US Water Agency Moving Away from Salt-based Water Softeners
Residential water softeners use an average of 30 pounds of salt per month and contribute to 10 per cent of all salt in the sewer system, says Martha Davis, executive manager for policy development at the Inland Empire Utilities Agency (IEUA) in Chino California in an article by the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin.
And according to the IEUA, these numbers are just too high, because they are looking at banning salt-based water softeners, and are offering rebates to those that make the switch.
A switch to a saltless alternative saved the city of Santa Clarita $110 million since it did not have to install expensive salt removal technologies at its sewage treatment plants.
But the move to a salt free alternative has been met with some resistance from companies such as Culligan, who faces losing 30 to 40 per cent of their business should this switch occur. Culligan sells salt-based automatic water softeners which, depending on their capacity, can run anywhere from $999 to $4,000.
Eric Rosenthal, Culligan’s senior vice president of marketing says having soft water allows entire households to operate more chemically-free.
“You use less detergents to get things clean,” says Rosenthal. “Sediments created by magnesium and calcium stick to the heating elements and increase costs of heating the appliance by 25 per cent.”
Which is true, but Rosenthal continues on to say that removing the salt-based water softeners is just trading one problem for another, meaning removing the salt will lead to more detergent and energy consumption due to limescale build up since no other alternative water softener can do the job quite the same.
But, the Scalehound unit incorporates technology that utilizes the power of quartz and provides users with a greener solution to hard water. The unit softens water without using chemicals or salts, saves the user money at the same time and can replace conventional water softeners. And the price is right with the Scalehound, costing 65 per cent less than Culligan’s least expensive unit.
To read the whole article by the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin click here.
To read more on how Culligan is fighting against the ban of salt-based water softeners click here.
On June 15, 2011 the IEUA board moved to authorize a ban on the installation, replacement or enlargement of automatic water softeners in the Chino district. The existing automatic softeners are allowed to remain in place.
The IEUA received more than 100 letters of support from residents and more than 25 letters from water agencies, environmental groups and businesses.
To read more on the movement click here.
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