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Hard Water is HARD!

Hard Water is HARD!

The Smiths' live in the Santa Clarita Valley, an area known for exceptionally hard water. The average hardness in the S.C.V. is around 31 g.p.g. (that is grains per gallon.) That is the measure of total dissolved solids in the water distributed to that area of southern California. Wikipedia describes them as follows: The most common chemical constituents are calcium, phosphates, nitrates, sodium, potassium and chloride, which are found in nutrient runoff, general stormwater runoff and runoff from snowy climates where road de-icing salts are applied. In other words, the water is HARD.

Hard water causes many plumbing failures including but not limited to excessive faucet leaking, toilet leaks, noisy water heaters, high water pressure inside a home, restricted flow at fixtures, tankless water heater failure, and more. The Smiths' had many of these symptoms and so they called a soft water tank delivery service to have them install an exchangeable tank system in their garage. This is almost always a first reaction, especially so in the Smiths' case because regenerating salt systems were banned COMPLETELY in Santa Clarita in mid 2009. The sales pitch being that the soft water will reduce the obvious issues related to hard water.

The service sales person is ignorant to the fact that the system will do little to nothing to remove existing scaling. He or she was also told and will tell you that their system is the best on the market and it is a proven technology. It is not that person's fault that they were lied to or that they are ignorant. The water wasted in recharging those tanks is incredible, it is a tds replacement, not removal, that means that the bad dissolved solids have simply been replaced with other solids like sodium or potassium, in other words the water got slipperier not soft. Oh and by the way the tanks will need to be replaced a minimum of twice a month to keep that slippery water. The least I've heard of a client being charged for this "service" is $50 per month, for those of you who are not quick mathematicians that is $600 per year and $6000 over ten years if you rule out an annual increase for being a good customer. Great sale, wrong move.

I would look to a more sustainable solution, there are many "salt free" conditioners on the market, a lot of them are advertised as easy enough for any homeowner to install. I have yet to see one of these "easy" systems that works whether it is a wire wrap system, bypass valve, or super fine particulate system I have not been overly impressed. Now lets get to the meat of the whole thing, American Water Filter and ZetaRod, these two work... and the right way! Both of these systems are stand alone incredible use of technology. The American Water Filter system has no flow restriction, it uses rare earth magnets to charge the water and leave them in a suspended state to remove existing scale and prevent future buildup. It requires no maintenance has a great flow rate and comes with a 60 day money back and ten year replacement warranty. This unit does not draw electricity from your house, can be installed anywhere and is a set up and forget it unit that will not leave you wanting. ZetaRod is another good system that is plumbed in line, meaning no restrictive bypass valves, and requires only a little maintenance. This system plugs into a standard 110 volt outlet, must be installed out of direct UV light, and only costs about $3 per year to use. It follows the same technology of suspending the molecules to remove and prevent scaling. Now this is a solution to the problem, not a bandage that needs bi-weekly changing.

The Smiths' who initially signed up to spend $6000 over ten years installed an American Water Filter System for less than $2000, they are under no contract and do not need to have strangers in their garage or lurking through the bushes every other week. The value they received was simply having the peace of mind not to have to worry about problems related to hard water, and by the way, no more scrubbing that expensive glass shower door until it scratches just to get rid of water spots.

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