When you install a water softener in your house, one of the things you need to be aware of is how to keep it clean. The resin inside your water softener will accumulate the minerals from the water - that's how it makes the water soft. Unfortunately, this leads to a buildup of minerals in there, so you need to clean it periodically. If you've never done this, here's what you need to know.
Choosing Your Cleaner
The most important part of this process is ensuring that you have the right cleaner. You need a cleaner that is specifically designed for water softeners, and one that will exchange the minerals for sodium ions. If you're not sure what to use, you can talk with your water softener installation contractor.
This is important, because you may need a cleaner that's heavily targeted to one specific element. If you know your water is rich in one mineral, look for a cleaner that's designed for it. Otherwise, a traditional softener cleaner should work well for what you need.
Treating The Softener
Make sure you don't use the water in the house while you're treating the water softener. Add the cleaner to the brine tank or the salt tank of your softener. Read the package directions carefully so you know how much to add, as it can be different with each brand.
Once you've added the cleaner, it's time to set the tank into regeneration. This will tell the system to recharge the resin. Locate the regeneration control on the control panel. You may need a screwdriver to turn it. For most models, turning it clockwise will engage regeneration mode.
The resulting solution from this cleaning cycle will be discharged into the mineral tank. Once that's done, repeat the process one more time to ensure that the system is sufficiently clean.
Restoring Your Water Flow
After you've run the system through a cleaning cycle for a second time, it's time to restore your water system. Turn the regeneration knob clockwise to restore water flow, then turn on the nearest faucet. Let the water run for about fifteen minutes so that the cleaner is fully flushed out of the system.
Keeping The System Clean
Repeat the process as needed to keep your water softener clean. If you're not sure how often you should do it, talk with your local contractor. He or she will test your water and give you an idea of how frequently the system should be cleaned. You can also set up a maintenance contract and have your local technician handle the cleaning and other care for you. This is often best if you're not confident in your ability to do the task properly.
For more information, you will want to contact a company such as American Water Treatment.