1. Water Hardness : what is it and why does it have to be prevented
Hardness in water is the addition of the concentrations of multivalent ions, principally Calcium and Magnesium. Certainly other iones such as Iron, Manganese, Zinc, and Aluminum are also responsible for the total water hardness however, the concentration of these ions is generally insignificant compared to Calcium and Magnesium and are not considered in standard measurements of water hardness.
Two of the most important benefits of using water softeners are:
- Reduction of scale-forming tendencies by Calcium and Magnesium carbonates.
- Reduced consumption of cleaning detergents
2. What is membrane water softening? : hardness removal with NF (nanofiltration) membranes
Nanofiltration(NF) and reverse osmosis (RO) membranes are used to separate dissolved solutes from water. In particular, Nanofiltration membranes are typically used to remove organics or hardness and are often referred to as softening membranes.
One of the main advantages of NF versus typical ion exchange softening is that Calcium and Magnesium are not replaced by Sodium but just removed by the membranes. This way boiler cycles in steam production are increased and traditional regeneration-salt storage is not needed any more.
3. How can water hardness be removed with ion exchange resins?
Ion exchange resins are used for softening hard water where calcium (Ca2+) and magnesium (Mg2+) are efficiently exchanged for sodium.
Ion exchange water softening have the following benefits:
- It effectively removes hardness while maintaining a stable pH.
- It is a proven effective technology with many years of operating experience.
- Requires little operator attention
4. Are electromagnetic and magnetic water softeners effective?
Magnetic and electromagnetic water softeners use a controversial and unproven technology that uses magnets installed around a pipe to create a magnetic field that is supposed to prevent hardness scaling.
There is no scientific or technical evidence to prove that magnetic or electromagnetic devices available in the market as water softeners have any physical or chemical effect of water hardness.
With no evidence about their effectiveness or improvement in the water quality these systems have been challenged by different international water associations and experts, hence Warercore doesn’t recommend the use of these devices.