In homes with hot water, it is important to have a water softener. A water softener makes the water gentler on your appliances, clothing, and even your skin. A water softener is an appliance, and like all appliances, there are some things you need to do to maintain your water softener and ensure it is working well.

Thing #1: Check the Salt Levels

The one thing you need to do regularly when you have a water softener is to check the salt levels. The salt for your water softener is located inside of the brine tank; without enough salt, your water softener will not be able to do its job. 

It is easy to check the salt levels. Just lift the lid on the brine tank, and make sure that the salt takes up at least half-space in the tank. If it is not, you should add some more salt.

Thing #2: Clean the Brine Tank

About once a year, you will want to clean your brine tank, where the salt is located. Over time, sludge can form in this tank, which will decrease your water softener's overall efficiency. To keep your tank running efficiently, you need to clean your brine tank. 

To do that, you will need to put the system in bypass mode. Then, turn off the water softener, unplug it, and remove the brine tank. Take the brine tank outside and dump it out. You should dump the brine tank in a gravel pit or area. Don't dump the brine near any vegetation, as the salt will kill the plants. 

To clean the tank, you will want to use some cold water and dish detergent, along with a long brush, to clean the tank's inside. You can also put some bleach in the water and allow the water to sit for a while before scrubbing again. 

Be sure to rinse out the tank thoroughly and then wipe it down before putting everything back together. You will want to put the system out of bypass mode and add a little water to the tank before adding two new bags of salt. Allow the salt to sit for a few hours, and then allow the regeneration cycle to start. 

Thing #3: Keep an Eye Out for Salt Bridges

Finally, you need to keep an eye out for salt bridges. Salt bridges happen when salt binds together and creates a bridge of salt, with empty space under the bridge. If you check the salt levels frequently enough, you should just be able to break the salt bridge up using a handle or something that allows you to reach into your tank. Or you can pour some warm water on the salt bridge to break it up.

You can take care of these tasks on your own, or you can hire a plumber to deal with salt bridges and clean the brine tank for you.

To learn more, reach out to a water softener service.