If your softener is using an excessive amount of salt, it is recharging much more than it should. This can be a result of an out of date hardness setting, or a metering hiccup.
The latest systems also have low salt indicators or even a remote monitoring alert to let you know you are running low on salt and help make water softener maintenance easy. Overall, because newer models are more efficient with salt use, they typically only need to have salt added every 6-8 weeks.
How long does a 40 lb bag of water softener salt last? We hear questions like this often, and the answer is that it really just depends on your system and your household water needs. While the average family will go through a 40 lb bag about once a month or so, your amount will vary.
Salt Level Is Too High (or Water Is Too Low)
More than that could mean you're adding too much salt, which is wasteful and encourages crusty build-up. Ideally, you should fill salt to an appropriate level for your household, then let the salt drop until you see the water level in the brine tank.
This may be because you have a leak near the softening unit, or in your home's pipes, toilets or faucets. Even small leaks can waste up to a gallon of water every day. You might put off fixing your leaks, but leaving a leak as it is will waste money and increase your water softener salt usage.
If your softener isn't working properly, you will begin to see hardness symptoms and iron popping up in the home, and your softener will use less salt than it had previously. You may also notice less water pressure throughout the home.
As a good rule of thumb, you should start by setting your water hardness level on your water softener to match the GPG of your water supply. For example, if your report shows you that your water hardness level is 10 GPG, then you need to set your water softener to 10 GPG as well.
As mentioned above, the usage will vary depending on your family's needs and the hardness of your water. If your softener is sized and programmed correctly, you will probably use between 40-50 pounds of salt per month. Make sure you check your salt levels at least once every month.
If there is a layer of sludge, you'll need to completely clean out your brine tank and refill it with salt and water. Note: Salt clogs in small valves and other assembly pieces can prevent your water from being softened. We suggest having a professional find and remove the clogs as this may require disassembly.
No brine tank should ever be FULL of water! Newer water softeners, especially those with digital valves, only have water in the brine tank two hours before the softener goes through a cycle. These “dry” tanks should not have water in them between cycles.
The resin beads in water softeners get their sodium ions from salt that you must add to the brine tank portion of your softener. This is usually in a tank that is completely separate from the one containing the beads. You'll need to refill the salt once every two to three months.
Water softeners today work off gallons going through the system. A house with one person with a 30,000-grain unit will go through a 50Lb bag of salt every five to six weeks.
Salt mushing occurs when the salt in the brine tank recrystallizes to create a sludge. A salt bridge is a dome of hardened salt creating an air pocket between the water and salt. Both of these situations prevent proper recharging, and you'll need to check your brine tank to resolve either of these issues.
For a properly sized water softener system, the industry standard for an average family of four, (with a water hardness level of 7-10 grains per gallon) will use approximately 10lbs of salt each week or one 40lbs bag of salt each month.
Water softener crystals are better for two-part water softening systems, but it's still best to use pellets in homes with a high water (and therefore salt) usage, because they're less prone to clogging the brine tank.
We've shared what you need to know in this guide. Water softener salt usually lasts 2-3 months, but the best practice is to top up the salt tank with one 40-pound bag every month.
Typical traditional block salt comes as 4kg blocks – 1 x 4kg block is about the right amount for one person, per month to use. The new HarveyArc model uses mini curve salt blocks, with average usage of one pack per person per month (2 x 2.15kg blocks per pack, equivalent to 4.25kg.)
The higher the number, the harder your water is, and the problems it causes will be more extensive. A single grain per gallon (gpg) is equal to 17.14 parts per million (ppm).
If the hardness is set too high, the softener will cost more to operate and waste water, costing you extra money. If your home has new copper plumbing, do not run the water softener for at least the first few weeks you use water at your house.
Simply put, you know something is wrong with your water softener when its regeneration schedule shifts. If your softener is running more or less often than every two to three days, it's a good idea to call a professional to come take a look at it.
This is a common problem. clogged eductors or jets in the control valve can cause a water softener to not draw in salt. A malfunctioning brine or float valve can be the culprit. A brine line that has a hole in it can also cause a water softener to not use salt.