A household water softener can be an appealing feature to buyers searching for Round Rock homes for sale. Hard water tastes harsh, causes scale and buildup on fixtures and dishes, and can shorten the lives of appliances. But having a water softener requires some maintenance if you want to get the most out of it during its lifetime. Here are a few tips from our real estate agents for keeping your water softener in good working condition for as long as possible.
- Check Salt Levels Once a Month
Salt is one of the things your water softener needs to do its job, so to properly maintain it, you'll need to refill the salt when needed. This isn't something you'll need to call a professional for, thankfully. With a properly working water softener, you should only need to refill the salt every couple of months, but you'll want to open up the brine tank at least once a month to check the levels, especially if you're using more water than usual. Unless the manual or the markings on the tank state otherwise, the tank should always be about half full of salt. If the level is lower, refill as needed.
- Inspect the Tank for Salt Bridges
Salt bridges are formations of salt inside your tank that prevent the water softener from doing its job properly. When you check the salt levels every month, you will also be watching for signs of salt bridges forming, such as salt levels that appear to never go down. To break up a salt bridge, pour hot water over the salt and then use something, such as a broom handle, to push the salt buildup down into the water. If you get a lot of salt bridges, it may be from using cheap salt, or it may be an indication that your water softener is in need of professional maintenance.
- Clean the Brine Tank Once a Year
Your water softener doesn't require a lot of maintenance, but you do need to clean the brine tank about once a year to keep it at peak performance. For your convenience, you can wait until the softener is almost out of salt before cleaning it. Dump the water and salt, scrub out the tank with dish soap and water, and then pour a bleach solution into the tank and let it sit for a little bit before dumping and rinsing. Once that's finished, you can reattach the tank and refill it with salt and water. Let the salt and water sit for a couple of hours before starting a regeneration cycle.
- Watch for Signs of Trouble
In addition to the regular maintenance mentioned here, it's important to also keep an eye on the quality of water in your home. If you start to notice signs of hard water, such as scale or buildup on fixtures and in appliances, in sinks and bathtubs, or in your water kettle and bathroom cup, it may be a sign that the water softener is no longer doing its job. Also, watch for tiny particles called "fines" in your water, which may signify that the resin in your water softener is getting old and breaking up. If you notice these signs, it may be time to have a professional check out your water softener.
Installing and maintaining upgrades such as a water softener can make your home more appealing to buyers when it comes time to sell. For more information about easy ways to boost your home's value and saleability, contact us today.