Do water softeners shorten the life of water heaters?

Photo of author
Written By John Stephen
I’m John, the person behind the aquahow blog. I love to investigate water conditions and ways of building water filters. Mostly for my aquariums and home use.

Yes. The water softeners can damage the water heater and reduce performance. Hard water requires extensive treatment before it passed through the filter. The water softeners corrode the anodes used in the heater. You have to replace it every year to keep it working. 

How does a water softener affect your water heater?

The minerals in the water accelerate the corroding process and reduce the lifespan of the heater. A high level of minerals, salt, metals, and many other substances makes the heater work at the optimum level to decrease the mineral capacity to make the water smooth.

Softening process may consume a significant amount of energy during the water heating process. 

Your water heater is used at maximum power at all the time. As a result, the anodes are depleted in the process, and their life span is reduced to a great extend.

To bring the heater to its standard capacity, you have to replace the anode to achieve the same level of performance.

Failure to replace the anode will make the heater less effective. Water softeners may also not work as required.

The water heater serves the purpose for around 8 to 12 years. The core function of the water heater lies in the internal mechanism where the anode is placed.

When the water heater developed the corrosion inside the tank due to the hard water substances trapped in the water, it needs replacement to get it back to the normal state. 

The modern water heater manufacturer uses the anode rod in the tank that prevents the water from developing corrosion in the tank. It essentially absorbs most parts of the corrosive elements.  

It protects the metal lining of the water heater tank and puts the corrosion away from it. The water software process is designed to filter out the hard minerals from the water, such as sodium, and release the softer water through the pipe. 

However, the soft water has more effect on the water heater as it can corrode the water heater anode faster than the hard water.

As soon as the anode is down due to corrosion, the substances in the water will slow through water and reach the water softener system, which eventually shorter the life span of a water heater.

Do water softeners destroy water heaters?

Yes. The Probability of the water heater’s performance drop is high when the water softener is connected to the water heater. However, many water heater manufactories use protective paint and material to prevent corrosion in the tank. Still, the damage can occur in the long run. 

The process called ion exchange is produced inside of the tank. Calcium and magnesium swap for sodium in the process. Sodium is a naturally great conductor of electricity.

The availability of sodium in a high quantity would speed up the decay of the steel tank. It is estimated that the depletion process of the steel is about 5 times compared to normal water use.

Does a water softener extend the life of a water heater?

The water heater core efficiency lies in the one single metal called anode rod. The anode rod is used in the water heater to avoid the corrosion of the inside metal of the tank. It plays a significant role in protecting the heater from serious damage.  

The anode rod is made of pure aluminum. Also, in some cases, the magnesium rod is used inside the water heater, depending on the easy availability of the metal in the region.

Without this metal, the water heater will develop corrosion inside and start leaking from everywhere.

The anode rod enhances the lifespan of the heater and protects it from damage. The steel has an opposite charge which keeps the water away from it, and it does not react to it. 

Freely moving corrosive minerals and minor electrical current would damage the water heater, and eventually, the whole system will collapse.

When the anode rod is placed inside the water heater, it starts attracting the corrode first. The anode sacrifices life to protect the water heater and extend the lifespan of the heater.

Do I need to flush my water heater if I have a water softener?

Generally, you won’t need to flush the water frequently. The draining process should be performed when a large unit of hard water is the process through the water heater. In case you have the water softener, you may have to remove the water regularly. 

Soft water also contains a good amount of calcium and magnesium.

When the water heater is heated, the large deposits of these minerals will block the water flow, and you are at the risk of clogs. As a consequence, the water heater performance will be reduced.

What is the best way to use a Water heater water softener combination?

There are several types of water heaters and water softeners are available in the market. They come in different sizes and shapes. Depending on your need, you can combine the two devices to produce a good result for your water supply system. 

These products are sold separately. You cannot find them together as they perform entirely different methods.

Also, the water heater has a limited capacity to heat the water at a specific temperature. Softener also requires special attention while using the product to keep them sustainable for the long run.

How does a water softener work with a water heater?

The Water software device works on the technology called the ion exchange. The method allows the device to eliminate calcium and magnesium from the water. The process is run when the hard water moves to the mineral tank. 

The tank has a special arrangement to flow the water from the spherical resin beads. The plastic beads contain polystyrene substances that are charge with the sodium ion.

Next, the water is sent through the resin beads, which have a negative charge to them.

On the other hand, the calcium and magnesium atoms have a positive charge. Both attract each other and form a single substance that resides in the tank. 

When the hard water moves through the resin, the beads take action to grab the mineral’s ions.

It filters the water and releases the less contaminated water. In this process, a large number of sodium ions is released. 

The resin strips the hardness of the water during the filtration process.

As the water passes through the mineral tanks resides at the bottom of the tanks. And lighter softened water flows out into your home through the connected pipelines. 

Continue Reading….