How Water Softeners Work
The untreated water passes through a cylinder containing ion exchange resin beads. The hardness salts – calcium and magnesium ions – are attracted to the resin and removed from the water supply producing softened water.
The resin is automatically cleaned or “regenerated” by rinsing a small amount of brine through the cylinder. The accumulated hardness does not enter the water supply and is automatically flushed away to a nearby drain. Refreshed by regeneration, the resin is again ready to remove hardness minerals.
The frequency of regeneration depends on the hardness and volume of water being used. It takes place automatically, and is initiated in one of the following ways:
The frequency of regeneration is controlled by setting the pins on the skipper wheel. Once set, the softener will automatically regenerate at the pre-determined interval – normally at 2am. There is also a manual override to enable a regeneration to be initiated at any other time.
Regeneration still typically takes place at 2am. This unit measures the daily water usage and statistically averages the last 7 days consumption – ignoring very low or zero water usage. The computer will determine if the softener has sufficient remaining capacity to supply the next days needs, if not it will initiate a regeneration. As water consumption changes the computer compensates and regenerates accordingly.