Does Your Water Softener Affect Your Septic System?

Does Your Water Softener Affect Your Septic System?

If you have a septic system, you’ve likely heard all about routine septic maintenance. You’ve probably even brushed up on your septic care knowledge before hosting a party or building a house. After all, the integrity of your septic system depends on how your household handles water.

But how does a water softener fit into the picture? 

This type of system treats the water that goes in your home, while the septic system treats what goes out. Naturally, you may wonder if your water softener affects your septic system.

HOW DOES WATER SOFTENER WORK?

First thing’s first: Water softener is a solution for hard water. This “hardness” is caused by high levels of minerals, which mainly include calcium and magnesium.

Hard water isn’t dangerous, but it can be annoying. Common problems associated with hard water include:

  • Soap scum in bathtubs  
  • Mineral deposits left on dishes
  • Stiff laundry
  • Mineral buildup in pipes
  • Extra soap required to clean hair, dishes, or other surfaces

A water softening system can help these issues. It involves a resin bed that swaps the calcium and magnesium for sodium ions. The result is softened water, which flows through your home as usual.

When the resin is full of hardness ions, it begins a regeneration cycle. A high-sodium water, or brine, passes through the resin bed. The brine gives sodium ions in exchange for hardness ions. Eventually, it goes down the drain, taking the hardness ions with it.

WATER SOFTENER AND YOUR SEPTIC SYSTEM

Understandably, you might wonder how the process of water softening impacts your septic system. Maybe you’re concerned that the brine will harm your system’s natural bacteria. Or, perhaps you’re worried about the extra liquid entering your septic tank.

There’s also the concern that the hardness ions can disrupt your drain field’s absorption.

Well, we have some good news. A water softener does not pose a problem for your beloved septic system.

In fact, it can lend a hand. According to researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, softened water can promote the growth of “good” bacteria. This will only enhance the effectiveness of your system.

Another study by the Water Quality Research Foundation also found that the brine doesn’t cause overflows. The brine’s high content of calcium and magnesium actually helps solids settle, thus reducing the risk.

TAKE CARE OF YOUR WATER SOFTENER AND SEPTIC SYSTEM

While the above benefits sound great, there’s just one catch: Both systems need to be efficient.

Your water softener must operate properly in order to help your septic system. For instance, a water softener that regenerates too often will surely overload your septic tank.

Likewise, your septic system should be well-maintained. This includes being mindful of water usage and what is sent down the drain.

TREAT YOUR SEPTIC SYSTEM WELL WITH PARADISE VALLEY SEPTIC

Paradise Septic is ready to answer all your questions. We can explain how your water softener affects your septic system, along with general maintenance and care. We’ll even manage your pumping scheduling with our automated service.

By keeping up with regular maintenance inspections, you’ll help your septic system stay in good shape. In turn, you’ll feel good knowing that your water softener is helping — instead of harming — your system.

Paradise Valley Septic has served Phoenix and the surrounding areas for more than 18 years. We can’t wait to help you, too. Contact us at (480) 351-1725 to get started.

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