Do Salt Free Water Softeners Work?

Do Salt Free Water Softeners Work?
By Mark Timmons
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Do Salt Free Water Softeners Work?

The simple and easy answer is NO, because in actuality, what many companies call "Salt-Free Water Conditioners" simply do not soften the water. By definition, a water softener is any device that reduces the hardness to below one (1) grain per gallon (gpg).  If it doesn't do that, it's not a water softener.  We have tested the following systems as to whether they are "water softeners" or not and here is what we found:
  • Pelican Naturesoft - The water we tested coming out of the device was not soft.
  • NuvoH2O - The water we tested coming out of the device was not soft.
  • Aquasana - The water we tested coming out of the device was not soft.
  • Apec Futura - The water we tested coming out of the device was not soft.
Yet, all the above companies persist in calling their products, "Salt-Free Water Softeners."  You know, if what I am saying is untrue, they could get together and sue me for liebel.  They can't however, because their products actually do not soften the water.  Let me make it clear, that I am not saying they don't work. What I am saying is that they should not call their products a water softener if they don't soften the water.  HELLO!  It's really simple, it either softens the water or it doesn't.  I can scientifically prove that they don't! Why would they call their products water softeners when they do not soften the water?  It's simple - people actually think they are buying a water softener that doesn't use salt so it allows them to recruit more customers... even if their claims are untrue.  Pelican, Aquasana and Apec Futura are all similar technologies to the old Green Wave "tank-type, media-based" water conditioners that US Water Systems used to sell.  I say "used to sell" because we have discovered a better and much more economical method. On May 1, 2016, US Water Systems released their new line of Green Wave Systems that work better ands cost less than any other system on the market today.  The new Green Wave salt-free water conditioner is the New Standard by which all salt free systems will now be judged! The Green Wave is the new revolutionary and economic way to deal with hard water. The Green Wave system uses a unique and patented dosing system which adds a small amount silicopolyphosphate (a food grade material) to the water, effectively "sealing" Calcium and Magnesium. Silcopolyphosphate is a "food grade" product and is safe for human consumption according to the WHO and FAO recommendations. It meets all FDA requirements for being "food grade." However, with so many chemicals, pesticides, rocket fuel, pharmaceuticals and 35,000 other potential contaminants in the water, we recommend that you utilize a reverse osmosis system for drinking water. RO takes out the silisopolyphosphate as well as all the rest of the "bad stuff." Reverse osmosis removes the largest spectrum of contaminants of any water treatment process. The Green Wave prevents calcium and magnesium salt deposits on sanitary systems, faucets, hot water appliances and inside pipework. The Green Wave water treatment method is environmentally friendly, uses no electricity and 100% safe for drinking water. Hard water is also bad for your skin. Dermatologists and specialists often recommend that patients treat hard water as this is gentler to your skin. Skin irritations and infections can be prevented or considerably reduced by treating hard water before use. By using the Green Wave, no Calcium deposits are left on your skin and soap residues are rinsed off easier and cleaner. Your skin knows the difference. Features:
  • No Salt
  • No Electricity
  • No waste water
  • No carbon footprint
  • Environmentally friendly
Salt free water conditioners exist for the purpose of preventing hard water scale, often called lime scale.  The Green Wave Solo is small, but mighty.  It prevents scale better than any salt-free system we have ever tested and is backed with a ONE-YEAR MONEY BACK GUARANTEE!

How we got here is important:

US Water Systems has been at the forefront of salt-free water treatment movement for the past decade. We started into the salt-free water conditioning industry over a dozen years ago and soon began using the nextScaleStop TAC(Template Assisted Crystallization) media, the concept of which was from German engineering.  We used it for a few years before switching to the Filtersorb SP3 NAC (Nucleation Assisted Crystallization) which was also of German engineering and in fact, was made in Germany. While we felt SP3 was superior, we were not satisfied 100% with the performance, so we kept looking at the different available technologies around the world. We looked at systems that used wires wrapped around pipes, like Easy Water, giant magnets, which are sold by a number of companies, and adding citric acid to the water to lower the pH by companies like NuvoH2O.  In our opinion none of these technologies were as good, than our GreenWave system using the SP3 Filtersorb media… but we weren’t satifsfied. In 2014, US Water became aware of technology that utilized a very compact system for the prevention of limescale buildup from the Netherlands.  We started testing it and we were very impressed.  Now almost two (2) years later, on May 1, 2016, we are incorporating that technology into our new GreenWave.  We believe that this is the ultimate salt-free water treatment system in the universe.  It is called The GreenWave System.  Not only is it compact, but it works more effectively at preventing limescale than any other product we have EVER tested!  It also is the most economical – Systems start at $399.95. It does not eliminate the Calcium and Magnesium in the water; however it seals the Calcium and Magnesium so it will not stick to surfaces or heating elements to prevent the buildup of lime scale.  The Green Wave preserves the Calcium as a crucial mineral for the human body, but totally prevents lime scale.  Furthermore, unlike traditional water softeners, the Green Wave does not use salt, does not waste water, uses no electricity and is environmentally friendly. Here's the full lineup: https://www.uswatersystems.com/systems/salt-free-water-conditioners
May 8, 2016
Comments
Grant
May 18, 2016 at 3:34 PM
This is interesting article. I found that European companies have been using a similar system for a few years. I am interested in using this product. Could you answer a few questions? 1. What is silcopolyphosphate or silicopolyphosphate (silico polyphosphate) ? I just tried researching that by itself to educate myself on what it is and cannot find much about it, could you elaborate a little more ? 2. I believe that since is is a phosphate that makes it a salt of some kind, is it is good for the body? 3. Is there any research or studies available that shows the success rate of using this product? 4. How does it effect existing plumbing that has scale buildup? 5. Are there any disadvantages using this type of system?
Mark Timmons
May 19, 2016 at 9:14 AM
Grant, Here are the answers: 1. It is a food grade powder which is also used in wine, meat, cheese, soft drinks and other food products. Please find enclosed the technical data sheet for your information. Also enclosed the certificate of compliance within the EN 1212 European drinking water regulations and also meets the requirements of the FAO (Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations) and WHO Expert committee on Food Additives (World Health Organization) 2. It is no salt and it makes it no salt. It only transforms into a liquid when in contact with water, coating the Calcium. It is good for the human body, especially for people with a sensitive skin as Calcium can be very irritant on a sensitive skin. Water treated with the Green Wave feels better on the skin and is experienced as soft water by customers and effectively improving skin conditions for them. 3. Yes, there have been studies on this, you can find them searching on internet also. In Germany water suppliers even use this method to keep their transport pipes free from build up of limescale. 4. Scale build up inside pipework will slowly disappear depending how much limescale has been built up. Normally it would take 6-9 months to remove it in an average situation. 5. There are no disadvantages using it for mankind or environment, it is 100% drinkable and food grade and needs no power or waste system. It protects against build up of limescale, however it preserves Calcium as a crucial component for the human body (teeth and bones)
Grant
May 19, 2016 at 5:38 PM
Mark, Thanks for responding to my questions. Where do I find the technical data sheet that you referenced? I looked for studies based using the terms in your article (silicopolyphosphate, Silcopolyphosphate, silisopolyphosphate), but I did not find anything. Should I be looking for something different when searching? Again thank you for spending the extra time to educate me I do appreciate it.
Joe G
August 4, 2016 at 2:51 PM
do magnet water "softeners" work??
Mark Timmons
August 4, 2016 at 10:00 PM
Yes, of course they work! Just not very well. Actually, I am being kind. They are a total waste of money in my opinion.
James Rinkevich
August 12, 2016 at 1:33 AM
Here is the study on this stuff http://www.isws.uiuc.edu/pubdoc/C/ISWSC-65.pdf yes, it works on calcium carbonate but not on magnesium. Fortunately most hard water is 90% to 99% calcium carbonate. But note that any magnesium will scale from it. Worse phosphates pollute surface waters and streams by promoting algae growth. They have been banned from detergents in many places.
Mark Timmons
September 15, 2016 at 3:59 PM
Sorry for the late response. The document you refer to is from 1957 ??? HELLO! The world has moved on since then, so did drinking water treatment. The product used in the Green Wave Solo system, Metaqua 187L is a corrosion / scale inhibitor for potable water systems. The scale inhibition effect is established by the threshold effect forming a stable calcium complex. The polyphosphates absorb the calcium ions thus forming a colloidal particle. This prevents deposition under potable water conditions. The tendency to precipitate rises with increased temperatures through heating or with increasing pH`s. This for Calcium and Magnesium ions. If precipitation needs to be prevented under high temperatures and high pH`s a softening step needs to be implemented to remove Ca and Mg. The working principle of Metaqua 187L is mainly focused on preventing Calcium scale under potable water conditions. Under these conditions magnesium will not likely precipitate because they are only present in a minor concentration compared to calcium. Precipitation of these ions will only take place when a supersaturated state for Ca and Mg is reached. Since Calcium is present in a higher concentration it is more likely to precipitate earlier then Magnesium. That is why it is more important to focus on the prevention of calcium scale and not Magnesium scale. The influence of phosphates on the environment are known due to abuse in 20th century. It is commonly known that (micro)biology including algea need N (nitrogen); P (phosphor) and P (potassium) to grow. If these food sources are available in abundance this will lead to an increase in growth / reproduction rate. That is why the use of phosphates is strictly regulated in European water treatment. As an example: the discharge limit for P in Holland, Belgium is set on 2 ppm of P. When Metaqua 187L is dosed a 3 ppm we would find less than 1 ppm of P, coming from our Metaqua 187L product, in the discharge water. Even at double dosing rates the influence would be little. This treated water is afterwards diluted, hundreds of times, by other water streams in the sewer system further reducing the impact of our treatment.
Dan
December 28, 2016 at 5:48 PM
Shameless plug, Your picture is on the home page of US Water Systems' website. Your product was on my short list of ones to buy but after seeing this kind of shady dealing I'm no longer interested.
Mark Timmons
December 28, 2016 at 6:17 PM
Dan, Please tell me what is shady about telling the truth! I am very interested!