How Do Water Softeners Work?

Do You Need a Water Softener?

If you live in South Texas or the Hill Country, chances are you have incredibly high levels of calcium in your water supply, meaning you have hard water. Kinetico Water Softeners offer a brilliantly engineered system to transform your water supply into clean, soft water. No matter if your water supply comes from the city or a private well, your water contains minerals that can harm your appliances and dry out your skin.

Water Softener Ion Exchange Process

The ion exchange process turns your hard water into soft water by trading the hard water minerals for sodium minerals in resin beads. The resin beads are all negatively charged exchange sites, attracting the positively charged ions in hard water, like calcium and magnesium. As these positively charged hard water minerals make contact with the resin beads, it pushes the positively charged salt ions out, as like charges repel one another and opposite charges attract. As the resin beads become exhausted from this exchange, water softener salt is added to recharge them and continue the process.

Water Softener Salt

Although the salt content in soft water isn’t usually enough to concern homeowners, people who are sodium sensitive may need to look into one of our saltless tank systems. The more efficient a water system you have, the less salt you have to add to the water. A saltless system conditions your water by crystallizing calcium, reducing scale build up in pipes and appliances – and on glasses and dishware.

What’s the Difference Between Hard and Soft Water?

If you’re unsure of what kind of water you have in your home, spotting the difference is easy. One of the most common ways to know if you have hard water in your home are the spots on your clean dishes or glasses. This is due to the way hard water and soap interact. Another common sign you have hard water is stains and buildup in your bathtubs, toilet bowls and sinks. Dishwashers and other appliances alike will collect these minerals, causing them to work hard and break down quicker. Soft water will allow you appliances to be more efficient, dishes to shine and save you money in the long run.

Most of the country – 85% of U.S. homes – suffer from hard water, and San Antonio is no exception. If you live in or around San Antonio and the Hill Country and you don’t have a water softener system, it’s time you get one. Instead of asking how does a water softener work, start asking what system will work best for you – and contact us today for a free estimate.

Read more Frequently Asked Questions.

Water Softener Products

Explore more Kinetico water systems and decide which is the right fit for your lifestyle.

Premier Series

Kinetico Premier Series water softeners supply homeowners with the ultimate solution to their water conditioning needs.

Signature Series

The Kinetico Signature Series of water softeners is the perfect economical choice for many homes. The new Signature Series is modeled after our original water softeners.

Essential Series

Kinetico Essential Series water softeners feature all of the essentials for basic hard water challenges.

Trusted by San Antonio Companies and Homes

Kinetico Water Softeners are rated 4.9 out of 5 from over 1,000 reviews.

Jonathan Myers

We're very glad we got this installed. The technician, Alberto, was very polite and thoroughly explained what he was doing and what we would need to do.

Kyle James

Alberto kept me informed on his arrival time. He was professional and exceeded my expectations concerning the install of the water filtration system. I also need to put a plug in for Tracy for her patience and skills at making things happen behind the scenes...a true unsung hero. They both deserve a raise!


I just had my system installed by Alberto and Jay, and I wanted to say that they rocked. Got it all in and gave me some instructions to follow, all while being determined to detail and professional. Thanks, fellas.