Perfect Water for the Earth.

   

The WaterMax water softener is the most environmentally friendly domestic water treatment system on the market.


 
Environmental Benefits

Some of the substantiated benefits of using softened water are listed below:

Energy Consumption

Work published in France shows that a 1mm increase in scale thickness can reduce heating efficiency by an average of 6%, with the first 0.4mm showing a rate as high as 10%.

Another study by New Mexico State University, showed that over 29% more energy was used by gas heaters run on hard water, and 21% more with electric heaters. 

Detergent & cleaning agent consumption

The Association Franšais pour l?Etude des Eaux found, some 20 years ago, that soap and detergent use more than doubled in hard water. Since then detergent formulations have been adapted to take into account hard water, by the use of additives such as phosphates, yet many brands still indicate considerably different usage rates for hard and soft water. 

Both the additional detergent and the ?softening? additives increase the environmental burden of laundry and bathing activities.

Because of its scaling effects on sanitary ware, anti scalants are often necessary in hard water areas. These tend to be acid based, so are both costly and have an environmental impact.

Fabric life

A study carried out in a Chicago YMCA laundry, found that softening the water supply increased the life of frequently washed household items such as sheets, pillow slips and bath towels by 20-40%.

Life Cycle Analysis  (LCA)

As yet, analyses of the full life cycle of water-based processes are very limited. However, a Swiss study on domestic clothes washing showed that ion exchange softening was environmentally better than either the use of unsoftened water, or captured rainwater.

Environmental Impact of softening 

  • Raw material consumption

Softening equipment is manufactured from various materials, including common metals and plastics, which are recyclable. It should also be noted that the equipment has a long life, typically over 15 years, and requires minimal maintenance. 

Salt (sodium chloride) is the only consumable product used in the process. Salt is abundant in nature, in both geological deposits and the sea. It is relatively easy to extract and process, with little chemical use or impact on the landscape. The principal environmental impact is the energy used in evaporation, which can be minimized by the use of efficient evaporator systems.

Salt Discharge

The regeneration cycle of the softening process discharges a quantity of sodium chloride into the drainage system, and sodium ions are added to the softened water. 

Studies on septic tanks and sewage systems have repeatedly shown that the sodium/salt burden has no harmful effect. Sodium does not bio-accumulate which ensures that there are no long term environmental effects.

Modern equipment is designed to have a high salt efficiency, so effects on the overall chloride and sodium environmental burden is minimized.

Water consumption

The regeneration and backwash cycles of the softener do use more water than standard consumption. However, modern demand-driven equipment keeps wastage to a minimum.