Soft water is essentially free of dissolved calcium or
magnesium. A small percentage of homes are supplied with naturally soft
water. But since naturally soft water usually has not been neutralized
by passing through mineral layers in the ground, it can be quite
corrosive. Softening water mechanically, such as with a home water
softener, does not make it corrosive, however.
Since calcium and magnesium are not present in soft water, no adverse
reaction with soaps and detergents occurs. The result is the virtual
elimination of soap scum and the corresponding reduction in time spent
cleaning. Hair and skin can "breathe" more readily.
And the School of Consumer & Family Sciences at Purdue University
recently conducted a study which proved that the life of clothing and
household textiles was prolonged up to 15 percent when they were washed
in conditioned water.
Soap usage can be dramatically reduced with soft water. Since the water
is already soft, the cleaning agents have no hardness minerals to react
with and overcome, lather more readily and work more effectively. In
fact, a large proportion of the ingredients in most soaps and detergents
consist of chemical "water softeners" added to prevent the reaction
between the detergent and the hardness minerals present in most water
(the reaction that forms a sticky residue or soap curd). Since such
chemicals are not necessary for cleaning with soft water, less soap is
Soft water households experience considerable savings on laundry
detergent, dishwashing detergent, bath soap, hand soap, shampoo and many
other cleaning products.
Many soft water users purchase pure soaps, products that do not contain
additional chemicals or perfumes. These supplies are generally less
expensive but clean just as well as (if not better than) their heavily
Since soft water contains no scale forming minerals, it leaves the inside
of plumbing and water using appliances free of solidified rock.
Appliances operate more efficiently and last longer when using soft
water. Leading appliance manufacturers have recognised the problems that
hard water causes and recommend the use of home water conditioners to
help their own products operate more efficiently.