If you are living in a hard water area, you already know a water softener repair is an essential tool for everyday living.
Yet, what can you do when your water softener breaks down or starts messing up with the functionality?
That is why you got us – to tell you everything about a water softener repair.
Let’s be clear – a water softener is not an easy peasy machine, but a complex system and many things can go down if you try to repair it yourself.
On the other hand, you can always call technical assistance provided by the company you bought the appliance from, but this would probably break your budget.
Yet, some water softener repair requirements are not so pompous as you may think at first and can be solved in one-two-three.
Salt-based water softener systems face a couple of common issues we are going to list down below and explain how to perform a water softener repair if the situation got alarming.
Water Softener Repair – Step by Step
If your water softener is apparently not working, we have an ace in the sleeve for this situation.
Fixing the issue with the water softener is medium-complex, takes one-day maximum, and will cost you just a few bucks in the best case.
1. Clean the salt tank
Salt may form a crust or hard dome within the brine tank.
The main reason for building up deposits is – you.
If you add too much salt in the system or if you add it too frequently, the salt will domesticate itself and build up even more deposits with time.
Use a long wooden stick to break up the salt.
After this, use a shop vacuum to remove any sediments from the tank.
To polish it up completely – clean the tank with soap and water.
2. Clean the resin tank injector
Dirty salt is the number one enemy of the injector, as it gets easily plugged with salt sediments.
First of all, you want to shut down the water supply.
Next, run your water softener through a manual regeneration.
This will relieve the water pressure gathered within.
Once you are sure the pressure is gone, detect the caps on your water softener and remove them on both sides.
On the right side of the head, you will see the injector, while the injector screen is on the left side.
Clean the injector thoroughly and take the caps back.
3. Clean the resin bed
If your water contains iron, you should clean the resin bed and kick out iron from the system.
You will need an appropriate agent for refreshing the bed.
Also, read through the directions in the manual related to this matter.
To eject the iron, remove the cover from the control valve, and then depress the regenerator knob.
Turn it in a clockwise direction to turn on the “service” mode.
Then, run the agent through your water softener.
4. Ensure enough water is flowing into the brine tank
Just because there is some water in the tank, that doesn’t mean there is enough water in it.
If water is being pumped up into the bottom of the tank only, that means your water softener loses its softening capacity.
Maybe it is just the brine tank float that hadn’t been switched to straight.
If you can notice the float can’t move up freely, make sure to provide its free movement.
On the other hand, if this doesn’t work – you will have to clean all the parts inside the tank and probably replace the switch.
5 Most Common Water Softener Issues (and How to Fix Them)
If you want to repair the water softener system in your home, you can do that easily by following our above-mentioned tips and steps.
Yet, if you don’t maintain in properly from that moment on, the issue will come up again.
That is why we want to draw your attention to the most common problems related to your water softener.
Salt usually form up within the lines, but it can find its ways and build up inside your tank as well.
After some time of improper maintenance (just in case you were a bit overburdened with other things), salt may form a bridge at the base of the tank.
Sodium is the one to blame here, as it tends to form hard piles of salt deposits down below.
One of the issues you may face with your water softener is that is works seemingly, but it doesn’t soften the water the way it should.
If you have noticed the motor if working just fine, but you can spot a major difference in hardness of the water in comparison to a couple of days ago, then, my dear – you have a salt bridge in your tank.
It certainly won’t take long to identify the issue, as you would notice the change in water and check on motor.
When everything is taken into consideration, and you can see an obvious issue – it is the salt bridge.
You can purchase a solution for this, but you can also save a couple of bucks and simply find something sturdy.
A broom handle would work just fine, as all you need is to reach the bottom of the tank and break up the salt bridge.
When you did this, make sure to reach the sides of the tank as well, inspect the edges, and break up any deposits.
Any flowing through system faced blockages at least once.
The salt and minerals tend to accumulate and create blockages over the course of the years.
This happens in the line mostly, as well as the brine line and the filter screen.
Noticing the degree of softened water reduced significantly is a clear sign of a blockage.
Make sure to read the previous paragraph about tricks on how to repair your water softener and remove any blockages.
The most effective systems with dealing with hard water are salt-based systems indeed, and such systems use resin beads.
Most of the time, resin beads have a lifespan as long as the water softener system you are using.
Yet, sometimes, certain things can cause them not to work at their full potential.
An almost certain sign those resin beads need your attention is the off-recurring demand for recharging.
Another method to detect the issue is to check out for any particles floating in your water softener.
Water transports small parts of the bead continuously in case the resin bead broke.
Yet, there is nothing much you can do about this – you will weather clean them out or replace them.
A water softener system requires the user to use it manually.
However, this is the reason why some users mess up their systems a bit.
Among all those settings, it is indeed easy to make an error.
After all, some water softeners are truly so complicated and complex that you would have to have a vast technical knowledge to be able to break into the mechanism.
With such softeners, even the slightest change in setting may result in a blockage.
The best thing you can do here is to get confident with the manual.
Read it a couple of times if needed.
The troubleshooting section is essential to get into.
Yet, you can always call a professional in case you don’t want to risk on this one.
Now we come to the heart of any appliance – the motor.
Just like any other type of motor, the water softener motor can fail as well.
Maintenance is always the key to ensuring your softener’s engine won’t give you up anytime soon.
When the system won’t start at all, you can be sure it is the motor issue.
Don’t panic right away – double-check on cables and if they are damaged.
If everything looks sleek, but the appliance is still not reacting, you would probably have to replace it with a new one.
How to Extend the Lifespan of Your Water Softener
Now that we explained how to perform a water softener repair and listed the most common issues that may happen to you with this appliance, we want to tell you how to keep your water softener as healthy as possible.
Here are some simple, yet efficient recommendations:
- Even if you are using pure salt, make sure to clean the tank at least once a year,
- Avoid standard rock salt, as it may cause building sediments up (which is a health concern as well), while sediments may cause blockages and clog the injector or the valve,
- Use iron remover if you know there is iron in your drinking water,
- Pay attention to the position of the softener’s drain line, as it should be installed above the grate of the drain and it shouldn’t be pushed down into a floor drain.
Water Softener Repair Recap
Even though sometimes you would have to call a professional to repair or replace your water softening system, that doesn’t mean you can’t fix some of the most common issues with the appliance. If you stick out to our tricks (even if you are not a seasoned DIYer), you can perform a water softener repair in just one day.
In case you need a new one, check out our review for the best water softener.