What Is Water Softener Regeneration- Complete Guide

water softener regeneration cycle


A water softener device will, of course, save you from a ton of trouble. It is, in fact, true that water softener is very easy to use. But can you tell me only one name of any device that runs for a lifetime? No machine can run for the whole life without maintenance once or twice a year.

A water softener also can’t operate for an eternity. So, you have to take care of it time to time by proper maintenance. But how will you actually do it? Stay with me for the rest of the article to know all about the regeneration of water softener and how to do it properly!

Mechanism of Regeneration of a Water Softener?

If you want to know about the regeneration of water softener, you have to first know about how a water softener works. The working mechanism of a water softener is really very simple. Let me take you to a short tour:

Hard water mainly contains ions and minerals. Among the ions, Calcium and Magnesium ion are mostly present. NaCl or sodium chloride is poured in the water softener. There is a resin tank in the softener where the main part occurs. The calcium and magnesium ions are exchanged with sodium ion.

But when all the ions are exchanged, where do the magnesium and calcium ions go? This is the part where regeneration is necessary. The whole resin tank gets filled with the ions. It holds on all the ions to itself. That’s when the resin bed can’t clean more of the ion. Regeneration is that period when the minerals and ions that spoiled the resin tank/bed are being cleared. During this regeneration period, water softener floods this resin bed by the help of brine water. By this treatment, the ions are flushed and the resin bed can start its work insistently.

Why do You Need to Regenerate a Water Softener?

Increasing Efficiency

Regenerating a water softener is of the same importance as using it. Without proper treatment, a water softener can never provide you its 100% efficiency. The minerals and ions will block the path for sodium ion. So, regeneration is very important to increase its efficiency, Icecubicle Blog has explained it in detail.

Prevent the Flow of Hard water

If the resin bed is fully covered with minerals and ions, it won’t give its best performance. The process of softening water will be reduced by 40-60% if the resin bed is covered in ions. You will get the hard water in all the taps and pipes. Thus, you must regenerate the water softener for proper use.

Protect the Resin Bed

As you have known, the machine needs regeneration when the resin bed is full of ions. If the resin bed is covered in these types of minerals, it will not last long. The bed will get a permanent damage. Then you have to buy a new one. If you do not want that, you must regenerate the water softener time to time.

Protect the Softener from a Permanent Damage

Faulty machines are never good. They are harmful to both users and environment. This is not any of us wants. Moreover, if the resin bed is covered for a long time, the whole water softener will suffer its consequences. To protect the softener from a permanent damage, regeneration is necessary.

Economic Benefit of Regenerating Water Softener

Now let’s come to the point. How will you be benefitted financially if you regenerate your water softener?

Regenerating will Prolong the Life of the Water Softener

When the resin bed will stop working properly, the water softener will have to bear the extra pressure of water. The water softener has its unique system of working. If either of the parts is damaged/stops working properly, the whole machine will suffer a system loss thus reducing its life. So, properly regenerating will save the cost of buying a new water softener frequently.

More Economical than Buying a Resin Bed

A water softener serves you the utmost benefit. But when the resin bed is compromised, it won’t be of any help to you. Frequent regeneration will help you keep your resin bed perfect for use. Then it will last for a very long time. Not maintaining properly will cost you much because you have to buy a resin bed frequently. This is too much expensive than regeneration.

Less Detergent Cost

If your water softener stops functioning properly, the main task of the water softener- softening hard water, will get hampered. And that’s why you will get hard water in every showers and tap. Therefore, you will always need a lot more detergent and soaps while washing the clothes. Properly regenerating will save you from the extra wastage of money.

Step by Step Guide for Regenerating a Water Softener

Mainly water softener can be regenerated in two ways:

  1. Automatically
  2. Manually

Regeneration of Automatic Water Softener

In the “Automatic Softeners,” you won’t have to worry about anything at all. Moreover, all the modern water softeners are automatic. So, when you buy an automatic water softener, you just have to pour about 40-60 lbs. of salt crystals (according to different devices) and push the ‘Regenerate’ Button. Wait for some time (half hour-one hour) and all done.

Of course, these devices are fully automatic. They regenerate frequently by their own. But if you still want to regenerate by your own will this is the process.

Manual Regeneration of Water Softener

If you want to regenerate/backwash your water softener by your own hand, here are the steps you should follow.

  • Step 1: Powering Off Properly

The first and foremost step is to power on your machine. Switch it off and then plug it put from the socket. This step is must for the properly regenerating the water softener manually.

  • Step 2: Turning off the Water Line from Source

The water softener is now connected with the main water tank of your water softener. To turn off the flow of water in the water softener, always turn off the water line from the source.

  • Step 3: Opening up the Water Softener

This is the interesting part. Just take a screwdriver and locate where the resin tank is. Then open up the screws of those part. The resin tank of the softener should come out easily after this part.

  • Step 4: Taking out Residual

You will see there is some water in the ground of the resin bed. This water should be taken out and dumped. These are of no use to us.

  • Step 5: Take the Resin Bed Out

Now is the part where the ‘manual regeneration’ begins. Take the resin bed out and grab some salt and water by your side.

  • Step 6: Breaking the Ions & Minerals

You will see that in the resin bed, there is a thick layer. This is the layer that contains ions and minerals. This is the main part where the automatic water softeners do their work.

As you have taken out the resin bed, take a strong object and break the ions that are blocking the ground of the resin bed. These should not be strong enough. So, this part will be easy for you.

  • Step 7: Wash with Brine Water

When you are done breaking all the ions of the resin bed, now it’s time to finish off properly. Take some water and discharge the sodium chloride salts in it. As you have broken all the ions and minerals, you would need about 10-15 lbs. of salt will be enough to backwash the resin bed.

Just mix the salt with the water and wash the resin bed with it properly.

  • Step 8: Re-installing the Resin Bed

When you have finished doing all these works perfectly, it is time for you to re-install the resin bed of yours. Put the resin bed in the slot of the water softener like before and close the softener with the screws.

  • Step 9: Completion

That’s it. You are done. Now connect the line of the water softener with the water tank. Plug the socket in electricity. Your water softener has been successfully regenerated/backwashed.

Cautions You Need to Follow while Regenerating

  • Always read the owner’s manual properly.
  • Be careful when removing the resin bed for manual cleaning.
  • Remember to plug out the socket from electricity.
  • You must be careful while handling the resin bed
  • Use the perfect salt-crystal for a perfect regeneration.

Final Word

Regenerating or Backwash of a water softener is nothing but the process of cleaning the resin bed as the ions and minerals block it. Manually doing it is painful as well as risky.

Almost all of the current water softeners have the automatic regenerating process. You never have to put your hands in the softener to get this done. But if you still want to do it, you can follow these processes and easily do the backwash by yourself.

But from our position, if you want to hear the truth- our recommendation is Always to use the modern softeners that come with built-in regenerator. Because then you will find a very easy and effective way of regenerating without any trouble.

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