Can You Drink Softened Water?

A general question we encounter from our customers is whether it is safe to drink water from a water softener. It is a common myth that the salt levels in the water, once it has been softened, cause it to be unsafe to drink; however, in the majority of cases in the UK, this is not true.

There are some exceptions to this, which we will discuss in further detail, but first, let's look at how a water softener turns hard water soft.

At a glance:

  • In most of the UK, it is safe to consume softened water, as the levels of sodium after softening remain below 200 mg/l, the level considered safe to drink.
  • One of our water experts can test your water supply to determine how hard your water is and, therefore, how much sodium would be produced to soften it.
  • If required a separate hard water-filtered drinking tap can be installed, so you get the benefits of softened water for your shower and appliances, but keep your drinking water separate. 

How Do Water Softeners Work?

Water softeners turn hard water into soft water using a chemical process called reverse osmosis. This is where hard water is fed into the water softener, where resin beads extract the calcium and magnesium ions and replace them with a small number of sodium ions before providing the softened water back into your household.

What Are The Recommended Levels Of Sodium In Drinking Water?

For water to be considered safe to drink, the sodium levels must remain below 200 mg/l. The majority of the UK has mineral levels low enough that the sodium required to soften it is well within the recommended parameters.

One of our water experts can test your water supply to determine whether you are in the regional bracket of extremely hard water. We will advise you on the best course of action, which may be installing a separate hard water-filtered drinking tap.

Book a consultation with a water softener specialist Book a consultation with a water softener specialist

Is There Salt In Softened Water?

Water softer requires you to put in block salt, which is another factor that fuels the myth of softened water being unsafe to drink due to salt levels. However, this is inaccurate as most salt is used to soften the resin beads, and only a minimal amount enters the water.

Can You Drink Water From A Water Softener?

In the majority of areas in the UK, it is perfectly safe to consume softened water, as the levels of sodium after softening remain below 200 mg/l.

It is worth noting that a handful of extremely hard water areas in the UK contain a level of minerals too high to extract with sodium ions and still remain below the recommended amount.

It is also suggested you don't drink softened water if;

  1. You have been prescribed a low-sodium diet.
  2. You are using it in baby formula.
  3. You are watering plants with it.

Additionally, some people don't like the taste of soft water.

If you have any concerns regarding the consumption of soft water, please consult a medical professional.

Alternative To Drinking Softened Water

If you don't want to consume softened water but would still like the benefits of a water softener for your home, there is still a solution.

We can fit a designated hard water drinking water tap in your kitchen to provide you with clean and fresh drinking water. A water filter removes all the impurities from the hard water supply, such as traces of pipe metal, which often makes drinking it unpleasant, and provides you with freshly filtered water. This will improve not only the taste but the quality of your consumable water.

The Benefits Of A Water Softener

There is a range of benefits when installing a water softener, and these benefits support your entire household. Hence, a water softener is still worth considering even if you don't want to drink the softened water.

When you install a water softener in your home, you are removing the minerals that cause limescale. When you drastically decrease the amount of limescale in your home, you will see the following;

  • A decrease in your energy bills due to increased efficiency in your appliances such as water heaters.
  • A reduction in spending on products, such as shampoo, soaps and cleaning supplies.
  • Spend less time cleaning limescale from bathrooms and kitchens.

Furthermore, soft water can alleviate dry skin and eczema, softer and brighter-looking clothes when washed and protect the hair with natural oils resulting in healthy-looking hair.

You can contact Kinetico today for more information regarding our water softeners or filtered drinking taps.