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How Resin is Used in Water Softening

diagram charged resin beads

When considering the purchase of a water softener, you will probably come across mentions of ‘resin’ in your research. Resin is an essential component in the operation of a water softener. Understanding how resin is used in water softening can be very helpful in choosing the right water softener to meet the needs of your home.

Resin is used in water softeners to initiate the ion exchange process, which draws the hard water minerals from your water. How well a water softener performs is dependent upon how effectively it uses its resin. When comparing water softener options bear in mind that the type of resin and the design of the tank can make a significant difference in how it performs.

The Water Softening Process

Resin consists of small plastic spheres that are packed in a “bed” inside the water softener tank. The resin beads hold a negative charge that will attract any positively charged ions. The pre-charged resin beads are initially coated with sodium ions, which naturally hold a positive charge. The ion exchange occurs when the positively calcium and magnesium ions in the water supply knock the sodium ions off the resin beads, and attach to the resin in their place. In the process, the sodium ions are released into the water.

Once all of the resin beads are saturated with hardness, the water softener needs to have a way to get rid of the calcium and magnesium it captured in order to continue collecting. Regeneration occurs as the water softener flushes out the hardness mineral ions using a brine solution. This solution is created when salt, or sodium chloride, is added to the water softener. The brine replenishes the resin beads with sodium ions. The positive charge of the resin is strong enough to break apart the sodium chloride compound coming in from the salt water, so they are ready to begin the ion exchange process again.

Different Types Resin

What makes the WaterBoss special is how it uses “fine mesh” resin. Fine mesh resin is much smaller, so more beads are tightly packed into the bed compared to regular resins. WaterBoss uses a unique vacuum packing process, which provides the greatest capacity for hard water treatment in the smallest space possible. While fine mesh resin has greater softening capability, the fine mesh resin alone is not the key to optimizing effectiveness. The design of the water softener can aid in its ability to use the resin most efficiently.

WaterBoss – Designed For Better Performance

The typical approach to water softener design often leads to a problem called channeling or tunneling within the resin. It happens when the hard water creates a path or channel through the resin, which becomes oversaturated with mineral ions. The WaterBoss is engineered to assure that the water is distributed more evenly through the resin bed, thus maximizing the use of all of the resin. Sodium ions attach to the surface of the resin, so the more resin beads that come into contact with the water, the more effective the cycle becomes.

Super fine mesh resin and the patented WaterBoss design allow it to deliver unsurpassed quality in water treatment.

Contact your authorized WaterBoss dealers to learn how we can meet your water treatment needs!