Don’t Get Scammed into Buying a Salt-Free Softener

… because there is no such thing as a salt-free softener, unless you want to include a whole house reverse osmosis system in that definition.

Selling “salt-free water softeners” is a marketing dream, because there are no rules and conventional and usual definitions of certain words can evidently just be ignored.  That might explain why many “marketing” companies are selling devices which they call “salt-free water softeners.”  The truth is: they do not soften the water – they don’t even come close!

See, when you sell a traditional water softener that uses salt, there is an objective, scientific way to determine if the system is actually working.  There are various companies who make water test kits that enable you to ascertain whether the water is actually soft or not.  You can measure the exact softness of water with scientific certainty. These testing kits include titration methods and even test strips.  If you buy a water softener that uses salt to regenerate, its performance can absolutely be measured. Every time.  In every situation. There is no vacillation – the water is soft or it’s not!  It’s something that can be scientifically proven.

That’s why some companies like selling what they call “salt-free water softeners.”  They say they soften the the water without salt while leaving the beneficial minerals.  According to every dictionary I have ever read and even Alexa (from Amazon), soft water is “water where the hard minerals (calcium and magnesium) have been removed”.  But the salt-free marketing guys say that their process leaves the beneficial minerals.  Thus, by there own words they establish that it is not soft water.  It can’t be if the hardness minerals are not removed. So, if it doesn’t not soften water, it cannot be called a “WATER SOFTENER.”  Yet, that is exactly what they call it.

They might call that good marketing.  I call it what it is:  Straight up Consumer Deception and it’s about time some consumers stand up and say to their State Attorney General:  “I was told that this was a salt-free water softener and it flat-out did not soften the water.”  If you are not sure, you can take the water to a lab and have them test it.  I get e-mails and letters every day from consumers who complain that they have been duped by companies selling salt-free softeners which do not soften the water.

Of course it didn’t soften the water, BECAUSE SALT FREE SOFTENERS DO NOT SOFTEN THE WATER IF THEY DON’T REMOVE THE MINERALS.  It’s impossible for it to soften the water. That’s  just a marketing scheme designed to trick you into buying their product. According to any dictionary, to be called “soft waterthe hardness in the water must be removed to below 1 gpg (grain per gallon).”  It’s really simple – if you have a process that removes the hardness to below 1 gpg, then you can call it a water softener.  If you don’t, then it is not a “water softener.”  Furthermore, to call it that is downright deceptive to the consumer.

I am amazed that these companies continue to get away with their deception… but I guess most people don’t have the inclination, money or time to take these marketing companies on.  In the interest of full disclosure, at US Water Systems, we sell the Pulsar Limeblaster Soft-free Water Conditioner.  It does not soften the water, but it does “condition” it so that limescale will not stick. It works great to prevent limescale from forming in water heaters, faucets and fixtures, but it does not soften the water.  No way, no how.

You see, soft water forms incredible suds when you wash clothes, wash dishes, shower or shampoo.  With REAL soft water you will use 50-75% less soap, shampoos and any cleaning product. That does not happen with systems that do not use salt.  In fact, many of the systems that are called “Salt-Free Softeners” do a really poor job of preventing scale.  Our Limeblaster comes with our 365 Day Satisfaction Guarantee because it works better than any other lime scale prevention system.

Look, we sell a lot of Limeblaster Salt Free Conditioners, but we call them what they are: Conditioners, that prevent limescale, not softeners that remove the lime from the water.  They do not increase the sudzing of soaps and the like and do not eliminate spots like a water softener that uses salt, but if you don’t care about that, then a Limeblaster Salt Free Conditioner may be for you.

Listen Up: If you are a marketing company selling a product that you call a salt-free water softener, and it does not make the water soft, shame on you!  It’s time you came clean.  Call it what it is: a salt free conditioner.  That’s fine – just don’t lie and call it a salt-free water softener… and consumers:  It’s time these guys were turned in to your State Attorney General.  If you are unsure if your salt-free softener makes the water soft, send a sample to us at US Water Systems.  We will test it and tell you the truth.

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This article has 7 Comments

  1. I get the no salt systems are not as advertised, but is there a system for softening water that is not bulky and require lots of space?

  2. Hi,
    We live in central florida, a little town called Leesburg. Our house is 10 years old and we are having a problem with black rings in the top of the toilet bowl where the water comes out to the bowl. Our water does not appear to be very hard and the taste isn’t too bad. What do you recommend as far as a system that isn’t a lot of maintenance.
    Thank You

  3. 1. We used the TAC for many years and were never happy with the results. The Limeblaster works much better. PERIOD!

    2. The Limeblaster is much less expensive to purchase and operate.

    3. There are lots of worse things in the water than Food-Grade Polyphosphate and a Reverse Osmosis removes substantiall of of that!

  4. Salt free systems are a joke and a big scam in MI, they do not work, they put about 15lbs of some type of resin that turns hardness and lime into a type of crystal form that allows it not to attach to the plumbing,But cause heavy white in dishwashers, water still has hard feel to it. BIG SCAM.

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