How to Use Soft Water
Now that your Kinetico water system is installed, you can enjoy all the benefits of having soft water. If you are not accustomed to soft water, here are some tips to follow to get the most benefit from your new system:
Use pure soap products.
Most leading brands of laundry soaps, household cleaners and shampoos contain large amounts of detergents. The harsh chemicals in these detergents are necessary when using hard water, but you can reduce your use or eliminate them altogether with soft water. We recommend you use pure soap products; clear liquid soaps without dyes and perfumes. If you continue to use your normal detergents, you should significantly reduce the amount used. Your local, authorized Kinetico dealer can provide you with more information and recommended detergent amounts.
Use less soap and household cleaners.
When using soap or cleaners with soft water, start by cutting the amount of soap you normally use in half. You may even find you can use as little as one-quarter the amount you were using before. Hardness minerals in water interfere with soap’s cleaning ability. Once they are removed, soap can do its job better. Even though you’ll use less soap, you’ll get more suds and cleaner results.
It’s especially important to reduce the amount of laundry soap you use. Washing clothes in soft water not only means you’ll need less soap to get your clothes clean, but also that the soap you do use will rinse out completely. Washing in soft water makes your clothes look whiter and brighter, and they’ll last longer too. It is very important not to let your clothes sit in the washer after the cycle is complete. Detergent buildup can stain your clothing. Again, Kinetico recommends that you use clear, liquid soaps, without dyes or perfumes.
After bathing in soft water, your skin should feel “slippery.” It’s not soap left on your skin. What you’re feeling is your own smooth skin without any leftover soap curd or residue. When you bathed in hard water, you were never able to rinse this residue off completely. The soap curd that left a ring in your bathtub was also left on your skin. But now that you have soft water, you’ll feel soft, smooth and clean. The same holds true for rinsing shampoo out of your hair.
Reduce or eliminate the use of fabric softeners.
Fabrics washed in hard water retain soap curd or residue making them “crackle” when removed from the dryer or stiff if air-dried. Fabric softeners are necessary with hard water to keep your clothing soft, but with soft water, you can reduce your use of fabric softeners or eliminate them altogether.
Take special precautions with automatic dishwashers.
Soft water, when combined with caustic phosphates in some dishwasher detergents and very high temperatures in the dry cycle, can etch dishes and glassware. To prevent this possibility:
- use the “no heat” dry cycle on your dishwasher;
- use the minimum amount of a good quality, low phosphate dishwasher detergent needed to clean your dishes. This may be as little as 20 percent of the amount recommended by the appliance manufacturer or on the dishwasher soap box;
- wash good china and crystal by hand.
Special care for plants and fish.
Depending on your water hardness level, amount of rainfall and how often you water, you could use soft water for outside watering, but why waste your soft water? Water your lawn, shrubs and outside plants from an outside hard water faucet or put your Kinetico water system in by-pass before watering. See the “By-pass” service tip for instructions on by-passing your system. Many houseplants can be watered with soft water, although some houseplants can be highly sensitive to the elevated level of sodium ions in soft water. You may prefer to water houseplants with hard water or water from a Kinetico reverse osmosis system.
Fish accustomed to hard water may have trouble with an abrupt change to soft water. Make the change gradually over a period of seven to 14 days by blending hard and soft water until the tank contains 100 percent soft water. Once you begin using soft water, you should notice that your fish tank stays cleaner longer.
– From the Kinetico Owner’s Manual