How safe are water treatment methods
Physical water softening and filter systems
To the Protection against limescale there are different methods and procedures. This is the most common Ion exchange process, which removes the lime from the water. Furthermore can also Dosing systems stabilize the lime in the water. However, corrosion protection is often in the foreground when it comes to dosing technology. Both methods are explained below.
Under the physical water treatment methods there are dubious products whose effectiveness has been scientifically refuted. In addition, the water purification with special Filtering techniques to be distinguished from pure water softening. Water filters, which are usually installed directly after the water meter at the house entrance, are used to filter out the smallest particles from sand or rust as well as other suspended matter from the water.
These particles can also disrupt the function of the cold and hot water systems and cause consequential damage. In combination with a Pressure reducer Such a water filter can also protect equipment and fittings from pressure surges and damage. However, these water filters do not remove the hardness-forming minerals calcium and magnesium. For that you need one further treatment.
A Orientation aid for the selection of the procedure offers the German Gas and Water Association e. V. (DVGW). The devices marked with a test mark by this association correspond to the generally recognized rules of technology and can be used in accordance with standards. The DVGW certification mark guarantees, among other things, that water softening is economical and ecological.
Water softening by means of an ion exchanger
This is what happens with most water softening systems Ion exchange process for use. The magnesium and calcium ions, which are harmful from a technical point of view, are exchanged for sodium ions. This is why such a system is also called an ion exchanger.
When viewed in detail, the water softening systems contain resins with sodium ions deposited on their surfaces. It will mostly be Polystyrene-based synthetic resins used. These are also used in the food industry and are therefore harmless. If the untreated water comes into contact with these resins, the magnesium and calcium ions displace the sodium ions and accumulate on the resin.
The Line-damaging magnesium and calcium ionsn are now chemicallybound. This means that only technically harmless water can flow into the pipes. However, the resin cannot bind calcium or magnesium indefinitely. This is why the resin is regularly regenerated and can therefore be absorbed again. For this purpose, the ion exchangers are equipped with a Regeneration salt solution flushed.
The water softener takes the Regenerations automatically in front. The frequency or frequency of regeneration depends, among other things, on the degree of hardness and the amount of water consumed. In the case of individual systems (the system only contains one ion exchanger), only hard water is available during regeneration. Intelligent systems place the regeneration in the times when normally no water is used. In order to be able to use softened water continuously, the installation of a double system with a second ion exchanger is recommended. This then takes over the water softening while the other regenerates.
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