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Water Softener vs Filter

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WATER SOFTENER vs FILTER: The Difference Between Each.

Bianca Shaw explains the difference between a Water Softener and Water Filtration System.

Water Softener vs Filter

Wednesday, May 4th, 2022

      Water softener vs filter, what exactly does that mean? Well, water issues are never a “one size fits all” which is why various different types of water treatment systems exist in order to address all your possible water needs. 

An easy way to categorize the most common water issues is by which ones can be treated with a water filter and those that can be resolved with a water softener. While these systems may seem similar they serve different purposes.

To break this down even further we will explain the difference between water filters vs water softeners, their benefits and what water concerns they can eliminate. 

In order to better understand the difference between water softeners vs filters, it is important to understand what contaminants can be found in your water and why they may need extra processing via a water treatment system.

Background Water Softener vs Filter
Softener vs Filter Diagram Revised

What's in my water?

        If you live in a city you may be aware that your tap water is generally treated by your utility company however that process is usually very minimal therefore contaminants and water hardness are often still an issue for many homes.

A few contaminants that are commonly found in water include the following :

  • Nitrates
  • Arsenic
  • Lead
  • Manganese
  • Sulphur
  • Calcium and Magnesium (water hardness)
  • Fluoride
  • Bacteria, viruses and other microorganisms
  • Chlorine & Chloramine
  • Mercury
  • Pharmaceutical drugs
  • Volatile Organic compounds (VOCs)

As well as many other harmful pollutants and contaminants. 


What is a water filter?

       Let’s focus now on the water filter side in order to better understand the differences between water softeners and filters.

If you’ve ever noticed an unpleasant taste or odour in your water it’s most likely due to unwanted chemicals being present.

The only way to remove these chemicals in order to have better tasting and better smelling water is to filter these chemicals out of your water.

How do we filter these unwanted chemicals out? By installing a water filtration system! A water filtration system is used to filter out undesired chemicals, pollutants, particles and bacteria from your water. 

Some examples of what a water filter will remove from your water include heavy metals such as lead, mercury and arsenic.

However that’s not all, a water filter will also remove any traces of pharmaceutical drugs, pesticides or any disease carrying microorganisms. 

Why do heavy metals need to be filtered?

       If heavy metals such as lead, mercury and arsenic aren’t eliminated from your water they can wreak havoc on your health. Some of these harmful effects can include reduced mental and central nervous function as well as cause damage to your lungs, kidneys and liver.

There is evidence that children are more susceptible to heavy metal poisoning and the toxic effects that heavy metal poisoning leads to. 

According to water-education, children and infants that are exposed to heavy metals can result in learning difficulties, damage to their nervous systems, memory disorders, and behavioural issues.

Sadly, it has also been shown that heavy metal poisoning in children and infants can also end up resulting in brain damage. This is why it is pertinent to stay vigilant and filter these metals out of your water.

The 4 stages of water filtration

       Another main difference to note between a water softener vs filter is that a water filtration system uses a process which involves four stages.

All of this happens through 4 stages of water filtration which include sedimentation, filtration and disinfection and purification.

The following is a breakdown of how the four stages of water filtration work:

Stage 1 Sedimentation: During sedimentation, the PP 5 micron filter filters out large particles which then settle at the bottom of the water supply.

Stage 2 Filtration: Once the particles have settled to the bottom of the water supply, the clear water on top will pass through filters equipped with activated coconut carbon. Activated coconut carbon is used in order to remove organic chemicals and gases from your water.

Stage 3 Disinfection: After filtration, a KDF copper filter is used in order to kill any remaining parasites, bacteria and viruses to protect your system from scaling and bacterial growth.

Stage 4 Purification: Lastly, the purification process uses catalytic carbon to eliminate chloramines and hydrogen sulphides from your water.

Why a water filter is so important

Chlorine is known for causing an unpleasant odour and taste in your water. It is also known for reacting with other metals that can lead to forming harmful chemical compounds.

If lead is ingested it can cause lead poisoning which can lead to brain, kidney, and reproductive health issues especially in adults.

Chlorine is known for causing an unpleasant odour and taste in your water. It is also known for reacting with other metals can lead to forming harmful chemical compounds.

Fluoride can be toxic, especially to infants and children. Having excess fluoride in your water can lead to organ damage within the body.

Water-borne bacteria can become hazardous to your health, sometimes leading to infections or increasing the risk of diseases.

Once the water filtration process is complete you will have safe, clean water throughout your entire home. You will now notice the difference in taste and smell due to chlorine and chloramines being filtered out. 

Not only that, but you will also have peace of mind knowing there are no harmful chemicals entering your home, or affecting your and your family’s health via your drinking water.

SoftBlu Water Softener System

What is a water softener?

        Now we can move on to the first half of water softener vs filter and focus on what exactly a water softener does. 

The main issue a water softener is used to address is called “water hardness.” In simple terms water hardness is a negative issue that can wreak havoc on your skin, hair and home appliances. 

Hard water is water with an excess amount of calcium and magnesium. Elevated levels of those chemical compounds in your water can result in a film of residue being left behind if used to wash your hands, body, dishes or laundry.


Water hardness is known to reduce the effectiveness of your appliances including your laundry machines. This may lead to your clothes looking dingy due to having to be washed more than once to get rid of residue buildup. 

This issue can also ruin the efficiency of your appliances which will directly impact your energy costs meaning you will be paying more out of pocket on your energy bills.

So now that we’ve established that water hardness is a negative issue you’re probably wondering how do we solve this issue? 

If water hardness is negative then it only makes sense that water SOFTNESS is on the positive side, if that’s what you guessed you’re absolutely right! 

Soft water is free from any harsh chemicals which means that it is gentle on your skin, appliances, hair and the rest of your home.

A water softener softens your water by capturing the calcium and magnesium ions in your water and replacing them with sodium and potassium ions. 

So not only does a water softener remove ions that cause water hardness it also ADDS ions to add softness to your water.

After the water softening process is completed you will get to enjoy softer skin, shinier hair and no more residue buildup around your appliances.

Hard water in Canada

      Many municipalities in Canada have hard water, some of these cities include Waterloo, Mississauga, Toronto, and Guelph.

Hard water is measured by “grains per gallon” also referred to as GPG, to put this into perspective hard water is considered anything within the range of 7-12 GPG https://homewater101.com/hard-water-numbers and anything higher than that is considered “extremely hard water.”

Many cities around the GTA have a gpg range that places them in the category of having hard water, this is why water softeners are important in households across the country.

Can a water softener filter water on its own?

      Another common question that comes up when comparing water softeners vs filters is can a water softener filter water on its own?

Water softeners do filter water however they only remove specific contaminants which are different from what water filters remove. 

This is why it’s important to understand the difference between a water softener vs a water filter, how they work and what their purposes are.

Is a water filter better than a water softener?

When it comes to water softeners vs filters both water treatment systems have their own advantages as they both address different water issues.

As was previously mentioned a water filter is best for providing your home with great tasting water and reducing the risk of harmful chemicals that can be found in your water. A water softener is a great system that can do wonders for your skin and appliances.

It’s important to keep in mind that a water softener can provide you with many benefits however, the softened water is no safer than consumption without being processed through a water filter system.

It is always an option to have more than one water purification system installed but we will also show you a new product that does everything a water filter does as well as a water softener all in one convenient system.

Chlor N Soft 2 in 1
Water Treatment system

       Instead of saying water softener vs filter wouldn’t it be incredible to be able to address all of the aforementioned water issues by only installing one system? 

Well good news, that system exists! It is known as a Chlor N Soft 2 in 1 system https://eyehomesolutions.com/chlor-n-soft-water-filtration/

This system removes water hardness, provides water softness during ion exchange as well as filters out any particles and pollutants found in your water. 

By including a water filtration process alongside the water softener process you will have chlorine, harmful chemicals, particles, and microorganisms removed from your water while also removing water hardness.

Not only will you have better tasting, and more pleasant smelling water your body will thank you for allowing it to have healthy, shiny hair and skin while also reducing the risk of minor skin irritations caused by water hardness. 

 A Chlor N Soft 2 in one system is the best of both worlds. Instead of water filters VS water softeners, we decided to bring them together into one system in order to provide your household with the purest, softest water.

To get your hands on one of the Chlor N Soft water treatment systems head over to eyehomesolutions.com and start enjoying all the benefits of having healthy, clean water.

Why a Combined System is Ideal

     Combine water softening and water filtration systems such as the previously mentioned Chlor N Soft system are the most effective way to treat your water supply. A combined system will address all of your water quality issues.

Some issues may include the presence of harmful chemicals, an unpleasant odour in your water and also water hardness.

By installing a combined water softening and water filtration system you will have peace of mind knowing all the water throughout your home, whether it be your kitchen faucet, your appliances’ water supply or the water you bathe in will be treated and softened at the same time.

In Conclusion

In conclusion, if you’re still trying to decide between a water softener vs filter then it will depend on what issues you find present in your water. If you still have any confusion, having a water test performed by a professional can give you conclusive answers as to what’s in your water and from there you can decide which water purification system would best suit you and your water’s needs.

If you experience an array of the aforementioned water issues then a combined water softening and water filtration system such as the Chlor N Soft 2 in 1 system https://eyehomesolutions.com/chlor-n-soft-water-filtration/ will be your best bet in providing you and your whole home with protection.


1 thought on “Water Softener vs Filter”

  1. Great information and very clear and straight to the point. I would encourage others to review this article.

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