A water softener works by passing the incoming hard water through a sealed container called a resin vessel, which contains literally thousands of little ion exchange resin beads.
These beads attract and retain any hardness in the water i.e. scale and scum, that causes so much damage to your system. When these beads become saturated with hardness, they need cleaning and regenerating for continued use. This is done by rinsing them with a weak solution of brine (salt and water).
The brine together with the previously collected hardness is then automatically flushed down the drain. This process takes place automatically as determined by the softener, with all the homeowner having to do is ensure the softener is kept full of salt. For this purpose we recommend that only tablet salt – available from a local plumber’s merchant – be used.
In conclusion therefore, salt does not soften the water. The resin cleans/softens the water and when required the salt cleans the resin. During the cleaning of the resin, the previously collected scale and scum is discharged automatically down the drain together with the salt.
At no time does the salt enter the water supply.