How to Install a Water Softener

In this guide, we show you how to install a water softener. Water softeners play a crucial role in making hard water soft. Hence, reducing household water expense.

In this article, you’ll learn:

  1. Step by step process on how to install a water softener
  2. How different water softeners are installed
  3. A suitable location for installing a water softener
  4. Water Softener Installation Cost

Important Considerations before Installing the Water Softener

Remember the following:

  1. The instructions – carefully read the guidelines provided and confirm that all the system components are available before beginning the installation.
  2. Confirm that you comply with all the applicable building, electrical, and plumbing codes for your specific region.
  3. Ensure you install the softener unit on the main water supply
  4. Ensure you turn off the electricity and water heater
  5. Ensure you have Pipe Thread Seal Paste and Teflon Tape to cover threaded connections
  6. Check the guideline for the recommended location for the unit. Systems with electronic components should not be installed outdoor or in uncovered areas.

Step By Step Process on How to Install a Water Softener

Please note that there are different types of water softeners. Each softener has its installation instructions provided by the manufacturer.

So, remember to always refer to these instructions when doing the installation. These water softeners include:

  • Salt-Based Water softeners
  • Salt-Free water softeners
  • Magnetic System
  • Reverse Osmosis System

Installing a Salt-Based Water Softeners

This is Do-It-Yourself (DIY) whole house water softener Installation.

Confirm all parts of the system are included in the delivered package.  For example, bypass valve, drain line, wax, brine tank, softener tank, PVC tail Adaptors

You Will Need:  

  • Copper
  • PEX plumbing or steel
  • PVC
  • Tape measure
  • Teflon Tape
  • Seal Paste
  • Pipe cutters

Step By Step Process for a Whole House Water Softener Installation

  1. Locate the shut-off valve and Turn off the water at your house main supply line. The shut-off point for most home’s main water supply is located in the basement near the water meter.
  2. Drain all the water pipes. Open the lower valve and Let all the remaining water run out.
  3. Locate the most appropriate area you wish to install the system. The ideal place would be along the main water line
  4. Make the softener tank leveled.
  5. Remove the covering cap at the top of the system tank
  6. Fix the bypass valve onto the tank (Some softeners have in-built bypass valve). Tighten using your hands. A bypass valve allows you to turn off the water supply to the softener without affecting the supply for the whole house.
  7. Connect the inlet and outlet of the softener as marked on the head. The inlet side connects the incoming water and the outlet side connects outgoing water (usually marked somewhere). Double-check to see you have gotten the correct flow direction.
  8. Fix the drain hose to the system’s drain valve fitting. Carefully Clamp the hose appropriately. The other end of the drain should be 1½ inches above the drain hole to stop back siphoning of wastewater. (Follow the manufacturer’s instructions in this section).
  9. Connect the overflow valve to the brine tank and clamp it down well. The overflow connection is an important safety measure which prevents an overflowing brine tank.
  10. Add salt inside the brine tank. Refer to your manual for the amount and type of salt you should use.
  11. Put the system in bypass mode while slowly turning on the water. Check for any leaks.
  12. Plug in the water softener and begin full regeneration cycle. Check the manual for instructions on how to set the flushing schedule.

ABC Waters Fleck 5600 Water Softener– Installation Tutorial 

Installing a Salt-Free water softener

You will need

  • Teflon tape
  • Tubing
  • Tape measure

Step By Step Process

  1. Choose the installation location
  2. Shut off your home’s water supply
  3. Open the lower valve to Drain out the water from the pipes
  4. Use the pipe cutter to cut the pipe leading to the main supply line. Fix elbow fittings to allow inlet and outlet ports.
  5. Place a shut-off valve around the pipe and fix the carbon pre-filter

The Following Video Describes How To Install A Salt-Free Water Softener Unit

Installing a Magnetic Water Softener


Wear a pair of gloves Before installing the magnetic water system . Keep metal objects away from the magnets as its difficult to separate them once attached.

  1. Choose an ideal location for placing the magnetic softener. This step should not be hard as these systems are small and can fit in most places.
  2. Refer to the instructions on how to open the magnet box.
  3. Once you open the magnet box place it over the pipe and secure it with the provided wingnuts.

Installing a Reverse Osmosis System

For this installation, we’ll consider under sink reverse osmosis systems.

You will need:

  • Electric drill
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Hammer
  • Screwdriver
  • Teflon tape

Step By Step Process

  1. Confirm that all components of the system are included in the delivered package. Check if the whole unit will fit under your kitchen sink. The system can also get installed in different locations like the utility room or the garage.
  2. First, install the sink’s spigot. Then, Fix the RO spigot on the countertop or the kitchen sink. You can drill or use the existing holes for the spigot.
  3. Connect the red tube to the faucet and lock the spigot in its housing.
  4. Position the tank under the sink top spigot and fix the tank connector. Use the tape to thread the tank nipple. Fix spigot tubing on the tank.
  5. Connect the system to the main water line.
  6. Connect the rest of the tubing.  Check the manufacturer’s instructions on correct tubing connections. The tubing connections include; one coming from the main supply to the filter unit. Another one, the RO tube connects to the sinks and to the storage tank. Another tube from the storage tank to the sink spigot.

Water Softener Installation Cost

The cost of water softener installation is dependent on a number of factors like; Water Softener Size, water condition, and type of water softener.

If you wish to Do it yourself, the cost will be about $500. This amount caters for the basic installation kit needed for the job.

On the other hand, professional installation will depend on the size of your home.

-1 – 2 bedroomed house will roughly cost $700 to $ 1,000.

-Bigger homes with more than 3 bedrooms will cost about $1,500 to $ 2,500.

-The maximum you should pay for professional installation is $5,000. Also, the unit must be large and complex to install.

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