Water Softeners Report


Prices & Costs

Water Softeners > Prices & Costs
  Price Range
  Installation Costs
  Upkeep & Maintenance
Although purchase price is the most substantial expense, the overall costs associated with operating a water softener involve more than just the initial outlay for the unit. There are several primary types of additional expenses, although precise amounts will vary depending on the specific model of water softener and the extent of water usage in the household.
There are a number of different factors which play into the final price tag associated with any given water softener product.

A residential water softener can cost anywhere between $300 and $3,500, depending on the brand, model, size and feature set. Generally, you will be able to find an excellent product in the $1,000 to $3,000 range from any company on our list of Top Brand Manufacturers. If you have a larger household with greater water consumption, you will need a water softener with a higher grain rating and this will correspondingly push you higher in the price range.

The second largest one-time expense for a water softener after its purchase price is usually its installation. If you use the services of a qualified professional, installation can run you anywhere from $100 to $1,000, depending on the complexity of the system and the extent to which your home water piping and drainage setup needs to be updated or modified. Installing the unit yourself can definitely save you this expense, but unless you know what you are doing you may end up incurring greater expenses that you save. For more details, you can see our Installation section here.

In addition to purchase and installation, most water softeners use a dual tank system which requires that the brine tank be refilled with new salt every month or so. The actual frequency and amount of the refills will vary depending on product model, salt type, and water usage, but a typical expense on salt and additional water comes out to somewhere in the range of $150 to $300 per year.

As long as the water softener works as intended, there should be no other upkeep or maintenance requirements beyond refilling the brine tank. However, over time parts can wear out, pipes can corrode and lines can become damaged. A common problem for water softeners involves the brine line, the injector and the filter screen. These are typically fairly inexpensive components to replace and sometimes the issue can be solved simply by flushing the brine line. In other situations, particularly if the water softener is old and no longer working properly, it may make more sense to buy a new unit rather than try to fix the old one.

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