Not everyone understands the reasons for water softening processes. The fact is that if water is comprised of a substantial volume of magnesium or calcium, it is designated as being “hard.” This tupe of water can cause pipe clogs and make it difficult for detergents and soaps to fully dissolve after use.

Water Softener Process

The process of making water softer involves removing the ions that produce hard water, usually magnesium and calcium ions, but sometimes including iron ions as well. Water softener units can be connected right to the water supply at issue in order to achieve the desired result.

A quality water softener is designed to have a long lifepan, and usually require little more than some minor routine maintenance and refilling with salt, whether solar, rock or evaporated salt is preferred.

Those who are using pure types of salt in their water softeners have discovered that conditions of high humidity or excessive accumulations of salt can cause clogs to form. Salt that becomes wet before it is utilized starts to bind. With the passage of time, a solid, hard mass can form in the tank, halting the flow of water.

Pure Types Of Salt

This is the point at which the softener will cease its proper function and will no longer utilize salt to make the brine required for soft water. There are some key things to watch for and ways to solve the problem should it arise.

A way to determine if this problem is occurring is to look at the salt pellets beneath the layer that sits at the very top. If there is a wet block of solid salt, there is an issue that requires resolution.

Now, it is time to turn the water supply to the softener completely off. This can be done with the bypass valve or at the faucet itself. Take a long-handled tool such as a mop or broom, tip it upside down into the softener.

Next, use the long handle to tap on the solid salt block to dislodge it. If the handle is not effective, try using a tool that is sharper. Once this has been accomplished, remove loosened pellets from the top and keep chipping away, but take care that no holes are punctured in the softener. Scoop up successfully dislodged chunks.

This is the point in time at which water at the softener’s bottom must be vacuumed. Then, a couple of gallons of heated water should be poured over whatever salt block remains and another quart into the well that holds the brine.

The softener can be turned back on and the added water should sit for a period of roughly four hours. Manufacturer instructions for regenerating the machine should be followed, and additional attempts to break remaining salt solids should be made. No salt should be added until all the old is used.


It may be necessary to repeat vacuuming and adding of water a few times before success is achieved, but in the end, the softener should return to normal function. For more information visit