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Home Water Softeners Comparison

How to Choose a Water Softener System

What are the best water softener systems to buy for your home? To answer this question, start by asking another — what are your family’s water usage needs? While the purpose of a water softener is to remove the concentrations of magnesium and calcium that cause water hardness, the product you choose to accomplish this goal depends on a wide range of external factors. The number of people in a home, the amount of water those people regularly use and the existing water hardness levels should all be considered in your product purchasing decision.

Below, you can compare our selection of water softener systems and brands. Each option comes with a convenient user manual that will simplify the installation process.

Product / Model Name EcoPure 31,000 Grain Water Softener

EP31
EcoPure 42,000 Grain Water Softener

EP42
EcoPure EPHS Whole Home Hybrid Water Softener & Filter

EPHS
Whirlpool 30,000 Grain Water Softener

WHES30
Whirlpool 40,000 Grain Water Softener

WHES40
Whirlpool Pro Series Water Softener/Whole Home Filter Hybrid

WHESFC
Dimensions D 19.75 in
W 16.5 in
H 47.75 in
D 19.75 in
W 16.5 in
H 47.75 in
D 19.75 in
W 16.5 in
H 47.75 in
D 19 in
W 18 in
H 43 5/16 in
D 19 in
W 18 in
H 47 7/8 in
D 19 in
W 18 in
H 47 7/8 in
Rated Softening Capacity (Grains @ Salt Dose) 12,300 @ 2.4 lbs.
26,200 @ 7.7 lbs.
31,300 @ 12.9 lbs
16,600 @ 3.3 lbs.
35,300 @ 10.3 lbs.
42,200 @ 17.4 lbs
14,000 @ 2.9 lbs.
29,800 @ 9.3 lbs.
35,600 @ 15.6 lbs.
12,800 @ 2.9 lbs.
24,600 @ 8.0 lbs.
28,900 @ 13.1 lbs.
11,900 @ 2.4 lbs.
31,600 @ 9.0 lbs.
40,000 @ 15.5 lbs.
11,000 @ 2.6 lbs.
24,700 @ 7.8 lbs.
31,100 @ 13.4 lbs.
Minimum Water Supply Flow Rate 3 gpm 3 gpm 3 gpm 3 gpm 3 gpm 3 gpm
Maximum Drain Flow Rate 2.0 gpm 2.0 gpm 2.0 gpm 2.0 gpm 2.0 gpm 2.0 gpm
Water Supply Max. Hardness 110 gpg 110 gpg 100 gpg 95 gpg 125 gpg 120 gpg
Certifications NSF International against NSF/ANSI Standard 44 for hardness reduction and efficiency, and certified to NSF/ANSI Standard 372. NSF International against NSF/ANSI Standard 44 for hardness reduction and efficiency, and certified to NSF/ANSI Standard 372. NSF International against NSF/ANSI Standard 42 for the reduction of chlorine taste and odor, and Standard 44 for hardness reduction, efficiency and the reduction of barium and radium 226/228, and certified to NSF/ANSI Standard 372. NSF International against NSF/ANSI Standard 44 for hardness reduction and efficiency, and certified to NSF/ANSI Standard 372. NSF International against NSF/ANSI Standard 44 for hardness reduction and efficiency NSF International against NSF/ANSI Standard 42 for the reduction of chlorine taste and odor, and Standard 44 for hardness reduction and efficiency, and certified to NSF/ANSI Standard 372.
Reduce Chlorine Taste? No No Yes No No Yes
Reduce Calcium & Magnesium? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Rated Efficiency (Grains/Pound of Salt @ Minimum Salt Dose) 5,090 @ 2.4 lbs. 5,090 @ 3.3 lbs. 4,230 @ 2.9 lbs. 4,410 @ 2.9 lbs. 4,958 @ 2.4 lbs. 4,230 @ 2.6 lbs.
Ideal Household Size (# of people) 1-4 1-5 1-5 1-4 1-6 1-5
Free Shipping? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Smart Regeneration Technology Variable Salt Dosage Variable Salt Dosage Variable Salt Dosage Demand Initiated Regeneration Demand Initiated Regeneration Demand Initiated Regeneration
Low Salt Light? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
High Flow Valve? Yes Yes No Yes Yes No
Full Parts & Labor Warranty 1-Year 1-Year 1-Year 1-Year 1-Year 2-Year
Water Softener Price $490 $540 $625 $570 $630 $690

Be sure to consider how much water people in your home regularly use — a household with 5-6 people will require a higher grain capacity model than one with 2-3 people. More people in a home leads to higher water and salt usage. You can use salt more efficiently with a softener that is designed to match the number of people in your home. If you’re unsure how many people will be using your water softener, it’s better to overestimate than underestimate your grain capacity needs — otherwise your equipment might not meet your performance expectations.

It’s important to take your water’s existing hardness into account when choosing a softener. In the table above, pay close attention to the maximum hardness for each softening system. This figure is measured in grains per gallon (gpg). One grain per gallon is the equivalent of one grain of calcium carbonate dissolved in one US gallon of water. Water hardness levels of 7 gpg or more are considered hard, with levels of 10.5 gpg or more being considered very hard. If you are unsure whether your water can be considered hard or not, request a free water hardness test kit to learn your exact water hardness level.

Every salt-based water softener requires regeneration to remove impurities such as mineral particles in the resin tank. Most water softeners schedule this regeneration process for a set time of day, with a predetermined amount of salt used for the process. Smart regeneration reduces the amount of salt used during regeneration cycles and limits the number of cycles that take place. Both of our water softener brands feature exclusive smart regeneration technology.

EcoPure Variable Salt Dosage

This exclusive feature automatically uses a predictive algorithm to calculate the amount of salt and water necessary to regenerate the system. The technology senses the hardness level of the water it collects in order to calculate regeneration requirements. It only uses what is necessary, resulting in a significant reduction in salt and water usage.

Whirlpool Demand Initiated Regeneration

This technology learns and predicts your daily water usage patterns. It makes adjustments based on these patterns and regenerates only when you need it. Demand Initiated Regeneration automatically calculates how much salt to use as opposed to using a fixed amount.

Both of these features are an ideal way to save salt and water if you’re away for an extended period of time.

Water softeners are used to remove calcium and magnesium, while central water filtration systems are used to remove sediment, chlorine, taste and odor. A non-hybrid water softener can prevent spotty dishes, dry skin and appliance stains, but it will not address many of the water contaminants that can lead to health issues. On the other hand, the best whole house water filtration and softener systems provide an all-in-one solution in a single unit.

If you already have a whole home filtration system in place, there is no need to install a hybrid softener. In these situations, a standard EcoPure or Whirlpool water softener can be integrated into your existing setup.

The rated capacity of a softener is the maximum number of hard water grains the unit can remove prior to regeneration. These figures vary depending on the amount of salt you’re using and a home’s water hardness level. For this reason, the same product may regenerate more frequently in a different household with higher water softening demands.

Ready to Shop for a Water Softener?

Now that you understand your options, you can browse EcoPureHome’s wide variety of water softening systems.

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Get More Information

Still undecided and want to learn more about your water softening options? Visit the Home Water Resource Center to find valuable information for all of your water softening needs. Then, you’ll be ready to find the system that’s right for your home and experience all the benefits that soft water has to offer.

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