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Simple Guide on How a Water Descaler Works

You have probably heard by now about water softeners, water conditioners, and water descalers, but don’t know what to choose best for your home or business? Today we will discuss how a water descaler works, besides highlighting its advantages.

How a Water Descaler Works

A water descaler is, as we said, a hi-tech device that does not alter the chemical composition of your water, but rather how the hard minerals in the water behave.

The Main Components of a Water Descaler

Water descalers, in general, follow the same principles when it comes to building and functioning. Let's see the essential components of a water descaler:

  • a high frequency modulated electromagnetic field
  • a signal cable coiled externally around the pipe

How Do Water Descalers Treat Hard Water?

By manipulating their behavior with the use of electrical currents, a water descaler keeps the minerals in your water but prevents them from building up inside your pipes or appliances, rendering them harmless.

  • A water descaler treats the water with electric impulses generated in the electronic unit.
  • A computerized microchip controls these electric impulses.
  • The system uses two impulse coils wrapped around the pipe, transmitting the signal-frequencies.
  • The bands of the water descaler work in pairs and form a frequency-field.
  • As the water flows through, this frequency field changes the mineral crystals in the water.

In short, a water descaler creates an electromagnetic field (frequency-modulated) inside the supply pipe. The field forces the ions of calcium/magnesium bicarbonate to create crystallized particles of calcium/magnesium carbonate in the water.  These micronuclei accumulate and grow in a snowball effect, flowing in the water as suspended particles. The water descaler, thus, modifies their shape and size, which is now different from the ones you find in untreated hard water. 

After going through the descaling process, the calcium/magnesium nuclei remain in suspension until they reach the drain. They do not stick to the inside of the pipes, heating elements, and appliances' components. 

    Other Things You Should Know About How Water Descalers Work

    Since the innovative water descalers function based on two impulse coils placed around your incoming water supply line, they come with a significant advantage: installation is straightforward and does not require the presence of a plumber.

    • Water descalers are small pieces of equipment you can install in your own home by following the instructions offered by the manufacturer.
    • The water descaler, as it breaks down calcium and magnesium molecules, transforms them from crystals to smooth strings that do not adhere to your pipes’ interiors or appliances’ components.
    • In case you wondered, an electronic water descaler removes the deposits gradually. It also changes the molecular structure of the minerals, as described.
    • If a water softener uses a chemical process of replacing some hard molecules with salt, the water descaler simply modifies the very fabric of the hardness particles, making them benign and eliminating the nuisance of limescale.

    Frequently Asked Questions on How Water Descalers Work

    Now that we saw how a water descaler works, we should also learn more about their efficiency and functionality in your home and business.

    1. How Soon Can We Expect a Descaler’s Results to Become Visible?

    Usually, for a descaler to show visible results, you should wait for up to three months. Some electronic descalers lead to significant reductions in hard water and limescale even faster. The water conditioning results generated by a water descaler also depend on the distance between the descaler and the installation point along your pipes. They also depend on the ambient temperature.

    2. Do Electronic Water Descalers Work with All Types of Pipes?

    Generally, yes. Given their build and features, water descalers work with iron, copper, stainless steel, plastic, PVC, PE-x, and compound pipes.

    3. How Many Water Descalers Do You Need for a Big House?

    One water descaler should cover the needs of a family living in a small house. For larger families and homes, you need to discuss with a manufacturer’s representative to help you with the proper measurements. For the best results, you should install a water descaler at the main water supply.

    The same goes for commercial installations. If you want to get rid of hard water and limescale problems in a restaurant or pub, hotel, medical cabinet, or an entire hospital, a professional plumbing team together with the manufacturer can help you make the best decisions in this regard.

    4. What Are the Advantages of Water Descalers as Opposed to Water Softeners?

    Traditionally, water softeners have been so far the go-to choice for treating hard water. However, since they now meet bans, restrictions, and regulations, water descalers became the new popular choice. We have discussed their differences before, but here they are in short:

    • Water descalers do not change the chemical composition of the water;
    • If you use a capacitative electronic water descaler, it can also dissolve and soften old scale deposits found in the pipes, heating elements, heat exchangers, and so on in the presence of accelerated water flow.
    • Water softeners take a lot of space in your home. Since you can install a water descaler directly on your pipes, it is not necessary anymore for you to make room for tanks, bypass valves, spigots, and so on. 
    • As one can easily figure out, water descalers are more affordable than water softeners (8 to 10 times cheaper, even);
    • Lastly, water descalers are eco-friendly, easy to install, require little to no maintenance, and do not need consumables (as water softeners require you to frequently purchase salt pellets).

    5. Do Water Descalers Purify the Water?

    No, and neither do water softeners. If your water contains impurities or pollutants, has an odd color, smell, or taste, or gives you health concerns, it is better to focus on a water filter. Water descalers do not make the water drinkable if it was not already. 

    Why Do You Need Water Treatments in the First Place?

    hard water and limescale

    The talk about water softening or descaling revolves around hard water treatments. Living with hard water and its subsequent limescale deposits is not pleasant or safe for that matter. You have plenty to deal with when the water in your home is hard, as it can become a costly business to let it be that way.

    As discussed on a previous occasion, hard water is a given in over 80% of American homes. Rich in calcium and magnesium, silica, and manganese, hard water leads to pipework and appliances damages over time.

    • Since they are insoluble, the calcium and magnesium molecules adhere to the inside of your pipes, plumbing, heating elements, and appliances’ components, rendering them progressively inefficient.
    • Moreover, when you leave it untreated, hard water leaves behind limescale – deposits of calcium.
    • Such buildup sticks to itself, managing to lower the flow rate of your water, eventually blocking and clogging your pipes completely.
    • Another issue with limescale, as we have said before, is that it damages all the equipment and installations running on water. In case you wondered, it can even affect the steam quality of your iron, leaving behind stains and traces on your clothes.
    • Both hard water and its ugly child, the limescale, decrease the lifespan of your infrastructure and your appliances. In order to work, such machines and equipment require more and more energy. In translation, you will pay more and more money over time for heating, proper water flow, and, unfortunately, appliances’ repairs and replacements.
    • Hard water is nowhere near the idea of living an eco-friendly and sustainable life. Those unsightly and hard-to-scrub limescale stains need even more (hard) water and cleaning products to disappear. You are living in a vicious circle, where you use more and more hard water to clean the effect of hard water. Consider the extensive use of detergents and chemicals to keep your bathroom and kitchen clean and you soon figure out that you deal with an endless money pit.

    From washing machines to kettles, and from irons to wine glasses, hard water and limescale are the silent and (almost) invisible enemies of your lifestyle, budget, and the environment.

    • Moreover, limescale is dangerous for your health. While experts do not deem it as a threat if you drink water with limescale, these deposits represent a danger to people with dry skin and dermatological conditions.
    • Science has not agreed yet, but there is some consensus that drinking water with calcium and magnesium in it is overall good for our health. Nevertheless, hard water correlates with skin, eye, and hair issues. Such problems can become especially severe for people with sensitive skin, children, and pets.

    In conclusion, more and more people are looking for ways to condition their water. Treating it against hardness and limescale also eases your life and makes it more comfortable. Here is how the conversations about how a water descaler works begin.

    Enter the Water Treatment Systems

    One of the most proficient ways to manage hard water and limescale deposits, preventing them from ruining the infrastructure of your home and the functionality of your appliances, are water treatment systems.

      The Better Alternative - Salt-Free Water Softeners

      Salt-free water softeners – water descalers – represent modern and innovative devices that also soften your water but without replacing some molecules with others. On the contrary, salt-free water softeners do not add anything new in your water; they just treat it through a different process.

      As discussed above, water descaling is not the same thing as water softening. Water descalers work well with any home size and can meet all budgetary restrictions. Moreover, they do not carry an environmental burden. 


      Other Benefits of a Water Descaler


      So we’ve established what a water descaler’s purpose is: reshape hard mineral crystals to make them less sticky and eliminate hard water’s negative effects.


      We’ve already mentioned how this benefits your appliances, hair, and skin. But now let’s take a look at hard water’s health effects. Research has shown that excess calcium and magnesium particles in hard water are beneficial for drinking.


      They help people with diabetes and can even prevent other illnesses such as heart disease. With a water descaler, all of the mineral particles are left intact, it’s only their shape that gets modified to stop them from sticking to your hair and skin.


      Another benefit of descaling your water instead of softening it with salt is that your septic system won’t be affected at all. Sodium tends to have nasty reactions when combined with the residue in these systems, so they’re far from ideal. That’s also the main reason why salt-based water softeners are heavily regulated in some states.


      Finally, if you have a pool, you can use a water descaler to remove cloudy pool water. of course, a descaler isn’t a filter, so you’ll also need a pre-filter for other pollutants like chemicals or metals, and a UV filter for successfully eliminating bacteria.


      The Bottom Line

      Before you go looking to purchase a water descaler for your home or business, you should also check out the products’ warranties and lifespan. Water descalers need little to no maintenance, and you will find excellent guarantees and warranties from reputable manufacturers. Other than that, since now you learned how a water descaler works, all you need to do is pick the right one for your needs and enjoy soft water for years on end!