Water conditioning works when water runs through a conditioning system that contains sodium ions. These sodium ions replace excess ions of magnesium and calcium to improve the quality of the water.
The sodium ions are found in beads known as zeolite. These beads hold onto sodium ions until they come into contact with water containing magnesium and calcium, due to the fact that calcium and magnesium have a higher positive charge.
Water that contains large amounts of magnesium and calcium is known as hard water. Hard water causes buildup in pipes, heaters and even tea kettles. The residue can cause blockage in pipes, alter the taste and odor of water, and make it difficult to clean pots and pans.
The process of conditioning water is commonly known as water softening, but water conditioning involves any process of improving the quality of water, such as purification, filtration and any methods that improve the taste of water.
Since there are several different kinds of water conditioning, which are designed for various outcomes, it is important to be aware of the quality of the water being conditioned and the conditioner being used. Users should also remain wary of any contaminants or buildup in minerals.