The Magnetic Water Softener Is A WASTE Of Money (My Experience)

Last Updated on September 3, 2020

So, you’re thinking about buying a magnetic water softener because of hard water problems?

Chances are you’re experiencing mineral deposits and residue on your taps, shower head or in your kettle? Maybe you have serious pipe scale buildup?

Hard water wreaks havoc on your appliances and plumbing because it contains minerals called ions. Although hard water is not immediately life threatening in any way, it does have a negative impact on your hair and skin.

Effects of Hard Water - Why You Need A Magnetic Water Softener

If you are suffering with hard water then it’s time to get some form of water softening device. If you’re looking for a quick fix option, try a faucet filter. Or if you want a more sustainable long term solution then consider getting a whole house water softening system.

When you start comparing water softener device prices, you’ll see that magnetic water softeners are much cheaper.

But do they work?

Are they a cost effective form of water softening when compared to the more traditional and more expensive options?

Or is it simply a waste of money and a wasteful way to delay the inevitability of buying something with a proven track record like a whole house water softener?

What Is A Magnetic Water Softener?

Mineral MagnetThe magnetic water softener treatment is a fairly controversial method of passing hard water through a magnetic field in order to create a softening effect on the water.

The magnetic water softener is also known as Anti-scale Magnetic Treatment or AMT and is considered to be a “safer” alternative to water softening because it doesn’t use chemicals.

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How Do Magnetic Water Softeners Work?

The idea is that attaching powerful magnets to your pipe will draw out the hard water ions before that water enters your plumbing system.

Magnetic Descaler On Pipes

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Red Cross Fatal Problems With Magnetic Water Softeners (& Why It’s A Waste Of Money)

Magnetic Descaler On PlumbingMagnetism is a very complicated field.

It is difficult to know exactly how magnets will affect ions and this type of magnetic approach to water softening is completely unknown to most.

This means that it is almost impossible to work out on your own whether such a system would work for you before you buy.

To make matters worse, there is no standard form of magnetic water softener and they are sold independently.

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…Even More Problems with Magnetic Water Softeners

Magnetic DescalerThe place one would normally turn to for information in the absence of market data is scientific research. But even though there have been hundreds of studies looking at magnetic water softening, they are mostly inconclusive.

There are some studies showing that magnetic devices do have an effect on water. These studies show that magnetic water softeners produce electrical charges in calcium carbonate particles.

However, the studies that actually looked at the actual claims of magnetic softeners only found minimal effects on pipe scale.

Again, even though some promising trends can be seen, the results are inconclusive.

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Green Plus ArrowBETTER Alternatives to Magnetic Softeners?

While some studies show that using a magnetic water softener can have a marginal effect, it does not justify potentially spending hundreds of dollars to buy one. Standalone Salt Free Aquasana

Yes, they are significantly cheaper than other options but the fact they might not work means it’s not worth your time or money.

You should invest in a system that you know will 100% work if you have hard water.

Here are magnetic softener alternatives with a strong proven track record:

  1. The traditional, ion-exchange water softener that uses salt, which have proven themselves to completely eradicate hard water. Aquasana 99 Contaminants
  2. Salt-free softeners, if you don’t want to use salt or chemicals. These are sometimes called descalers and also have a strong proven track record of preventing scale buildup in your pipes.

Any of these options will cost you more than a magnetic water softener, but at least you can rely on them to do the job.

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Magnetic Water Softeners: My HONEST Experience

After writing this post, I decided to try out the magnetic water softener for myself. I found one on Amazon that has (at the time of purchase) 5 out of 5 stars so I got that one.

Magnetic Water Instructions

Mr Water Geek ThinkingThey were basic but powerful magnets and easy to attach to the pipes.

I left them to work for a few days and monitored.

In fact I removed all the limescale around my taps and sink (with harsh chemicals) beforehand so that I could easily spot how well the magnets worked.Cheap Desclaer

There was just one small problem: it didn’t work.

I literally saw no difference. “It was a total waste of money and time.”

This makes sense when you think about it.

If magnets were so successful, wouldn’t water softeners stop selling?

Magnetic Water Softener

Wouldn’t the secret get out about how effective they were and people would instead choose to buy the cheap, no installation required, chemical-free option?

The bottom line is that the only way to treat hard water problems is to get a water softener.

If you don’t want to use salt or to worry about constant regenerations then get a salt free water system.

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The Best Option That is GUARANTEED To Treat Hard Water?

The only way, I repeat the ONLY way to treat hard water in 100% of cases is to use a traditional water softener that uses sodium / salt.Pelican Whole House Softener Filter Combo

There are lots of great options that you can buy online. The only issue is that they will need to be installed. Ideally by a professional plumber and connect directly to your water supply.

A bulky softener machine that needs a lot of work to set up is what puts people off getting a water softener in the first place.

I don’t blame them.

Getting a water softener is not the easy option but is still the only guaranteed way to get rid of all your hard water and limescale issues.

The good news is that places like Aquasana have made this process easier.Check Prices & Read Customer Reviews

You can buy a salt free softener and get a free pro-grade self installation kit.

Scientific References

Effects Of Magnetic Treatment On Scaling Power of Hard Waters.

Bali Mahmouda, Mabrouk Yosraa, Abdelli Nadiab – Separation and Purification Technology Volume 171, 17 October 2016, Pages 88โ€“92. Magnetic Water Softener.

Smothers, KW; Curtiss, CD; Gard, BT; Strauss, RH; Hock, VF (15 June 2001). “Magnetic Water Treatment” (PDF). Public Works Technical Bulletin 420-49-34. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

MacAdam J PhD Thesis Cranfield University UK. Dept of Water Science and various studies

Coetzee PP, Yacoby M and Howall S (1996) The role of zinc in magnetic and other physical water treatment methods for the prevention of scale. Water SA, 22(4): 319-326.

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The Best Salt FREE Softener Option?

If you are interested in getting a water softener that does not use salt then Aquasana make the best rated salt free systems available on the market today.mrwatergeek winner badge

Their most salt free water softener and whole house filter combination is the Aquasana OptimH20 Whole House Filter + Salt Free Softener.

But there’s a problem.Aquasana Whole House Features ListWhole house filter and salt free softener systems come at a much higher price then their magnetic counterparts.

If the high price is a big problem then you should consider using the coupon code:AQGEEK50 for 50% OFF.

The AQGEEK50 coupon code means up to 50% OFF. **ENDS SOON**.

Aquasana Salt Free Softener and Filter System

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comments

  1. We have had in the past, several salt water softeners, and work period! I had a magnet on a past home and sadly had to go back to the salt softener! That being said, at our current location is well water, that we do NOT have the VOLUME of water to regenerate hey salt water system!
    What are my options now?
    Is there a NEW low volume salt water softener on the market ?

  2. Large COMBO water softener works, you just need to understand what you are buying and have a realistic expectation. This does not remove the minerals, this changes them into a small particle that does not stick and build, that simple. I challenge you to get one of those local magnetic companies to come out and give you an estimate for their system, I did, and the cost was over $1500.00. They could not provide the answers I wanted either, how do I know it will work? All I got was; you will feel it. Well for $1500.00 that was not good enough. What I did get from them was the understanding that you need several magnets, depending on the size of your home(information I did not see posted anywhere about this product) When I saw the reviews on this product, I thought, there is nothing to lose.

  3. Our water is very hard and before installing a magnetic water conditioner we had to clean lime build up out of an electric hot water heater roughly every eight months, with the magnetic conditioner the period between cleanouts jumped to well over 5 years.

    1. Hi Samantha

      That’s great to hear, which brand/model are you using?
      I’d like to do some follow up research on a magnetic conditioner that actually works ๐Ÿ™‚

      Stay hydrated,
      Luke

  4. You say that you tested the magnetic descalers and removed all of the lime and scale buildup around faucets before hand. Why do you have lime and scale buildup around faucets? Don’t you already have a salt water softener?

    1. Hi Nathan

      That’s right, at the time of testing the magnetic descalers I didn’t have a softener and I thought magnetic descalers would be the fast and easy solution to solve my hard water problems.

      Sadly, they were not. Sigh.

      Stay hydrated,
      Luke

  5. In desperate need of your help. I had my water tested by the city and i also did my own testing. Its seems my water is within “normal range ” for chlorine, ph, alkaline, etc. so why does my skin feel sticky when drying off in the shower and my hair is dry frizzy and take forever to blow dry ( feels wet when maybe its not really) . sometimes my clothes after washing and drying has a “chemical” smell to them. I tried the aquabliss shower head filter to no avail still with the hair and skin problems. I moved from CT to SC and had no problems in CT (hair ,skin was fine). Everyone else in my family is fine with the water it seems that its only effecting me. my hair and skin thank you for any insight and recommendations you can provide

    1. Hi Tricia

      Sorry to hear you’re having these troubles. It sounds like it could be hard water.

      Unfortunately, shower filters are usually ineffective. The only thing I can suggest is that you install a water softener and see if this reduces your symptoms.

      Best wishes,
      Luke

  6. So much information! What would you do? 2400 sq ft. And two people. Tons of calcium in the water. (Water heater which we replaced had about 18 inches of white crystalline sludge in the bottom!)
    I am definitely not a DIY guy for this. Would the Eddy salt-free system work for us? Looks less invasive/hassle.
    Vs Fleck. Not too expensive but ? Reliability ? Maintenance
    Kinetico–we’ve been quoted 4-5000 —or more
    Arrrgh

    1. Hi Dave

      I don’t think the Eddy is strong enough to deal with that much calcium. These “alternative” / “salt free” softeners DO NOT soften ๐Ÿ™ They don’t treat or remove anything from the water, they only gently de-scale the pipes. So it would be a waste of your time and money.

      The best solution as far as I can see is to get a salt based water softener (e.g. Pelican Salt Based Softener and Filter).

      OR

      If you want a salt free option consider an Aquasana saltfree softener and filter combination.
      Luke
      Mr Water Geek

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