• 827 Oyster Park Drive, Ste A
  • Edisto Island, SC 29438

Pros and Cons of Different Water Treatment Options

Differences in Water Treatment Options

It always comes down to what is the best option for a customer when it comes to treating bad water.
Well water normally is much worse than your typical city water but that is not always the case so
what is the best option?

Listed below is the list of Pros and Cons of each type of system that we sell.

1. First and foremost, I always recommend a water test by an independent lab. Most often, everyone
tests in different ways and although they will be close, they are never the same.
2. Never let anyone tell you that zero hardness is what you need to obtain. Most manufactures of
water heaters or pumps recommend 6-9 grains of hardness. Zero hardness will do just as much damage
to your pipes, water heaters, faucets and pumps as hard water will. When a manufacturer finds out
you have too hard or too soft water they will void your warranty. Keep that in mind when a someone
tells you that zero hardness is what you need.
3. There is a misconception when it comes to treating all incoming water as well. Depending on
your water you may be able to just treat the hot water heater inlet side. Most issues with water
damaging pipes, valves and faucets is created on the hot water side. Heating of the water
solidifies the contaminates in the water causing issues like scale. Scale then travels through the
system and sticks to the pipes, valves and faucets. I have seen 2” pipe reduced to ½” due to build
up. Cold water does not solidify the contaminates so why treat it? You will be mixing it with hot
water that is treated. Saves you a lot of money in the end either in salt or water usage on a RO
4. Over sizing or under sizing a system can cost you as well so always have a professional size the
system properly.

RO Systems


1. Reverse osmosis water filter systems are one of the most popular forms of filtering water, and
with good reason-they are one of the most effective forms of water purification available today.
2. Reverse osmosis filtration can greatly improve the odor, appearance, and overall taste of your
water. Exceptional Water: Because RO has the ability to remove 95-99 percent of total dissolved
solids (TDS), as well as chlorine, fluoride and other impurities.


1. One of the major disadvantages of RO systems is that they remove most of the minerals from the
water leaving it with an acidic ph. Also, during the purification process the average water usage
is 4 gallons to purify 1 gallon but can use up to 20 gal of water for each gallon purified. This
all depends on how bad your water is and how large a system you have. Some companies now claim 1
gallon per one gallon. That is possible if everything is working 100%. How often does anything work
2. Reverse osmosis can also be very costly. Units can cost thousands of dollars including
installation. Some in the millions. The high price does speed up the water filtration process but
at the same time the amount of water wasted is significant.

Water Softeners


Hard water is water with high levels of dissolved minerals (calcium and magnesium) measured in
many areas as being above 1 grain per gallon. Hard water leaves stains in laundry and makes water smell
or taste bad. If your shower or sink has reddish-brown stains, you have hard water.
1. Equipment and pipes last longer: Softer water will prevent the build-up of limescale on various
equipment and pipes over time, which in turn makes them last longer and run more efficiently.
2. Showers, sinks and Equipment are easier to keep scale free with soft water:
3. Brighter linen: Hard water deposits also build up on linen/clothes over time, giving them a dingy,
grayish tinge. Softer water keeps your linen/clothes looking brighter, longer.
4. Soaps lather: Everyone likes the feeling of a nice lather with your soap or shampoo. Soft water
improves lathering which feels good (uses less chemicals that can be expensive) and for a Hotel/Motel/Resort could be a benefit with your


1. Cost: The main negative of water softeners is the initial cost and salt costs although the price of a system
has come down quite a bit it can still be costly, add on at least a few thousand dollars for
installation. Depending on how your water pipes are set up, you may need to add additional plumbing
as well which can run into the thousands. Salt is expensive! 40-50 lb bags cost anywhere from $5-7 and in some industrial plants or hotels they can consume 1-20 bags a day.
2. When looking at costs, though, don’t forget cost savings mentioned above: equipment that last
longer, and linen/clothes that looks better, lasts longer.
3. Taste: Most people decide to keep a tap that does not have softened water. Many state that
softened water does not taste very good, so they opt to keep a drinking water tap as well.
4. Increased water use: Water softeners require regeneration time, where the softener can recharge.
Some softeners use water to “clean out” the extracted minerals, which in turn can increase your
water bill by about 10%.

Anti-Scale Systems


1. Maintenance-free systems: non-salt systems don’t use salt, so you don’t have to deal with
replacing salt bags or related maintenance.
2. More economical: lime-scale inhibitors or water conditioners don’t use electricity and don’t
have a regeneration process, so they don’t waste water, nor do you have to spend money on salt
3. Descaling effect: non-salt systems will lightly descale your pipes and will prevent further
lime- scale deposits.
4. Compact models: compared to salt water softeners, non-salt systems don’t have brine tanks, thus,
take up less space.


1. Hardness minerals are not removed: water conditioners don’t remove hardness minerals from water,
they only prevent them from building up and sticking to surfaces.
2. No soft water is produced: since the water is still hard, you won’t be able to enjoy all of the
benefits of soft water (e.g. softer clothes, skin or hair).
3. Resin has to be changed every 3 years that can be costly but not as costly as adding salt.
4. If the system is down for a few days without water flow the resin can dissolve and will need to
be replaced.

What is the right system for your needs?
Let ECWS have your water tested. We will then give you the options and guide you in the right


520 Folly Rd Suite P, PMB #325 Charleston, SC 29412