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With everyone looking for ways to cut back and save money, many people forget to look within their own water systems for the answer. The addition of a water softener in a home or office can significantly reduce utility costs. Additionally, some devices can even help the environment. We talked to some professionals in the water treatment industry to find out the benefits consumers can expect from buying a water softener. In turn, dealers can use these benefits in a sales pitch to show the customer that they're buying more than just a water softener, they're helping improve their lives and others.
First the question needs to be asked, why is there a growing interest in water softeners? Obviously we've mentioned the cost and environmental benefits, but why are people so interested in softening water all of a sudden?
"The benefits far outweigh the operating costs," says Steve LaMere, vice president of operations for Marlo Incorporated. "It is important to keep in mind that the use of membrane technology — reverse osmosis and nanofiltration — are quickly becoming viewed as 'water softeners' themselves, especially for commercial and industrial applications involving boiler feed."
The market for water softeners themselves seems to be expanding. More people are implementing the process into other forms of water treatment.
Jesse Stojan, marketing representative for Waterworld USA Inc., has a different take on why people are using water softeners. "It's more along the lines of who's giving out that knowledge about softened water and their effects. With an increase in the spread of this knowledge more people will most likely want to include a water softener into their residence and business."
The bottom line is more people are becoming aware of the dangers of hard water in their homes and businesses. As dealers, you should be looking to educate customers on all the benefits from water softeners.
With the entire country still dealing with a tough economy, everyone is searching for areas where they can cut back. Yes, in this case you have to spend money to save money, but in the long run the cost benefits from using a water softener will more than pay for themselves.
"There are numerous cost savings from water softening devices, whether they are traditional ion exchange or membrane-based systems," states LaMere. "The most noted benefit is reduced fuel consumption from the hardness scale prevention in water heaters and boilers."
LaMere goes on to state that, "A 1/16-inch thick layer of hardness scale can reduce heat transfer by about 12 percent, which is directly proportional to the increased amount of fuel required to compensate for the loss."
It's been noted in previous articles from Water Technology that hard water can quickly add to your bills. Therefore, it's no surprise that a water softener would have the opposite effect.
"All appliances that rely on water to either fuel or accomplish a task benefit greatly from softened water," notes Stojan. "It ensures better performance and extended life of the appliance, such as dishwashers and laundry machines, as well as drinking water systems."
Stojan adds that the amount of money saved on utilities could be in the thousands because with a water softener the water heater will be able to function more efficiently.
Health and environmental benefits
People are becoming aware of the health effects from drinking water. Water softening can have a huge impact of the quality of water being distributed in homes and business, and should be a lead sale's pitch.
"Naturally, the health benefits to having soft water are the reduction in the buildup of unwanted clogs and corrosions," responds Stojan.
He uses the example of pouring water into a rusty can, which is what you would be doing if there was no water softener to reduce corrosion.
After saving money and taking care of ourselves, the next thing many of us look to do is save the environment. More utilities and supplies are based around the fact that we need to start protecting this planet.
"The use of water softening devices will decrease fuel, chemical and water consumption, which have direct, positive environmental benefits," LaMere continues.
The only negatives towards using water softeners is in brine generation waste, but both experts say there is no solid evidence that it has a negative impact on the environment.
And the consequences of not using these benefits in a sales pitch are far too dangerous. The knowledge and advantages of water softeners can result in a successful sales campaign in 2013 and beyond.