MAGNETIC WATER CONDITIONING
Rather than simply replacing the calcium
ions with sodium ions, magnetic water conditioning works on
an entirely different principal. Magnetic water conditioning
systems cause the calcium and carbonate ions present in the
water to reform into crystals before they can attach themselves
to your pluming fixtures or interact with soaps and detergents.
As an added bonus, the calcium carbonate in solid crystalline
form can be removed by filtering systems.
Magnetic water conditioning systems use the
fact that a magnetic field will exert a force on moving charged
particle. The direction of this push depends on the direction
and charge of the moving particle. This is the how electric
motors work. As charged particles, electrons, move along a
coil of wire they are pushed by the magnetic field from magnets
in the motor housing. This push is perpendicular to the coil
of wire, and causes it to spin.
In a magnetic water conditioning system,
powerful magnets are placed around the incoming water pipe.
As the calcium and carbonate ions enter the magnetic field
they are pushed in opposite directions, due to their opposite
charges. As all of the calcium ions are pushed in one direction
and all of the carbonate anions are push in the opposite direction,
they tend to collide. When these collisions occur, the ions
stick together forming a solid form of calcium carbonate called
aragonite. These microscopic crystals can then be filtered
out or allowed to pass through your home’s plumbing
and down the drain. Because the crystals were forced to form
while moving in the water, they do not have an opportunity
to attach themselves to your fixtures. Furthermore, sense
the calcium is no longer in ion form; it does not interact
with soaps and detergents, eliminating the build-up of soap
MAGNETIC WATER CONDITIONING
Calcium ions (Ca2+) and carbonate anions
(CO3 2-) are dissolved in water.
Calcium ions and carbonate anions are pushed together by
magnetic field colliding to form solid aragonite. Solid
aragonite crystals pass harmlessly through plumbing system
without adhering to fixtures or interacting with detergents.
• Benefits of Magnetic Water Conditioning
• Does not pollute water by adding sodium
• Does not waste water during regenerating processes
• Requires no electricity
• No mechanical or electric parts to maintain
As water passes through soil and over
rocks on its way to your local reservoir or aquifer, it
slowly dissolves minerals just like the salt discussed before.
Water that contains a lot of dissolved minerals is said
to be "hard". The primary culprit is calcium carbonate
(CaCO3). Calcium carbonate in its various forms is one of
the most common minerals and the primary component of limestone.
When dissolved, it becomes a calcium ion (a calcium atom
missing two electrons, Ca2+) and a carbonate anion (three
oxygen atoms and a carbon atom bonded together with two
extra electrons, CO32-).
The dissolved calcium carbonate presents
a few problems in residential tap water. The most noticeable
is the scale that builds up around faucets, in tubs, on
shower walls, in coffee makers, pretty much every where
the water is used. As the water evaporates when these surfaces
dry, the calcium and carbonate ions are left behind. With
out water to remain dissolved in, they reform into a mineral,
clinging to the surface the water was originally on. Another
place these ions reform into mineral deposits is the inside
of your water heater especially on the heat exchanger. This
causes your hot water heater to work less efficiently, and
can eventually damage the pluming inside the hot water tank.
The ions in the water can also interact with soaps and detergents
resulting in soap scum.
Traditional Water Softeners
Traditional water softeners use a process
called ion exchange to remove calcium ions for the water.
Water is passed over a material (different manufactures
uses different materials and processes) that has been covered
with sodium ions. The calcium ions have a stronger attraction
to this material than the water molecules. As the calcium
ions are attracted to the material they trade places with
sodium ions. Eventually all of the sodium ions on the material
will have been replaced with calcium ions and the system
will need to be regenerated. This is the reason for the
rock salt and back flushing. While such systems do remove
much of the calcium from the water, every calcium ion removed
is replaced with a sodium ion. The advantage is that minerals
formed with these sodium ions do not adhere to surfaces
like the calcium-based minerals.
Disadvantages of ion exchange water softeners
• Cost of regenerating (rock salt, wasted water during
• Possibility of expensive repairs to mechanical or
• Health concerns arising from high levels of sodium
• Environmental damage due to sodium levels in waste
Put salt in water and what happens?
Recall what you learned in high school
chemistry. Table salt (NaCl) is formed from sodium and chlorine
held together by electromagnetic forces. A neutral sodium
atom has eleven protons and eleven electrons. However, the
eleventh electron is easily removed from a sodium atom.
When this happens, there are more positively charged protons
then negatively charged electrons, so the particle of sodium
has a net positive charge. The reverse happens to chlorine,
it tends to pick up a loose electron, becoming negatively
charged. These charged atoms are called ions (positively
charged), and anions (negatively charged). The oppositely
charged sodium and chlorine ions are attracted to each other
and form a salt crystal.
A water molecule (H2O) is formed differently. Unlike the
salt, where one atom gains an electron and the other loses
and electron, the atoms of hydrogen and oxygen share electrons.
However they do not share evenly. The electrons tend to
spend more time around the oxygen. This unequal sharing
leads to a fascinating phenomenon. The oxygen side of the
molecule has a slight negative charge and the hydrogen side
has a slight positive charge. When you put salt in water,
the positively charged sodium ions are now attracted to
the negative side of the water molecules. Similarly the
negatively charged chlorine anions are attracted to the
positive side of the water molecules. This attraction to
the water molecules pulls the salt crystal apart and we
say it dissolves. The ions and anions are now mixed through
out the water.