Water softeners and water filters – only one will remove chlorine from your water. Find out what your water softener is really doing to your water, and how to pick a water filter that safely removes all chlorine from your water below.

Water Softeners Don’t Remove Chlorine

Even the best water softeners simply remove calcium and magnesium particles from your water supply. These hard particles can be troublesome, from clogging up steel pipes to leaving watermarks in the dishwasher. A water softener uses ion exchange, which replaces the hard minerals with salt – this is completely ineffective for chlorine removal.

Well, a water softener is better than nothing, right? Actually no. Increasing your salt intake is usually a bad idea unless you’ve got a salt deficiency. The calcium and magnesium particles that were in your water, although not ideal for cleaning, were doing your body a lot of good. Low levels of magnesium can be linked to high blood pressure while low levels of calcium are of course bad for bone health.

Consider using a water softener on the pipes for your shower or clothes washer, rather than for your drinking water!

Why Remove Chlorine?

Chlorine is added to our water supply as it’s a fantastic disinfectant. Chlorine is the reason you can drink a glass of water straight from the tap without worrying about consuming pathogens, bacteria, and diseases! But chlorine does have its disadvantages.

  • It can alter the taste of your water, which alters the taste of food and beverages you prepare with tap water.
  • Chlorine becomes airborne in the shower when water becomes steam, meaning you absorb the chemicals through your skin and lungs.
  • It dries out your skin and hair, causing irritation especially for people with skin conditions.
  • Byproducts formed from chlorine and contaminants in your water could be toxic.

The amount of chlorine in your water will depend on your water supplier – if you want to remove the chlorine, you’ll need more than a water softener.

How to Remove Chlorine from Water

To remove chlorine (and the byproducts produced by chlorine) you’ll need to use a water filter. Look for filters that have a carbon filter – this carbon filter is submerged in the water to absorb chlorine and other water contaminants (from harmless minerals to chemicals to microorganisms that have survived the chlorine) before the water reaches your tap.

You’ll need to change the carbon filter regularly – how regularly depends on the filtration system, the size of your house, the amount of water passing through and the level of impurities in your water.

So, does a water softener remove chlorine? The answer will always be no, but the solution is surprisingly simple. Take a look at our recommended filtration systems that can remove chlorine from your water here.

Jake is a clean water enthusiast and blogger. He has spent his university days in Chicago studying various water filtration technologies and now enjoys helping people live healthier lives when it comes to water consumption.