Water hardness is one of the major problems with tap water in the UK. Most homeowners use water softeners to prevent lime-scale build-up on bathroom sanitary ware and kitchen appliances. While water softeners are indeed effective, lime-scale water filters are a zero waste and affordable alternative to salt-based or liquid water softeners. What are the benefits of using lime-scale inhibiting water filters and how efficient are they?

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Benefits of lime-scale water filters

  • Complexity and cost-efficiency: Unlike water softeners that only deal with water hardness issues, some scale-inhibiting filters (e.g. the ones that contain granular activated carbon) will not only address water hardness issues, but will also remove chlorine, some VOCs and improve the taste and odour of tap water. Therefore, if you’re looking for taste improvement and lime-scale reduction, you can opt for these types of filters instead of installing a water softener and a separate water filter for taste and odour improvement.
  • No-hassle filters: Unlike some water softeners, lime-scale water filters don’t require electricity, salt, brine tanks and don’t have backwash systems. Their filter media is either capable of removing iron and manganese or transforms calcium ions into calcium crystals, thus preventing the formation of lime-scale deposits.
  • Easy installation: Depending on their type and model, lime-scale inhibiting water filters can be installed in-line (e.g. on a cold water line prior to a water heater) or under-sink as a standalone filter.
  • Multiple applications: Some scale reducing filters like the Omnipure SCL10 Chlorine Filter With Scale Inhibitor can be used for scale control in a variety of domestic and commercial appliances such as ice machines, fridges, reverse osmosis systems, water coolers, drinking water fountains, etc.
  • Filter media variety: Water filters created for scale reduction contain different kinds of filter media in different combinations. Thus, you can have GAC and phosphate filters, resin filters, pyrolox.
  • Durability: Thanks to the long service life boasted by these filters, they are often referred to as zero-maintenance water filters. Indeed, some filter models have to be replaced only every 12 or 24 months.

Efficiency of scale inhibiting water filters

The efficiency of these filters depends on the quality of your water supply, however, some models (e.g. the Watts 4.5 x 10 inch ScaleNet Softening Resin Cartridge) boast an efficiency that is on par with the efficiency of water softener systems.

These scale control filters are a good alternative for those who don’t want to install a water softener or don’t want to deal with some of the downsides of owning a water softener.