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water softener

How Long Does a Water Softener Last?

Whether you already own a water softener or are considering investing in one for your home or cottage, you may be wondering how long a water softener actually lasts. (It’s certainly on our list of frequently asked questions!)

Although there is no hard and fast “best before” or “expiry” date on water softeners, I have seen water softeners last anywhere from just a few years all the way up to 30 years!

Let’s compare…

The cheap Chinese or Korean ones sold at big box stores are the most likely to have a short lifespan of about 3-5 years, but occasionally you might see a few more years… if you’re lucky. These units are pretty much disposable since troubleshooting information is vague and incomplete, and parts availability is very poor. Finding a repair manual or parts list for these is impossible. Trust me, we’ve tried everything!

The water softeners I’ve typically seen with the longest lifespan are MADE IN USA, like the very popular ones using Clack WS1 valves or the ones that have been manufactured for generations by companies like Hague, who produces the Aquamaster/Water Boss water softeners. These units have great manuals, a great dealer support network, replacement parts availability, and lots of how-to videos on YouTube as support. Their YouTube videos are excellent guides that will help you correctly install them yourself, or help you/your dealer troubleshoot if you run across a concern. I have seen many Clack and Aquamaster/Water Boss water softeners last well over 20 years.

SUMMARY: Far too often a water softener fails merely because there is no one available that can problem solve and repair, and because replacement parts are not easily available.

My recommendation? Whichever brand or unit you choose, be sure to invest in a water softener that has good support so you can help maintain the longevity of your unit for many, many years to come.


If you need guidance on what type of water softener would be best for your home, reach out to Gary The Water Guy today!