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Although tap water is industry-filtered depending on the source that it comes from, it can be what is called as ‘hard water’ which means that it contains minerals and metals such as calcium and magnesium which can lead to a lot of problems such as stains appearing on areas that the water comes to contact with, it can dry your skin and in some cases make it feel itchy as well as clog up and wear out pipes and appliances that use water.

Additionally, citric acid water softeners balance out the pH level so it is close to the natural pH level of your skin reducing the chances of dry and itchy skin.

Water softeners are an appliance that uses a process called ‘ion exchange’ in order to remove the minerals and metals from the water so they do not pass through your pipes and damage them. In this article, we are going to be reviewing and comparing the top citric acid water softener to help you find the best one for you.

Best Citric Acid Water Softener

  1. PurRite Shower Filter Water Softener
  2. Eddy Electronic Water Descaler – Water Softener Alternative
  3. Aquios DS300 Duo Full House Salt-Free Water Softener & Filter System
  4. NuvoH20 Home Water Softener System
  5. Water2Buy W2B800 Meter Water Softener
  6. Whirlpool WHES40E 40,000 Grain Softener

PurRite Shower Filter Water Softener

The PurRite Shower Filter Water Softener is the cheapest citric acid water softener on this list, it is manufactured by a trustworthy company whose products are available in major retail chains such as Sears and Home Depot. This citric acid water softener is specially designed for easy and fast installation, according to the manufacturer the average installation time takes just a few minutes.

This citric acid water softener for shower heads features a universal fitting style that allows it to be put in various showers at your home. So you don’t need to be worried about the size of your shower before buying this beast.

The technology on this softener purifies water through a unique filtration process, one with 15 stages. It contains elements capable of improving your body health, be it brittle hairs, irritated skin, or itchy, dry nails.

PurRite Water Filter’s excellent filtration technique works well for both hot and cold water, and without compromising the water’s quality. It aids in the removal of any dust, metals, sediments, mold, and chemical or toxic minerals from the water.

The PurRite Shower Filter Water Softener filter cartridges last around six to eight months. However, this also depends on the amount of water, how soft it is, and how dense the minerals are.

The good thing is that it’s a low maintenance water softener. Since it’s salt-free, there’s no scale buildup on the softener that would require you to change it frequently.

Key Features:

  • Filtration and purification of all large particles and also common minerals such as chlorine, calcium, heavy metals and sediments which makes sure that the water will not irritate your skin, it is safe for consumption if needed and also that there are no odors.
  • A multi-step 15 process that adds key elements such as Vitamin C, Nano Silver, and Kado 55 that help further purify the water and also increase your overall health.
  • No tools are required to install this water softener which makes it even easier to use.
  • Despite being fairly low priced this product comes with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
  • Specially made to be put on shower head allowing you to have fresh and clean water to wash your hair with.

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Eddy Electronic Water Descaler – Water Softener Alternative

Manufactured by the British electronic descaler company Eddy, this electronic water descaler is in the mid-price range of citric acid water softeners on the market however it is advertised as a cost-effective answer to dealing with limescale building up inside of the pipes due to the content in the water.

Furthermore, according to the official website of the manufacturer of this product, it is CE and FCC certified in the United Kingdom, the European Union and the United States showing that it is a high-quality citric acid water softener alternative that is both effective and safe to use.

This option is very appealing since it requires no salt addition, maintenance, or backwashing, and uses very little power. The refund policy, which offers a complete refund if the device is returned within 12 months of purchase or if the consumer is dissatisfied with the outcome, is nearly unheard of elsewhere in the industry.

Instead of using salt to purify water, this device uses two-wire coins wrapped around your water supply to change the way minerals act in the fluid. It doesn’t alter the chemical composition of the water; instead, it prevents calcium and magnesium from clogging your pipes. Since these crystals do not interact with their surroundings, the threat of limescale reduces.

A great benefit of using the Eddy Electronic Water Descaler is that it requires zero maintenance. It works by pulsating low-frequency electrical waves into the water as it passes through the pipes, eliminating the need to cut lines, buy fittings, or even turn off the water. All you have to do is find a place near an electric outlet along the main water pipe.

Key Features:

  • It comes with a lifetime warranty against breakdown giving you peace of mind that if anything happens which is not your fault you qualify for a free replacement or repair.
  • Easy to install with no plumbing work required.
  • No maintenance required which in the long term saves you a lot of money and time.
  • Additionally, you are promised complete satisfaction or you can get your money back, terms and conditions do apply.
  • According to statistics from the manufacturer of this product they have had 99% customer satisfaction in the past 14 years that this product has been sold.

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Aquios DS300 Duo Full House Salt-Free Water Softener & Filter System

Aquios DS300 Water Softener is the most expensive product in this comparison review article, it comes with very similar features to the two other products on this list however those features are overall superior.

For example, this water softener is able to treat water that has a hardness of 30 GPG compared to the Eddy Electronic Water Descaler which is able to treat hard water of 20 GPG and the PurRite water softener which does not have a specified GPG rating.

This device includes a filtration system that uses commercial-grade technology and full-house water conditioning. All in all, it’s a performance powerhouse wrapped in a slim and sleek design.

Moreover, the Aquios DS300 ensures that your water is free of sediment, chlorine, and other unwanted contaminants. Thanks to its 5-micron catalytic carbon-filtering technique, this filter can remove even the tiniest traces of chemicals. The Aquios water treatment system will never have you dealing with the buildup of magnesium, calcium, and other hard water byproducts in your fixtures and pipes.

This system is built with a high flow rate and filtration rate in mind. It differs from previous salt-based systems since it doesn’t get rid of the minerals in your water that make it “hard.” Instead, it employs a commercially available but eco-friendly technology known as “Siliphos,” a polyphosphate additive that prevents deposits and buildups.

There is very little upkeep required, and you don’t have to think about programming or wasting electricity. Plus, it has a 6-month cartridge life and a 40,000-gallon cartridge capacity. A 20-year warranty is the cherry on the top.

Key Features:

  • Designed to have a high flow rate and high filtration rate allowing for fast and efficient filtration with no loss of efficiency in the filtration even if there is a higher flow in the pipes.
  • Able to handle higher than average hard water GPG which makes it a lot more reliable no matter where you live in the world.
  • Salt-free technology that helps prevent limescale from forming on the water.
  • A 20-year warranty is included with this product.
  • 5-micron catalytic carbon filtration that is able to remove even the slightest traces of chemicals that may have contaminated the water.

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NuvoH20 Home Water Softener System

NuvoH20 Home Water Softener System is one of the three premium citric acid water softeners from the NuvoH20 company that specialize in creating water filters and softeners that employ the power of citrus rather than of salt.

The NuvoH2O citric acid water softener is ideal for anyone looking for a safe way to deal with hard water issues. To neutralize hard ions like magnesium or calcium, NuvoH2O systems use a chemical process called chelation, which keeps them soluble and prevents limescale buildup.

Thanks to this technology, this NuvoH2O softener can prevent 99 percent of scale from accumulating and removes existing scale from fixtures and pipes.

This product is designed to adjust the pH levels to where they are healthy for the human skin as well as using agents in the citrus constituent that binds the metals and minerals to prevent them from building up on surfaces and causing scaling.

The NuvoH2O Home softening system is designed for homes with a square footage of 1,000 to 2,000 square feet and two to three family members. Not to forget, the water conditioner has a maximum flow rate of 15 GPM, meaning you won’t notice any difference in water flow.

All in all, this water softener is an excellent choice if you don’t want to spend money on expert installation; it’s small in size and doesn’t demand professional plumbing.

Key Features:

  • Extremely high capacity is available for the filters with the ability to process 20,000 gallons before you need to buy a replacement filter.
  • Approved by reputable government bodies such as the FDA and the NSF which should give you confidence that this product is safe to use.
  •  have designed it with eco-friendliness in mind with the water softener not using any electricity to work and also producing no waste.
  • Installation is also very easy with the additional option of booking an appointment with a certified NuvoH20 who will make the process quick and effortless.
  • Ability to pay in monthly installments for the product through the official NuvoH20 website which allows you to have more flexibility with your finances.

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Water2Buy W2B800 Meter Water Softener

If you’re looking for a large water softener to cater to the soft water needs of your big family, the Water2Buy W2B800 Meter Water Softener is best for you. It can soften up to 1060 gallons of water a day; enough for a family of 1-10 members. Moreover, it works equally well with both city and well water.

Thanks to its compactness — 225 X 500 X 1100 mm — you can easily fit it into your garage or base, making it perfect for small households.

The best part is, this water softener is highly energy efficient. The overall energy consumption is so small that you will hardly spend $15 annually on electricity.

The softener comes with a built-in digital meter control to regulate the consumption of salt and water. The water softener is also equipped with an automatic cleaner that runs a regeneration cycle every time it becomes too dirty to process clean water.

To enhance efficiency, this water softener measures your daily water consumption and regenerates accordingly.

Key Features:

  • Comes with a complete installation package of US power supply, manual, water softener, pre-fitted bypass valve, bypass lever, and 1 inch (28mm) High FLOW connection fittings.
  • The water softener regenerates only at 3 AM so as to not disrupt your daily water usage.
  • Its water-efficient model uses only 90 liters of water when regenerating to minimize water wastage
  • Comes with high-strength corrosion-resistant fiberglass that adds to the durability of this device
  • Adjustable water hardness gives you the freedom to choose the intensity of limescale filtration in every cycle

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Whirlpool WHES40E 40,000 Grain Softener

The Whirlpool WHES40E 40,000 Grain Softener is best for medium-sized families of 1 to 6 members. Designed to remove up to 10 ppm of clear water iron, this NSF-certified model is extremely efficient in removing limescale deposits and hard water symptoms like stains on clothes and spotty dishes.

The Whirlpool automatically calculates the amount of water and salt needed for each cycle to minimize wastage, ensuring maximum efficiency.

The Whirlpool water softener also comes with a smart salt-level indicator that informs you every time the appliance is low on salt so that you don’t have to guess the perfect time to replenish the salt content.

Its smart sensor calculates your water usage to meet your increasing water demands. And when you’re away — maybe for a vacation — the dip in usage will inform the appliance to not waste any water in unnecessary regeneration.

Key Features:

  • Can remove even the finest impurities, including iron, which is practically invisible to naked eyes.
  • Comes with a 1-year warranty that can be extended to a 2-year full body and labor warranty if you buy 3 bottles of Whirlpool WHEWSC water softener cleanser.
  • Demand-triggered water regeneration technology to reduce water wastage
  • Works equally well with city and well water and can be connected to all major appliances of your house

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Salt-Based Water Softener vs Salt-Free Water Softener

The two types of water softeners that dominate the market are salt-based water softeners and salt-free water softeners, and the difference between the two types is much bigger than just the fact that one does not use a form of salt in its filtration system.

Salt-based water softeners uses various types of salt that remove particles and hard minerals that is in the water, it is very effective however due to salt being used often the water will have a much saltier taste and also contain a higher than average amount of salt which dries the skin and is also not good for your health if you frequently consume it.

On the other hand, you have the so-called salt-free water softeners which in reality are not really a type of softeners but are actually officially known as ‘water conditioners’ as rather than removing the materials from the water they change the structure of the metals and other minerals in the water that reduces the chances of them sticking and building up inside the piping and other surfaces.

Salt-free water softeners are also known as citric acid water softeners with citric acid being one of the main ingredients for altering the composition of the minerals and ions in the water, we go in further detail about citric acid below.

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Advantages of Salt-Free Water Softener

Citrus water softeners are typically tied to cheaper utility bills, soft skin, and convenience of use, not to forget their low-maintenance and environmentally-friendly design. Here are some more advantages of having them installed:

They Make Your Appliances and Plumbing Last Longer

They are much more effective at protecting your pipes and appliances from damage that can be caused by hard water.

Appliances and pipelines, as well as the process of replacing them, can be pricey. Citrus water softeners can help you get 30 percent more life from your water-based appliances; the NuvoH2O system is a good example of this.

They bring about a drastic reduction in wear and tear, which ultimately saves money on repairs and replacements.

They Provide You With Healthy Drinking Water

Healthier to drink than water that has been processed by a salt-based water softener and reduces the chances of you suffering from illnesses related to high salt intakes such as stroke and heart attack.

Enjoy the Benefits of Softer Skin

Citrus water softeners are an excellent method for making your skin softer and smoother.

Moreover, the water is better for your skin with a lower chance of your skin drying and itching as well as your hair becoming oily which is another common side effect associated with salty water.

They’re also efficient enough for many users to get away with using less soap and detergent, reducing the likelihood of dry skin. Using a citrus filter water softener will also reduce the harshness of clothing that has been previously washed in hard water.

They’re Simple to Keep Up With

Unlike traditional saltwater softeners, citrus water softeners don’t require their users to carry large bags of salt to their homes to maintain their systems. Instead, all you need to do is replace the cartridge regularly, which takes about 60 seconds and one person.

You have to use less personal cleaning products as well as cleaning products for your house as there is less salt so you will not have to wash the salt residue from yourself. the areas in your house that get in contact with water and other objects with the most common example being your dishes.

They Use Cutting-Edge Technology

Today’s best citrus water softener employs the most modern chelation technology used by the world’s top hotels and restaurants. The FDA has certified this technology, giving users peace of mind that they’re consuming safe drinking water, and are washing their clothes and bathing in water that won’t hurt their clothes and bodies.

Also, water softener business innovators are always on the hunt for new ways to get softer water, so we never know what the future holds for us!

They Are Eco-friendly

A lot of individuals today are “going green.” Citrus water softeners are becoming increasingly popular among the environmentally aware looking for a water softener that can easily be recycled and runs on electricity.

Furthermore, citrus water softeners don’t release hundreds of pounds of salt into the ground like other softeners, thereby doing their best to not disrupt the natural equilibrium.

How Citric Acid Water Filters Work?

Citric acid is a type of acid that is classed as ‘weak’ and in water filters, it is used to bind ions and chemicals together in order to reduce their effectiveness of sticking and building up on surfaces that they get in contact with which can include the walls of your bathroom, pipes, and taps for example.

Like all filters, citric acid water filters need to be replaced regularly based on the recommended lifespan use as well as the amount of gallons that are filtered on average, if you happen to use up a lot of water then you will have to change the filter every month for example compared to the two months recommended timeframe.

Things to Consider When Buying a Citric Acid Water Softener

You can’t pick the first citric acid water softener you see! That said, what should you look for when buying a citric acid water softener?

Flow Rate & Capacity (Size)

A water softener’s size or capacity indicates the grain of hardness it can eliminate before regenerating. Generally, the grain capacity of citric acid water softeners ranges from 8,000 to 80,000 grains.

Since softening is a function of time, the size of the soft water outlet also determines the flow rate or how many soft water outlets you can use at the same time.

In the end, it’s critical to select the appropriate size:

  • The greater the softening capacity, the higher the lifespan of the device media.
  • Undersized systems will exhaust ahead of time, cost more time and money to maintain, and wear out sooner.
  • An oversized unit is more expensive and causes damage to the resin bed due to irregular regeneration cycles.


Since these units will be used frequently, especially in busy households, you’ll want to be sure they’re durable, effective, and affordable to maintain.

Fortunately, most systems currently on the market are long-lasting, and many come with long-term guarantees for further peace of mind. In most cases, they’re also made of BPA-free plastic or stainless steel but double-check before buying.

Maintenance and Installation

If possible, get a citric acid water softener that you can install yourself. You will save time and money by not hiring a licensed plumber to install the system. Check the product description to see if you can handle the installation.

When it comes to maintenance, a citric acid water softener or salt-free softener typically requires significantly less attention than salt-based water softeners. Also, keep in mind that softeners with filters will require replacement, so do your research on how much they cost and how easy they are to repair and replace.

Purchase the One With High-Quality Components

Your ideal water softener must contain high-quality components and as a metered valve. It’ll not only have a greater shelf-life, but will also perform more efficiently.

High-quality components may be more expensive upfront, but they last far longer and have lower long-term running costs. Pick a system with poor-quality components and you’ll find yourself replacing them frequently and wasting a lot of water, resulting in substantially higher long-term costs than anticipated.

Think About Your Budget

Considering the price of the item isn’t enough; you must also account for replacement media. Find the answer to this question: how many times in a year do you need to tweak its components, be it repair or replacement? Keep in mind that the lower the media capacity of the system, the more frequently you’ll have to renew it.

Warranty and Service

Larger, more experienced manufacturers are more likely to provide superior warranties and customer service. This is partly due to their knowledge and expertise, but also due to their financial prowess.

Always read the warranty information that comes with a product and user feedback about how to service or replace it if the need arises. There are numerous citrus water softener reviews available to assist you with this.

Should I Buy A Citric Acid Water Softener?

A citric water softener is the right choice for you if:

  • You like the taste of softened water
  • You want your skin to be softer and your hair to be healthier
  • You want to decrease or remove existing scale accumulation from your pipes, water heater, and faucets
  • You’re looking for a less expensive alternative to a salt-based water softener
  • You don’t want to be cleaning often
  • Your water is either moderately or very hard
  • Salt-based water softeners are prohibited in your area
  • You prefer a more eco-friendly technique of water softening


What Is Citric Acid Used for in Water Treatment?

Citric Acid is a natural ingredient that to the average person is best known for being present in so-called citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, limes, and many other varieties.

Apart from being a great food preservative, citric acid is also what is known as a ‘chelating agent’ which is a chemical that initiates a chemical reaction with metal ions that causes them to come together which makes them lose properties that include the ability to build upon surfaces which can damage them in the longer, cause water-based appliances to break down and also be a hub for bacteria to thrive.

At What Temperature Does Citric Acid Burn?

Citric Acid has a very high burn temperature of 153 degrees Celcius or alternatively 307 degrees Fahrenheit this makes it a safe chemical to use in water softeners as there is minimal chance of the temperature inside of those appliances heating up to such levels so you if you install citric acid water softeners then you do not have to worry about adverse reactions occurring from the citric acid burning due to such high temperatures.

Regardless it is very important to handle citric acid with care because if you do not pay attention and happen to heat up an appliance that contains citric acid then you are in danger of getting seriously hurt as citric acid turns into gas when burned and if it has no ability to leave the facility where it is contained it can cause an explosion.

Is Citric Acid Strong or Weak?

Citric acid is graded as a weak acid which means that it has a higher pH level than average and that it also causes a chemical reaction when placed in another liquid which is most commonly water.

What Is Citric Acid Used For?

Citric acid is used in citric acid water softeners to bond together different metal ions and chemicals in order to reduce certain properties which in water softener appliances are most commonly to reduce the side effects of hard water that include scaling and damage to water appliances.

Citric acid is also an essential ingredient in the salt-free water softeners that helps protect pipes and other surfaces without introducing a large quantity of salt into the water which comes with other big drawbacks to people’s health.

Do Citric Acid Water Softeners Use a Lot of Electricity?

No, Citric Acid Water Softeners do not use any electricity as it is simply an appliance that contains a filter that automatically works by itself as water is passing through it by reacting with metal ions and other chemicals that are common in hard water.

The majority of manufactures of citric acid water softeners pride themselves on their environmentally friendly initiatives that aim to limit waste and energy use.

How to Use Citric Acid?

Installing a dispensing unit is probably the only way to use citric acid in a water softener. This device will precisely measure the amount of citric acid required in the system.

After all, it’s impossible to add citric acid purchased from a drugstore directly. It isn’t easy to know how much salt to put in your water softener either.

It’s best to use a citric acid water softener as a pre-filter in your existing water filtration system. This way, you get to soften the water before it runs through the system’s primary filtration process.

Is There Anything to Keep in Mind When Replacing the Cartridges?

You should have a bucket on standby if there is any water spilling. A bypass valve will come in handy too during this procedure. You may also want to keep an extra O ring or two on hand in case one or both of them wear out and leak.

The optimum time to replace O rings is while you’re changing cartridges. Also, avoid over-tightening, as it can be damaging.

Are Citric Acid Water Softeners Environment-Friendly?

Citric acid water softeners are an excellent alternative for anyone concerned about the environment. They usually don’t require electricity, produce little waste, and don’t require salt.

All of this makes for a system that’s less expensive to operate, more effective, and kinder to the environment.

How Does A Citric Acid Water Softener Work?

Citric acid is a chemical that binds metal ions in water, the most common of which are calcium and magnesium.

You may prevent these minerals from depositing on the surface of your shower walls or other surfaces by binding them with a chelant. On the other hand, overuse of citric acid can cause your alkaline cleaning solution to lose its effectiveness.

Is It Possible to Use Citric Acid Water Softeners With Well Water?

Although some customers claim to have used the NuvoH2O with well water, it’s not intended for households with wells. That said, if you do plan to use it with well water, you’ll need extra water filtering devices to remove iron, silt, bacteria, and other contaminants.

Does Citric Acid Soften Water?

Indeed, citric acid does soften hard water. It’s a chelating agent that reacts with metal irons in your pipes and appliances and deprives them of the ability to stick to the surfaces.

It works differently from other water softeners since it doesn’t remove those minerals, yet provides excellent results. It wouldn’t be wrong if you were to associate a citric acid water filter or softener with water conditioners.


In conclusion, there are a lot of different citric acid water softeners and salt-free water softeners to choose from. There is no clear winner that everyone must buy instead each model that we have listed in this comparison article is ideal for different types of consumers.

For example, if you are budget conscious then the PurRite Shower Filter Water Softener and the Eddy Electronic Water Descaler being the best option for you as they both cost under $200.

Overall, the Eddy Electronic Water Descaler is the best money for value appliance out of the two cheap options as it has a proven track record of over a decade of positive reviews as well as it is made of higher quality materials compared to the PurRite Shower Filter Water Softener which is made for very limited use in your shower.

While on the other hand, you have the Aquios DS300 Duo Full House and NuvoH20 Home Water Softener System which come with improved features but both cost over $500, they are good long term investments however not everyone is prepared to pay such a large amount of money for water softeners.

These models are also likely to be more durable with the NuvoH20 Home Water Softener System’s filter being able to process 20,000 gallons of water before wearing down and needing replacement with the filters costing only a fraction of the total price that you will pay originally. Out of the two expensive options, the NuvoH20 Home Water Softener System citrus acid water softener is the best value for money as it has a very durable filter that offers amazing value for money.

If you live in an area that has very hard water, then the Aquios DS300 Duo Full House is the best option for you as it has a GPG of 30 which is a measure of the level of hardness of water that it can process.