Culligan water softeners are among the best on the market for keeping your water soft, but for obvious reasons, the instructions for changing or resetting the controls is a closely held secret. Culligan makes money by sending out a technician, which may or may not be in your best interest. Here is some information on how to handle the settings yourself.
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A water softener uses salt to control the hardness of your water. It is important to know that a water softener does not remove iron for your water; you'll need a separate filter for iron removal.
Soft water is easier on your clothing in the laundry and easier on your budget for soaps, detergents and laundry soap--because you need less. Over time, this can save you significant money.
A water softener can also make your water taste better.
The initial settings for a water softener may change over time. One of the considerations is how many people are living in your home; the water softener may have been installed and set up when there were only two living in the home and now there is a family of four--the settings need to change to adjust for the increase in water usage. A sudden power surge that runs through your home may reset the controls to the factory default, which may or may not be best for your home.
Should you do it yourself?
It's not inconceivable that the company that installed the water softening system is no longer in business. If a perusal through your yellow pages doesn't yield a repair person who fixes all brands, you may have no choice but to tinker with the settings yourself. If your wallet is on the light side, you may want to at least try to fix it yourself, realising that if you don't do it right, you may still have to call someone to fix it. You may be able to get the instruction manual online if you know the model number (see Resources below).
Local large hardware stores, such a Lowe's and Home Depot, offer a free water test. If you're not sure if your system is softening the water, take a sample of your water to one of these stores and they can quickly test it to see how soft or hard it is. You should do this before attempting to adjust the settings on your water softener.
The Control Panel
The control panel is set up to automatically perform the softening cycle at preset times, and a power failure can change the setting if the backup battery is low. This is usually easily changed by simply turning the knob and setting the accurate time. The softener is also set up to know exactly how much salt it needs to soften the water--this is usually what homeowners want to check or change. A water test will tell you if it is not working correctly and whether you need to adjust it up or down to adjust the softness of the water.
Again, only you can decide whether or not you want to do this yourself or call in a technician. However, if you do call a technician and watch what they do and ask questions, it may be money well spent.
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