Water Softener Or Reverse Osmosis For Home- Do I Need Both?

Updated November 19th, 2023
person fills up water bottle with filtered tap water

Although it is not 100% necessary to install a water softener as well as a reverse osmosis (RO) filtration system, it is definitely beneficial to have both systems working in tandem for maximum efficiency and minimal maintenance costs.

Benefits of a Water Softener

Home Appliances Last Longer

Without the high content of calcium and magnesium that is present in hard water, which causes limescale build-up and blockages, water-using appliances such as dishwashers, kettles, and laundry machines will last much longer.

Hair and Skin Are Softer

As well as keeping your skin and hair silky smooth, soft water is more gentle for sensitive skin and can even help to provide relief against skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis.

Cleaner House

When you have soft water in the house, you’ll find you no longer have water spots that you need to clean from taps, sinks, countertops, or anywhere else. You’ll even have cleaner dishes!

Cooking Tastes Better

Using pure, soft water in food preparation will result in better-tasting final dishes. You should notice an improved taste in your drinking water too, as well as in teas and coffees.


Soft water even cleans your pipes from existing limescale, meaning your hot water system can function better, reducing your household costs and energy consumption which is not only beneficial for you but for the good of our planet.

Benefits of a Reverse Osmosis System


Your RO system keeps you and your family safe by filtering out impurities in the water, such as nitrates, chlorine, and lead, which can cause various health issues.


By reducing the minerals, salt, and other contaminants, you can have the peace of mind that the liquid you’re drinking is the purest quality which is essential to maintaining a healthy life.


It should come as no surprise, then, that water in such a pure form tastes a lot better. Any unpleasant smells will also disappear.

But if the RO system removes all the minerals in the water, how safe is it to drink reverse osmosis water? This video will explain more:

Environmentally Friendly

There’s no need to purchase bottled water any longer when you can get the good stuff straight out of your tap at home, reducing your plastic use and household waste.

Why Should I Use a Water softener With My RO Filter?

Your reverse osmosis filtration system will benefit from using a water softener for the two main reasons below.

RO Removes the Sodium Added by a Water Softener

A water softener works by ion exchange: trading magnesium and calcium ions for (most commonly) sodium. While this is effective in treating hard water, the resulting sodium levels are typically an unwanted side-effect, especially for those wanting to water their plants with tap water.

A Water Softener Protects Your RO System

While an RO system will soften your water and filter out impurities, the membrane of the filter becomes damaged by the hard water. This means it will wear out much faster than if the RO system processes water that has already been softened, resulting in higher maintenance costs, as well as the inconvenience of more frequent filter replacements.


It is a straightforward process to install a whole-house water filtration system in your garage or workshop. A water softener in combination with your reverse osmosis water filter is the best setup, particularly if you are in an area with hard water. Pairing these units means that you will have access to the best quality water throughout your entire house, with both systems complementing each other and working together to give you the most efficiently produced and purest water.

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