The short answer is “Yes.” But it is not a very smart choice. Although people do install their water softeners outside their homes, it may come with certain costs. The decision to install water softeners outside your home is tricky.
You are probably here because your main water supply line is outside or far away from your house. And you are confused about whether to run the pipe from the main water supply line or to install the water softener outside your house.
Can water softener be installed outside? Is it okay to install my water softener outside? Read the article below to know exactly what you should do:
- You can install your water softener outdoors.
- You need to consider certain factors for the outdoor installation.
- Preparation for the outdoor installation can be time-consuming and costly.
- Weather can cause real trouble for your water softener.
- Your water softener cannot withstand extreme heat or cold.
- Water softeners need a stable power supply.
- Water softeners should be close to the water POE.
- Water softeners should have a nearby floor drainage.
- You can partially bury your water softener.
- Some states do not allow water softener usage.
IS IT OKAY TO INSTALL MY WATER SOFTENER OUTSIDE?
Well, you can install your water softener outside your home, even in a garage outside your house. But it is not an ideal choice. Your water softener carries salt. It needs a stable power supply and a floor drain.
Water softener salt alone can be harmful to metals and every other thing outside your home or inside your garage. It becomes risky when you experience water softener leakage.
Well, not all water softeners leak easily, but it is a possibility, and you should be prepared for that. Nowadays, modern water softeners go through high levels of quality tests that almost eliminate the risk of water softener tank leakage.
In any case, it is not feasible to expose your water softener to extreme weather. Whether you install your water softener outside or inside, you want it to function properly. It is a common observation that water softeners perform better without causing any trouble when they are installed in suitable places.
What Are The Issues With Installing A Water Softener Outside?
Weather is the main risk. It can turn hot or very cold, and you cannot control it right away. You can experience these issues after installing your water softener outside:
Your water softener is not designed to withstand freezing. You might have seen pipes bursting during cold weather. Your water softener connects to your main water supply. So, it may stop functioning when it is exposed to cold weather.
The fiberglass structure in your resin tank is not designed to withstand high pressure. So, it breaks. Water experts say that your water softener should not be exposed to temperatures lower than 32 degrees.
The danger is real. Freezing can disrupt your whole-house water supply. Some homeowners report that water inside their water softeners freezes due to cold weather.
Your resin tank has a plastic tube that carries water. Freezing stops the water flow inside the distribution tube and can damage your water softener.
Water professionals do not like to install water softeners at any place that provides direct sunlight exposure. It is not just sunlight! It is UV exposure.
This UV exposure is not similar to your UV filter. Unlike a UV water filtration system, UV provided by sunlight falls directly onto the plastic parts of your water softener or onto the resin tank. UV exposure can damage almost all the plastic components of your water softener.
Water experts are of the opinion that temperature changes lead to water softener performance changes. They affect the normal functioning of your water softener. For instance, your water softener can stop functioning due to high cold or hot weather.
How To Make A Water Softener Suitable For Outdoor Installation
You have to ensure certain things before trying to install your water softener outdoors. You make sure that you can protect your water softener against extreme heat or cold. You can need to take the following steps to prepare your water softener for outdoor installation:
Install The Softener in a Shed
You need to prepare a proper shed for your water softener. A proper shed can protect your water softener against extreme cold or heat. Your shed should be close to your main water supply line. It should have a power supply for your water softener.
Ideally, you should have heaters in your shed for water softener. A heater should be able to protect your water softener against cold weather.
Bury The Softener Underground
Partial underground installation is one way to ensure the safety and protection of your water softener. It is a good idea because it provides natural insulation to your water softener.
People bury their water softeners when they feel that they can save space and additional costs. People bury not only the resin tank but also the brine tank. They do not bury the control valve of their water softeners.
Protect The Softener With An Enclosure
It is always a good idea to protect your water softener with an enclosure. It will protect your water softener against heavy rainfall, dust-storm, snow, or sunlight. You can buy a plastic or metallic enclosure for your water softener. However, you can also have a custom-made wooden enclosure for your water softener.
Use A Water Softener Cover
Water softener covers become relevant when you are not likely to experience freezing winters. Make sure that you get a waterproof cover for your water softener. You can either get a polyurethane or canvas cover for your water softener.
Using a water softener cover can have several advantages. It can protect the resin. It becomes a shield between other elements and your water softener. You can use it to extend the life of your water softener.
Protect The Power Cord
No doubt, the power cord is an important part of your water softener. It enables the proper functioning of your water softener. Your water softener can stop working if someone cuts the power cord of your water softener.
The power cord of your water softener can be exposed to extreme heat or cold if you install the water softener outside. So, make sure that your power cord is safe, secure, and connected correctly. Otherwise, it can get damaged.
Things To Consider
Installing your water softener outdoors means that you have exposed your water softener to heat or cold. You should remember that your water softener cannot tolerate too much heat or cold.
Water softeners need little maintenance, but they can stop functioning if you expose them to extreme heat or cold. Simply put, you have to take several protective and preventive measures while installing your water softener outdoors.
Accessibility And Space
Accessibility and space are perhaps the trickiest part of the outdoor installation of your water softener. You cannot install your water softener outdoors if you do not have enough space.
What do you mean by space and accessibility? Space and accessibility mean that you have space for your water softener and accessibility to perform routine maintenance tasks. In other words, you need to install your water softener outdoors in such a manner that you can disassemble or reassemble it anytime without facing any issues.
Close To The Point-of-Entry
It is common knowledge that you have to install your water softener close to the point of entry. Your water softener should be close to your main water supply. You are lucky if your water softener is close to your water meter. It can save a lot of plumbing costs.
Access To Power Source
Your water softener needs a stable power source. So, you have to provide a power source whether you install your water softener indoors or outdoors. You can experience power supply disruption if your power source is exposed to extreme heat or cold. So, make sure that your power source is fully covered, safe, stable, and secure.
Your water softeners produce wastewater. You should have a floor drain, a dry well, or a septic field outdoors for the safe disposal of the wastewater produced by your water softener. In some cases, you might need to install a softener drain line.
CAN’T A Water Softener Installed Outside?
While it is true that you can install your water softener outdoors, it might not remain feasible in some cases. These include regions with extreme heat or cold. It is not feasible to install your water softener outdoors if the weather is likely to remain extremely cold all the time.
Even if you provide additional insulation and take care of your water softener, the installation alone can be an unsuitable financial burden for you and your family. Freezing temperatures will stop or ruin the water-softening process.
Is there a law against installing water softeners outside?
Well, one cannot say that there is a law prohibiting the outdoor installation of a water softener. But you have to be careful when it comes to your state laws because some states do not allow the usage of water softeners. Only install one if your state allows the usage of a water softener.
Is it okay to install my water softener outside – Final Thought
Can water softeners be installed outdoors? While it is clear that you can install your water softener outdoors, it is still not a highly feasible option. You might need to take into account weather and other factors related to your water softener’s performance.
In some cases, it may become impossible to protect your water softener against extreme heat or cold. You should prefer indoor installation in such scenarios.