As I write this blog, I’m sitting in my RV in White River State Park in Arkansas, and I’m using our popular RV Water Softener to soften and condition the water in my RV. The water here is about 19 grains per gallon which is very hard. The water is fine to drink (Filtered) but shows signs of lime scale build-up after just a few days of staying here. If you own an RV, you probably already filter your water with the use of an external in-line filter, or an interior water filter cartridge that has a replaceable carbon cartridge. If you don’t filter your water and you drink it, you might be taking a big health risk. Either way, these in-line carbon filters work great for removing many contaminates from water, but they will not do anything for calcium and hard water removal and treatment. And if you spend long lengths of time like I do in my RV, then you will no doubt begin to experience lime-scale build-up from hard water in the park where you’re staying. One big difference between your house and RV fixtures is that you might have “Chrome Looking” fixtures in your RV but they might actually be made from plastic. And this means that hard water scale and build-up won’t clean off the same as if they were made from metal like your house fixtures are. So if you use lime scale removal chemicals like, Lime Away, CLR or Lime Out, it’s possible that you will damage your plastic fixtures. So what are your options? Well to begin with you will need to decide if you want to purchase an Ion Exchange water softener. This system would work exactly like a salt based water softener and require you to purchase salt and the bigger problem is the regeneration process that would require it to flush water every few days which would be prohibitive if you’re not hooked to a permanent sewer, and filling your RV gray water sewer tank which is probably less than thirty gallons of capacity. Or you could consider using a “Salt Free” RV Water Conditioner. This option allows you to treat the hard water without the salt, or wasting any water. This product simply hooks to the water hydrant that you would hook up your water inlet hose to, and your water inlet hose hooks to the RV Water Descaler. It’s very portable and easily stores in your camper because it’s only 12” long and 2” in diameter. These salt free systems will not actually remove the calcium from your water, but instead they break the calcium hardness down into small harmless crystals know as Arogonite, which will not allow the build-up of lime scale. Even though the aragonite is harmless, it could cause minor water spotting on shower doors and glasses. This is usually not a problem for RVers because RVs normally don’t have dishwashers. It’s really a trade off for the better of two possibilities. (1. Untreated hard water damaging your fixtures, 2. Treated water that wont damage your fixtures and possibly getting minor water spotting) You also have other options if you want a system that actually removes the calcium from your water, just keep in mind that for the calcium to be removed from the water, it will require an ion exchange process and you will need a salt based system. There are products on the market that won’t waste water, and you use table salt to regenerate the resin. You need to remember that they require maintenance. Our Salt Free RV Water Softener is virtually maintenance free, only requiring you to remove the core a couple times per year and wash it under running water and scrub it with a wire brush. It will last a life time and uses no moving parts or electricity. It can also be used for washing your car and many other point-of-use applications because it compact and very portable.