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How to Clean Water Softener Resin?

Fact checked by Stephen Conklin

how to clean water softener resin

Most homes have a water softener that collects and provides clean water. Just like any appliance, it needs cleaning and maintenance to retain its efficiency. Learning how to clean water softener resin will allow you to take care of your softener system without requiring professional help.

After some time, the minerals can build up in the resin tank. Once it starts to run low on salt, your tank needs cleaning. In addition, if you notice any change in color in the water or when the water tastes unpleasant after passing through the softener, you should do a clean-up as soon as possible.

Table of Contents

Steps in Cleaning Water Softener Resin


What you’ll need:

  • Resin cleaner
  • Flathead screwdriver (optional)

When choosing a commercial resin cleaner, make sure that it can remove mineral buildup. There are also specific cleaners that are designed to address a particular element like iron. Decide on a resin cleanser after determining your needs.

Before proceeding, choose a time when you don’t need to use water. Once that is set, you can start completing the following steps:

Feed the cleaner to the unit

Follow the cleaner’s instructions and pour the solution into the brine tank.

Set to regeneration mode

Locate the regeneration control knob and turn it counterclockwise using the flathead screwdriver. If you have a digital unit, long press the recharge button to start the regeneration mode right away.

Repeat the process

Refill the brine tank with the suggested amount of resin cleaner, then rerun the regeneration process. Run it for the third time if the resin bed is loaded with calcium or iron.

Return to normal setting

Go back to the regeneration control and rotate the knob clockwise to return the system to the standard setting. Skip this step if you have a digital water softener unit.

Flush out the water

Close the control panel and locate the nearest faucet attached to the water softener system. Run the tap for 10 minutes to flush out the cleaner from the unit.

Repeat this process as often as needed. During hot summers, run the regeneration process once a week. You can run the process once a month when the water is used less.


  • Wash your hands and any area of skin that comes in contact with the solution. Use soap and water. If your eyes happen to contact the solution, wash your eyes with cold water.
  • Take a rest in the open air when you feel any discomfort after completing the clean-up task. If you don’t feel better after a while, seek a doctor’s advice.

Water Softener Maintenance


Water softener systems are low maintenance, but it needs more than just cleaning. Put a little extra effort into the upkeep of the system to ensure a smooth running of the units for the years to come. Here are some things that you need to check regularly.

  • Use the correct type of salt

Follow the manufacturer’s manual on what type of salt you should be using for your water softener system. Using the wrong kind can cause the softener to malfunction.

  • Check the salt level

Inspect the level of salt every 4 to 6 weeks to avoid issues like smelly water. When the water doesn’t lather while washing, it is an indication that the unit needs cleaning.

  • Prevent salt bridges and salt mushing

Crystalized salt and solid crusts within the brine tank form a space between the salt and water. It can result in tank blockage, lack of brine, and eventually hard water. Manage the humidity level of the softener and keep the brine tank half full to prevent this from happening.

The cleaning process can be labor-intensive. But the money, time, and trouble that you will save in the long run makes it worth all the effort. Another piece of advice is never to purchase cheap resin that doesn’t meet your home’s requirements. You need to invest and spend a bit more to get the best results.

If your home water softener so is too old and you spend too much time and money to maintain it. I think you should consider a new water softener. Such as smart water softeners, citric acid water softeners, or twin tank water softeners.

We hope that this cleaning guide has been helpful to you. Was it able to provide the solution that you are looking for? Share your experience with us in the comments! If you know anyone who will find this article helpful, share it with them!

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