Please Pass the Salt — A Buyers’ Guide For Water Softening Salt - Wolverine Water Systems

Please Pass the Salt — A Buyers’ Guide For Water Softening Salt

High-quality products require high-quality care. Your Wolverine Water system is no exception. 

Our systems require durable, first-rate salt to keep them running smoothly and efficiently. Performing routine salt maintenance will help you prolong the lifespan of your water system and get the most out of your investment. There are many different brands and styles of softening salt on the market, and we know it can be confusing to know which ones will work best. Here’s a brief overview of the role salt plays in your water system, and which brands of salt you should choose when you head to the store. 

Why does my Wolverine Water system need salt? 

If you ever asked your high school chemistry teacher, “when am I ever going to use this?” — keep reading.  

While it may just look like a big mysterious tank in your basement, your Wolverine Water system uses a bit of science to turn untreated water into the softened water flowing from your taps. Learn more about what’s happening inside the tank (and unleash your inner nerd) with this simple look at the ion exchange water purification process. 

Hard water is full of dissolved minerals like calcium and magnesium. In order to remove these minerals, your water must go through the ion exchange process. Our whole home water systems use ion exchange resin beads, which contain sodium ions. When hard water passes through the system, the resin beads release the sodium ions and grab onto the calcium and magnesium ions, removing them from your water. The result is softened water, free from the excess minerals that can cause buildup and wreak havoc on your pipes, fixtures and appliances. 

You can now enjoy the benefits of softened water in your home! But the resin beads in your Wolverine Water system are still hanging onto that calcium and magnesium. Over time and with prolonged use, the resin beans will become saturated with hard water minerals and will need to be regenerated, or reversed. This is where salt maintenance comes into play. Adding high quality salt to your system creates a “brine” (aka, sodium-rich water). Unsurprisingly, the tank you add the water softening salt to is called the brine tank. The high levels of sodium in the brine force the ion exchange process to reverse, freeing up the resin beads to get back to work. The wastewater created from this process is flushed down the drain and your water filtration system begins softening your water all over again. 

Important note: just because the ion exchange process leaves behind sodium ions in your water, it doesn’t mean that you’re drinking, cooking with, or bathing in “salty water.” Salt (NaCl), is a chemical compound while sodium is an element. The element sodium is found in many everyday foods. Sodium ions in your water are released gradually into your water, are flavorless and don’t pose health risks. Long story short — your softened water will not taste salty. 

Where can I get Wolverine Water approved salt? 

Not all salt is created equal. We recommend you use the brands listed below. Other brands of salts that haven’t been tested with our products may cause damage or impact the lifespan of your Wolverine Water system. 

Many of these can be found at big box home improvement stores, like Lowes, Home Depot, or Menards, or at your local hardware store. Product availability may vary.


Available at: Wolverine Water locations
($9.25 per bag for Ultra High Purity and $12.00 per bag for Red-Out)

We recommend Duracube Ultra High Purity Salt for general use and Red-Out Duracube for customers with extra iron in their source water. Duracube Salt is available for pickup at our East Lansing and Lowell locations.


Available at: Lowes, Home Depot, Menards, Amazon

This widely available, high-quality brand can be found at a variety of locations and will work well with your Wolverine Water system


Available at: Home Depot, Amazon, Walmart

The longtime brand has become a trusted household name. Their high-quality softening salt is compatible with your Wolverine Water System. 

We are committed to helping you get the most out of your Wolverine Water system. If you have any further questions on maintaining your system or which salt to buy, please contact us! Our expert team will be ready to assist you.

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