Best Compact Water Softener: Top 8 Picks To Combat Hard Minerals


best compact water softener

If you are trying to find the best compact water softener, you have come to the right place! I invite you to check out the list of top 8 products that will not only save space but also combat hard water with ease. So without wasting any time, let’s get started!

Quick Answer

Hard water contains high levels of minerals which are havoc to your plumbing, appliances, and even skin! A portable water softener will help you by removing these hard water-causing minerals. Before putting your money into such a product, here’s a quick overview of what to look for:

  • Know your water usage to select the appropriate water softener capacity.
  • The type of water softener you want, it may be salt-based and salt-free.
  • Available space to ensure the unit fits comfortably.

By considering the factors above, I have shortlisted the list of the best picks. These include Go OTG3NTP3M, DuraWater 48,000-grain, and Pro Aqua 16,000-grain. But that’s just a sneak peek only. Continue reading to learn about the 8 best compact RV softeners, what features and specs to look for, and how to choose the one that suits you best. Without further ado, let’s dive deeper into the details!

Best Compact Water Softener: Comparison Table

Listed below is the comparison chart of the 8 best products:

Now that we have gone through a quick overview of the products, let’s explore them thoroughly.

1. Best Overall: On The Go OTG4-DBLSOFT-Portable

Let’s check out the positives and negatives of this water softener:

On The Go OTG4-DBLSOFT-Portable

Pros

  • It can make 40% more soft water than other units in the market.
  • Provides 1600 gallons of soft water that can last over a month.
  • It has a back-flush adapter for quick reverse connection when required.
  • No tools or electricity is required to operate it.

Cons

  • Lack of a digital or analog display to indicate the regeneration process.

The OTG4-DBLSOFT water softener features 16,000 grains per unit of softening. Its unique swivel inlet valve ensures easy connection. While it utilizes ordinary table salt for regeneration through a large, hassle-free opening.

You can use the resin for a complete 20 days before needing to recharge the system again. A 1-year warranty is also offered by the manufacturer so you can be at ease when buying.

On The Go OTG4-DBLSOFT-Portable

Features

Explore its exceptional features to grasp why it’s truly outstanding:

  • Patent-pending design includes hardness test strips.
  • A full cradle base to keep the water softener stable and secure.
  • Inlet and outlet hose adapters are included for secure connection of pipes so you can use them without needing anything else.

Specs

The following are the specs of the DBLSOFT:

Specification

On The Go OTG4-DBLSOFT-Portable

Flow Rate:

3 GPM

Grain Capacity:

16,000 grains

Capacity:

640-1600 gallons

Dimensions:

23.4 x 11 x 10.8 inches

Weight:

32 pounds

Recommendation: If you wish to prevent build-up and rust stains inside the water lines, then this is one of the best water softeners having a good 3.0 GPM flow rate. It is especially great because of the inlet hi-flow shutoff flow valve however the regeneration cycle is 15 to 30 minutes. That is longer than what some units require.

2. Best Value for Money: Pro Aqua Water Softener

Let’s dive into this softener’s strengths and weaknesses:

Pro Aqua Water Softener

Pros

  • It has a robust NSF Polyethylene tank, supported with resilient fiberglass.
  • It can decrease the quantity of Calcium, Magnesium, Iron, Lead, Radium, and other Heavy Metals.
  • This unit does not require electricity so you do not have to worry about powering it on the go.
  • For regeneration use, you can opt for a female-to-female connection.

Cons

  • The build of the main opening could be improved.

Pro WS-P-16 has a space-saving design, perfect for RVs and Campers. The garden hose is ¾-inches which can be fitted easily. This tiny titan has a 16,000-grain capacity which will provide up to 2,000 gallons (at 8 GPG hardness). This means you get 40 days’ worth of soft water. It also has an option for a WS-P Regen Kit. You also get 2 years of warranty which ensures your investment is safe.

Pro Aqua Water Softener

Features

Let’s examine its exceptional features:

  • It comes with a Y splitter to direct the flow.
  • Shut off valve is included in it as well.
  • You will also get a double and a quick connector.

Specs

See the product details below:

Specification

Pro Aqua Water Softener

Flow Rate:

5 GPM

Grain Capacity:

16,000 grains

Capacity:

2,000 gallons

Dimensions:

10 x 10 x 20 inches

Weight:

35 pounds

Recommendation: If you need to protect your equipment from hard water then get Pro Aqua Water Softener. It can perform regeneration with only a couple of table salt boxes within 30 minutes. The softened water can last 40 days. However, you will need to install it perfectly so it does not leak.

3. Best for Personalization Features: DuraWater 48,000-grain Water Softener

Let’s explore its pros and cons:

DuraWater 48,000-grain Water Softener

Pros

  • It has an Upgraded 10% chlorine-resistant resin bed that protects against wear and tear.
  • Mineral tank comes fully loaded so you don’t have to worry much about installation.
  • The advanced paddle wheel meter can be fully programmed for various water treatment applications.
  • The brine tank consists of standard with a safety float and quick connect fitting.

Cons

  • Some users reported that it can be noisy.

DuraWater is a salt-based water softener. It is designed to remove magnesium, calcium, and traces of iron from the water. It features a digital LCD screen with touchpad controls. You can personalize the metered regeneration system of the unit. This way it will fit into your schedule. What’s great is you do not need to worry about its installation as a guide is provided within the package.

DuraWater 48,000-grain Water Softener

Features

Let’s take a closer look at its amazing features:

  • It comes with a Fleck 5600 SXT Metered Valve so you monitor it.
  • You will also get one 1-inch Noryl Plastic Bypass.
  • The package also includes 1 Inch Male Threaded Yoke.

Specs

Let’s talk about the specs of the unit :

Specification

DuraWater 48,000-grain Water Softener

Grain Capacity:

48,000 grains

Capacity:

3428 gallons

Dimensions:

‎10 x 10 x 54 inches

Weight:

53 pounds

Recommendation: If you are looking for a smart water softener system that is powerful, then this product is for you. What’s great is that it is programmable so you just need to install it. Once it is set up, you can leave it on and the regeneration cycle will happen on its own. Due to it being a high-grade machine, it can be noisy so keep that in mind.

4. Best for User-Friendly Design: On The Go OTG3NTP3M Water Softener

Let’s check out the positives and negatives of the water softener:

On The Go OTG3NTP3M Water Softener

Pros

  • You can use ordinary table salt for the regeneration.
  • It uses Ion Exchange resin beads to soften water.
  • You can enjoy a continuous 20-day usage of the resin before having to recharge the system again.
  • It is a compact water softener so RV and Marine users can use it well.

Cons

  • Maintenance is needed. Make sure to check refillings every week and fill up if needed.

OTG3NTP3M is a portable water softener that comes with hardness test strips and storage inlet/outlet caps. You will also receive a back-flush adapter. It has a carry handle and a wide opening for making the refilling an easy task.

It does not require electricity to soften the water and one regeneration cycle lasts only 15 minutes. You will notice fewer stains, more soap lather, and 0 foul smell when you use this.

On The Go OTG3NTP3M Water Softener

Features

Explore its exceptional features to grasp why it’s truly outstanding.

  • It only weighs 18 pounds making it a great choice for people looking for a portable water softener.
  • A 360-degree swivel inlet valve is included to make the fitting easy for customers.
  • Pouring a box of ordinary table salt has been made effortless with the wide-mouth opening.

Specs

The following are the specs of the device:

Specification

On The Go OTG3NTP3M Water Softener

Grain Capacity:

8,000 grains

Capacity:

800 gallons

Dimensions:

7"L x 19.5"W x 7.3"H

Weight:

17 pounds

Recommendation: If you need tool-free hook-up water softener systems, then keep this unit in mind. It has a flow rate of 2gpm and a capacity of 800 gallons while weighing only 18 pounds. The design is user friendly hence refilling is super easy. But keep in mind that, unlike other softeners, this device needs maintenance almost every week.

5. Best Sturdiest Space Saving Design: Aquasure Harmony Series 32,000

Let’s explore this softener’s strengths and weaknesses:

Aquasure Harmony Series 32,000

Pros

  • The by-pass valve is made with fiber-reinforced polymer to ensure it is robust and sturdy.
  • The resin will last 10 to 15 years with proper regeneration.
  • The auto-flush intervals are easily customizable with the fully programmable backlit digital display.
  • Thin Profile Hydraulic Meter and Digital Control Valve come preassembled for easy installation.

Cons

  • A few customers have complained that the brine hose leaks a bit.

Aquasure Harmony water softener can remove hardness minerals, such as calcium and magnesium. It comes with a digital control head that allows you to customize and monitor the water-softening process. One of the best things about Aquasure water softener is that it has many preassembled parts for easy installation.

Aquasure Harmony Series 32,000

Features

Let’s take a closer look at its amazing features:

  • High-Grade Tank is made up of fiberglass-lined polyethylene to make it corrosion-resistant.
  • The salt storage tank has a wide opening to make refilling easy.
  • Digital control calculates and measures water usage to ensure maximum capacity.

Specs

See the product details below :

Specification

Aquasure Harmony Series 32,000

Grain Capacity:

32,000 grains per gallon

Capacity:

800 gallons

Dimensions:

9 x 9 x 1 inches

Weight:

67 pounds

Recommendation: This unit should be a go-to choice for people looking through the list of space-saving water softeners, that are easy to assemble. Each component of this system is designed to last years and prove value for money. However, make sure each connector is tightened otherwise it will leak.

6. Best For Grains Per Minute: Whirlpool WHES30E

Let’s explore the pros and cons of Whirlpool:

Sale
Whirlpool WHES30E

Pros

  • The flow rate is 7.6 GPM which is more than enough for a mid-sized house.
  • It has a memory feature that preserves the settings even when the power is off.
  • It is able to detect when there is a need for a regeneration cycle and only initiates it then. Meaning no wastage reduces water and salt.
  • The control panel is touch-based and can display how much salt is present.

Cons

  • You will need to refill the salt a bit frequently for it to work.

The WHES30E water softener is designed for 4 people households. What’s great is that it can calculate the regeneration requirements automatically and you won’t have to keep tabs manually. It will detect salt levels itself and start the system. Moreover, you get reduced limescale formation due to this water softener.

Whirlpool WHES30E

Features

Let’s examine its exceptional features:

  • It is certified by NSF to reduce hard water symptoms.
  • 8 ppm of iron is removed by it due to advanced design.
  • The shape of the water softener is slim and thin so it can fit in tight spaces.

Specs

Let’s take a closer look at the product specifications:

Specification

Whirlpool WHES30E

Grain Capacity:

30,000 grains

Capacity:

1060-gallon

Dimensions:

20.5"L x 15"W x 48"H

Weight:

86.8 pounds

Recommendation: If you are looking for a smart water softener system, then go for it. You will not have to worry about rising salt levels as it will detect those and start the process. Meaning no more rusty pipes, foul-smelling clothes, or stains, and a worry-free cycle. However, keep checking the Salt refining for it to work.

7. Best for Low Maintenance: Whirlpool WHES40E 40,000 Grain Softener

Let’s check out the positives and negatives of the water softener:

Sale
Whirlpool WHES40E 40,000 Grain Softener

Pros

  • This water softener system can remove 10ppm of clear water ferrous (iron).
  • The 125 grains per gallon is quite impressive considering its competitor’s flow rates.
  • This is sufficient for 6 people households needing soft water.
  • Has a salt tank light so you can see the levels easily.

Cons

  • The installation process requires an extra hand.

Whirlpool’s 40,000-grain salt-based water softeners can remove Calcium, Magnesium, and clear Water Iron. It has a 3-year warranty on electronics while 10 years on parts and labor so purchasing it is a worthy investment. Moreover, it will keep your skin feeling healthy and soft as it has a 125 GPG flow rate.

Whirlpool WHES40E 40,000 Grain Softener

Features

Explore its exceptional features to grasp why it’s truly outstanding.

  • The water softener comes with a bypass valve.
  • An installation kit is provided for the customer to help set it up.
  • 1-inch male pipe thread comes with the package.

Specs

Let’s take a closer look at the product specifications:

Specification

Whirlpool WHES40E 40,000 Grain Softener

Grain Capacity:

40,000 grains

Capacity:

37.1 gallons

Dimensions:

20.5"L x 15"W x 48"H

Weight:

86.8 pounds

Recommendation: If you do not want a headache from frequent cleaning, then this water softener is your best bet. It also has NSF certification so you know it meets the highest health standards. However, it is not a salt-free water softener so remember to keep refilling.

8. Best Warranty Option: AO Smith Whole House Water Softener Alternative

Let’s explore its pros and cons:

AO Smith Whole House Water Softener Alternative

Pros

  • It will last you a whooping 6-year period, in other words, 600,000 gallons of soft water.
  • This is a chemical-free and salt-free water softener.
  • It has a DIY and a compact water softener installation system.
  • This works with the city and well-water as well.

Cons

  • It is recommended to tie a ribbon around the fittings. Otherwise leaking might occur.

This is one of the salt-free water softeners that uses a descaling process to prevent scale buildup in pipes and appliances. Resulting in extending their lifespan and improving water quality. You get a 6-year warranty on it so don’t worry.

You do not need to refill salt or waste water on backwashing. Neither do you need a drain line. One can install it on their own and it is a compact product so not much space is occupied either.

AO Smith Whole House Water Softener Alternative

Features

Listed below are the features of AO Smith:

  • The components include the whole House Descaler.
  • In the package, you will also receive a shut-off valve.
  • The hose adapter and nipple are provided to the customer as well.

Specs

The following are the specs of the softener :

Specification

AO Smith Whole House Water Softener Alternative

Capacity:

600,000 gallons in 6 years

Dimensions:

30"L x 9.25"W x 9.25"H

Weight:

12 pounds

Recommendation: If you need a maintenance-free device for softened water, then go for this. You install it once, and get 6 years’ worth of soft water. It is compact and the drain line is not needed. Neither is electricity or salt bags. You should tighten the fittings well. Wrap a ribbon drop around them to prevent leakage.

5 Considerations Before Buying a Compact Water Softener System

When you are in the market for compact water softeners, there are a few things you need to think about. This is important, the unit might be a great one but it should fulfill your specific needs. Let’s learn the factors that contribute to this below.

Compact Water Softener System

1. Size of the Water Softener Systems

You need a compact water softener hence make sure to measure the space you will be keeping this in. Then read the dimensions of each component in the system. It is always better to have a space still a few inches bigger than the machine so in case you need more of it while setting up.

2. Grain Capacity

You will need to check the grain capacity of the water softener. The amount of grain capacity depends on the hardness of your water and amount of housemates. An ideal compact water softener will have at least a 16,000-grain capacity.

Grain Capacity

3. Upkeep

The maintenance can be a hectic task especially if your schedules are packed. Hence choose from water softeners that do not require much of it. My tip is to:

  • Use resin beads as they will have less wear and tear.
  • Invest in water softener systems that have automatic regeneration cycles.
  • Go for systems that need refilling after at least 3 to 4 weeks.
Upkeep

4. Type

You will have to choose between salt-free water softeners and dual-tank water softener which is salt-based. The latter ones are more efficient and cost-effective. However, the former ones are more affordable.

5. Other Qualities

There are other things that can help the usage experience better. Such as:

  • The ability to detect hard minerals and automatically start the regeneration cycle.
  • Preassembled parts for easy installation.
  • Digital display so you can be updated on the gallons of water supply.

For better understanding, check out this helpful video.

4 Things To Maximize The Water Softener’s Efficiency

In order to use the water softener to the best of its abilities you must do the following:

  • Scan the Water Softener for Salt Levels: Low salt levels can lead to the return of hard water in the home. Have a good look at them every 4 to 6 weeks.
  • Examine the Brine Tank: Be aware of the formation of salt bridges, which can hinder water softener performance.
  • Use the Recommended Salt: The user manual would state the type of salt that needs to be used. Only go for that one otherwise you will risk reducing the system’s life.
  • Wash the Resin Bed: This will get the beads of iron and other metals off the resins resulting in better regeneration.
 Water Softener's Efficiency

FAQs

Is it safe to drink water from a water softener?

It is safe to drink water from a water softener. Just remember that if the water hardness before it was treated was less than 400 ppm then drinking that water is okay.

How long do water softeners last?

Water softeners last 10 to 15 years if you are doing proper maintenance. You can prolong its life by using an additional pre-filter.

What are the disadvantages of soft water?

The disadvantage of soft water is that if you drink it regularly, you will intake excessive sodium. This could lead to issues of blood pressure.

How do you clean a water softener?

To clean a water softener you will shut it off. Then drain and wash the brine tank with fresh water. Inspect and clean the resin bed if necessary, and then restart the system.

Conclusion

Summing it up, before making the purchase of the compact water softener look at the space you have, the system’s dimensions, determine the water usage of your house, and the hardness of the water. Then, according to that look for the appropriate grain capacity.

I found my perfect match in On The Go OTG4-DBLSOFT-Portable. It has 16,000 water capacity which is great for my 4-person family. The 16,000-grain capacity treats the water hardness of my RV very well. There is a year of warranty so I am at ease.

On The Go OTG4-DBLSOFT-Portable
. On the Go, Portable Water Softener provides 16, 000 gallons of softwter that you will be able to use for over 30 to 40 days. It comes with a year of warranty. The flow rate is 3 GPM while the grain capacity is 16,000. Making it a great deal.

Boch Richard

Richard Boch is a chemical engineer responsible for designing water filtration systems for industrial and residential customers. He has more than 20 years of experience with ion exchange, activated carbon, and reverse osmosis. Richard's expertise has made him a go-to source for municipalities and businesses looking to improve their water quality. When he's not working, Richard enjoys spending time with his wife and two young children.

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