How & Why You Need To Bypass Your Water Softener

What is the water softener bypass? In this video, we talk about how to change it and why you should consider it. Just like any other valve in the home, it’s important to know the standard operation of the bypass valve. A well-functioning water softener can have many benefits, including softer skin & hair, less soap used, less scale & scum buildup, fewer stains on dishes, protected pipes & appliances, and better-tasting water. Don’t have a water softener?? Give us a call! Or watch our YouTube video on water softener pricing!

Watch our Video and You’ll Learn:

  • How To Bypass Your Water Softener.
  • Why You Need To Bypass Your Water Softener.
  • Why Bypassing Is Necessary.

Listen To The Audio

Enjoy this transcript below!

Troy: Hey everybody. Troy Champion Plumbing at Eagan. This is just a quick video on how and why to bypass your water softener. So this one is up an in-service here at our training facility in the shop, just so you can get an idea. They’re usually down in the utility room by the water heater. This is the brine or the salt tank that goes with it. Some of them are cabinet models, but we will turn over to Cole and talk a little bit more of how and why you need to bypass your water softener.

Cole: All right, so this is one brand bypass. These are on a lot of several different brands, actually this little brass one right here. You can see there’s a little arrow. It’s in service mode. That way the water’s going into it and it’s softening right now. We get a lot of calls, too. They have lower pressure in their home and they’re wondering why. One of the main things that I do to troubleshoot what’s low pressure if the whole home has it, is put your softener bypass. Real simple lever. You just go ahead and turn it to bypass.

Troy: This is a brand new one. So this one we can move rather easily. They get the little arrow right there pointing towards bypass, pointing in service. But some of them, you got to give it a little bit, make sure you’re supporting your plumbing lines so you’re not putting any pressure on those. Sorry, Cole.

Cole: And a lot of times, once you switch it over to bypass, you’ll check your faucets and you’ll notice you’re getting way better pressure. So right there, it tells you softener is the cause of the issue. There’s different bypasses, different models. This one, classic bypass, you’d slide it in to bypass it. It’ll actually say push for bypass on the lever.

Troy: Can’t really focus on that. But it does say if there’s always going to be an arrow or something telling you what direction to go to bypass it.

Cole: Yes. And usually, you have this bypass or you have this bypass. They fit a lot of different makes and models, especially if you’re having low pressure and you’re seeing something discolored coming through your faucet. So your toilet’s not working properly, you want to show shut that off because…

Troy: We’ve got one over here that Cole actually took out a couple of months ago,

Cole: We have a toilet. These are these little resin beads. These are what are in the softener. That unit gets old and fails. It cracks and it sucks these all into your plumbing system. This one right here, it clogged up all the toilets, kitchen, bathroom faucets. We had to replace a lot of them, flush a lot of them out. It’s a very expensive expense on a bigger home if you have to redo all your fixtures.

Troy: So if they’re seeing any sort of little yellow beads, get downstairs, bypass that water softener-

Cole: Bypass it right away.

Troy: … and call us or another plumbing professional right away.

Cole: And it’s easy too. Once you have low pressure, like your toilet’s not working properly or something, pop the lid off. If you see that in there, turn your softener on bypass, give us a call and we can diagnose from there. Most likely it’s time for a new water softener.

Troy: Any other reasons why they’d want to bypass it? So low pressure, if you’re having low-pressure issues bypass it. See if your pressure comes back.

Cole: Yep.

Troy: If they see the little beads, you want to bypass it. Any other reason, really, to bypass a water softener?

Cole: No.

Troy: You can’t think of any?

Cole: Not that I can’t think of any. So usually, a low-pressure issue or if you got beads or something not working properly in your home, that’s usually what it ends up being, especially on an older model.

Troy: Well, since we’re talking about water softeners, any tips? Do they need to be maintained? How much salts it should someone put in their softener?

Cole: Well, here we got a tank right here. We got salt. We’re almost empty obviously. You can see there’s some water on top of the salt. Totally normal. I never fill them totally full. You could get a salt dam and then it doesn’t want to feed it down. I’d go half, three quarter at most. Let it chew that all down and then add more again, which then it will clean this all out and you won’t have to worry about anything getting clogged up in there.

Troy: I’m a two-bagger. I put two bags at a time and I wait until I can almost see the bottom of my brine tank or salt bin.

Cole: Then two bags probably takes you a couple months. So it’s not like you’re going to have to feed it every week.

Troy: Right? Yeah. These things are a lot more efficient than the old-style water softeners. They actually have a meter. It’ll count the gallons used. The plumber should be setting it up for your city hardness. And other than that, you don’t need to do anything to these but add salt.

Cole: Yeah.

Troy: That’s it. That’s why and how you bypass a water softener. If you have water softener problems, give us a call (651) 365-1340. Or look us up on the web And please click that subscribe button.

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We work Monday through Friday: 7:00 AM – 5:00 PM and Saturday: 7:00 AM – 12:00 PM. After hours emergency service is available. You can find us at 3670 Dodd Road in Eagan, MN 55123 during our open hours. You can also call us at (651) 365-1340 or email us.