7 Best Water Softener Reviews by Consumer Reports: Portable, with Filter & Digital Meter

Indigestion, balding, patchy skin and a number of other ailments can all be traced back to the same thing: bad water. Softening up water can make it a lot easier to use. The water softeners listed below can help you soften your water and make it healthier to use.

7. Aquasana 6-Year, 600,000 Gallon Whole House Water Filter

Aquasana 6-Year, 600,000 Gallon Whole House Water Filter



  • 600,000 gallon filtration guaranteed
  • 10 inch pre filter
  • Shipped in more than one box
  • Includes 0.75 inch pipe fittings

This filter is great for people that live in areas where chlorinated water is common. The filter is specially designed to remove chlorine and there are lots of benefits to this. Firstly, the water ends up tasting better. Water is not just for drinking, we cook food with it too. This food tastes a lot better as well because the water no longer has that chemical taste.

The water becomes a lot softer as well, you can feel it when you shower. It’s a pity that this water softener is so difficult to install, otherwise it would have ranked much higher on this list. It’s also rather expensive, which is confusing because this product does not have features that support the price point. Another thing you should consider is that this water softener leaves charcoal deposits in your pipes from the filter which you will have to occasionally clean up.


  • Better tasting water
  • Noticeably softer water
  • Accessories included
  • Reduces chlorine


  • Difficult to install
  • Expensive
  • Leaves charcoal deposits

6. Whirlpool WHES30 30,000 Grain Water Softener

Whirlpool WHES30 30,000 Grain Water Softener


  • NFS certified
  • 1 year warranty
  • Made in the USA
  • Removes up to 8 ppm of iron

An NFS certified water softener is sure to be a good buy. Right off the bat this product is superior to the Aquasana model ranked below it because it is a lot easier to install. You can do it on your own without having to hire a professional to help you out. There are also no sedimentary deposits being left in your pipe.

Further benefits of this product are that it filters your water efficiently. Metals and unpleasant tastes get leached out through the complex filtration process. This is a relatively durable water softener as well, although the metal cover tends to rust over time. One thing you should consider before buying this water softener is that the connectors between the pipes are not secure enough. If the water pressure is too high, some water might leak out of these connectors.


  • Easy to install
  • Attractive design
  • Long lasting and durable
  • Filters very hard water quite well


  • Connectors sometimes leak when subjected to high water pressure
  • Metal cover rusts after extended use

5. Mobile-Soft-Water Portable Softener


Mobile-Soft-Water Portable Softener


  • Removes soluble calcium and iron
  • Intended for mobile water softening
  • Treats 5 gallons per minute
  • Weighs 14 pounds

This product is great at removing two commonly found minerals in water: calcium and iron. These minerals can make the water you’re drinking taste strange and metallic. They also make the water heavy and harsh which can cause skin problems and make you lose your hair. Calcium and iron can also be bad for you in large quantities, so this water softener helps you improve your health as well as making your water tastier and more comfortable to shower with!

One of the main benefits of this product is that it is quite portable. It also treats water rapidly, so you can carry this water softener along with you on camping trips or when you’re travelling. One thing that takes away portability is that you need to charge this product a lot before you can use it. Also, it isn’t big enough to be your main water softener at home.


  • Lightweight and compact; optimal portability
  • Fast water treatment
  • Improves water taste
  • Can filter all kinds of water


  • Only works after an extended period of charging
  • Too small to fulfill home water use requirements

4. Shower Filter Water Softener

Shower Filter Water Softener


  • Removes heavy metals and germs
  • Purifies water
  • No tools required to install
  • Meant for showers

The Shower Filter Water Softener does a good job at improving the showers you take. After a few days of showering with this water your skin will naturally feel a lot softer and cleaner, especially right after you get out of the shower. The water won’t just feel good, it will be cleaner too. This is because this product removes bacteria and germs as well as sedimentary deposits in your water.

Since this is primarily used for shower heads, this water softener is quite portable as well. In fact, it is lightweight and compact enough to fit in a pocket in your backpack. This water softener gives you great water pressure to shower with, but it does not do much to filter drinking water efficiently. This is especially a problem if you consider that this water softener doesn’t store any water. Overall, though, it deserves it’s relatively high ranking on this list.


  • Makes skin and hair feel soft and clean
  • Reduces risk of diseases caused by bacteria
  • Provides good water pressure
  • Lightweight and portable


  • Does not store water
  • Difficult to use to treat drinking water

3. Hansing Whole House Water Softener System

Hansing Whole House Water Softener System


  • Coconut activated carbon filter
  • Stainless steel, anti corrosion design
  • 185,000 grains capacity
  • Weighs 6.25 pounds

Weighing in at just a little over six pounds, this water softener is quite easy to transport and install. Unlike the Shower Filter Water Softener, this product stores the water that it purifies which makes it perfect for people that want a water softener for home use. This filter is also very effective, it leaves the water with quite a pleasant taste. Some people might not like this taste, though, because it is not exactly neutral.

This water softener also fails to provide strong water pressure unlike the Shower Filter Water Softener, which is why it failed to rank higher in the top three. That being said, this is an extremely effective water softener that successfully filters your water, and it is durable against alkaline and acidic water as well which is a pretty big bonus. The durability will help this water softener last a lot longer.


  • Holds a lot of purified water
  • Durable stainless steel is resistant to rust and corrosion
  • Surprisingly lightweight
  • Effective filter leaves water tasting great
  • Resistant to non neutral pH water


  • Reduces water pressure slightly
  • Water taste not neutral

2. Discount Water Softeners Premier 40,000 Grain Water Softener

Discount Water Softeners Premier 40,000 Grain Water Softener



  • Metered water control
  • Soft water brine tank
  • Neoprene tank jacket
  • Bacteria resistant design

This water softener deals a major problem with this type of product: bacterial growth. It prevents bacteria from growing in the water tank and filters out a lot of heavy metals which neutralizes bad tastes in the water. Another great thing about this water softener is that it doesn’t reduce water pressure unlike the Hansing Whole House Water Softener System at number 3. This is why this product is ranked higher.

In spite of the high water pressure, you will notice that you end up saving a lot of water. This is because you will feel cleaner more quickly while showering. Cleaner water will also help you lather up better with soap. These things more than make up for the high price you will have to pay for this water softener. However, this product is tough to install on your own, and the fact that a professional will have to step in would increase costs which is an inconvenience.


  • Prevents growth of bacteria
  • Reduces water consumption
  • Provides optimal water pressure
  • Meter lets you see how much salt is filtered
  • Effectively neutralizes bad tastes and odors


  • Requires a professional to install
  • Rather pricey

1. ABCwaters 5600sxt Fleck Softener and Carbon Filter

ABCwaters 5600sxt Fleck Softener and Carbon Filter


  • Upflow carbon contaminant removal
  • Fleck 5600sxt digital valve meter
  • 48,000 grain capacity
  • No electricity required

This is the only water softener on this list that can be considered genuinely environmentally friendly because it does not use any electricity to filter the water. This is a high capacity water softener that leaves your water tasting completely natural and neutral, and it also doesn’t produce any wastewater during the filtration process. You also have a digital valve to help you accurately assess how much water you have left and how much is being filtered.

All of this combined with the reasonable asking price comes together to make this the best product on the market right now. This is the pinnacle of the water softener industry, even though there have been some complaints of poor customer support. For the most part, though, this water softener gets the job done quickly without compromising on quality, and goes easy on your bank account as well.


  • Environmentally friendly due to no electricity used
  • Highest capacity on the market
  • Leaves absolutely no taste
  • Digital valve meter gives accurate readings
  • Does not produce any wastewater
  • Very reasonable pricing


  • Some complaints of poor customer support

Consumer Reports for ABCwaters 5600sxt Fleck Softener and Carbon Filter

Dolores C. Cornell: I installed it about a week ago and it’s been working so well! My showers are so much more comfortable now.

Patricia D. Trimble: I was initially annoyed when my husband bought this because it seemed like a waste of money. But now that I’ve used it for a while I can see that he knew what he was doing!

Travis O. Primeaux: I live in California where the water is pretty hard. I could tell the difference after I installed this water softener.

Casey T. Dorr: My hair feels so soft after using the water softener! Also, my dishes are a lot easier to clean. I didn’t even know that would happen!

Veronica R. Seymour: This is a serious product. It’s helped me finally get good water.

These water softeners can help you lead a healthier life, not to mention how comfortable you will feel after showering with softened water. Our research has lead us to conclude that the ABCwaters 5600sxt Fleck Softener and Carbon Filter is the best product on the market and can give you the best possible water.

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