Is Water Filtration Necessary For Steam Showers?
Many steam brands will tell you yes, but why is that? In this blog we will cover why water filtration may or may not be necessary for your steam shower. If you've read our blogs on building your dream steam shower and the benefits of steam showers and are ready to move forward with your project, read this blog to determine if filtration is right for you.
Why you might want filtration.
Scale is the leading determinant of steam generators. Scale can form on the heating cores and other components of your generator which can lead to less efficiency and eventually failure if not taken care of. If you have hard water, you are at extreme risk of this happening to you as scale can build up extremely quick.
What is scale?
Scale is typically made up of dissolved calcium deposits and magnesium salts and can cause issues all over your house, not just your steam generator. This is a major problem for your plumbing pipes, your water heater, among other appliances.
What are my options to remove scale?
Just any old in-line filter is not likely to help with scale. What you will need is a system focused on removing scale. Amerec offers the Scale-X water filtration system that not only removes scale, but other chemicals such as chlorine from your water so you experience a clean steam bathing experience. Water Inc. also offers the Housepure DWF filtration system which is great for all appliances in your home including a steam generator. This filtration system is focused on softening your water and removing scale from the equation. You can also explore whole home water softening and filtration options from our partner website DrinkingWellCo, focused entirely on filtration.
What if I don't have hard water?
We recommend getting a detailed TDS measurement of your water so you can fully understand what you are bathing with. Scale can still build up if you water isn't defined as "hard" and you could still be bathing with significant chlorine in your water among other chemicals. To prolong the life of your generator, we strongly recommend filtration, especially if you have a generator that utilizes a gravity drain rather than a powerflush drain like that from ThermaSol.
Wait, it matters which generator I have?
While filtration is recommended for all steam generators, some are better at removing scale than others. Pretty much every generator on the market is going to feature a separate drain with a flush valve that drains on gravity as shown below.
This technology provides good drainage of water out of the tank, but what gets left behind are calcium deposits and scale. If you are not filtering the water going in, this system can leave all the stuff we don't want in the generator left behind.
The exception to this industry standard is the PowerFlush option from ThermaSol which utilizes pressure to break up these deposits and flush your system directly out of the steamhead. The video below will explain how this works.
While this feature is great for prolonging the life of your generator and is an industry first, ThermaSol still recommends water filtration as a precautionary and inexpensive option to rely on, especially if you don't already have "soft water".
Water filtration IS an important factor to consider when purchasing a steam generator. Steam generators are a big investment in your home and we recommend protecting it so that you can enjoy it for as long as possible! For help choosing the correct filtration system for your steam shower, feel free to contact us and we will be happy to share recommendations and thoughts.