General Frequently Asked Questions

What is hard water?

Hard water is one of the most common water problems that can occur in the home. Hard water can cause your dishes and glasses to have spots, cause a buildup of scale and soap scum, and make laundry colors dull. All of these problems make cleaning a chore. The typical cause of hard water is dissolved calcium and magnesium minerals in the water supply.

The Water Quality Association defines hard water as water with a concentration of dissolved minerals above 1 GPG (grains per gallon). Levels of hardness are described as follows:

Soft Water: Less than 1 GPG

Slightly Hard Water: Between 1 and 3.5 GPG

Moderately Hard Water: Between 3.5 and 7 GPG

Hard Water: Between 7 and 10.5 GPG

Very Hard Water: More than 10.5 GPG

An ion exchange water softener is the most common method for treating hard water.

What are the effects of hard water?

The presence of hard water in your home results in:

  • Limescale buildup around faucets or showerheads
  • Soap scum on shower walls, bathtubs, sinks and other fixtures
  • Plumbing and pipe corrosion
  • Streaky or spotted dishes
  • Stiff, scratchy laundry
  • Irritated, dry skin or dull, lifeless hair
  • Decreased efficiency of appliances and more frequent breakdowns
  • An increase in the amount of soap and detergent needed for cleaning


Has Culligan Water received any endorsements?

Good Housekeeping has given the Culligan® HE water softener, our Aqua-Cleer® water filter, and seven other Culligan products their powerful seal of approval.

In addition, the Aquasential™ Smart HE Water Softener, as well as the Aquasential® Smart RO Drinking Water System, have both been awarded the “World’s Most Efficient” in December 2021.

Most recently, the Culligan Aquasential Smart RO Drinking Water System has also received the House Beautiful Live Better Award for 2022.

What is Culligan Water's 100% Satisfaction Guarantee?

When you choose Culligan, you are choosing the finest water treatment products available in the world today. We are so certain of this fact that if you aren’t completely satisfied with your water products or services, we offer a full refund within 30 days of your purchase.


What should I consider before buying a water treatment solution?

Water Hardness

It is important to have your water tested for hardness and other factors to determine your exact needs. Even if you already know you have one or more water problems, getting a water test is an excellent first step to choosing a water treatment solution. Do you have hard water or poor water quality? Find out with our free water test.

 When evaluating your needs, an expert will consider a number of factors. For instance, the current hardness level and the size of a family will have an impact on the type and size of the equipment required. The same holds true for drinking water systems.

Your Water Usage and Pressure

Water pressure and the amount of water used are important factors to look at when outfitting your home with a system for improving water quality. The size of your household may influence water usage, and different families have different water needs. Factors such as expected family growth and guest visits should also be taken into account.

Avoid a “Quick Fix”

Finding a fix for an existing water problem is your primary focus, but don’t be too quick to go with the cheapest water treatment solution. You might find that a higher-end system will be more efficient and handle your needs better. Before making a purchase, get a detailed estimate for the cost of equipment, installation, and maintenance to make sure you are getting your money’s worth.

Buy From a Reputable Dealer

A reputable water treatment equipment dealer can be an excellent resource when you need help determining your water conditioning needs. Culligan® is the most trusted name in the water treatment industry.

Financing Options

You may be able to get the price of your water conditioning equipment financed under FHA Title 1 or private lending agreements. Make sure to check with your bank or finance company to get more information. Local dealers may offer special financing options as well.


What questions should I ask after I've decided on a water treatment solution?

Picking the right water quality improvement system doesn’t have to be a chore. Here are some helpful questions you can ask to make sure you are getting the best water treatment system for you and your family.


  •  • Does the price include installation?
  •  • Will installation include all the features you might need?
  •  • Will installation include a bypass to provide garden and lawn faucets or a faucet for unsoftened water?
  •  • Will the system have the capacity to support your current and future needs?
  •  • If you are leasing equipment, does your agreement include an option to buy?
  •  • Does the dealer you plan on buying from have an established business in your area?
  •  • Are there any customer references for your dealer?
  •  • Have you had your water tested by a reputable lab and/or the local health department for health-related problems?
  •  • Will a representative call to consult with you to determine the right system for you?
  •  • Did the salesperson explain the cost and method of regenerating the system?
  •  • Did the salesperson provide answers to all of your questions about the design, function, and cost of the system?
  •  • Are there maintenance contracts or other after-sale services available from your dealer?
  •  • Will the equipment come with a written warranty?
  •  • Did you make sure to read and understand the terms of the warranty?

Why is iron in my water a problem?

Rust is caused by iron in water and comes in five different forms. Particle iron and clear water iron are the two most common. These types of iron can cause staining of tubs, sinks, laundry, and even your hair. Iron bacteria, colloidal iron, and organic iron are the three other types of iron that can be found in water. These types of iron will cause red stains, sulfurous odor, and a tea-colored appearance to your water. A special iron water filter can be used to eliminate iron in your water.

Do I need filtering or softening?

To determine if you need a water filter system or a water softening system, you must first determine what impurities are in your water. Culligan Water Filters will eliminate particles in your water that can cause staining, odors, and excessive cleaning. A home water filter from Culligan will protect you and your family from undesirable impurities in your water.

Water softening eliminates dissolved minerals that cause hard water spots and limescale. Cleaning will become easier because your water will work with you, not against you.

Find out what impurities are in your water, contact Culligan of San Antonio to schedule your free in-home water test.


Should you rent or own your equipment from Culligan?

To rent or to own the joy of great water

Whether you decide to rent or own a Culligan water softener, drinking water system, or water filtration system, you’ll be able to experience the benefits of better water in everything you do. The advantages of both renting and owning are laid out below to help determine which is right for you. If you’re not sure which to choose, contact us today for personal assistance from one of our experienced water experts.

Rental benefits

  •  • Low introductory offer and an affordable monthly rate
  •  • Additional financing options may be available – Check with your Culligan San Antonio representative
  •  • No long-term contracts with bottled water delivery and softener
  •  • Variety of equipment to fit any space and application
  •  • Repair and maintenance costs are included in the monthly fee
  •  • Try before you buy option with equity in equipment
  •  • Delivery with turnkey setup and installation
  •  • Opportunity to upgrade to new products and services as available
  •  • Salt delivery is available along with 10-point maintenance and water check
  •  • 24-hour emergency services on all products
  •  • 30-day, 100% satisfaction guarantee

 Ownership benefits

  •  • Added equity and value to your home
  •  • Ability to move to and install in a future home
  •  • Licensed professional sales and installation
  •  • Carries the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval
  •  • Unmatched performance and durability
  •  • Option to add salt delivery service
  •  • 30-day, 100% satisfaction guarantee
  •  • The most trusted name in water since 1936

What are common water problems?

Here are some of the common water problems we can help you solve today with a professionally installed water softener or drinking water system.

Hard Water Spots

Hard water spots on your dishes? Culligan Water is softer.

Minerals from hard water can accumulate on clothes, dishes, glassware, bathroom fixtures, and other household items. Hard water causes unnecessary wear and tear on your appliances and requires up to 8 times as much detergent or soap. With a Culligan water softener or water conditioner, you can remove hard water minerals from your water, eliminating hard water spots and scales while protecting your appliances and saving you money.

Bad Tasting or Smelly Water

Does your water have a bad taste or foul odor? Culligan Water tastes better.

That foul odor coming from your faucet or showerhead is caused by Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) such as manganese, iron, sulfur, and other chemicals. TDS can cause your water to smell like fish, chlorine, or rotten eggs. Culligan Water’s reverse osmosis drinking water systems, whole house carbon filters, or water conditioners will ensure you never have to take another smelly shower or drink another glass of bad-tasting water again.

Excessive Iron in the Water

Seeing stains on your drains? You need Culligan Water.

If you’re seeing rust on your appliance fixtures and drains, then the culprit is likely high iron content in your water supply. If left untreated, iron can eventually stain any surface that your water comes into contact with. It not only looks gross — it also can shorten the life of your appliances and fixtures. Our Culligan Water technicians have the equipment to prevent iron stains and save you from cleaning up the mess.

Acid Staining

Are your pipes springing leaks? Culligan Water can fix it.

Water that contains acid can leave green-blue stains on the surfaces and fixtures around your home. It can be a real hassle to clean acid stains, and that’s only the tip of the iceberg. Those green-blue stains are actually the result of the acid eating away at the copper in your pipes. Over time, this causes leaky, corroded pipes. Your neighborhood Culligan Water dealer has the answers you need to prevent your pipes from bursting.


What are the effects of drinking hard water?

While there is no convincing evidence that hard water poses any adverse health effects, it does make cleaning more difficult, leaves behind soap scum, and has a negative impact on hair and skin softness. Hard water is primarily caused by dissolved calcium and magnesium and occurs in two forms — carbonate and non-carbonate. Carbonate hardness can be removed by boiling the water, but non-carbonate hardness requires the use of softening or filtration in order to be removed.


What happens if I move?

Moving can be stressful in and of itself, but aside from packing and unpacking, setting up the electricity, and changing your address for newspaper delivery, it’s important to think about your water.

Wherever you move to, you can count on your local Culligan dealership to provide you with a free water analysis at your new residence. Your Culligan Man can test for a variety of contaminants*, including iron, rust, acid, chlorine, and more. The water in your home can be different from the house just down the road, so you should be aware of your unique water situation. 

 *Contaminants may not be in your water.


What is the cost of a water test/consultation?

Getting better, cleaner water is easier than ever with consultations and water testing at no cost to you. When it comes to your home’s water quality, Culligan Water knows the importance of clean, softened water. That is why we make it easy to get the information and clarity you need with FREE, no-obligation, in-home water tests and consultations. 


Does Culligan offer discounts?

We offer discounts to all Military and First Responder personnel.

Click here to see our special offers.