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Best City Water Softener: Buying Guide

By G. Simms, Plumber, Contractor 

By G. Simms

Plumber, Contractor

Time: 3-minute read

The city's water supply may have full of minerals. You should get a water softener from a reputable brand. 

A review of the top products for city water. You can choose from the SpringWell FutureSoft, Fleck 5600 SXT, Aquasana Whole House, or Waterboss 950 based on their features, grain count, the capacity, and regeneration cycles. 

Even city water contains hard water minerals. It also contains chlorine meant to kill bacteria. You can eliminate one or both of these problems with a water softener or whole house filtration system.

Keep reading to see our top softener picks for city water, including what features they offer, how much they cost, and how long they’ll last.

We’ll also offer some insights into what you should look for when choosing a water softener for city water.





In a Rush? Here's our Top Choice:

SpringWell FutureSoft

  • 99.6% scale prevention
  •  Zero drop in water pressure 
  • 6 months risk free
  • Keeps your appliances free of hard water scale build up
  • Premium certified components 

Top Water Softener for City Water Reviews




FutureSoft Salt Free

FutureSoft Salt Free



  • Prevents & Cleans Scale Build Up
  • Give Appliances a Longer Life
  • No salt and electricity needed


  • Flow Direction: Upflow
  • Flow Rate: 12 GPM
  • Operating Pressure: 20-80 PSI


Fleck 5600 SXT 48,000 Grain

Fleck 5600 SXT 48,000 Grain



  • Regenerate less than once a week
  • Safety float
  • Back up Memory


  • 27 x 17 x 62 inches
  • 20.8 pounds
  • Flow Rate: 12 GPM

How to Pick the Right One for Your Needs?

  • Always check how hard your water is when looking for a water softener. This will allow you to pick the right technology and model that will fit your needs.
  • Grain count is the most important rating of the water softener. Conventional water softeners are rated by the number of grains a particular model can remove before flushing the filtering resin material. Use a water test kit to find out how many grains of minerals each gallon of your city water has.
  • A traditional softener, such as the Fleck, Genesis, or WaterBoss models below uses resin to filter out the minerals that make your water “hard”. They use salt to rinse the resin.
  • Salt-free softeners, such as the Aquasana and Pelican filter models we’ve chosen for this list, coat the minerals in polyphosphate so that the water carries them through your plumbing without any problems.
  • Whichever you choose, you’ll want to check their water flow rate. If you purchase a softener that can’t supply enough water for the needs of your home, you’ll experience low water pressure. For normal functionality, you should have a water flow of at least 2 gallons per minute per family member.

Best City Water Softener (Updated 2023)

These softeners are from different brands and offer a wide variety of features. That means they also vary widely in price. Read about each one to find the model best suited to take care of the needs of your home.

  • TAC process
  • Eliminates scale
  • extends life of appliances
  • saltless
  • 6-month money back guarantee

1. SpringWell FutureSoft City Water Softener

12 GPM
Flow Rate

No Salt, No Maintenance, Good Clean Water


If you’re looking for a maintenance free system that doesn’t require salt, electricity, a drain, and one that doesn’t waste any water than look no further.  Springwell’s Futuresoft Salt Free system is one of the highest rated salt free systems in the industry giving you a premium system at whole sale pricing.

The FutureSoft Water Softener uses Template Assisted Crystallization or TAC. It is unlike ordinary salt-based water softeners which remove minerals from hard water through ion exchange. The  FutureSoft system addresses the hard water minerals by crystallizing them so they don’t stick to your faucets, fixtures, shower heads and more.  

SpringWell’s Futuresoft system is saltless, eliminates scale, extends the life of your appliances and makes cleaning easier.

With Springwell’s 6 month satisfaction guarantee and lifetime warranty on all parts and pieces, you’re guaranteed to love the system.  They also give you free shipping and have top notch customer service making the buying and installation process easy.

If you’re looking for a system that addresses the common contaminants found in your city’s water such as chlorine and chloramine, then we recommend Springwell’s Whole House Filtration System with the Futuresoft Salt Free Combo.

  • With safety float valve
  • Pre-treats water
  • 5 yr warranty for the valve
  • LED screen
  • Back up memory

2. Fleck 5600 SXT 48,000 Grain City Water Softener

12 GPM
Flow Rate

Balance between price and functionality


The Fleck 5600 SXT 48,000 Grain Water Softener for city water is one of the best models out there. It is perfect for families of 4-5 people as it is able to treat more than 48,000 grains before the next regeneration process and has a flow rate of 12 gallons per minute.

It is also very economical as it will need to regenerate less than once a week, even if there are five people in the household. As is the case with other 5600 SXT models, it will measure your water usage in your home and will initiate a regeneration process when needed to refresh the filtering capacity. And it has a flow rate of 12 gallons per minute.

To make it safer, Fleck added a safety float that will prevent overfilling and a drain that will be an additional backup in case of a water mess.

Your city pre-treats your water, cutting hard water grains per gallon by 50%. This model is going to deal with the rest of them.

When you purchase this model, you will also get a five-year warranty for the valve that can last up to 27 years and a ten-year warranty for the tank that can last three times that long.

The LED screen helps you program the Fleck 5600 SXT for your hardness rating. The control head also has a backup memory.

The brine tank can hold more than 250 pounds of salt, so you won’t need to worry about refilling it very often. If you have a very large family, you might need to fill the softener with a bag of salt every six weeks.

The installation process itself is fairly easy and fast. If you have some basic plumbing skills, you will be able to install it yourself in only an hour or two.

  • Removes 97% of chlorine
  • With professional-grade installation kit
  • Great-tasting water
  • Good for skin and hair
  • Clears air of any VOCs

3. Aquasana Whole House Filter and Salt-Free City Water Softener

Flow Rate

No need for salt, electricity, or backflushing

Crystallizes grains

Some of the negative effects of hard water and chlorinated water are dry skin and brittle hair that also looks dull. If you are using city water and have been using a traditional water softener, but your hair is still dry, our recommendation is to install the Aquasana Whole House Water Filter and Salt-Free Softener.

The Aquasana Whole House Softener will remove most of the chlorine from your city water while crystalizing grains of minerals so that they can’t bother your clothes, pipes, and body. Chlorine and other chemicals are able to evaporate when you are taking a shower and this can contaminate the air you breathe. This model will also deal with those problems to improve your air quality.

However, it’s worth the money because you won’t have to add salt to your water to control mineral buildup. You won’t even need to plug it in.

This model is guaranteed for 10 years of usage or until 1 million gallons pass through it. It is very good for families of three or four since it has the flow rate of 7 gallons per minute. You will also get the installation kit with the product for 0.75-inch pipe fittings.

If you’re using it for city water, the only maintenance you should need to do is refill it with SimplySoft polyphosphate material every 5-10 years. You’ll know it’s time when you notice your water getting hard again.

  • Zero waste water
  • No need for electricity or salt
  • Great-tasting water
  • Good for skin and hair
  • Can be installed inside or outside 

4. Pelican PSE 1800 Whole House Water Softener Filter

10 GPM
Flow Rate

Micron Pre-filter System, Catalytic Granular Activated Carbon Media (GAC), Pelican Media Guard

4 stage filtration

The Pelican PSE 1800 Whole House Water Filter & Water Softener is a great choice if you use city water as it has a unique filter that is specifically designed to deal with chlorine and chloramines. Once you remove these elements from your water, you will instantly notice your hair becoming softer and your skin becoming healthier.

The Pelican PSE 1800 Whole House Water Filter & Water Softener is a great choice if you use city water as it has a unique filter that is specifically designed to deal with chlorine and chloramines. Once you remove these elements from your water, you will instantly notice your hair becoming softer and your skin becoming healthier.

You will have to change the filter’s carbon media approximately every five years. When you use this Pelican model, you won’t need to worry about changing the filters or doing any other maintenance other than cleaning the tanks once every five years.

The PSE 1800 model doesn’t use electricity or salt. It also doesn’t require any programming and the installation process is a piece of cake. The filters will change the grains in your hard water into crystals, which will prevent them from bonding to any surfaces.

The warranty on the Pelican PSE 1800 lasts a lifetime. And, yes, that covers all of the components. You will also have a flow rate of 10 gallons per minute, which is enough for large families.

  • metered upflow regeneration cycles
  • Good against chloramines and chlorine
  • Locked-in memory feature
  • Saves up to 75% on salt and 64% less water
  • Custom cycle settings

5. Genesis 2 Duo 32,000 Grain

Flow Rate

"Set and forget" system


This Genesis 2 Duo 32,000 Grain Water Softener and Whole House Chlorine Filtration System is basically the Genesis Premier upgraded with a big carbon filter. In other words, you can also call it an ultimate chlorine removal machine.

This model has everything that the Genesis Premier has, including a 7-day purge cycle, metered upflow regeneration cycles, and easy to use and to program control head, an LED display, and a 10-year warranty. You get a lifetime warranty for the tanks.

The carbon filter will remove chloramines and chlorine from city water, which will result in healthier skin and hair. The softener’s crosslink resin will protect it from any chlorine that might get through. Both the filter and the softener will be cleaned during the regeneration process.

This Genesis 2 model will work for more than seven days between regeneration processes as it has a filtering capacity of 32,000 grains. You will have a water flow rate of 7.2 gallons per minute, which is enough for a household of four people. However, if you need better flow rate and longer regeneration gaps, you can always buy this model in 40,000 and 48,000 grain sizes.

This model has a very simple design that anyone can install and program, but it comes with the most advanced features. With its locked-in memory feature, you will never have to worry about the time resetting or needing to reprogram it.

It also has a display that will show you the most important information, including the last regeneration date, flow rates, and remaining volumes until the next regeneration process.

When you buy this 32,000 grains model, you will also get 0.75 inch connections and all the other pieces necessary to install the three components of this water softener for city water.

  • Good for small families
  • Easy installation
  • With sediment and dirt filter
  • With Charcoal filter
  • Removes odors

6. WaterBoss #950

Flow Rate

Small design


The WaterBoss City Water Softener #950 model is a little smaller than the other products on this list, but it is very good for city water. It has a very compact and unique design and you will have no troubles installing it in places that don’t have a lot of space for additional plumbing. The process of installation is also a piece of cake and you can do it yourself with a few basic tools.

Since this water softener for city water has a 22,000-grain capacity, it is perfect for smaller families or those that don’t consume much water. It’s also an ideal fit if you are looking to put a water softener in your small office. The model has both a sediment and a dirt filter, which is ideal for the capacity and comes in handy if you are using well water but won’t require any maintenance if you’re using city water.

Another great feature that this water softener offers is the charcoal filter.

It will remove the chlorine that is common in city water. If you think that your area’s water has an unpleasant smell because of minerals and salts, this model will effectively remove almost all odors from the water.

Due to its small size, it will also look very elegant once it is installed. The water softener weighs 105 pounds and is 31 inches tall. You will get a 10-year warranty on the WaterBoss #950, which will cover any defects that might show up.

It has an LED display, and it is programmable to fit your needs.

You can buy this small, unique compact water softener and make it an inexpensive, effective, attractive softener for low water needs.

Final Verdict

FutureSoft Salt-Free

If you are looking for the perfect unit for city water, our recommendation is the SpringWell FutureSoft Water Softener.

Here are some of the pros with choosing Springwell. 

  • Reduce scaling & water spots
  • Extend the life of your appliances
  • No drop in water pressure
  • No salt needed & no wasted water
  • Lifetime warranty on all parts & tank
  • Easy Installation Instructions and Video
  • Top Notch Customer Support

The friendly user interface, affordable cost, and functionality all make this model our top pick for the water softener for city water. You can’t go wrong with it and you probably won’t find a better one for the money.

For a list of products with awesome features and affordable cost, click on this softener link.

You may check out softeners from Nuvo or  models from North Star for comparison. 

About the Author

George Simms is a Salt Lake City based plumber and contractor, with a focus on aiding homes and businesses (particularly farm) solve problems with hard and contaminated water. Walter is here to share his wealth of job experience and a knowledge of both modern and antique plumbing.

Last Updated on January 9, 2023