Are Water Softeners Banned In San Diego?

Salt-based water softeners are banned in certain California areas because of the state constantly dealing with droughts. Salt (NaCl) is a hinderance to sanitation, which is tasked with reclaim and reuse of sewage water. This water is an important source for farmers and their irrigation efforts in an area where suitable water is often scarce.

Where In California Are Water Softeners Banned?

California is not alone in the illegalization of self-regenerating water softeners – Texas and Massachusetts have since passed similar laws. As of 2021, water softeners are banned in the following California municipalities and counties. Some areas near San Diego where water softeners are reportedly banned include Oceanside, Vista, Solana Beach and Otay Mesa.

Communities where water softeners are banned in Southern California.
  • Beaumont
  • Brentwood
  • Camarillo
  • Chino Hills
  • Corona
  • Discovery Bay
  • Dixon
  • Fillmore
  • Fontana
  • Fountain Valley
  • Hollister
  • Ironhouse Sanitary District
  • Irvine Ranch Water District
  • Lathrop
  • Livermore
  • Lodi
  • Los Angeles County
  • Malibu
  • Montclair
  • Monterey
  • Moulton Niguel Water District
  • Oceanside
  • Ontario
  • Otay Mesa
  • Oxnard
  • Piru
  • Pleasanton
  • Rio Vista
  • Salinas
  • San Clemente
  • San Juan Capistrano
  • San Luis Obispo
  • Santa Barbara County
  • Santa Clarita
  • Santa Maria
  • Santa Paula
  • Simi Valley
  • Solana Beach
  • Stockton
  • Thousand Oaks
  • Upland
  • Ventura
  • Ventura County
  • Vista

You can see all water softener bans in the state by viewing this Google Map.

When Did Water Softeners Become Illegal In parts of San Diego?

In 2009, the California state legislature set forth a proposal that banned conventional water softeners that discharge salt into municipal sewer lines. Culligan and a number of its competitors filed suit in Sacramento, claiming the new law, which would decommission any current homeowner’s softener system, to be unconstitutional.

As of 2021, there is no statewide ban in California on water softeners. These decisions have been left of up to the local municipalities, as per Assembly Bill 1366 passed in 2005, which gives local water districts the right to ban self-regenerating water softeners to satisfy discharge standards.

How Water Softener Bans Are Affecting California Residents

Laws in California that prohibit salt-based water softeners use enforcement policies. If you are found in possession of a working water softener in an area that does not permit one, you could face fines of $1,000 or more.

Water Softener Alternatives In California

There are two main alternatives to traditional water softeners in California: salt-free water conditioners and portable exchange (PE).

Portable exchange services are popular for homes that want the utility of a real salt-based water softener. PE tanks use no electricity and require few if any changes to plumbing. Culligan takes care of the delivery of new tanks and maintenance, and offers flexible scheduling solutions based on usage.

Culligan’s Salt-Free Conditioner provides a similar solution for your home that a traditional softener would by reducing damaging scale formation from minerals such as calcium and magnesium. However, unlike a traditional water softener, a conditioner does not eliminate these minerals, but reduces their ability to form scale. Its anti-scaling media protects your home’s major appliances and plumbing, making it easy to clean out your tub or sink. Likewise, NO salt purchasing is ever required.

A salt-free water softener solution offers many benefits, including:

  • Scale reduction protects your home’s major appliances and plumbing
  • Eases cleaning of showers and sinks
  • Reduces carbon footprint – zero wastewater or electricity needed
  • Cost savings include no salt purchases EVER, reduction of hot water bills and scale damage repair costs.
  • Virtually maintenance free — media replacement every 3 to 5 years
  • Neutralizes calcium and magnesium
  • Extends the life of water-using appliances

Do I Need A Water Softener in San Diego?

Water in San Diego can range from moderately hard to very hard. Ground water can absorb minerals that make their way into your home, causing buildup on faucets and fixtures, limiting the life of your appliances, causing hair and skin problems, and making laundry dull.

A 2009 article in the Los Angeles times estimated 10% of homes in the area had hard water.

Water Softener Hardness Scale

What Is The Best Water Softener System in San Diego?

Whether you’re looking for a traditional water softener or salt-free conditioner solution, no company does it better than Culligan – the industry leader in water softening and water treatment for more than 85 years.