Removal of Barium from water using a water softener November 7, 2016 22:45
Barium can be removed from your home water in a number of ways. You can use a reverse osmosis system to remove it from the drinking water for a single faucet, or you can use an Aqualux water softener like this one to remove it from the water for your entire dwelling.
Barium is a naturally occurring 'alkaline earth metal' that due to it's very high reactivity is never found in nature in it's elemental state, rather it is found in its reacted state. You can learn everything you ever wanted to know about barium here.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommends that barium concentration in drinking water does not exceed 2.0 mg/L (same as ppm). Concentrations above this limit can cause high blood pressure, gastrointestinal issues, and a variety of nervous and circulatory system disorders.
Water softeners are effective in the removal of barium, because barium is very chemically similar to calcium - one of the hardness ions that water softeners are designed to remove. Because barium behaves much the same way as calcium, the ion-exchange process of the softener is effective in removing it.
When choosing a water softener for your home, be sure to choose a system that uses a high quality resin. Softener resin quality is measured by the hardness of the resin, expressed as 'cross link' percentage. Look for softeners made with 10% cross linked resin to ensure maximum barium removal, and maximum resin lifespan.
Here are other articles about the removal of barium using water softeners that you might find useful:
Water Quality Associate Barium Fact Sheet
U.S. EPA Facts about Barium in Drinking Water