Have you ever been to the grocery store and wondered just what is the best kind of saltwater softener you should buy among the gazillions of choices? And that no matter how much you try to compare those white sacks with one another, the only information you’re getting is their brand name and that every single one of them claim as the best salt for water softeners?

So now, you’re stuck on that aisle selling sacks of the “best water softener salt” not knowing what to do and looking like a complete idiot. I’m definitely not taking a jab at your intelligence. I’ve been in that kind situation before so I understand.

The very first time I had to buy a salt softener, I had to spend minutes just staring at the products with so many questions running through my head. In the end, for utter lack of knowledge, I just decided to buy the pack with the best design. Genius right? Now, I know better and you should too.

This article will help you know the best salt for water softeners in the market today and give you an idea about softener salts.

What is a water softener salt? How does it work?

A water softener salt is, as its name suggests, used to soften water in order to enhance the quality of water used in homes. Because believe it or not, the water used in every household, factories and other commercial establishments isn’t actually pure.

This particular type of impurity that I’m talking about is the so-called water hardness. Hard water is very high in minerals particularly calcium and magnesium, as well as other metal cations, which can cause galvanic corrosion, clogged plumbing, and limescale build-up. Hard water is also not very compatible with soaps, making it harder to wash off dirt and beauty products. This can also, in turn, cause some serious skin dryness and other skin problems. If your sinks are riddled with icky stains and your skin’s getting flaky, it may be a sign that you need water softener salt.

By using softener salts, hard water is transformed into soft through the removal of calcium, magnesium and sometimes even iron. I am not going to go all chemistry nerd with you by discussing the chemical process and the chemical equations during water softening but what happens is that the ions from softener salts are exchanged with the “hardness” ions of the water thus allowing the excess calcium and magnesium ions to be flushed out.

What are the types of water softener salt?

First-time buyers are often unaware that there are actually multiple types of softener salt sold in the market. Depending on your water hardness level and your preference, there are three types that you can choose from. Let’s look at each of them.

Evaporated Salt

Evaporated salt is the highest quality of sodium-based salts with a purity level of 99.6% to 99.99% – the purest among the other types. It is also the most expensive. Higher purity level means a more effective treatment of water hardness so there’s less chance of limescale buildup and clogging. This type comes in pellets.

Solar Salt

This salt type is made by naturally evaporating seawater or brine under the sun. It has a purity level of 99.5% and has high solubility rates. Solar salt is not a recommended for a large home with high water hardness as it has a higher build-up. This type is usually sold in pellets.

Rock Salt

Rock salts are naturally occurring and are mined underground. This type has low solubility rate due to high amounts of calcium sulfates so tank build-ups are more likely to occur. It has a purity level of 98% to 99%.


Potassium chloride is a safer alternative that can be used in place of salt. It is a great choice for those who are wary of increasing their sodium intake. This type is sold as pellets and is more expensive compared to the others.

Review of the Top 5 Best Water Softener Salt

Now that you’re more knowledgeable about softener salts, you’re probably itching to know the best water softener salt that you can buy in the market. Below, you’ll find the chosen Top 5 best salt for a water softener compiled among the multitudes of brands you can choose from.

Product #5 Morton Potassium Chloride Pellets – 40 lb. bag

Morton is a brand more commonly known for their table salt but now, they’re also one of the leading brands when it comes to softener salts.

Morton Potassium Chloride Pellets is a healthier alternative to sodium chloride softeners that not only reduce chloride discharge to up to 20% but also provide an incredibly long-lasting effect on maximized performance. This softener also boasts a 99% sodium free rate so there’s less salt build-up.

Since the product also comes in compressed pellets, there is less mushing. Meaning, you won’t be worrying about brine production and tank cleanup anytime soon. If your home area is having problems with ridiculously hard water, you won’t ever regret buying this softener. It’s priced reasonably, performs well, has great health benefits and is long-lasting – what more can you ask for?

Product #4 Cargill Salt 40# Potassium Chloride Pellets 7376

Another fantastic softener salt for people who’re inclined to cut back on their sodium intake is Cargill Salt 40# Potassium Chloride Pellets 7376. This product is made up of 99% sodium chloride so it’s very soluble and is very safe. And with solubility as high as this, you won’t be bothered with constant tank build-up so you can be sure that your water-softening unit is always functioning smoothly. The product also resists mushing and salt bridge formation, so you’re guaranteed that there’s optimum brine production.  

Furthermore, Cargill Salt 40# works really well in all softeners so you’re getting your money’s worth and more. The product also comes in a polyethylene bag for certain moisture protection.

Product #3 Diamond Crystal Iron Fighter Pellets Bag 40 Lb

Diamond Crystal Iron Fighter Pellets Bag definitely lives up to its name. If you’re having problems with rust stains on your sinks, laundry, bathtubs and household fixtures, there’s a good chance that your hard water has high iron content. With this product’s specially designed FDA-approved rust-remover formula, you won’t have to put up with annoying rust stains dirtying your home anymore.

This also means that you won’t have to endure your water’s metallic smell. This softener salt also has great effects on your skin so those with sensitive skin (like me) will definitely benefit from using Diamond Crystal Iron Fighter. Think about awesome.  

You won’t have to worry about compatibility too since it works with most softeners. And since Iron Fighter’s evaporated salt pellets easily soluble in water, your tank won’t suffer from frequent salt bridges and build-ups. The patented double handles which make carrying easier is also a good bonus. This product will definitely live up and even surpass your expectations.

Product #2 Diamond Crystal 804017

Another great softener salt product that made it on the Top 5 list is Diamond Crystal 804017, a solar salt softener with a very high purity level of 99.6%. This naturally evaporated salt is specially formulated to resist mushing and salt-bridging; thus, making it easier for the brine to form and minimizing tank residue build-up. Since it’s also pure salt, it has very low insolubility level and above all, it can be used in both household and commercial softening units with high efficiency.

Diamond Crystal 804017 Solar Naturals also has another great perk that is very useful for those with vegetable and animal farms. The filtered brine form of this product can be used in curing your pickles, processing your meat and poultry, quality grading of sensitive vegetables as well as in hiding curing. During winter, the product is also useful in snow and ice removal. And to top it all off, Diamond Crystal 804017 is very long-lasting and is NSF approved so it’s very safe for use.

Product #1 MORTON SALT 1501 50 lb Systemsaver Pellet

The last but definitely not the least product that’s on this list is Morton Salt 1501 50lb Systemsaver Pellet which received very high praises from many users. In fact, it’s the best Morton salt softener pellet product that you can buy on the market.

The Systemsaver Pellet makes use of a patented formula that makes sure that your softeners, pipes, water heaters, and appliances are all running more efficiently and are longer lasting. By significantly reducing tank build-ups and efficiently eliminating water iron content through its resin cleaning additives, your softeners will run smooth and high-maintenance tank clean up eliminated.  

Morton’s Sytemsaver Pellet definitely deserves all the good reviews and the many endorsements it got from leading softener brands since it functions just as advertised with no exaggeration whatsoever. This product is packed full of useful features that saves you so much money and trouble that it’s the only softener salt that has received the Good Housekeeping seal. That alone is enough to attest just how deserving Morton Salt 1501 Systemsaver Pellet is of the title best water softener salt.


So that’s a wrap. These are the best salt for a water softener that you can purchase without worrying about whether it’s effective or not. Depending on your water hardness, the softener salt you choose should always have high purity and solubility. But like I said, these are the best softener salts in the market so whichever you choose, it’s guaranteed that you’re getting your money’s worth.