Can I Transport a Water Softener Lying Down

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A water softener can not be transported lying down. Instead, a water softener should be positioned upright when moving it. If the appliance is transported horizontally, it can easily roll about. This is likely to cause damage to some of the more fragile internal components and external controls.

After purchasing a water softener, careful consideration needs to be given to how you will transport it home. Due to its size and cylindrical shape, moving this appliance can be challenging. Caution needs to be given to its position while in transit to prevent damages.

So how exactly is a water softener supposed to be transported? Solutions to your problem will be explained to ensure that it arrives home safely and undamaged. We will also discuss the possibility of taking your water softener with you when moving to a new house.

Laying Water Softeners Down Is Not Recommended

It would seem logical to lay your water softener down when transporting it because that’s the best way to fit it into your vehicle, especially smaller vehicles like sedans. However, as it is a cylinder, it can easily roll around. Movements like this can damage both internal and external components of your water softener.

Leading water softener manufacturer, General Electric (GE), gave these instructions

regarding moving water softeners:

“The water softener must be in an “upright position” when you are transporting it or only moving it across the room. Furthermore, do not lay the softener on its side because this will damage the control head, covers, or tanks.”

Problems With Laying a Water Softener Down

Water softeners are not designed to be laid down—either while transporting or moving them and when they are in operation. Transporting them in an upright position is a more challenging option. However, this brief inconvenience is a far better alternative to arriving home with a broken appliance.

Components That Might Be Damaged

If the resin and brine tanks move during the moving process, both external and internal features and parts are likely to get damaged.

External Features

The tanks themselves may be damaged. Both tanks may get scuffed or dented from rolling around, particularly if you transport them with other items in the vehicle or trailer.

Where the metal resin tank can get dented, the plastic brine tank can be cracked. Cracks in the brine tank will result in leakages of the salt solution, which might be repairable—or the whole tank will need to be replaced completely.

The third and most important external feature that can easily be damaged is the control valve. This valve coordinates the filtering, regeneration, and cleaning cycles as well as the direction of the water flow. Any damages to this component and the functioning of the system as a whole will be impaired.

Internal Components

Firstly, there is a delicate float-and-valve assembly in the brine tank. Any hard knocks and this fragile system will come apart at the joins.

In the mineral tank, the slender riser tube can be cracked or broken. Additionally, the distributor basket at the base of the tank can become dislodged.

High Replacement Costs of Individual Parts

If components of the water softener become damaged in the moving process, you will have to source replacement parts. Buying individual components can be very costly. The table below supplies a few examples of water softener parts and their estimated prices.

Keep in mind that you may also require a technician to install new components, which will add to your expenses.

Part NameReplacement Cost
Bottom Distributor$156.21
Brine Tube$64.08
Brine Tank$485.87
Float, Stem & Guide Asm.$112.51
Control Timer$231.36
Prices quoted from eReplacementParts. Prices accurate as of August 2021.

Related article: Can You Put a Water Softener in a Crawl Space?

How to Safely Transport a Water Softener

Best Option: Use the Original Packaging

If you have just bought a new water softener, keep it in its original packaging. This is one of the best means of protection against damage from moving.

Keep It Upright

As explained above, your water softener needs to be in an upright position, regardless of the means of transport.

Strap Or Tie It Down

It is essential to secure your appliance tightly with ratchet straps or ropes to keep the water softener upright in the face of long and bumpy journeys ahead. Place blankets or towels underneath the straps so that the exterior of the appliance doesn’t get damaged.

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Use Padding

Once you have strapped the water softener down, wrap the entire appliance in padding. You can use blankets, pillows, bubble wrap, etc. Not only will this prevent scuff marks, dents, and cracks in your two tanks, but it will also absorb some of the impact while being transported on the road.

Moving Blanket for Protecting Furniture- Heavy Duty Recycled Cotton Padded Tarp, Multi Purpose- Pets, Camping, Hunting, Picnics and More by Stalwart, Blue, Set of 1

Use a Dolly If Necessary

Water softeners are not one of the heaviest appliances, but they are awkward and cumbersome to lift and carry. We recommend using a dolly or a hand truck when moving your water softener in and out of vehicles, especially if you are moving it by yourself. A dolly will prevent any accidents from occurring.

Cosco 3-in-1 Aluminum Hand Truck/Assisted Hand Truck/Cart w/ flat free wheels

I’m Moving: Can I Take My Water Softener With Me?

The brief answer is, yes, you can take your water softener with you when relocating.

However, you should ask yourself the following questions before packing up your system:

  • Does the area where I’m moving to have significantly hard levels of water?
  • Is there adequate space in my new house to install the water heater?
  • How much will it cost to transport it there, and do I need the services of a plumber to install it?
  • Is it worth bringing it with me?

How Can I Safely Move My Existing Water Softener?

If you have decided that it’s best to take your current water softener with you, here are some steps to take when transporting it to your new home.

  • Manually set the regeneration cycle. This will drain the water in the resin and brine tanks.
  • Close the inlet and outlet valves.
  • Disconnect the water pipes going to and from the water softener. Wrap up the pipes and store them safely.
  • Make sure no dirt gets into the hose openings by covering them in plastic.
  • In the case of water softeners already in use, it is extremely important to transport the tanks in an upright position. At the bottom of the mineral tank, there is a layer of gravel bedding. This prevents the tiny resin particles from being flushed out of the tank when water flows over them. If you lay the mineral tank on its side, there is a possibility that the gravel bedding and resin will be displaced. Resin may be able to flow out of the tank and into your new house’s plumbing.
  • Keep the water softener away from extreme temperatures, especially in a removal truck or storage unit, for extended periods.
  • Reinstall it within 90 days as bacteria can grow in the tanks if they are stagnant too long.

If you are moving homes and would like to know more about transporting other appliances, we recommend reading these articles:

Can You Transport a Front Load Washer Lying Down?

Is It Ok to Transport A Water Heater Laying Down?

Is It Ok to Transport a Dryer Laying Down

Is It Ok to Transport a Gas Stove Laying Down?


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