Magnetic water treatment is a method of supposedly reducing the effects of hard water by passing it through a magnetic field as a non-chemical alternative to water softening. It is a water treatment system that claims to reduce water’s hardness by passing it through a magnetic field. Magnetic water treatment is regarded as unproven and unscientific. Strong neodymium magnets are often used in Magnetic Water Treatment to prevent or reduce scale formation with hard water. Hard water has a high mineral content, usually consisting of mostly calcium and magnesium.
Magnetic Water Treatment directs water to pass through a strong magnetic field. The idea is that by using a powerful magnet on the outside of your pipe, the magnet will pull or alter the ions found in your water before it enters your home’s plumbing system. By placing two strong neodymium magnets on either side of the incoming pipe, all the water passes through a strong, uniform magnetic field. It does not remove any calcium from the water. It does not remove calcium and magnesium, which are hard water elements that form scale in pipes and appliance components. Technically, it is still just as hard as before it passed through the magnets. It claims to change the structure of the deposits that form, making them tend to be less apt to stick to surfaces. This is especially true in places where water sits, such as hot water tanks, even with magnetic water treatment systems, the scale still forms. A chemist at Simon Fraser University, Canada suggests that the reason these magic gadgets may sometimes appear to work can be explained by the chemistry of water.
Water treatment products based on magnets are widespread and have been on the market in various forms for a long time. Vendors of magnetic water treatment devices frequently use pictures and testimonials to support their claims but omit quantitative detail and well-controlled studies. Vendors of various types of magnetic products claim that they can alleviate pain, cure illness, improve engine power and fuel efficiency, and – relevant to this article – have all manner of positive effects on water and water quality. Advertisements and promotions generally omit system variables, such as corrosion or system mass balance analytics, as well as measurements of post-treatment water such as the concentration of hardness ions or the distribution, structure, and morphology of suspended particles. It is interesting to bear in mind that most scientifically valid studies have not shown the technology of magic water treatment devices to be effective for scale control. Magnetic Water Treatment products claim to be able to correct a range of issues that relate to water quality but fail to offer objective evidence to support these claims.