Water Softening Systems Market

2021 Analysis and Review: Water Softening Systems Market by Operation Type –Electric and Non-Electric for 2021-2031

Water Softening Systems Snapshot

As per Future Market Insights (FMI) analysis, the water softening systems market will total US$ 10.82 Bn by the end of 2021, exhibiting year on year growth of 4.5% between 2020 and 2021. Healthy growth projections remain constant for the forecast period of 2021-2031.

Water softening systems demand outlook remains positive, with the market size projected to expand at a robust 6.5% CAGR over the assessment period. Awareness regarding water quality and policies favoring implementation of advanced technologies will create a conducive environment for growth.

Key Points Covered in Water Softening Systems Market Survey

  • Market estimates and forecast 2021-2031
  • Key drivers and restraints impacting market growth
  • Segment-wise, Country-wise, and Region-wise Analysis
  • Competition Mapping and Benchmarking
  • Brand share and Market Share Analysis
  • Key Product Innovations and Regulatory Climate
  • COVID-19 Impact on Water Softening Systems Market and how to Navigate
  • Recommendation on Key Winning Strategies

Water Softening Systems Market Historic Sales Compared to 2021-2031 Forecast Outlook

As per FMI’s analysis, demand for ultra-soft water softening systems visibly grew due to soaring concerns pertaining to water contamination across the globe. However, amid the COVID-19 outbreak, sales reduced to an extent, especially on account of restrictions imposed on movement, which halted product installation in various residential, commercial, and industrial spaces.

However, growth is on the cards, with sales of salt-free water softening systems and increasing shift towards electrification and automation of industrial filtration systems and water treatment equipment, emerging as key trends in the market.

Government initiatives in collaboration with water supply management authorities that are aimed to establish a reliable supply chain will foster sales in the market. FMI forecasts water softening systems sales to grow by 6.5% CAGR between 2021 and 2031, as against growth at 4.7% registered between 2016 and 2020.

Water Softening Systems Installation in Healthcare and Industrial Sector Set to Spur Demand

Water softening systems sales uptick is on card owing implementation of government-sponsored initiatives such as expansion of smart cities and clean water initiative. Focus on the prevention of water contamination and ensuring availability of clean, soft water for all will remain a chief growth driver.

Geographically, the U.S., Canada, and the U.K. are considered to be key areas where water-related concerns are on a rise, which is encouraging market players to launch innovative and efficient water softening systems to curb the problem.

In addition to the residential sector, growth in application in healthcare, pharmaceuticals, food & beverage, and semiconductor industries are also driving demand for water softening systems.

Other countries such as India, China, and South Korea, which are witnessing growth in commercial and industrial sectors amid rapid urbanization, will emerge as attractive pockets for sale. Government-funded projects for public health, sanitization, and cleanliness are creating demand for water softening systems, thereby propelling sales.

How will Efforts in Water Quality Education Impact Water Softening Systems Sales?

Quality of water is interwoven with quality of life across the globe. Changes in quantity, quality, and natural cycles of water systems have consequential impacts on human life. As the population continues to grow, water contamination is becoming a global burden, stunting the global supply of clean water.

Human health suffers from direct impacts of contaminants in water such as chemical, biological (bacteria, virus, protozoa, slime molds), radiological (decaying radioactive elements in soil and bedrock, seeping into water streams), and thermal (climatic changes such as excessive heat).

In terms of indirect impacts, water quality significantly affects the quality of food humans derive from ecosystems. For instance, the lack of clean water for irrigation may subsequently curtail food production in many regions. Seafood supply also depends on freshwater quality and contamination in fisheries and natural sources leads to risk of extinction of certain species.

Improved water source provides direct access to water free of contamination and pollutants, which is becoming a need of the hour. Globally, the most prevalent water contamination-related problem is eutrophication, access of phosphorous and nitrogen in water due to surface runoff, which is highlighting the need for water softening systems significantly.

Here, animal/livestock wastes and agricultural fertilizers are the main contributors to eutrophication, leading to dense growth of plant life, creating chances for bacteria build-up and depletion of wildlife due to lack of oxygen. Eutrophication also leads to algal bloom, resulting in fish kills, inedible shellfish, and blue algae, subsequently compromising the use of water for drinking, cleaning, and harvesting.

Yearly water quality checks are gaining more importance as the quality of water changes over time and water treatment systems installed several years ago might not be fit for the current situation. This will also create attractive opportunities for water softening systems sales growth.

Water softening systems are often installed in households to effectively remove hard minerals such as calcium and magnesium. But in some households, high iron content is reported to be a big problem, especially in rural areas. As the quality of water differs based on locations, innovations in water softening systems are essential to tackle such issues and get the desired results.

Low-Penetration of Water Softening Systems in Rural Areas Hampering Sales

In rural areas, consumers are comparatively less aware about the importance of water softener systems, purification and filtering systems, which is a key factor restraining growth.

Rural consumers prefer purifying water via conventional processes such as boiling, cloth straining, chlorinating, slow sand filtration, and ceramic filters, which in turn reduces rural spending on water softening systems as compared to urban spending.

However, a significant rise in demand for water softening systems is being witnessed in emerging economies, owing to urbanization and water quality education, which are creating lucrative opportunities for global market players.

Developing nations such as China, South Korea, Brazil, and India are investing heavily in water softening systems, thanks to cohesive efforts by organizations such as WHO and UNESCO that are trying to make clean water available in various developing locations.

Country-wise Insights

Will the U.S. Maintain Lead in Water Softening Systems Market?

The U.S. proudly owns one of the safest water supply channels in the world. As per the Centres for Disease Control and prevention (CDC), 90% of Americans consume tap water supplied from community water systems, which are treated according to safe drinking water standards.

However, drinking water quality varies based on locations, depending upon the conditions of the water source and the treatment it receives, which must comply with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards regulations. Many states have their own drinking water standards, and community water systems abide by rules set by the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA).

Even with the safest water supply channels, water contamination can still occur due to sewage releases, naturally occurring chemicals, and minerals, land-use practices, manufacturing processes, and malfunctioning of wastewater treatment systems. Such factors are pushing the need for water softening system installations in the U.S.

With increasing risks of contamination in drinking water that are mainly caused by improperly maintained distribution pipes in the country, consumers are getting more conscious regarding water softening systems and their ability to remove untreated chemicals in the water as it reaches their homes, thus propelling sales in the market.

Additionally, health-related threats posed by contaminants present in drinking water are encouraging manufacturers to focus on product innovations and technological developments to keep disorders like gastrointestinal illness and neurological disorders at bay.

What are Causing Water Softening Systems Sales Uptick in the U.K.?

Owing to stringent regulations implemented to maintain water quality standards in the U.K., sales outlook for water softening systems will showcase an upward trend during the assessment period. Even with the presence of high-quality water supply sources, residents in the U.K. are investing in water softening systems to avoid any risk of contamination.

To comply with the regulations, water bodies need to meet a large number of standards related to pollutant concentration, health of sea population, and groundwater quality. These regulations are becoming the main areas of focus for market players, which is leading to enhanced product developments in water softening systems, thus driving sales in the market.

In the U.K., tap water holds significant quantities of limescale, which damages water pipelines by getting deposited in taps and drains, leading to bacteria build-up which later contaminates freshwater as well as wastewater.

Leading players in the U.K including Harvey Water Softeners Ltd. are rolling out highly effective products to curb this problem. For instance, Harvey Water Softener's product line includes HarveyArc, HVX, and Big Blue. These variants are suitable for different house sizes respectively and are equipped with advanced twin cylinder systems that soften water round the clock. 

Sales of Water Softening Systems to Gain Traction in India

FMI's analysis projects positive growth outlook for the water softening systems market in India, owing to rapid urbanization, industrialization, and population expansion in the country. With these developments, environmental problems such as water pollution have also become a growing concern.

Rising industrial and agricultural activities have deteriorated the quality and quantity of surface and groundwater in the country, thereby impairing availability of safe and clean drinking water.

Various government and non-government organizations in India are striving to educate the masses about water quality and ensure adequate supply of drinking water in remote locations. However, the conscious efforts are hampered by lacking environmental sanitation, which has generated a tremendous need for avenues that fill the gap in the existing support structure.

To eliminate water contamination in households and commercial sectors, communities are largely investing in water purification and softening systems across schools, hospitals, corporate spaces, and community centers, thus propelling the market growth.

Category-wise Insights

Residential Sector will Lead Water Softening Systems Applications

Owing to growing concerns regarding excessive mineral volumes in drinking water, the residential sector is anticipated to experience ascending applications of water softening systems throughout the assessment period.

Prevalence of point-of-use (POU) water purifiers is acting as a challenge for water softening systems in the residential sector. However, gradually shifting concerns towards the importance of water softening systems will propel sales in the market.

Product innovations by leading players, with respect to sizes of houses and system designs (mono pipe, multi-tube, and twin-tube) depending on water hardness will allow consumers to purchase water softening systems as per their needs, adding to the convenience of buying and installation.

What is the Preferred Design for Water Softening Systems?

Twin-cylinder water softening systems are being preferred widely over mono cylinder water softeners, owing to their durability and efficacy. Mono cylinder water softeners fail to function in high water hardness concentrations, while twin-cylinder systems deliver the required results effectively, gaining traction in developed regional markets.

Which is the Top Selling Water Softening System Operation Type?

Based on operations, water softening systems are either electric or non-electric. Over time the demand for better efficiency and improved operations are giving tailwinds to electric water softening systems sales. FMI has projected demand outlook in the U.S., U.K., and Canada to remain optimistic through the assessment period.

On the flip side, sales of non-electric systems will continue rising as well especially as installation gains momentum across markets with unmet needs.

Competitive Landscape

As per FMI’s analysis, the global water softening systems market is dynamic in nature, with significant developments among leading players with regards to product innovations to improve the efficacy of water softening systems.

Companies operating in the market are focusing on educating the masses about water quality in order to promote sales and community well-being. Additionally, product innovations, strategic collaborations, and manufacturing facility expansions are among other strategies employed by manufacturers. For instance:

  • In March 2021, Kinetico Incorporated, a leader in quality water systems, collaborated with Mike Holmes, a well-known professional builder, contractor, and television host to spread awareness regarding the importance and need for safer, better water in homes and commercial spaces.
  • In May 2021, Culligan International supported National Drinking Water month to educate consumers about their products and how water quality plays a critical role in health and well-being.

Scope of Report



Forecast Period


Historical Data Available for


Market Analysis

USD Million for Value

Key Countries Covered

US, Canada, Germany, U.K., France, Italy, Spain, Russia, China, Japan, South Korea, India, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand, GCC Countries, Turkey, Northern Africa, and South Africa

Key Segments Covered

Operation Type, Application Type, Design, and Regions

Key Companies Profiled

  • EcoWater Systems LLC
  • Culligan International Company
  • Kinetico Incorporated
  • Hydroflux
  • Envicare Technologies Pvt. Ltd.
  • Wychwood Water Systems Ltd.
  • Harvey Water Softeners Ltd.
  • Pelican Water Systems
  • BWT AG
  • Marlo Incorporated
  • Monarch Water Ltd.
  • Qingdao Haier Co., Ltd
  • Atlas Filtri
  • Watts Water Technologies Inc.
  • Feedwater Limited

Report Coverage

Market Forecast, Company Share Analysis, Competition Intelligence, DROT Analysis, Market Dynamics and Challenges, and Strategic Growth Initiatives

Customization & Pricing

Available upon Request

Key Questions Answered in the Report

  • What is the current water softening systems market value?

    The water softening systems market surpassed a valuation of US$10.82 Bn in 2021.

  • At what rate did the water softening systems market grow between 2016 and 2020?

    The water softening systems market experienced sluggish growth at around 4.7% CAGR between 2016 and 2020.

  • What are the key trends driving water softening systems sales?

    Rising applications of water softening systems across emerging economies, coupled with efforts to curb water contamination levels in households are key trends driving water softening system sales.

  • Who are the leading players in the water softening systems market?

    Leading players operating in the water softening systems market are BWT AG, Ecowater Systems LLC, Qingdao haier Co., Ltd., Watts Water Technologies Inc.

  • What will be the demand outlook for North America water softening systems market?

    North America water softening systems market is anticipated to dominate the water softening systems market, exhibiting growth at 4.8% CAGR between 2021 and 2031.

  • At what rate will water softening systems demand rise in Europe?

    The water softening systems market in Europe will rise at 3.7% CAGR over the assessment period.

  • Which are the key exporters of water softening systems?

    China, the U.S., and Germany are key exporters of water softening systems.

  • Who are the key producers of water softening systems?

    China, India, U.S., Germany, and the U.K. have emerged as key producers of water softening systems.

  • What is the Japan and South Korea growth outlook for water softening systems market?

    Japan and South Korea will account for 5.5% of global market share in 2021.

Water Softening Systems Market by Category

By Operation Type: 

  • Electric
  • Non-Electric

By Application Type:

  • Residential
    • Salt-based
    • Salt-free
  • Industrial
  • Commercial

By Design:

  • Mono Cylinder
  • Twin Cylinder
  • Multi-Cylinder

By Region: 

  • North America
  • Latin America
  • Eastern Europe
  • Western Europe
  • Asia Pacific excluding Japan
  • Japan
  • Middle East and Africa (MEA)

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Water Softening Systems Market