As part of our extensive study of water softeners, we’ve evaluated the three types of NUVO H2O models available for sale. If you’re looking to read about the specifics of each model or to learn about the NUVO and other softening systems our buying guide is just what you need.
In our NUVO H2O water softener reviews, we’ve covered the effectiveness, size rating, installation, maintenance, and price of each model. We’ve also provided some tips on who should use the system and who shouldn’t.
In our buying guide section, we’ve briefly explained the important factors you’ll need to consider when choosing a water softener and how some of the common technologies, including NUVO’s CitraCharge system, to soften your water. At the end, you’ll be able to shop with confidence and with an informed idea of what will work best for the condition of your water.
In a Rush?
NUVO has made shopping easy by using only one type of softening technology in all of their models. All you need to do is to determine what size you need.
Read our full reviews of these models below the buying guide.
How to Pick the Best One for Your Needs?
The systems are rated by how large your house is. That can be a little misleading, though. The assumption is that if you have a larger house, you have a larger family.
But what if your children have moved out and you still own your house? What if you have a smaller house with a large family?
The real factor in choosing a water softener is how many gallons of water your family or housemates use.
The filters in the systems need to be changed every 35,000 gallons. A person uses an average of 80 gallons per day. If you multiply that average by the number of people living in your house, you can estimate how long the filters will last.
A person living alone would only need to change the filter once every 14.5 months. A family of four, on the other hand, would need to change it every 3.5 months.
You’ll also want to consider your water pressure needs. How much water do the people in your house use at any one time? Here’s how much water the average, common elements in a home use.
Shower, hose, or sprinkler: 2 gallons per minute (GPM)
Washing machine or dishwasher: 1.5 GPM
Sink faucet: 1 GPM
If two people need to take a shower in the morning using two different bathrooms while someone else runs the washing machine while doing a load of dishes as a third person uses the kitchen sink to cook breakfast, the total water usage at that moment would be 8 gallons per minute. Most households don’t even need that high of a flow rate, but add up your actual usage to determine how high you need.
Coupling with another Salt-Free Technology
Do you know how hard your water is? Have you had it tested for other elements or contaminants? Get the knowledge you need with a water test kit.
If you have particularly hard water, the product might not solve all of your problems. You will see an improvement, but you might also benefit from pairing the NUVO with another salt-free system.
The NUVO works by adding citric acid to the water as it flows through the filter. The citric acid bonds to the calcium and magnesium (the minerals in your water that make it “hard”) and changes the structure of the molecule so that it can’t stick to or stain anything. You get fewer clogs, less mineral buildup, and reduced staining.
The citric acid also lowers the pH of the water, creating an unsuitable condition for minerals to build up
If you find that the product isn’t adequately solving your problems, you can add a complementary salt-free technology to your overall softening system. An electro-magnetic softener, such as the Eddy Water Descaler, or a fully magnetic system, such as the Magnetic Water Technology Two-Unit Combo will further help soften your water. Electro-magnetic and magnetic systems suspend the grains of hard water minerals in your water so that they don’t adhere to any surfaces before flowing down the drain.
If you have a well with iron, manganese, sulfur, bacteria, or viruses, or city water with chlorine and chloramines, you will want to pair the unit with a Aquasana Rhino 6-Stage 500,000 Gallon Well Water Filtration System with SimplySoft Salt Free Water Softener and UV Filter or a Aquasana Whole House Water Filter and Salt-Free Softener. These are whole house filters that soften by coating hard water grains in natural polyphosphates.
If you use an electro-magnetic or magnetic softener, install it after the unit. If you use a polyphosphate softener and filter, install it before the NUVO system.
Top Choices on the Market
3 NUVO Water Softener Reviews:
We’ve arranged our list of reviews by model size. We’ve included information on how well each model works, who should use the model, how easy it is to install and maintain, and how much you can expect to pay for it. Note: Though rated by size, any model will work in any home. Because you have to change the filters in the systems, an economical choice would be to purchase the largest model possible to make each filter last longer. Likewise, if you live in a large home but have a small family, you might find that a smaller system meets your needs just fine.
H2O Studio System
The NUVO H2O Studio Water Softener is the smallest model the company offers but is just as effective as the larger versions for its size.
Meant for homes of 1,000 square feet or less, it delivers more than enough water pressure. With a flow rate of up to 15 gallons per minute, you could probably run every shower, faucet, and appliance in your apartment, condo, or small house and not notice a decrease in water pressure.
You will, however, notice a decrease in the hardness of your water. The NUVO H2O Studio uses the company’s patented CitraCharge filter cartridges to “soften” your water. We put the word “soften” in quotes because CitraCharge works differently than conventional softeners.
Instead of removing hard water grains from your water, the citric acid in CitraCharge breaks down the molecules so that they can’t bond to the inner surfaces of your pipes and appliances or the outer surfaces of your fixtures, sinks, showers, and tubs.
CitraCharge further treats the water by lowering its pH level. Mineral deposits form more easily in water with a higher pH level (more basic), so adding the citric acid to the water brings the pH back down (more acidic) to inhibit mineral buildup. If you live in an area with acidic water, NUVO systems might not be right for you.
The NUVO H2O Studio is an in-line softener that connects very easily to your existing supply line. Simply turn the main valve off, open a faucet to drain the water out of the system, and then cut the pipe to insert the NUVO. You might need adapter fittings if your supply line is larger than ¾”.
This model doesn’t need any special mounting bracket to hold it up. It only weighs 6 pounds, so your supply pipe should be able to support it easily.
To maintain the NUVO H2O Studio, all you’ll need to do is replace the filter every 4-6 months, depending on your water usage. The cost is less than $50 per filter. Turn the main supply valve off, run the water out, and unscrew the top to replace it.
The NUVO H2O Studio is available for less than $565 and comes with a 5-year warranty. Just don’t install it in direct sunlight or in an uncovered outdoor location.
H20 Home System
Like the Studio model, the NUVO H2O Home System is a salt-free softener that uses citric acid to change the chemical make-up of mineral molecules so that they can’t form deposits or make stains. The CitraCharge (the company’s citric acid formula) also raises the pH of your water to further reduce the chance of mineral buildup.
It still supplies 12-15 gallons per minute and is designed for homes ranging from 1,000-2,000 square feet. With even 12 gallons per minute, your family could run 2 showers, the dishwasher, the washing machine, two faucets, and water the lawn all at the same time without noticing a drop in water pressure.
At 1”, the installation ports are larger than the Studio model. If you have a ¾” supply line, simply add a couple of adapters when you connect it. It weighs a little less than 9 pounds, so you might want to support it with a wall bracket or make sure your supply line is bracketed to the wall on either side of the installation.
You’ll need to change the filter every 4-6 months at a cost of less than $75 per filter. Each filter treats 35,000 gallons, so it might be a good idea to add a meter to your supply line to better time and economize filter changes.
You can purchase the Nuvo H2O system for less than $650. It comes with the same 5-year warranty, provided you don’t install it in direct sunlight or in an uncovered outdoor location.
H2O Manor System
The NUVO H2O Manor System is designed for homes larger than 2,000 square feet.
The softening technology is the same, using CitraCharge (a blend of citric acid) to stop the formation of mineral deposits inside and outside your pipes.
This model weighs a little more than 20 pounds and has installation ports for pipes sized 1.5”. If yours are smaller or larger, simply buy a couple of adapters to size the connection up or down. The unit itself provides up to 18 gallons per minute, more than adequate even for large, busy families.
The filter will need to be replaced approximately every 6 months. Each filter costs less than $95.
Like the Home System, each filter is rated to treat 35,000 gallons. To get the most life out of each filter, add a meter to your supply line to measure how much water you’ve used. Replace the filter every 35,000 gallons and reset the meter.
The NUVO H2O Manor System is available for approximately $930. It comes with the standard 5-year warranty, but the warranty is void if the unit is installed in direct sunlight or left uncovered outside.
The NUVO H2O Home System is the most economical of the three. It has a high enough capacity for most homes and is less than $90 more expensive than the Studio model. With the ability to soften the same number of gallons per filter as the Manor model, there’s not much of a need to upgrade unless you need the higher flow rate.
It uses the same CitraCharge formula as the other models, so it will be just as effective at keeping hard water grains from bonding to your pipes and surfaces. It’s easy to install with any size pipe (some adapters might be needed) and can supply up to 15 gallons per minute. At less than 9 pounds, it’s truly a wall-mount system.
The $75 filter every 6 months isn’t a high cost when you consider that this unit doesn’t use salt or electricity. The NUVO Home System costs less than $650 to begin with, and the 5-year warranty only represents a portion of its expected lifespan. You can reasonably expect a NUVO system to last a lifetime with proper care.
Buy the NUVO H2O Home System and see what a difference it makes for your water.