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As an alternative to a conventional salt-gobbling, kitchen-cabinet filling, water-wasting softener, I'm planning on installing a whole-house Combimate (made by Cistermiser). This is one of those polyphosphate micro-dosing thingies (it adds about 2–3 ppm of food-grade polyphosphate, which sequesters the dissolved calcium, so reducing scale). @JSHarris almost certainly knows about the idea, but I thought of him when I read the claim that it's also good for red/brown water from boreholes. I was going to get a BWT Combicare from ScrewFix, but was put off by DIYnot denizens saying they often plug up with scale, which is kinda ironic. Or there's a similar Italian product I found on FleaBay. So anyone got experience of these things? Do they work? Do they keep working after a few years?