Q: I'm wondering if your show has ever looked at the differences between magnetic water treatment and chemical water treatment. We have a bad scale problem in our new house. We get white build up on glasses, even though the dishwasher is new. A plumber told me that you could use magnetic treatment to solve this problem and extend the life of the water heater and other things. Is this technology good? Does it work? Is magnetic treatment any safer than sodium-based water softeners? — Bart, Ventura, CA

A: Richard says: I have patiently listened, watched and read about magnetic water treatment for years and have been told of miraculous success stories. However, I can only say at this time that I just don't know if they work. I am familiar with water softeners and know they work when installed and maintained properly. If your plumber has had success, has some clients you can talk to and you trust him, then go for it. It's worth the risk to do it. In the best case, you get better water in your house. In the worst case, you spent money but didn't change the water quality.
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