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Hard Water: What It Is and Why You Don’t Want It in Your Plumbing

The term hard water is one that often confuses people. Isn’t “hard water” just ice? But regardless of whether people know what hard water is or not, they usually understand that it isn’t something that they want in their plumbing… which is exactly right. If your home suffers from hard water, you’ll need to contact plumbers to install a special water softener to counteract it.

What hard water is

Hard water is water that has a higher than normal content of minerals suspended in it. The common minerals that create hard water are magnesium, gypsum, and calcium. None of these minerals are harmful to ingest (they exist in many foods and liquids). However, they can spell serious issues for plumbing pipes and appliances.

The troubles from hard water

The main threat that hard water poses to a residential plumbing system is that it leaves calcite deposits along the interior of pipes. This creates a tough build-up along the pipes that will eventually start to restrict the volume available for water to flow, causing an increase in water pressure. If the problem is not addressed, the high water pressure will lead to leaking and damage to appliances.

Hard water is also destructive for water heaters. The temperature inside a water heater tank draws the minerals from the water and turns them into limescale along the interior if tank. Limescale will contribute to a water heater overheating and could result in permanent damage.

Watch for signs of hard water

There are a few warnings to look for that will tell you that you have issues from hard water: white, flaky deposits on fixtures, film left across tub and shower surfaces, and difficulty creating decent soap lather. Call water softener specialists to test the water and then find a water softening solution.

Ken Neyer Plumbing, Inc. offers water softeners and other water treatment services in Cincinnati, OH.

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