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Hard Water Problems

     Hard water is an extremely common problem for homeowners to have, even when on public water systems. Hard water is not hazardous to your health, but more of a hindrance to appliances. Common signs of hard water are: water spots on the glass door of your shower; residue on drinking glasses after they have gone through the dishwasher; or when you are bathing in the shower and the soap is not getting “sudsy” enough when bathing. Hard water is caused by high calcium and magnesium in the water. This problem can shorten your appliances’ life span because of the clogging it causes in the pipes. Some examples of such appliances are: the washing machine, refrigerator, and dishwasher. These appliances are most affected because of the common water usage. Washed clothing becomes noticeably stiffer and rough after a wash, and also start to lose brightness in color. If you are experiencing a reduction in water pressure or flow, chances are the calcium has been building up in your pipes causing blockages. This could lead to more complicated plumbing matters down the road, such a splitting pipes.

There are a few ways to try and reduce the amount of hard water in your home. First, by reducing the temperature of your boiler just a few degrees, you will be able to limit the amount of mineral deposits from forming in the cooler water. Many households attempt ion exchange, which is when plumbers install a water softener. The softener introduces sodium into the water to keep the calcium and magnesium from combining and causing hard water. The only problem with this process is that if you have health concerns and a high hard water count, the amount of sodium in the water could cause health issues. If you are on well water, it is always a good idea to perform your own test or have it tested by a water specialist. The water can change every few years because the flow of the groundwater tends to shift causing different minerals to be found in the water. If you are on public water system, the municipalities release water test results once or twice a year giving you the luxury of the test results annually. Your water quality results of either your well or public water system can be a huge benefit for the homeowner, especially if you are planning to replace appliances, remodel, or even sell your house.