Hard Water Defined
“Hard” water is water that contains high traces of dissolved mineral content, such as calcium, magnesium, iron, and more. These dissolved mineral ions accumulate over time in the form of scale, which is a thin white film that has several negative effects on plumbing fixtures, pipes, and appliances, as well as, hair, skin, nails, laundry, and dishware. But these minerals will not negatively affect your health in anyway, other than some dry, itchy skin and dingy hair. What you need to worry about is the effects on your home.
The degree of “hardness” varies on a spectrum. Water can be anywhere between marginally hard to very hard. It depends on where you live, how you obtain your water, regional soil conditions, crops, farming, and more.
Water is naturally soft when it falls to the earth in the form of rain. But once it permeates the ground and trickles through layer after layer of soil and rock, it picks up mineral contaminants as it makes it way down. This is why well water and underground water is harder than rain water. The two most common culprits are calcium and magnesium, as mentioned before.
You will be able to determine if you have a hard water problem by looking for the signs. Filmy white scum or spots on clean dishes, white film on faucets and shower doors, dingy laundry, greasy hair, poor soap lather, funny-tasting coffee and soup, metal-like odor in tap water, dry skin, and more are all tale-tell indications that your water is hard.
Install a water softener to get rid of hard water! The technology in water conditioners are extraordinary these days, and they are highly-effective at eliminating hard mineral ions at an affordable price. You can then take it a step further by installing a water purification system, such as water filters or a reverse osmosis system. Again, talk to your trusted plumber for help choosing a water softening plan for your home or office. They have the knowledge and resources to provide accurate assistance.