Hard water is a problem in our area, but it’s not as bad as some other parts of the country. Lime scale is the most obvious sign that your home has hard water. That’s the white crusty substance that will accumulate on your faucets, sinks, tubs, and other plumbing fixtures. If your water has a large amount of calcium and magnesium, it’ll stay behind after the water evaporates. It doesn’t just make your fixtures look ugly—it also has the potential to affect their lifespan.
Why You Should Care
Hard water makes dish washers and washing machines work much harder. The soaps we use aren’t as effective. Clothes don’t come out as clean and they don’t stay bright for as long. Hard water makes your dishes look spotty and foggy after they come out of the dishwasher.
Hardness in the plumbing system will eventually restrict proper flow of appliances and build up inside of the pipes. It’ll also slowly clog up the rim of your toilet where water releases along the bowl.
When it comes to the water heater, hardness buildup will reduce its life and overall efficiency. When all that hardness falls to the bottom of a gas water heater, it means that the system will have to work much longer to heat up the water. That’s because it has to heat up the minerals before it can work its way up to the water itself.
What You Can Do
The best way to deal with hard water is to install a system to soften the water in your home. A water softener removes the calcium and magnesium from the water. It’s most noticeable to people when showering, bathing, or washing their hands. When you have soft water, you get a very silky smooth feeling.
It’s not because the calcium and magnesium prevents all the soap from being washed off. Instead, it’s actually because calcium and magnesium removes the natural oils from your body. Women will notice a difference in their hair, too. They’ll need to use less shampoo and conditioner. For cleaning products in general, you should be able to use half of what you’re accustomed to.
Options & Maintenance
Unfortunately, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution for every home. The ideal system is based on the size of the home, number of bathrooms, and size of the water lines. We tend not to size the water softener off of the number of residents in the home. Let’s say there’s a residence with only two people living there. If we were to install a softener sized for them, it might not be able to keep up with demand if the home is sold, if more people move in, or if family comes over for a holiday visit.
Maintenance depends on the quality of the water. In our area, hard water that comes from a well may contain a higher level of iron. Iron requires more maintenance, since it can potentially clog the unit. You need regular maintenance from a qualified professional to ensure that the unit is functioning correctly and there’s no excessive iron buildup.
If you notice the telltale signs of hard water, give Boulden Brothers a call or contact us online. We’ll be able to make a recommendation about the ideal water softener for your home.