Most of the time the water supply that you get are considered to be hard water which may contain few natural minerals in high amount. Though hard water is not considered unhealthy, it can always cause a number of problems.
By knowing exactly the amount of hardness in the water, you can consider hard water treatment process needed for you. However, hard water can certainly pose a number of plumbing problems for sure.
How the water becomes hard?
Rainwater can be considered as pure water, but when it will pass through various surfaces then it is going to absorb many different minerals like calcium and magnesium. As a result, a soft water obtained from rain turns out into hard water.
The amount of minerals present in hard water will decide its hardness. Generally, it is measured as the unit of mg/L.
Water is classified in the following way:
- Hardness level of 0 to 60 mg/L will be considered as soft water
- Hardness level of 61 to 120 mg/L will be considered as moderately hard
- Hardness level of 121 to 180 mg/L will be considered as hard
- Hardness level greater than 181mg/L will be considered as very hard
Few common problems
Following are few problems of hard water:
- Build-up of scale within the pipeline that restricts flow of water
- Build-up of scale and film on fixtures and ceramic tiles
- Rinsing of soap and shampoo can be difficult and hair and skin may remain dull/dry
- Water heater life may get shortened due to scale deposit
- Glasses and dishes will get spots
- Washing of clothes will become less effective
- Water consumption during washing can increase
What will it do in plumbing?
Various minerals present in your hard water will start building up inside the fixtures, pipes and appliances over a period of time. Usually, we cannot see such build-up and leads to different plumbing problems, like clogs, reduced water flow and increased amount of stress on the pipes and fixtures.
Your appliances will work inefficiently and also wear down faster.
Hard water testing
The hard water presence can be usually felt by white scale build-up on various plumbing fixtures. In case, you are suspecting that there is hard water, there are few low-tech ways to test for it which is by shaking up little dish soap with water in a closed container.
In case, your solution cannot create plenty of suds then you can suspect hard water. In order to get more precise results, it will be better to contact the water provider and ask them to send recent testing report of water.
Also, you can get sample of water tested at local lab or get a company to perform on-site test.
Another option can also be by using a test strip for water hardness which is sold at various home centres and hardware stores that you can hold under running water and then match by using a colour gauge.