Found all over the United States, in varying degrees, hard water is detrimental to home plumbing systems. Many people are aware of the visible problems it can cause, like dry hair, bathtub rings, and unsightly white spots on the faucets. However, for some, how it affects their plumbing remains a mystery. When considered "moderately hard," it may not cause too many issues, but if it's classified as "hard" or "very hard" and you don't have a water softener, here's how it could affect your day-to-day life.

Hard Water & Indoor Plumbing

Basics

water softenerHard water gets its name from the high concentration of mineral ions in the liquid. Usually, it's calcium and magnesium, as well as their related compounds, like carbonates, bicarbonates, and sulfates. The United States Geological Survey classifies it by the concentration of calcium carbonate. If it's higher than 121 milligrams per liter (mg/L), it's considered "hard;" once it's more than 180 mg/L, it's "very hard." Although there are tell-tale signs of its presence, such as white, powdery, mineral buildup, if you want a more definitive assessment, you can have your water professionally tested. Companies offering water softener systems can usually do this for you. 

Damages

Because it creates mineral deposits, the biggest threat hard water poses is that it can hinder the flow of both the drainage and supply pipes. If your fixtures are draining slowly or the water pressure seems too low, there may be buildup in the pipes. Note, copper and polymer pipes, like PVC or PEX, are less likely to be affected, since they aren't as prone to corrosion as galvanized ones. However, depending on the hardness of the water and the subsequent amount of scale buildup, corrosion is still possible. A water softener system is the best way to prevent it from accumulating, especially if you have galvanized pipes. Even if it's on the lower end of the scale, it's a proactive option.

 

If hard water has become a problem or you want to take preventative measures to protect your plumbing, have Hewitt-Messenger Well Drilling & Pump Service install a water softener in your home. For more than 40 years, they've served clients throughout Southwest Missouri. If you're in Springfield, Republic, Rogersville, Ozark, or Branson, don't hesitate to get in touch! Aside from water softeners, they can also install purification systems. For a full list of their water-related services, visit their website or call them today at (417) 725-8816.