Steps To Take If Your House Has Hard Water
Do your dishes and glassware have white stains on them, even if they’ve just been washed? If so, chances are, your house might have a hard water problem.
And if you have a hard water problem, your dishware not looking clean is probably the least of your worries.
Hard water can negatively affect your lifestyle in many ways, but one thing you actually don’t need to worry about is consuming it. Though hard water sounds dangerous, it’s actually not bad for you, from a medical standpoint. And some have even argued that it can benefit your health.
Hard water is called ‘hard water,’ because it has a high concentration of minerals like calcium and magnesium. The severity of hard water can vary depending on what kinds of particles are in it.
Typically, hard water that has magnesium and calcium cations is known as temporary hard water, because it can be readily cleared of these particles. Temporary hard water can be ‘softened’ by even just boiling it.
However, permanent hard water is much more severe, in that it can’t be cleared by just boiling. Permanent hard water requires much more tedious efforts, including possibly installing a water softening system.
The kinds of compounds typically found in hard water are known to be beneficial to the body. Both magnesium and calcium are used by many bodily processes and play a role in ensuring that your body functions properly.
But having hard water within your house’s water system is not good. Hard water can degrade many appliances and decrease the efficiency of both your water system and the things that use it.
Typically, the signs of hard water are fairly easy to catch. In most cases, evidence of hard water will start showing up everywhere: your sinks, your dishware, your faucet, and even your hair. But the most obvious is that the water itself looks different.
Soft water, which is ideal, is typically clear, and when you collect a volume of soft water, there will be bubbles dispersed throughout. Hard water, on the other hand, will have very few bubbles and will have a cloudy appearance.
But once you’ve identified that you have a hard water problem, what steps should you take to get rid of it? And why should you even bother to fix it?
Well to answer the second question, you should definitely look into getting your hard water problem solved. Even if there are some issues that you think you can live with, problems caused by hard water will be more costly and lead to a lot more headaches down the road. This is especially true if the hard water starts to damage your pipes and the water system as a whole.
So, now on to the former question: what steps should you take?
1. Invest in a water softener
Getting a water softener system can be really handy in the long run. Many of them run the water through a cleaning process that includes things like ion exchange beds, but you should make sure you’re getting a water softener that will work best for your needs.
There are many kinds of water softeners. The most popular are salt-based softeners, which involve ion exchange, as described above. The water runs through a resin bed which exchanges the hard ions in the water with ‘soft ions.’
Though many ion-exchange softeners may need to be regularly cleaned, there are some systems that might have a sort of regenerative process that regenerates the resin, so that you don’t have to clean it as often.
There are also salt-free softeners, which don’t use salt at all. However, the main role of a salt-free softener is to make it more difficult for minerals in hard water to build up into obstructions. It isn’t as efficient or effective as a salt-based softener, but it won’t actually reduce the concentration of particles in your hard water.
2. Clean your faucets and other appliances
Whether you implement a water softening system or not, you should make sure you remove the mineral deposits from your faucets and other appliances. While mineral deposits can make your home look dirty, they also pose very real threats to the integrity of your water system.
The build-up of the mineral can lead to all sorts of obstructions that make it harder for water to flow.
One way to remove mineral deposits is by using vinegar. This works with both your dishware and your faucets and pipes. For more difficult and stubborn deposits, you should soak the deposits by using a vinegar-soaked rag and leave it for around an hour.
If you don’t like the sound of rubbing vinegar on things around your house, you could also try out other acidic household cleaners that can be bought at a regular household store. You need an acidic cleaner because hard water deposits are alkaline, so the acid will help break down the deposits, making them more easily removed.
3. Look into detergents and soaps that work with hard water
Part of why it’s important to address your hard water problem is that it can make everyday processes like doing the dishes and washing your hair more difficult, tedious, and ineffective. This means that it could cost you both time and money.
The minerals in hard water can bind to many of the active ingredients that are used in soaps and detergents, rendering them inactive and ineffective.
If you haven’t been able to install a more permanent solution to your hard water issues, getting detergents and soaps that work despite the hard water will make a huge difference.
This is especially important if you hate having dry, rough, and tangled hair. If you started noticing that your hair isn’t as clean or feeling as fresh as it usually does after you shower, it might be because of hard water.
If this is a problem you’ve been facing, you’re in luck! There’s actually shampoos that are made specifically to work in hard water conditions. These clarifying shampoos recommended by Giftwits are sure to make a difference. And there are many different kinds, so if you have other hair-specific conditions that need to be addressed, these should work for those too.
So, if you’ve got a hard water problem, fear not! There are many ways that you can address the issues brought on by mineral build-up.
If you’ve got temporary hard water, the solution may be as simple as boiling the water before you use it. But even then, it may be more useful to invest in a long-term solution.
But of course, implementing a water softening system can take time and money. So, in the meantime, there are many other products and techniques that you can look into to reduce the severity of these problems brought on by hard water.