When it comes to hard water vs soft water, there are some things that every home owner must know in order to keep their families healthy and their belongings in good condition.
One of the most difficult things for many home owners is understanding which type of water they have. When it comes to these two distinct types of water, there are a few facts that can help you determine what kind of water you have running through your pipes. Once you know if you have hard or soft water, you can make a conscious decision on whether you require a water softening system or not.
Knowing the Difference
The easiest way to tell if you have hard or soft water is to look at the lather on your soap.
Hard water causes:
- Soap to create a white film instead of a foamy lather
- Soap to remain on your skin and hair instead of rinsing off cleanly
You can also tell the difference between these two types by looking at your tub or shower surround. Hard water leaves a white mineral scale on your surfaces. These scales are made up of calcium and magnesium, and the minerals can build up in your pipes and clog them.
Hardness Can Be Temporary
It’s not unusual for people to be told that they have soft water, only to find that their soaps, shampoos and detergents don’t lather well. This occurs when you are experiencing a temporary hardening of your water. When your water becomes hard, it is typically because there are bicarbonate minerals present. Your water can be made soft by boiling or simply by waiting for the minerals to pass through your system.
Why Hard Water Is Not Preferred
Minerals in your water can cause many issues within your home. While hard water may be fine to drink, it is typically not healthy for your hair and skin. Some of these issues are of no real consequence, but some of these issues may require attention by professional plumbers.
- Never feels clean
- Loses its shine
- Dries out and can cause dandruff
- Dries out quickly
- Feels sticky
- Children may develop eczema
Washing clothes in hard water can ruin the fabric over time by breaking it down. Washing in soft water may leave a residue of detergent within the fibers. Again, it’s important to find a middle ground if you want to have clean clothes without damage.
Hard water can cause build up in your pipes that you don’t notice until they begin to back up. These mineral deposits must be flushed out by a plumber to prevent damage to your pipes. Unfortunately, many home owners do not realize that this build up is taking place until real problems occur. The simple installation of a water softening system will counteract this scale build up, and reduce (if not obliterate) the negative effects of hard water. Check out this page for some of the best water softening systems on the market.
Treating Hard Water
Whether your water is too hard or too soft, a treatment system can regulate your water, making it perfect for your family. When you have a treatment system professionally installed in your home, your water is made safe for drinking and perfect for washing.
When you consider how much better your water is for your family and the cost-savings you will experience by having clear pipes, having a water treatment system installed (such as a softener or filter system) in your home is more affordable than you think.
Can’t afford a whole house system, or are you renting? Why not try installing a simple shower head water softener/filter first!
Looking for more water softener information or advice? start by visiting the Water Softener Critic homepage – a water softener information hub.
Looking for more reviews? we’ve got you covered on our water softener review page.
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