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    July 07, 2020 5 min read

    What is hard water?

    If you're on this page, you've probably heard the phrases "hard water" and "soft water" before. But what exactly do those terms mean?

    Hard water is simply put, water containing a high mineral content. It begins with groundwater percolating through limestone, where it collects calcium and magnesium, and the higher the concentration, the harder the water is in mineral content. Soft water is just water with a lower concentration of minerals. You can often tell whether you have hard or soft water coming out of your faucet by looking for a white, chalky residue around your sink or in kettles or coffee makers. Now calcium, magnesium, and iron aren't necessarily bad for you, in fact, they're beneficial nutrients to our body. More often than not, the downsides of hard water on physical health can be solved simply by installing a quality home water softener system

    Can drinking hard water stain teeth?

    Can hard water stain teethPeople frequently as us " How do I get rid of hard water stains on my teeth?". Actually, there’s no solid evidence that drinking hard water can cause your teeth to turn yellow. You’d think that ingesting mineral-heavy hard water would have an effect on your teeth through direct exposure but the calcium actually has a benefit on your teeth, as well as your overall dental health, so increasing your intake isn’t going to hurt.

    But what about hard water being abrasive? Will it damage your teeth or cause tooth decay? For the most part, the minerals in hard water tend not to be abrasive enough to damage your teeth or their enamel. Using a water filter system will help to remove any buildup of mineral deposits in your appliances, but you don’t need to worry about the condition of your teeth. If your primary residence runs on groundwater, which 85% of Canadian homes do, it may be beneficial to check what is the water hardness in your city.

    What are the effects of hard water?

    Although drinking hard water may not directly affect your teeth health, here are eight potential problems that it may cause. Do any of them sound familiar?

    1. Why does my Water Tastes or Smells Funny?

    A strange odor or taste to drinking water is often one of the first clues you have a water conditioning problem, either due to hard water or bacterial contamination. For example, if your water has a metallic taste, it is most likely due to an excess of iron. If your water smells like rotten eggs, that could be from the hydrogen sulfide gas or certain bacteria reacting with magnesium to form sulfates. If you're wondering why your drinking water tastes like dirt. That could be sediment (actual dirt), old pipes, or algae. Algal blooms can also give tap water a moldy aftertaste.

    2. Why does my water cause strange stains?

    Yup, you can blame hard water, or specifically the iron, for the ugly brown or reddish stains that look like rust spots. The iron in your water could be coming from rusty pipes. Some people suggest using vinegar to help clean and remove them but ultimately, the stains will keep reappearing until you fix your hard water problem.

    Some people suggest using vinegar to help clean and remove them. Unfortunately, the stains will keep reappearing until you fix your hard water problem.

    4. Why does hard water ruin my showering experience?

    Minerals cause hard water to react ineffectively with soap, which makes it difficult to wash the soap off your body and you may find a film of soapy residue on your skin. In addition, limescale deposits from hard water can build up and clog your shower head too. This means weaker water pressure - With hard water, you may not be getting as clean and you may notice your hair is hard to manage.

    5. Why do my pipes keep getting clogged?

    Thanks to the hard water's high mineral content, it can also clog your pipes can cause major plumbing issues as well. Limescale deposits build up inside your pipes, which is caused by the dissolved minerals in hard water, constricting the flow of water, eventually leading to backups and the desperate need for a plumber

    6. Why aren't my clothes coming out clean

    Yup, Hard water can have a negative impact on laundry too, due to the incompatibility minerals have with soap and detergent. Soap normally washes away dirt but when it doesn’t get rinsed off properly, it can actually increase soil build up on your clothes. Clothes washed in hard water often appear dingy and wear out faster. It may even make your towels scratchy and rough.

    When you have hard water, you may have to buy detergent formulated to soften the water for you. However, you’ll likely have to use more laundry detergent, four times as much, (and hotter water) to get your clothes to be clean. Plus, just as iron stains your bathroom or countertops, it can also stain your clothes. Premature yellowing of your whites could be caused by the iron content in the water. When combined with bleach, iron oxidizes and causes your clothes to rust.

    7. Why does hard water irritate my skin?

    This is a common problem for those with sensitive skin, as previously mentioned before because rinsing with hard water leaves soap behind, it can cause people's skin to dry out and become itchy. Mineral deposits left on the body can also suck the moisture right out of your skin. The skin condition eczema is fairly common, especially among younger children. 

    8. Why are my appliances wearing out quickly?

    This might be the most expensive hard water problem of all. Those scale deposits can wreak havoc on many appliances in your home, from the dishwasher to the hot water heater. A build-up of sediment in your water heater can make it far less efficient. The same goes for other appliances. Poor efficiency means bigger utility bills. The ice maker in your fridge can stop working as scale deposits clog up valves.

    So it's not difficult to see how hard water can cost you money in the long run. 

    How water conditioning can solve your problems

    There is a simple answer to all your hard water issues - installing a water softener in your home.

    Water softeners remove things like calcium, magnesium, and iron from your water as it comes in from the source. It’s a worthwhile investment that could save you headaches as well as money. There are also other types of water conditioning products, like a reverse osmosis system, which can help eliminate potentially harmful contaminants.

     

    If you’re ready to look into the possibility of a water softener in your home, or if you simply have questions about the options available, contact us or use our Softener Selection tool to find the perfect water softener for you!