The Difference Between Hard and Soft Water and How It Affects Your Plumbing

The Difference Between Hard and Soft Water and How It Affects Your Plumbing 1

The Basic Science Behind Hard and Soft Water

Water is known to be an excellent solvent – this means it dissolves many types of minerals and chemicals, and usually contains dissolved minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and iron. The concentration of these minerals in the water determines its hardness. Water with a high mineral concentration is known as hard water while that with a low mineral concentration is known as soft water. The difference in mineral concentration ultimately determines how water interacts with your plumbing system.

What is the Effect of Hard Water on Plumbing

Hard water can have various undesirable effects on your plumbing system. As it flows, the minerals in the water are deposited on the internal surfaces of the plumbing which can result in mineral buildup or scaling. As the buildup continues, the pipes can become narrower which restricts the water flow. In severe cases, pipes can get completely clogged. The water pipes in your home can last up to 25 years, but with hard water, it is likely that you will need to replace them more often due to the buildup of mineral deposits.

What is the Effect of Soft Water on Plumbing

Soft water is much gentler on plumbing systems than hard water. With soft water, there is no mineral buildup leaving the pipes free to flow as they should. The lack of mineral buildup also means fewer water heater breakdowns, and improve the efficiency of plumbing fixtures prolonging their lifespan in the process. Soft water also reduces the buildup of residues on appliances like kettles, irons, and washing machines. Soft water is less likely to leave unpleasant stains in the bathroom over time, so you won’t have to use as many cleaning products to remove them. Overall, soft water is much gentler on your plumbing and can save you a lot of time, money and energy in the long run.

What’s The Solution?

There are several ways to treat hard water depending on its severity. The two most common solutions are water softeners and electronic descaling devices. Water softeners use ion exchange resin to eliminate minerals in the water that cause it to be hard. Electronic descaling devices, on the other hand, use an electromagnetic field to alter the chemical composition of minerals in the water, stopping them from sticking together and causing limescale buildup. A water softener is an effective and more traditional option while electronic descaling devices are newer and require less maintenance. To keep growing your understanding of the topic, make sure to check out the thoughtfully chosen external source we’ve put together to enhance your study. General plumbing work Llandudno

The Difference Between Hard and Soft Water and How It Affects Your Plumbing 2


Overall, the difference in water hardness is crucial to the lifespan of your plumbing system. Hard water can accumulate and cause buildup inside your plumbing, slowly reducing the system efficiency over time. Soft water, however, causes less damage and prolongs the lifespan and overall efficiency of the plumbing system. Thankfully, treatment options are easily available to solve this issue – so in the end, taking care of your plumbing system can be a breeze.

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