The Real Difference Between Hard & Soft Water

So What is the Difference between Hard Water and Soft Water?
The main difference between hard and soft water is the mineral content. Minerals commonly found in hard water are chalk, lime, calcium, and magnesium. Rain water is naturally soft but picks up these minerals as it runs through the ground. Hard water can cause problems in the house.
Hard Water Problems
Calcium, lime, and magnesium cause the problems commonly associated with hard water. Here are some of the most common issues:

  • There are spots on dishes after cleaning.
  • There is soap scum in the tub and shower.
  • Scale buildup and drain clogging is frequently occurring in the tub and shower.
  • The clothes are dingy after going through the washer.
  • Large amounts of sediment are present at the bottom of the water heather or other appliances including faucets.

These signs are a good indication of hard water but there are more conclusive methods you can use to test your home’s water.
Bottle Test
Gather a clean empty plastic bottle with a cap and dish washing liquid. Remove the cap and fill the bottle about halfway. Add about 5 drops of the dish washing liquid and shake vigorously. You should see foam forming. If the foam stays, the water is not hard. If the foam quickly dissipates, the water is hard.
Water Test Kit
A hard water test kit will indicate the hardness of the water with a good accuracy. To perform the test you start out by filling a vial with the water in question. Then add a drop of solution and shake well for 5 to 10 seconds. Keep adding one drop and shaking until a half inch of suds is sustained. Each drop used represents 1 grain of hardness. Anything less than 3 grains of hardness is at most slightly hard and does not need to be remedied. Anything higher than 3 you might want to treat.
You can buy these kits online or Call 512-388-0022 to Schedule your FREE! Water Test from a professional.
Hard Water Solutions
If you do have hard water and the resulting problems, the best solution is a water softener. These devices run the water through a resin bed to exchange the hard ions with soft ones. The resin bed will slowly buildup up hardness ions and need to be cleaned, as you might already know the Kinetico systems clean themselves. The salt in the bin is the key chemical for this cleaning process (a.k.a. regeneration process). Depending on the hardness of the water, this regeneration process is run on a timed basis triggered by a control panel. More efficient systems work based on the usage of water and not on a clock.
If a water softener is too expensive or isn’t possible for your home, try these tips:

  • -Use an homemade all purpose cleaner  to remove scale buildup.
  • -Use a squeegee to remove sitting water after a shower or bath.
  • -Use vinegar to prevent clogs.
  • -Use a detergent that works with hard water.

While these are temporary remedies, will help you out on the short term. We highly recommend a Water Softener or Treatment for the prolongation of your appliances and plumbing.
Give us a Call if you want to find out more about your quality of water and the available solutions.We also offer Water Purification Systems and Reverse Osmosis Systems
Stop by the American Water booth @ The Austin Spring Home & Garden Show THIS WEEKEND!
Serving From Belton TX to Buda TX and anything in between.