Taps Love Soft Water
Hard water is caused by minerals in the water such as calcium and magnesium, which can wreak havoc on your home. While hard water is safe for people to drink and use when cooking, it can make your home harder to clean and leave watermarks on shower screens and glasses. Over time, these minerals can coat your pipes and appliances such as taps and showerheads, reducing the flow of your water. The mineral deposits, known as limescale to many people, can even be the cause of failure for certain appliances by lowering their lifespan. This is particularly true for washing machines.
How Hard Water Damages Pipes
Pipes in your house are extremely important and they need to be kept clear of any blockages. However, with hard water causing mineral deposits to build up inside pipes, it reduces the availability of water over time. If the tap has a build-up of limescale, it can cause the tap to drip water and produce only a weak stream of water for you to use.
The minerals found in hard water such as calcium and magnesium can erode the pipes and even cause holes. These types of problems aren’t always noticeable at first and it is hard to tell when you need to act upon it until it’s too late.
Appliances Are Affected Too
Another danger that limescale can cause in pipes is a complete blockage when there is too much. If there are any appliances that use hot water, the temperature of warm water inside the appliances can accelerate the build-up of limescale and make them more prone to the formation of scale. Over time, this has serious effects such as the appliances needing more energy to heat the water which will cause energy costs to rise above the norm. Water heaters will have more mineral buildup than cold water pipes and sometimes a popping sound can be heard when the water heater is heating. This is caused by interior mineral expanding and contracting.
Boilers and Hard Water
Water hardness levels are important when it comes to your boiler. If you have extremely soft water with a high volume of flow rate it could leave pits in the copper tubing. On the other hand, extremely hard water will cause mineral deposits to be left behind and can block the boiler tubing. Another factor that can affect your boiler is the pH or acidic level of the water. It is important for the levels to be right to prolong the lifespan of the boiler and most manufacturers will provide the recommended levels for the boilers in manuals.
How Can I Prevent Damage to My Appliances and Pipes?
If you want to prevent hard water damage, one of the best ways to do so is to have a water softener installed in your home. The softener is installed between your water source and the internal plumping to filter out all the minerals that cause limescale. Inside the tank is a resin or crystalline substance suspended in a saltwater solution. When water containing minerals filters through, the minerals swap places with the sodium in a process called ion exchange. A softener is usually installed under the sink, but loft installations are an option as well.
The Benefits of a Water Softener
Before installing a water softener, you may notice that when you fill the kettle up and pour boiling water into your tea after, there is something floating on the surface. It is the limescale from your water. However, when you have a water softener installed, the quality of your cup of tea or coffee will be greatly improved. Not to mention the taste will be even better as well.
Your taps will be easier to clean and there won’t be any build-up of minerals to reduce the flow of water. You will also have the following benefits:
- Shinier glasses and plates
- No streaky shower screens
- More bubbles when washing
- Fluffier towels and softer clothes
- Smoother skin
If you are interested in how a softener can benefit your home, contact us today to arrange a free home survey! You can find out more about what that entails by clicking here.