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What is Hard Water?

What is Hard Water?



Many people think of hard water and only consider the aesthetic challenges it may pose by presenting layers of lime scale onto their faucets or making all the glasses look like frosted mugs, but there’s way more to it than just what is catching your eye.  Just as with the old iceberg analogy, 90% of the issues caused in a home by hard water are unseen and include:

  • Water Heater Failure
  • Major Appliance Damage
  • Increased Energy Cost
  • Bacterial Growth
How does this happen?  Let’s deal with how the water got hard in the first place.  Water in its purist form, devoid of contaminants and minerals, is a great solvent.  In fact, it has been given the nickname of “the universal solvent” because of its ability to dissolve more materials than other liquids.   It would actually be perfect when pure to provide a spot-free rinse for your best wine glasses.  By the time it makes it to your home, it may be rich in minerals that it has dissolved as it flows through underground aquifers, over and through limestone and other rocks.   The primary mineral that will cause scaling issues is calcium. Hello spots on dishes.  Wouldn’t matter what color the wine was in that!  scalewine.jpg

So, simply stated hard water is water that is rich in the dissolved minerals calcium and magnesium.  Water hardness may be expressed as milligrams per liter (mg/L) or grains per gallon (GPG).

To find out if the water in your area is hard, check out this post HERE.


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