The term “hard water” refers to ground water that contains high levels of such minerals as magnesium or calcium. Water softeners are devices designed to reduce the amount or effects of minerals in your home’s water system. This guide reviews the different types of water softeners and how they can protect your plumbing and improve your water supply.
While rainwater is “soft” when it falls from the sky, as it flows into aquifers it can absorb minerals such as calcium, magnesium and trace metals. While safe to drink, hard water can inhibit the effectiveness of soaps and detergents, which can result in bathtub rings, spots on glasses and dishes, less effective clothes washing and less effective rinsing of soaps and shampoos.
In addition, deposits from hard water can leave scale deposits and mineral build-up in coffee makers, water supply pipes, ceramic tile and water heaters. This can reduce the water flow, shorten the lifespan of a water heater and cause long-term damage to plumbing and fixtures.
You can also use a water testing kit to determine your water’s hardness level. A level of 1 grain per gallon (gpg) or higher technically indicates some water hardness, but 7 gpg often indicates that a water softener may be needed at your home.
A quick way to determine the best size water softener for your house is to calculate the average number of gallons your household uses in a day. You can determine this number by multiplying the number of people in your household by the average number of gallons used per day (usually around 75). Then multiply that number by the hardness level in gpg you found when you tested your water.
For example, if you have four people in your household using an average of 75 gallons a day, and your water test shows that your water hardness level is 7 gpg, your math would look like this: 4 x 75 x 7 = 2,100. Look for water softeners that can process at least 2,100 gpg on a daily basis. Plumber water heater replacement Omaha Bennington Blair