Hard water is water that contains elements like magnesium and calcium, which are normally filtered out to produce what’s known as “soft water.” Water line repair experts see the damage caused by long-term use of hard water all of the time. These minerals can end up in the water through the soil or even through corroded pipes while bringing along a potential slew of bacterium along for the ride. Bacterial contamination can be hazardous to your family’s health as well as the condition of your water lines, especially if the issue of hard water is not addressed right away.
What are the Problems Caused by Hard Water?
Even though as many as 85% of homes in the US have hard water running through their pipes, not nearly as many homeowners are aware of this issue. However, there are certain signs that you should be able to detect if you take a moment to sincerely question the condition of your water.
One of the first telltale signs of hard water that people experience is a funny taste or smell coming from their tap. Sometimes the water can taste like actual dirt. It may smell like rotten eggs or have another unpleasant odor or taste. Unfortunately, funny-smelling or bad-tasting water is the least of your concerns when it comes to hard water in your home. Other signs of hard water include:
- Water leaving nasty-looking brown stains in your sink or toilet. This is due to the presence of iron in your water.
- Soap scum and hard water spots. Hard water and soap don’t work well together and can lead to a buildup of scum in your shower that you will need some serious elbow grease to get rid of.
- Difficulty rinsing or lathering in the shower. As we said above, hard water doesn’t interact well with soap. So, when you shower, you might end up with a film of residue on your skin or find that your soap doesn’t lather as well as it should.
- Your clothes stay dirty after a wash. Body soap isn’t the only type of soap that hard water interferes with. Laundry detergent can be left behind due to hard water, making your clothes feel nowhere near as clean as you’d like or expect them to.
- Skin irritation. The leftover soap residue paired with the bacteria found in hard water can lead to skin irritation. People with eczema might find that their symptoms are becoming more severe.
- Appliance death. Are your plumbing appliances going kaput long before their time? Hard water can leave scale deposits that compromise the functionality of washers, dishwashers and other plumbing appliances.
How Does Hard Water Lead to Water Line Repair?
The biggest problem that households with hard water face are a buildup of these minerals within the water lines. You may first notice this problem if your pipes seem to be getting clogged for no apparent reason. Clogged pipes are a telltale symptom of hard water inflicting some serious damage to your water lines.
Imagine, for a moment, the arteries inside of a heart. Imagine the buildup of cholesterol constricting the flow of blood, growing worse and worse over time. That’s what’s going on within your pipes. Scale buildup makes it harder for water to travel to its destination and can make for expensive water line repair costs if brushed off for too long.
You should be especially wary of hard water concerns in your water lines if you have older, steel pipes. Hard water buildup tends to be especially problematic in these pipes versus PVC or copper.
Call a Plumbing Professional to Address Hard Water Damage
If you suspect that you have hard water, especially if you worry that the hard water buildup has compromised the integrity of your water lines, you should reach out to a professional plumber. The experts at Ridgeway Mechanical will help you to address the damage caused by hard water exposure. We will also diagnose any issues that may require water line repair to restore that integrity.