About 85% of the U.S. has hard water, so most households deal with the effects of minerals in their water supply. These substances are present underground where water is often sourced from. They’re generally harmless to human health. But they can have impacts on your plumbing system, appliances, and laundry. Some of the effects, including on pipes and even your water heater, can lead to costly issues down the road. However, there are solutions to help soften the water that enters your home. We’ll answer questions about what hard water is, what it can do, and how Grasshopper Heating & Cooling can help resolve it so you have softer water.

What is hard water?

Hard water is water that contains high levels of minerals, primarily calcium and magnesium. These minerals are picked up as water travels through rock formations and soil before reaching water sources.

What are the issues associated with hard water?

Some of the issues that can arise from using hard water include mineral buildup, soap scum, reduced lather, poor water heater performance, clogged plumbing, stiff and dingy laundry, dry and irritated skin, dull and brittle hair, and reduced efficiency of household cleaning.

How does mineral buildup affect my plumbing and appliances?

Hard water leads to the accumulation of mineral deposits, known as scale or limescale, in pipes, appliances, faucets, and showerheads. This buildup reduces water flow, decreases appliance efficiency, and shortens their lifespan.

What can I do about soap scum and reduced lather caused by hard water?

Hard water reacts with soaps and detergents, forming a sticky residue called soap scum. To combat this, you can use soap scum removers or consider installing a water softening or conditioning system to reduce the mineral content in the water.

How does hard water affect water heaters?

 Mineral deposits from hard water accumulate on the heating elements of water heaters, reducing their effectiveness and increasing energy consumption. This can lead to higher energy bills and premature failure of the water heater.

What are the solutions for clogged plumbing caused by hard water?

To address clogged plumbing due to hard water, you can employ techniques such as descaling or consider installing a water softener or conditioning system to prevent mineral buildup.

How does hard water affect laundry?

Hard water affects the effectiveness of laundry detergents, resulting in stiff and dingy clothes. It can also cause fabric fibers to break down more quickly. Using a water softener or adding a water conditioner to your laundry can help improve the quality of your wash.

Can hard water affect the skin and hair?

Yes, hard water can leave a residue on the skin, causing dryness, tightness, and irritation. It can also make hair appear dull, lifeless, and difficult to manage. Using moisturizers and shampoos designed for hard water or installing a water softener can help alleviate these issues.

How does hard water impact household cleaning?

 Hard water minerals can interfere with the effectiveness of cleaning products, resulting in streaks, residue, or the need for increased scrubbing. Using water conditioners or employing specialized cleaning products formulated for hard water can improve cleaning efficiency.

What solutions are available for dealing with hard water issues?

One solution is to install a water softener or conditioning system that can remove or reduce the minerals in hard water. Grasshopper Heating and Cooling offers a proprietary water conditioning solution that is safe for your septic and the environment. It can reverse past mineral buildup, making your pipes, fixtures, and appliances work like new. Contact us today for an evaluation and more information on our solution.