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What is Hard Water and Why Should I Care?

At some point in any home owner’s life the concerns of hard water is going to rear its ugly head. But don’t you worry, we’re here to help you understand and let you know there is help out there. So, let’s dive in, shall we?

What is hard water?

Hard water sounds like an oxymoron - unless you are talking about frozen water - and as such can be a hard concept to grasp for some. How can water be hard? The term ‘HARD’ refers to the minerals that have dissolved in the water. Typically, those hard minerals are calcium and magnesium. When looking at running water the hardness it is virtually undetectable to the naked eye. The proof comes later in the form of scale buildup, hard to remove spots on your shower doors and glasses, and even worse – in increased utility bills.

How does water become hard?

As water falls from the sky and begins its journey to your house’s pipes, it will wind up spending a good amount of time meandering though all kinds of earth, dissolving and carrying minerals along the way. Depending on where you are in the country will determine what type and level of hardness you’ll experience. Below you will find a map of the Unites States and the varying hard water levels throughout.

So why should you care?

Hard water is bad for your home, specifically your pipes, water heater, appliances, faucets and glassware, and showers. As hard water runs through the pipes of your house, to your appliances or out of your faucets it leaves trace amounts of mineral deposits behind. As water evaporates or dries up, the minerals are left behind. It’s a gradual process but considering how often water is run through your home, scale build-up can show up quickly causing all sorts of problems.

Have you ever turned on your kitchen sink to find the faucet head spraying every which way? Or has your dishwasher stopped washing as well as it did when it was new? Have you started noticing a white film develop on your shower door that just won’t wash off? All of these are indications of a hard water problem.

But these aren’t even the worst of it!

The real damage is the unseen – destruction lying in wait. It develops day by day, layer by layer until it reaches the point of failure. You’ll only know what is happening by the increase in your utility bills. Your water heater, washing machine and dishwasher are not running efficiently anymore and it is due to scale build-up on the heating elements and inside the pipes.

In fact, just 1 milometer of limescale build-up reduces heating element efficiency by 7%. That equates to about $300 per year. And it has the potential to shorten the lifespan of your major appliances by 30%. I don’t know about you, but I’d prefer to protect my major investments – i.e. my house (pipes) and expensive appliances within it.

Health Benefits

Hard water has gotten a bad rap. Although hard water is bad for you home, it is not bad for you, your family or pets to drink or bathe in. In fact, The World Health Organization and the National Research Council, among others, have found that hard water can be an important source of calcium and magnesium.

Want to learn more about how NuvoH2O Salt-Free Water Softening Systems and how they can protect your home and appliances?

Read The Nuvo Difference here.