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What is Hard Water and Why Does it Matter?

If you’ve ever noticed white or yellow stains on your dishes or fixtures, you may be dealing with hard water. But what exactly is hard water, and why does it matter? Keep reading to get the answer to those questions and more.



What is Hard Water?

Hard water is water that has a high concentration of minerals, primarily calcium, and magnesium. These minerals are naturally occurring, and as water flows through soil and rocks, it picks up these minerals. While hard water is safe to drink, it can cause a variety of issues in your home.


Why Does it Matter?

Stains and Buildup

One of the most noticeable effects of hard water is the buildup of minerals on your fixtures, such as showerheads, faucets, and pipes. Over time, this buildup can cause stains and reduce the water flow in your pipes.

Poor Appliance Performance

Hard water can also impact the performance of your appliances. The minerals in the water can build up in appliances like dishwashers and washing machines, reducing their efficiency and lifespan. Hard water can also cause your clothes to feel stiff and scratchy after washing.

Soap Scum

When hard water mixes with soap, it can create a film called soap scum. Soap scum can be challenging to remove and leave your skin feeling dry and itchy.

Higher Energy Bills

Hard water can also lead to higher energy bills. The buildup of minerals in your water heater can reduce its efficiency, causing it to work harder and use more energy to heat the water.


How to Test for Hard Water

If you’re unsure whether you have hard water, you can test it using a test strip or a water hardness test kit. These tests will measure the concentration of minerals in your water and give you an idea of the level of hardness. Or, if you suspect that your home has hard water, you can enlist the help of a professional plumber to test your water for you.


How to Treat Hard Water

There are several ways to treat hard water, including:

Water softeners: Water softeners are the most common solution for hard water. They use a process called ion exchange to remove the minerals from the water, making it softer and easier to use.

Reverse osmosis: Reverse osmosis is another option for treating hard water. It uses a semipermeable membrane to remove minerals and other impurities from the water.

Chemical treatments: Chemical treatments, such as water conditioners, can also be used to treat hard water. These treatments use chemicals to neutralize the minerals in the water, preventing them from causing buildup and other issues.


Test Your Water Today

Hard water may not be harmful to your health, but it can cause a variety of issues in your home. From stains and buildup to poor appliance performance and higher energy bills, hard water can be a headache to deal with. That’s why it’s always a good idea to have a professional plumber, such as Michael Runk Plumbing and Heating, test your water if you suspect that your property has hard water. Michael Runk Plumbing and Heating will take the time to test your water, determine the cause of your hard water problem, and fix the root cause of your hard water problem.


Contact us today to schedule an appointment. 

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Frederick County: Frederick (21701, 20702, 21703, 21709), New Market (21774) , Mount Airy (21771), Urbana (21704), Ijamsville (21754), Walkersville (21793), Libertytown (21762), Damascus (20872), and more.

Howard County: Clarksville (21029), Columbia (21044), Cooksville (21723), Dorsey (21075), Elkridge (21075), Ellicott City (21043), Fulton (20759), Glenelg (21737), Glenwood (21738), Granite (21163), Hanover (21076), Highland (20777), Jessup (20794), Lisbon (21765), Marriottsville (21104), North Laurel (20723), West Friendship (21794), Woodbine (21797), Woodstock (21163), and more.

Montgomery County: Olney (20832), Damascus (20872), Laytonsville (20882), Silver Spring (20910), Clarksburg (20871), Gaithersburg (20878), Germantown (20876), Bethesda (20816), Chevy Chase (20815), and more.

Baltimore County: Arbutus (21227), Catonsville (21228, 21250), Cockeysville (21030, 21031, 21065), Dundalk (21222), Edgemere (21219), Essex (21221), Garrison (21055), Lansdowne (21227), Lochearn (21207), Lutherville (21093), Middle River (21220), Milford Mill (21244), Overlea (21236), Owings Mills (21117), Parkville (21234), Park Heights (21215), Pikesville (21208), Randallstown (21133), Reisterstown (21136), Rosedale (21237), Timonium (21093), Towson (21204), White Marsh (21162), Woodlawn (21207), and more.

Carroll County: Eldersburg (21784), Finksburg (21048), Hampstead (21074), Manchester (21102), Marriottsville (21104), Taneytown (21787), Union Bridge (21791), Westminster (21157, 21158), Mount Airy (21771), New Windsor (21776), Sykesville (21784), Woodbine (21797), Taneytown (21787), and more.

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