Are you a homeowner in Georgia or South Carolina, suffering from dry skin and hair? Perhaps you’ve noticed limescale deposits inside your appliances and shower?
You may find yourself scrubbing away at scale build-up and moisturizing your skin and hair. Have you considered a water softener system? The hard water vs soft water debate has many facets and some that might be surprising.
The Water Quality Research Foundation (WQRF) conducted a softened water benefits study with an interesting finding. Using a water softener system for gas storage and instantaneous water heaters results in constant efficiency for its life cycle. Scale forming compounds present in hard water cause a noticeable decrease in efficiency over time and higher energy use.
If you want to save money and remove the harsh effects of hard water from your house, you should think about installing a water softener system.
Here, we’ll compare hard vs soft water and explore the benefits of a soft water filtration system. Read on!
The water we have in our home starts soft when it falls as pure rain. As it hits the ground and is absorbed, it starts its journey through rock formations, such as limestone. Since water is a solvent, minerals from these rocks dissolve on contact.
Many people like the taste of water that has been naturally “hardened” with minerals. About 85% of U.S. water is classified as hard, although the hardness-level differs depending on your location.
Calcium and magnesium are often the main nutrients in the water, along with iron. These minerals are good for our health, although they aren’t so good for household plumbing.
A hard chalky deposit, known as limescale, often builds up inside boilers and pipes, especially those used for hot water. The places where hard water evaporates will also often contain limescale deposits. The build-up inside pipes, in particular, reduces liquid flow and thermal conduction, so they become inefficient.
Other household appliances that utilize a water tank may become less efficient or damaged over time also. These include dishwashers and washing machines.
The calcium within hard water forms soap scum when it’s used with soap. You might notice spots or thin films forming on showers, baths, sinks, and drain pipes, wherever water has been in regular contact.
Hard water is also known to dry out hair, often making it brittle. Skin can dry out too, which is bad news if you have a skin disorder like eczema.
Soft water doesn’t contain all the minerals that cause limescale to form and damage appliances. Soft water is also milder on clothes, skin, and hair, which is ideal if you have sensitive skin.
Soap is more effective when using soft water, so washer cycles and showers will take less time and use less energy. You’ll also save money on your water bill. The low humidity of the winter is less-damaging when your skin and hair haven’t dried-out by hard water.
Cleaning sinks, toilets, and baths will take less time without having to worry about mineral deposits.
Although many prefer the taste of water that is rich in minerals, there are concerns in many areas about chemical leaks and other water quality concerns. Some homeowners may choose to get their water quality tested for contaminants as a precaution.
If you prefer the taste of soft water and don’t have a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, you might consider taking a multivitamin supplement. This helps to replace the nutrients that may be missing in soft water.
Which type of water do you have? Here are the hard water indicators:
So which type of water wins in the hard water vs soft water debate? Perhaps both. Some homeowners want soft water for their appliances and shower but wish to keep their drinking water hard.
Hard water can also be rough on clothes, wearing them out before their time and leaving them rough and stiff. Limescale build-up in the pumps and nozzles of appliances can cause them to work so hard that their motors eventually burn out.
There are concerns that soft water has an increased chance of leaching lead from older water pipes. If you have an older home (pre-1975) and want to soften your water, consider having a plumber inspect and treat your pipes to prevent this first.
How do you go about turning hard water into soft water?
A water softener system can be installed in the home, that will run the hard water through a mineral tank. Inside the tank, there is a bed of plastic or resin beads that possess a negative electrical charge.
Particles within the water that have a positive charge are attracted to the beads. Minerals like calcium and magnesium are left behind on the beads, and the water is softened as a result. The system can clear the beads during a process known as a regeneration cycle.
Although the beads don’t need replacing, there is a brine tank that requires periodic refilling with water softener salt. Most water softener systems introduce a higher-level of sodium into the water than is found in hard water.
If you have cardiovascular health concerns, you can look at a potassium pellet based system instead. Other systems include ones that utilize magnets or citric acid to demineralize hard water.
We’ve compared hard water vs soft water and shown you the many benefits of a softening system. Don’t let harsh minerals wear out your appliances or dry out your skin and hair!
If you’re considering a water softener system, we can help you. We offer the best quality plumbing services in Augusta, GA, and Aiken, SC. Our service promises plumbing professionalism and expertise, done the way it should be.
Contact us today to schedule service.