What Makes Hard & Soft Water?


The difference between hard and soft water comes down to the number of minerals found within it. Hard water has a high mineral concentration, while soft water has low mineral content.

The more minerals present in the water, the harder it is on your appliances and plumbing fixtures. This is because they tend to build upscale deposits over time.

These can lead to clogged pipes or costly repairs for homeowners with well systems that are not adequately maintained. So let’s take a closer look at hard and soft water.

The Two Types Of Water

Hard water has high amounts of calcium and magnesium.

Soft water is created when calcium and magnesium are reduced to deficient levels. This is often done through a water softener which replaces the minerals with sodium.

The Difference

The considerable difference between hard and soft water is their impact on your home’s plumbing system.

When hard water is heated, the minerals separate from the solution and cause the formation of scales that can clog pipes and corrode fixtures and appliances.

Sodium ions do not form scale-like calcium, and magnesium ions do. Therefore, reducing the mineral content to low levels reduces the chances of scale forming in your plumbing system.

If you are experiencing problems with your home’s plumbing system, it is important to determine the type of water you have. Hard water can be treated with a water softener. Call a plumber if you are experiencing problems with your home’s plumbing system.

If you’re still unsure what kind of water you have, your local water authority can help. They will test your water and let you know what type of water you have and the necessary treatment.

Why Should I Know About The Type Of Water?

There are several reasons why you might want to know whether you have hard or soft water.

If you have hard water, you’ll need to use more detergent than you would with soft water. In addition, the residues left on your dishes by hard water may be unappealing. You’ll also need to use more soap or shampoo if you have hard water because it won’t lather up as well.

If you have very hard water, your pipes could be clogged with scale after a few months.

On the other hand, soft water is not great for soap scum and may not get your dishes as clean as hard water. It can also cause some appliances, like dishwashers and coffee makers, to wear out more quickly.

Final Thoughts

You might be wondering if you need to worry about your water. The answer is that it depends on what kind of water you have.

If the only thing stopping you from enjoying a nice hot bath or shower is hard or soft water stains in your tub, then get your water tested!

You can use a simple at-home kit or send it to a testing lab for analysis to test your water. Once you know what kind of water you have, call a plumber to help manage your water hardness.