Hard water is a common nuisance in our part of the world, all the more so because the problems it causes are subtle enough to be endured in many cases. When plumbing systems spring a leak or a clog forms in your drain, you need to get it dealt with immediately. But hard water takes longer to become an active problem, which is why people tend to rely on store-bought solutions rather than call a plumber.
In most cases, you should call a plumbing service to deal with hard water problems. Though quiet, they can have a huge impact on your life, and dealing with hard water properly requires the knowledge and expertise only a professional can bring.
What Kinds of Problems Are Caused by Hard Water?
In and of itself, there’s nothing actively dangerous about hard water. It’s simply water with an excessively high mineral content, usually calcium or magnesium, which the human body can absorb safely. Unfortunately, that means that some municipal water services don’t filter it as well as they could, and the resulting hard water can affect your quality of life in a number of ways:
- Crusty build-up. That white crusty build-up on your faucets and bathroom fixtures is the result of hard water. While you can usually clear up the visible scaling with a cleanser purchased at the local store, scaling inside your pipes can cause considerable damage, and only a professional plumber can treat it right.
- Strange taste. Hard water has an odd metallic taste that can affect the quality of your drinking water, or even food prepared with it. This can be tough to put up with day in and day out.
- Laundry loads. Hard water is especially tough on laundered clothes: causing colors to fade more quickly and wearing down the integrity of the cloth. That means you’ll be forced to buy new clothes sooner than you’d like and your existing clothes won’t look as fresh or bright.
Solving the Problem the Right Way
There are do-it-yourself ways to solve some of these problems, but they’re often half-measures at best. For example, you may use a water softener with your laundry to reduce the impact of hard water, or install a water filtration system on your sink (or perhaps just buy bottled water from the store for drinking). These methods work, but they often waste money and become an ongoing cost to your home. And none of them can deal with the long-term effects of hard water on your plumbing, which may eventually create leaks and corrosion.
A professional plumber, on the other hand, can install a whole-house water softener in your plumbing system, designed to filter out the mineral content for the entire plumbing system. Your water will taste better, your clothes will last longer, and that crusty build-up inside your pipes and out won’t be a problem any more.