Hard water is a common problem among homeowners in Shreveport, Louisiana, but you may not recognize the signs that you have this issue at your home. Soft water can also cause issues. Here’s how to determine whether you have hard water or soft water and what to do about either condition.
Hard Water Signs
Determining whether water is hard, soft, or somewhere in between is done by measuring the number of grams of calcium that are present in each gallon. Hard water will have a rating of 7 GPG (grams per gallon), while water with a rating of 3.5 GPG or less is considered soft. If your water is hard, you could notice that clothing washed in your washing machine looks dingy or that dishes cleaned in the dishwasher have spots.
Since hard water contains more calcium, magnesium, and other minerals, it can also leave deposits behind in bathtubs, showers, water heaters, and washing machines, resulting in the need to replace these units more frequently. Deposits can also be left behind in pipes, increasing the risk of clogged drains and plumbing damage. It’s difficult to get soap to lather properly when the water you’re using is hard.
Soft Water Signs
When your water is too soft, it doesn’t contain enough calcium. Rather, it contains sodium ions that make it difficult to use for cleaning and food preparation. Additionally, soft water can cause issues for people on low-sodium diets who drink it. You may notice that using soap produces a lot of lather since soft water doesn’t inhibit the functionality of cleansers.
Problems and Solutions
Since both hard and soft water can cause issues, it’s important to look into stabilizing the level of your water. You can use a water softener to reduce the problems associated with hard water. It’s not quite as simple to harden soft water, but a reverse osmosis system can remove some of the extra sodium.
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