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[WHY SOFTEN WATER]
Water hardness is one of the
water problems facing homeowners today.
Hard water keeps soaps
and detergents from getting laundry and dishes really clean, causing homeowners
spend more on extra soap and cleaning products. It also leaves telltale
spots on glasses, shower doors and chrome fixtures causing homeowners to spend
extra time on cleaning. Hard water scale can clog pipes and plumbing fixtures,
premature failure of washing machines, hot water heaters and dishwashers.
Hard water also dries skin, dulls hair and makes shaving difficult.
is caused by calcium or magnesium dissolved in water.
When water falls to the
as rain it is virtually free of hardness minerals and is naturally soft.
In the old days people would store this naturally soft rainwater in barrels
and use it to do laundry. Now with the advent of deep-water wells the
rainwater has to work its way down through earthly minerals to reach the aquifer
from which it is drawn. On its way down, water, the universal solvent, comes
contact with calcium and magnesium from rocks, usually limestone, gypsum
and dolomite and becomes saturated with these minerals and changes from
soft to hard water.
Why is it called Hard Water?
The term "hard
water" originally came about because such water was "hard"
for soaps to really get things clean.The calcium in hard water retards
the cleaning action of soaps. The homeowner will use up to twice as much
soap or detergents and use hotter water when cleaning with hard water
than with soft water.
Hard water also combines
with soaps to form a curd known as "soap scum". This scum can
remain as a residue on "cleaned" laundry. It can also be found
as a white ring on tubs, tile and toilets.
Hardened soap scum actually
coats the fibers of the washed fabrics making them wear down as they rub
against the hardened coating. Thus fabrics washed in hard water do wear
out faster. Colors fade and whites darken faster in hard water wash.
hard water is heated the calcium comes out of solution and forms "hard
This scale builds up in household appliances and shortens their life. Electric
hot water heaters do not last long or operate efficiently as scale builds
up on their elements and in their tanks. Washing machines and dishwashers
also have shortened lives.
This scale is evident
as white spots on cleaned glasses, shower doors, coffeepots and the chrome
surfaces of faucets and other fixtures.
Plumbing pipes, fixtures,
and shower heads over time will become clogged with hard water scale.
The pipes become restricted and flow rates drop dramatically. Faucets
repairs more often due to scale clogging the inner workings.
also hampers good grooming.
The hardness minerals tend to dry the skin.
soaps do not work efficiently in hard water leaving hair dull and
dry. The undissolved
soaps and shampoos actually leave a residue film on skin and hair.
The film combines with shampoo or soap, trapping dirt and bacteria
chapping, itching, flaking skin and clogged pores. If you wash
in hard water you are not truly getting clean.
The remedy for
all these hard water problems is the installation of a water