How Does Hard Water Compare to Soft Water?

When it comes to your home, you want the finest amenities and conveniences available within your budget. Something widely overlooked but highly beneficial and affordable regardless of income? Soft water. All homes and businesses should be equipped with some form of hard water abatement system, as the options are wide-ranging, such as water conditioners, reverse osmosis systems, whole-house water filtration systems, well water iron filtration systems, and more. If you are noticing problems with your water bill, energy bill, hair, skin, laundry, dishes, or water-based meals and drinks, you might have a hard water issue on your hands.

Continue reading to learn how soft water compares to hard water for a better understanding of just how important water purification and conditioning is for a home or commercial building.

Indianapolis Water Softening Service and Repair 317-784-1870
Indianapolis Water Softening Service and Repair 317-784-1870

Explanation of Hard Water

Hard water is water that contains high traces of mineral salts. These minerals mostly consist of magnesium, iron, calcium, and other bicarbonates and sulfates. Water is naturally soft when it falls to the earth in the form of rain. Once rainwater has passed through the soil, bedrock, sand, and other layers of earth, it collects an abundance of hard minerals and ions. This changes the composition of the water and makes it higher in mineral salts. Such dissolved mineral ions accumulate over time in the form of scale, which is a thin white film that has several negative effects on plumbing fixtures, pipes, and appliances, as well as, hair, skin, nails, laundry, and dishware.

We measure this mineral capacity in grains per gallon, and the level of hardness on a scale from 1 to 10. Although hard water is generally measured in grains per gallon, it can also be read in parts per million (ppm) or milligrams per liter (mg/L) of calcium carbonate. The more grains, the harder the water, which means the degree of “hardness” varies on a spectrum. Water can be anywhere between marginally hard to very hard. It depends on where you live, how you obtain your water, regional soil conditions, crops, farming, and more.

Explanation of Soft Water

Soft water is the opposite of hard water because it is free of hard mineral salts. Rainwater is naturally soft. It only becomes hard when as it accumulates mineral salts as it passes through rock, chalk, and limestone in the ground. Neighborhoods that have hard water are probably located on top of a large bed if limestone; or their water supply facility is located near high mineral areas. This is why certain regions have softer water than others. It all depends on what’s beneath the ground, and how the water is treated at the local water plant.

Soft Water – 0 to 60 mg/L
Moderately hard Water – 61 to 120 mg/L
Hard Water – 121 to 180 mg/L
Very Hard Water –  Over 180 mg/L

Choose a Water Softener for Instant Gratification

In order to lessen the hardness of water, you must implement a water softening system. The most popular approach is to install a water softener, also known as a water conditioner. Water softeners use ion-exchange technology to eliminate hard minerals in water. The water softener conditions the water and then stores it in a tank for on demand use, whether that be your shower or kitchen sink faucet! You can also combine a water softener system with another form of water purification to further enhance the taste and quality of your water, such as whole house water filters, water purifiers, and reverse osmosis. See our blogs, “How to Choose a Residential Water Softener Based on Occupancy” and “FAQS About Water Softeners and Hard Water” to learn what you need to know about water softening.

Indianapolis Water Softener Repair and Installation Services

Call Weilhammer Plumbing Company at 317-784-1870 when you need a reliable water softener installation or water softener repair in Indianapolis, Indiana and its surrounding locations. Our licensed master plumbers specialize in water softeners, and are happy to answer your questions and provide advice free of charge! We offer a wide range of water softening and plumbing services for both commercial and residential properties, including water softener sales, repair, installation, replacement, and more. Call 317-784-1870 to request a free estimate, today!

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