The Difference Between Hard and Soft Water

Water is a very common compound, making up 60% of our bodies and 71% of the Earth’s surface. Aside from being common, water also varies in properties. Classifying water by its hardness, we have hard water and soft water. Here in Hills District, numerous plumbing problems have been caused by either one of these types of waters. Having different properties, hard and soft water can damage your plumbing system in different ways.

How are they different?

Water contains different concentrations of minerals. Soft water typically contains only sodium. On the other hand, hard water is a result of water picking up some dissolved minerals as it passes through the underground pipes. This leads to higher concentrations of calcium and magnesium.

The effects of soft water

Soft water, with its low pH level, is very corrosive. Corrosion is a big problem and has many undesirable effects in your plumbing. Aside from causing physical failure of your pipes, corrosion leads to water leaks, as well as a change in colour, taste, and odour of your water.

Due to the fact that soft water lacks minerals, it will pick up minerals such as copper and lead as it passes through your pipes that have not been treated to block this leaching. You can reach out to your local plumbers in Hills District to help you with a solution to prevent future corrosion.

The effects of hard water

Hard water is the preferred drinking water. With a high concentration of calcium and magnesium, it serves as a dietary supplement of these minerals. However, hard water is not the most friendly toward your household plumbing. The high concentration of minerals in hard water can lead to mineral build-up known as scale. Scale can be found on your household appliances, including water heaters, boilers, and the surface of faucets, affecting their efficiency. The build-up of minerals in your pipes can shrink the interior diameter, resulting in lower water pressure. Other than potential clogging, scale can also eat through your pipes, leaving small holes and causing water leaks.

Hard water can be dealt with using a water softener. Water softeners contain negatively charged polystyrene beads. As the hard water passes through the tank, the positively charged calcium and magnesium will cling to the polystyrene beads and sodium ions are released into the water. You now have softened water pumped through your faucets. Unlike naturally soft water, hard water that has been treated with a water softener will not have low pH levels. Hence, you will not be increasing the risk of corrosion by using a water softener.


It is important for you to know the type of water you have in your area so that you can determine the best way to maintain your pipes. Professional plumbers will be able to examine the problems you have in your plumbing system, identify the cause, and provide you with the best solution. You can contact local Hills District plumbers for quality services.

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