Water Hardness Testing Guide

Mar 13 2017

Hard water is the most common water treatment issue in homes. It exists when high levels of minerals such as calcium and magnesium from the ground are absorbed into water before it reaches your home. Since hard water comes from minerals in the ground, the hardness of water varies from city to city. Also, municipal water uses vary so it may be beneficial to look into your specific area for water hardness levels. Hard water doesn’t pose any health concern but it can seriously damage your water heater and plumbing.

Signs You Have Hard Water

  • Presence of white spots or powder on dishes or a film on glassware
  • Hard water scale build up on your bathtub or shower
  • White scale buildup on your sink faucet tap
  • Difficult to lather soap and shampoo
  • Hair and skin feels dry and rough

water sink

A Quick DIY Way to Test Your Water’s Hardness

  1. Fill up a clear 16 oz plastic bottle with about half a cup of water (1/4 of the way)
  2. Add 10 drops of liquid dish soap to the water
  3. Tightly screw on the cap
  4. Quickly shake the water bottle for about 30 seconds

If the soapy solution foams up quickly with suds, you most likely do not have a hard water problem. If the soapy solution does not foam up but instead forms a milky film in the water, then you most likely have a hard water problem.

If you think hard water may be present in your home, it is important to invest in a new water softener in order to eliminate the high mineral content. A water softener will not only eliminate the scale buildup, but it also poses several other advantages as well:

  • Softer clothing from your washing machine
  • Softer, less dry skin
  • Slower rate of pipe corrosion
  • More efficient and longer lasting appliances
  • Less soap and detergent wasted

There are many different types and brands of water softening appliances to choose from to meet your specific wants and budget.

Still not sure if you have hard or soft water? Contact a water treatment specialist for a home water evaluation.