Have you recently noticed any white spots on the clothes? Has your towel turned stiff, or your skin feels a little itchy? If all the answer is yes, then there is a high chance that there is a hard water supply to your house. You must know the destructive effects that hard water can have on your life. It can damage expensive home appliances and harm your body also. The experts always advise using soft water for washing clothes running the household appliances, and most significantly for drinking purposes. If by any means there is no way for soft water supply to your home, then you have to convert the hard water into the soft one.
Hard water contains high minerals like magnesium and calcium that you can remove by treating the water in numerous ways. The minerals that are present in the hard water leave behind deposits that will stain the glass, clog the drains, and leave residues on the skin and hair. Now, if you are wondering about how to convert the hard water into soft one, then you are on the correct platform. In this write-up, we will be addressing various ways for this process.
The necessity of converting Hard water into Soft
Hard water is neither beneficial for your appliances nor your body. For example, the mineral reduces the home appliances lifespan like geysers, dishwashers, and washing machines. The remaining hard water on the skin and scalp will lead to dandruff and itchiness. To stop these toxic effects it is vital to soften the hard water.
Ways to Know If you Have Hard Water Supply
Many states in the USA have moderate to hard water supply in their home. These states include California, Florida, and Utah. When the water enters the ground, it runs through the rock and mineral enriched soil. Magnesium and calcium carbonates get dissolved in the water, which results in hardness. When this water moves through the pipes and enters our home, minerals present in them will create limescale and another build-up. Below are some of the indications that indicate that you have a hard water supply to your home.
Reduction in the water flow
Due to the mineral build-up formation in the pipes and spout, you might have noticed a severe water flow reduction.
Dry Skin and Hair
The minerals present in the hard water cause the hair to become difficult and dry to style. The skin also results in this drying condition. You might be seeing deposits of minerals while and after you are having a shower on the skin.
Higher Electricity bills
Since the home appliances have to operate harder due to limescale deposits, your electricity bills are higher.
Soap will be less efficient
Minerals affect the shampoo and soap quite significantly, reducing the lather and suds formation. It will create a soap scum that is difficult to wash off. The laundry could lose colour and you cannot clean it effectively, due to the minerals present in them. It also prevents the detergent and the water in the foam formation.
Testing your Water
You can rapidly test your water supply to check if it is hard or not. Fill a bottle with water to the half and add three tablespoons of dish wash soap. Shake the mixture well and examine the foam well. If it dissolves rapidly, then you have a supply of hard water to your home.
Ways to Make the Hard Water Soft
Before proceeding onto the further segment, we would like to know do you have any idea how hard the water is? Also, are you sure that hardness is present in the water supply? If you do not have answers to both of these questions, you should conduct the hard water test first. Based on its results, you can select any of the following ways for converting hard water soft. Usually, hard water is of two types. One is temporary hard water, which you can convert through any of the below methods, and another one is permanent, which you cannot convert. Well, let us now check out what are the processes for the conversion.
Water Softening through the Ion Exchanging
It is one of the surest ways of converting hard water into a soft one. The ion exchanging water softener exchanges minerals like magnesium and calcium with the sodium minerals. Magnesium and calcium are ionic, and you can use them in removing the water hardness. An exchange water softening machine passes the water with the minerals over the resin beads that are man-made. These negatively charged resin beads get attracted to the positively charged minerals. When the minerals that are present come in contact with the resin beads, it replaces the minerals with sodium ions. In this way, this process replaces the water hardness.
Boiling (Efficient for Eliminating the Temporary Hardness)
You can eliminate the temporary hardness from the water through boiling. For this process, you have to boil the hard water for quite some time and then cool it for hours. The minerals that are already in the water will get sedimented in the container bottom. You can then pour the vessel water into a clean container that will leave the minerals in the other vessel.
Implementing Vinegar or Baking Soda
Baking soda includes alkaline properties, while vinegar has acidic characteristics. You can implement either of these two for the conversion of hard into soft water. Both of them can efficiently remove the scaly build-up, primarily caused due to the presence of minerals in the water. We will advise you to implement distilled white vinegar in this process. Add three tablespoon vinegar into 3 cups of water for removing the temporary hardness in the water.
The process which you want to imply for converting the hard water into a soft one also depends upon the water quantity. For instance, you cannot implement the boiling method for removing the water hardness if you are interested in using it in the washing machines. It is impossible to execute practically, as it involves an enormous amount of water. Thus the process depends on the purpose for which the user will be utilizing it.
So based on the purpose you can use any of the following methods for softening the water.
Softening of the Hard water in the Kitchen
A hard water supply in the kitchen might destroy all the vessels. If you are using the water for preparing the food, then it can affect the body also. The water used in the kitchen is comparatively less, and you can convert the hard water into soft through the two ways. Well, one of them is boiling, which we have already discussed above, and another one is:
installation of hard water softening machine in the kitchen tap
The most feasible solution for hard water conversion into a soft one is to attach a permanent softening machine in the kitchen tap that will get rid of all the minerals before being used. However, you will not get filtered water through the softener. If you require portable water directly from the tap, you will have to use a secondary filter for that purpose into the tap.
Softening of Hard Water in washing clothes
Clothes always get damaged due to the implementation of hard water. The minerals leave a white spot on the clothes. Hard water also decreases the detergent efficiency and converts the soft cloth stiff. There is a total of 4 ways through which you can soften the hard water for the laundry, which are:
Implementing Water Conditioning Liquid
A water conditioning liquid captures all the minerals of the hard water. The liquid acts like a catalyst in converting hard to soft water. Always select a non-precipitating water conditioning liquid. The precipitating ones always leave white precipitates on the clothes. Thus if you have a hard water supply, always add a few drops of this liquid to make your clothes soft and comfortable as it was before washing.
Installing Hard Water Softener
You install a hard water softener in the washing machine water inlet. The softener will convert the hard water into soft one before the water into the washing machine. It will also minimize the cost of implementing water conditioning liquid every time before doing the laundry.
Hard water might leave white spots on the washed clothes. For removing those stains, you can implement vinegar. Apply a little dilute vinegar on the spot and scrub the cloth. You should use the vinegar amount according to the type of scale present in the clothes.
Implementing Baking Soda
The user can feasibly use baking soda to remove the hardness of the water. It will reduce the water hardness level temporarily. In a bucket full of hard water, add half a cup of baking soda. The user can adjust the dosage according to their necessities.
Use of the Hard Water in Bathroom
The user will always feel irritating and itchy skin after having a bath with hard water due to the presence of minerals in it. If you use hard water for shampooing your precious hair, then the minerals will also get stuck to your hair, resulting in dandruff. Boiling the water every time before bathe is not a permanent solution. You can cover your hair by using a shower cap, but what about the skin. The for the bathing purpose, you can convert hard water through
Use of Hard water softening machine in the faucet of bathroom or kitchen
The user can attach a softening machine for converting the hardness of water into a soft one in the bathroom or kitchen valve. It will make the necessary conversion and supply the resultant water perfect for bathing purposes. Most of these machines operate on the principle of ion exchanging mechanism.
Softening of the Hard Water for the Drinking Purposes
For laundry or bathing, water conditioning liquid or hard water softening machine will do the needful. However, for drinking it, a water softening treatment will never be successful. You will require an extra step. It is because of all the previous methods that will remove the water hardness but cannot filter out the dirt and the impurities. For making the water portable, you will require an extra water purifier or filter.
Installation of a RO purifier
If there is a supply of hard water in your home, you will need to install a RO purifier for converting it into a drinkable and softer version. It will not only do the conversion but also terminates all the water impurities making it fresh and pure.
At the end of this article, you know various ways of converting hard water into a soft one. Thus you can imply any one of the above processes and make the conversion yourself. You can choose any of the above-listed processes depending on your necessities. But first, you should test if the water is hard or not. If you are dealing with average hard water, then installing a RO water purifier will do the needful.
After completing this graduation in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from Manipal University in 2013, Ankit began rummaging the current Indian market of technology and science. At apolloedoc, Ankit’s job profile consists of cumulating, researching, testing, and verifying products related to tech.
He has a knack for details and catches even the tiniest advantages and flaws that can make or break the product. Since last year, he has been writing for apolloedoc and has been our knight in shining armour when reviewing home appliances.
Ankit’s favourite pastimes consist of jamming onto his guitar with a couple of friends and constantly updating and learning new things! He is also a big-time pet lover and has a cute little pug named Oreo back in Chandigarh. He has bagged many achievements in his college by participating in multiple extracurricular activities.
Writing is something that comes to Ankit naturally. He has his own blog where he posts about coding languages and even provides coaching to students from 12th grade to 2nd year of college. At apolloedoc, Ankit beautifully showcases his knack for the written word by lucidly explaining information in an unbiased way.