hard water build up on a faucet

Impact of Hard Water on Your Plumbing

Hard water is a common problem for people. Hard water has a lot more minerals in the water than soft or moderate water. The most common minerals in hard water are calcium and magnesium.  

Hard Water doesn’t have any major health risk to you but it does have an impact on your plumbing. Besides making your dishes have white spots, and make your soap not work as effectively due to mineral build up. It can also attach to your faucet, inside your pipes and affect your appliances that use water. 

Hard vs Soft Water

Water’s softness or hardness is measured using grains per gallon or GPG. One grain is equal to 0.003 ounces of calcium dissolved in one gallon of water.

0-3 GPG is considered soft 

3.5-7 GPG is considered moderate or ideal

>7.5 GPG is considered hard 

To find out if you have hard water, you can ask your local water utility for a report or buy a water testing kit. 

The only way to truly correct hardness in water is to get a water softener installed in your home. It helps filter out the minerals, creating the softer water. 

How Hard Water Impacts Plumbing

hard water build up on faucet

There are many ways hard water affects the plumbing in your home besides creating unsightly build up on your faucets or clouding up your dishes. 

hard water build up

While you may think the deposits just collect on the outside of your faucet, it does not. It builds up in your pipes. The build up in pipes might not cause a clog, it will slow down water pressure and other materials may get caught on the build up. 


pipe corrosion

The common hard water minerals, calcium and magnesium, can destroy certain types of metal. The minerals will slowly break down the pipe over time, which causes leaking, breakage and occasionally discolored water. 

Broken Pipes and Leaks 

signs of a leak

Corrosion can cause this, but so can the lack of free flowing water. The minerals build up in the pipe, causing water pressure to diminish in some spots and build in others. The pressure can build up and cause connections in the pipes to fail. 

Water Quality 

water quality

While it is plenty safe to still use and drink, hard water quality isn’t the best. The magnesium and calcium make soap not as effective. Dishwashers and washing machines may have a harder time washing clothes and dishes. Which means they will have to work harder to get your clothes just as clean. 

Wear and Tear 


Hard water build up doesn’t just affect pipes, it can affect your dishwasher, washing machine and other appliances that need water. It can build up in those lines, and cause water to sit in the appliance. This means corrosion, mold or other damaging things may happen. 

Water Heater

water heater

Hard water is a lot harder to heat than soft or moderate water.  This means the water heater has to work harder, and it will take longer for the same results. The water heater may not last as long as normal. 

Final Thoughts 

Hard water can mean that your appliances don’t last as long or work as well. It may mean that your dishes are cloudy or your clothes aren’t as soft out of the dryer. 1-Tom-Plumber can install a water softener to mitigate the problem.

Call 1-Tom-Plumber

Don’t hesitate to contact or call us at 1-Tom-Plumber (1-866-758-6237) if you are having issues with hard water. We will immediately handle any emergency plumbingdrain cleaning and drain clearing, and water damage problem, including excavation of underground water lines and sewer main lines.

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