When it comes to the breakdown of household appliances, we’ve all heard more than once how “they don’t make them like they used to”. However, your washing machine, dishwasher, and water heater can have much longer lives when they don’t have mineral deposits and buildup clinging to moving parts. Installing a water softener ensures that calcium and magnesium are removed before they can take up residence in your appliances.
Hard Water Buildup Can Clog Plumbing
“Scale buildup” (also called limescale or calcium scale) is a term for the accumulation of minerals, such as calcium and magnesium, which mix with soap and other substances. As they blend, they form a hard layer on fixtures, pipes, and inside mechanical components. This buildup makes your appliances work harder to push water through pipes narrowed by sediment, causing the machinery to wear out faster. By installing a water softener, scale buildup is prevented, keeping your fixtures and pipes free of clogs.
Hard Water Decreases Efficiency of Appliances
Although energy-efficient appliances do come with a higher initial price tag, they can be a wise purchase when you’re saving on your energy bill each month. Unfortunately, if you’re running hard water through those appliances, they’ll lose their efficiency rather quickly and won’t bring you the energy-saving benefits for which you were hoping. Washing machines and dishwashers function closer to their original, factory efficiency for longer when running with soft water. The manufacturers of some higher-efficiency models will even void the warranty if the appliances are used with hard water. By installing a water softener, you’ll keep your machine under warranty and can enjoy its full benefits for many years.
Hard Water Damages Heating Elements in Hot Water Heaters
The buildup from hard water causes this vital appliance to wear out faster and need replacing sooner. Since one of the heating elements is located at the bottom of the tank, it’s especially susceptible to mineral deposits. Sometimes the electric parts become submerged under a layer of chalky sediment a few inches thick. This often leads to frequent repairs, and sometimes the water heater needs to be replaced entirely in only a few years. Surprisingly, tankless water heaters aren’t immune to this either. They can still accumulate hard water deposits inside their heating chamber.
As with traditional models, limescale can shorten a tankless water heater’s life by as much as one third. Additionally, because your water heater has to work a lot harder, buildup from hard water spikes your energy bill. A water softener keeps your water heater free from scale buildup, saving you money and the hassle of emergency repairs.
Hard Water Clogs Washing Machines
The metal filter screen near the fill valve on your washing machine can become clogged by hard water deposits. The buildup restricts the flow of water when you turn on your washer, causing only a small stream to trickle out. To correct this problem, you’ll need to remove the screens and soak them in vinegar to soften the calcification. Then, scrub them with a toothbrush to remove deposits. While this isn’t a complicated fix, if you install a water softener, you won’t have to perform this periodic maintenance. Water softeners keep your water pure and filter screens clean.
Hard Water Ruins Toilets
While the toilet may seem too simple a fixture to be damaged by hard water, a significant hard water problem can make a commode unusable in only a couple of years. There are small holes under the rim from which water flows when you flush. These holes can gradually become clogged by sediment, which means less and less water is released until the toilet will no longer flush properly, if at all. A water softener prevents this problem.
To keep your household appliances flowing freely for years to come, contact the experts at Advanced Water Softening. We can answer any hard water-related questions and recommend the best water softener for your home. Give us a call today.