Hard water is when the water in your home has high amounts of minerals, such as magnesium and calcium, dissolved in it. It is typically not bad for your health, but it can cause issues with your pipes and drains.
Signs of hard water
A sign that your water has too many minerals in it is residue left over after cleaning. This can include laundry coming out dingy, and even uncomfortable to wear, chalky spots on dishes and glasses, and a film covering your bathtub and shower. Another sign is stained porcelain, such as sinks and bathtubs.
A second sign to watch out for is decreased water pressure in showers and sinks. This is due to the minerals clinging to the sides of the pipes and constricting the amount of water that is able to leave.
Problems hard water can pose for drains
As stated before, the minerals can cling to the sides of pipes and fixtures. When it comes to your drains, this mains slow water removal for the same reasons the water is not coming out as fast from the faucet. This should be very closely monitored because this can lead to a clog depending on what else goes down the drain. Showers, for example, are at risk due to the amount of hair that cling to the pipes as well.
A bigger potential issue, however, is when these minerals combine with the soap that is being washed down the drain. The two can form a sort of curd that can leave a residue behind it as it washes down the drain. Not to mention, this can cause some annoyances if you’re bathing with hard water. The film left behind the curd can just contribute to the problem that the hard water is already causing on its own and make a clog more likely.
Some ways to get around the calcium and magnesium in your water are water filters, and water softeners that can be installed in your plumbing system to remove these minerals before they can add to the damage they have already done. If your drain is clogged as a result of hard water, call in a professional to help remove the residue from the walls of the pipe.