How hard is my water and should I use a water softner?

Dissolved minerals make water hard; as the amount of minerals in the water increases, the water becomes harder. Two common minerals found dissolved in drinking water are calcium carbonate and magnesium carbonate. There is usually much more of calcium carbonate than magnesium carbonate present in water; therefore, water hardness is reported as the amount of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) dissolved in water.

Water softening is the process of removing the minerals from the water and is commonly accomplished by either reverse osmosis filtration or ion exchange. Reverse osmosis filtration units can handle only small volumes of water and is usually performed at a single point of use, such as the kitchen sink. Ion exchange units can handle large volumes of water and are usually installed on the incoming water supply line to a property. Ion exchange systems exchange sodium ions for the calcium and magnesium ions in the water. For more information, please call 708-503-8000.

Show All Answers

1. Where does my water come from?
2. Why does my water sometimes smell or taste like chlorine?
3. What do you test for in the water?
4. How can I have my water tested?
5. Do water filters work and should I use one?
6. How hard is my water and should I use a water softner?
7. Do I have radon in the water?
8. Why does my water get milky white?
9. Why are there water restrictions?
10. Who should I contact for billing questions?
11. Who should I contact regarding my water pipes or water meter?