WHAT IS HARD WATER?
Water is considered “hard” when your Concord water contains higher levels of dissolved calcium and magnesium. Hard water makes cleaning clothes more difficult, creates streaking on dishes and glasses, and makes cleaning your hair and skin well a challenge. Hard water can also damage your home’s piping distribution system if not corrected. Hard water makes it hard to clean. There are high efficiency filtration solutions that will condition your hard water by removing these hard water minerals through the proven ion exchange water softening process. Based on the Annual Water Quality Report for the town of Concord, MA (http://www.concordnet.org), hardness levels vary but may reach into the moderately hard level. Iron was tested at levels that exceed the level that would evidence itself with orange or rusty colored staining on fixtures. Chlorine is also used as a disinfectant in the water which may cause a chlorine smell in the water (which can be removed with a carbon based filtration system).
While symptoms of water quality issues such as bad odors & taste, staining of laundry, bathroom fixtures, etc. are indicators of problems, the preferred starting point is to get a water test to identify the minerals or contaminants in the water and at what quantity they exist. This will lead to an effective system recommendation and route to providing your home with excellent water quality. While certain minerals & contaminants can be tested on-site (iron, hardness, pH, total dissolved solids), health threat items like radon in water, arsenic in water, nitrates and others should be properly sampled and brought to a certified laboratory for testing that requires specialized equipment.
WATER SOFTENER SYSTEMS
A water softener is a type of whole house water filtration system that is designed for removing hard water minerals (magnesium & calcium) as well as dissolved iron and manganese from the water. For water with high levels of iron or manganese (“the stainers”), an “up-flow” water softener is recommended to prevent mineral build-up in the bottom of the water softener. Also, high efficiency water softeners that are more efficient with both water and salt usage are preferred.
In addition to the above systems described, there are many other types of systems to remove bad tastes & odors, sediment and many other objectionable minerals and contaminants in the water. Starting with a water test will lead to the right approach. For more information on bad odors & taste in your water, see the link at http://bad-odor-taste-water/.