How Do I Know If I Have Hard Water?

Have you ever complained about those disgusting thick deposits in your kitchen or bathroom?

Do you usually suffer from skin irritation, and have noticed hair damage of late?

Do your cups and glasses have a layer of white cloudy deposit, no matter how often you clean them?

If you think these are problems you are facing, we can help.

The quality of the water you use can have significant effects on your everyday life. From causing damage to your bathroom and kitchen fittings to affecting use of various appliances and more, there are a lot of ways that hard water can affect you.

In this article, we tell you about what makes the water hard and whether or not you can do something about it. We will also tell you about some easy DIY methods that you can try out at home. These will let you easily test if the water you are using is hard water. Also, you can find out more about how you can prevent any further damage that the hard water is causing in your home and also find out how you can benefit when you make the switch from hard water to soft water.

What Makes Water Hard?

Hard water is the type of water in which the levels of magnesium and calcium are very high. In addition, the amount of metals and other natural minerals found in this type of water is also significantly higher than regular water.

While hard water will not really have an impact on your health, it can definitely cause a lot of damage to your bathroom and kitchen fittings. If you notice a lot of limescale buildup in your home, hard water could be one of the leading causes for the same.

Here are a few things that could cause the water to become hard:

the leading causes
  • Magnesium: One of the main causes of the water becoming hard is the amount of magnesium it has. Water comes into contact with magnesium mainly when it is moving through the ground.
  • Calcium: A high level of calcium in the water is also one of the main reasons for turning it into hard water. When the original water that reaches you flows through limestone, it absorbs excess calcium, which then gets mixed up in the water.
  • Iron: Some areas are also known to have a lot of iron deposits, and when this gets mixed with water, it can lead to hard water.

What Are The Effects Of Hard Water?

If you get hard water at home, you may be able to spot one or more of the following signs:

  • You will find it difficult to make lather or wash off that soapy feeling when you take a bath.
  • You always have to use more cleaning powder or soap to clean yourself or your clothes.
  • Freshly washed clothes may feel scratchy on the skin.
  • Your hair is almost always sticky and greasy, even after you have just washed it. Your hair loses shine and looks dull. Also, your hair will look rough and damaged, and when you touch it, you may feel it rough and pointy, especially at the ends.
  • There is always a light white and cloudy film on your bathtub, sink, bathroom and kitchen faucets, shower area and anywhere where the water runs regularly.
  • You will always suffer from skin irritation.
  • You will find spots on your utensils even when they are clean and dry.

How Do I Know If I Have Hard Water?

Yes, it is possible to know if the water you get in your home is hard water or not. If you are not sure whether you are using hard water or soft water, you can try out these easy DIY tests to find out and take the necessary steps. All the ingredients you need are easily available in your home and the tests will not take up more than two minutes of your time. Take a look.

Method #1

What You Will Need:

a glass of tap water
  • A glass of tap water
  • A glass of purified drinking water (from a different source than that of the tap water)
  • Peppermint castile soap (optional – you can use any clear soap)

How To:

1. Place both the glasses next to each other.

2. Next, pour a little of the soap in each glass.

3. When you put the soap in the glass of tap water, you may notice that the water starts to look cloudy. This is because the drops of soap will start to react with the minerals that are present in the water. This reaction is what leads to the residues that you notice on your clothes, your bathroom and kitchen fittings, and may even feel on your skin after taking a bath.

4. When you put the soap in the glass of purified drinking water, you will notice that nothing really happens. There is no change, and the water will still remain clear and there will be no residue.

Hard water

Method #2

What You Will Need:

 purified drinking water
  • A glass of tap water
  • A glass of purified drinking water (from a different source than that of the tap water)
  • Clear soap solution

How To:

1. Add three drops of the salt solution in each glass.

2. Mix up both the glasses so that the salt solution and the water mix well.

3. The water that is hard water will turn cloudy while the soft water will make lather. You will also notice a film of white spots on the glass that has hard water.

4. To try it out some more, add another five to six drops of the soap solution in the glass that has the hard water. Give it a nice shake. You will notice that even after adding more soap, there will still be no or barely any lather.

How Can You Benefit From Knowing If You Have Hard Water?

Knowing whether you are continuously exposed to hard water can help you take the proper preventive measures.

1. Take Care Of Your Health: Regular exposure to hard water can have serious effects on your health. As hard water contains very high amounts of calcium and magnesium, regular exposure, especially if it is also mixed in your drinking water, could lead to health issues such as irritable bowel syndrome and even diarrhoea.

2. ​Better Manage Your Expenses: When you use hard water to clean your clothes, you will need more soap and detergent because the water will create very less lather. This means that you need more soap to create enough lather that will be effective in cleaning. Once you know that the water you are using is hard water, you may be able to change the same and thus require lesser amounts of soap, causing less wastage of product and money.

3. ​Take Care Of Your Skin And Hair: Once you are sure the water you get is hard water, you can avoid using it for your shower. This can help you prevent any skin irritation problems that you may have been suffering from till now. Also, hard water can make your hair look dull and take away its shine, and with repeated use, can damage your hair, making it appear rough. Switching to soft water will restore your hair’s health and shine in a natural way, and you can easily avoid going to the salon for expensive hair treatments.