Constant calls for plumbing assistance may indicate that you have a hard water issue in your home. The following are a few of the symptoms of this problem.
White spots on dishes that won't wipe off are one of the most obvious signs of hard water, but there are more. You may end up with a residue inside the dishwasher itself. This residue could be white, yellow, or even a rusty orange depending on the types of minerals in the water. The nozzles on sprayer arms may become clogged with the residue, as can the water inlet lines. While a plumber can clean these periodically, eventually the buildup will shorten the working life of the appliance.
2. Poor Lather
Soap can't lather well in hard water, so getting a nice foam isn't usually possible. This doesn't just affect the handwashing of dishes. You may notice that your hair is duller and that your skin feels dry and itchy. Unfortunately, there is no way to improve the lather short of installing a whole house water softener to remove the excess minerals from the water supply.
3. Stained Clothing
Laundry detergents can also work poorly in hard water, which makes it harder to clean your clothing. Clothing may also feel stiff when washed in hard water. Further, the minerals in hard water can stain clothing. Odd yellow or rust-colored stains on clothing are a sign of hard water.
4. Clogged Inlet Lines
The buildup of mineral scale due to hard water can shorten the life water supply lines and certain appliances. Ice makers and coffee pots are often the first appliances to fail due to hard water, but your washing machine and faucets can also be damaged beyond repair. A plumber can often clear supply lines if the mineralization isn't too bad, but heavy buildup will require a replacement.
5. Water Heater Issues
Sediment buildup from hard water decreases the service life of your hot water heater. The sedimentation can lead to corrosion and leaks, valve failure, and burnt out heating elements. An annual plumbing inspection that includes flushing the tank helps alleviate some of the issues caused by hard water, but the water heater will still likely need to be replaced sooner than one that isn't exposed to hard water.
Although a plumber can address many of these individual issues as they occur, you can save time and money on frequent repairs by installing a water softener. Contact a plumber in your area for more assistance.