Hard water is very common both in modern houses and in old ones. Such water contains various chemical elements that are harmful to the body.
Hence the question arises, how to soften the water and remove all contamination? This is exactly what will be discussed in today’s article.
What is hard water?
Hard water is water with a high content of mineral salts, mainly calcium and magnesium. Mineral salts are contained in any liquid from natural sources, only in different proportions. So, there are a lot of salts in groundwater, so the water is usually harder.
And rain moisture, or that obtained from melted snow, is very soft, since it practically does not contain calcium and magnesium compounds.
How does calcium and magnesium minerals get into water?
Calcium, magnesium and other mineral deposits are enter aquifers quite naturally. Their content becomes especially high when the liquid passes through limestone and gypsum deposits.
It is important to note that when considering the issue of water hardness, it is calcium and magnesium that are taken into account primarily because of their wide distribution.
For the sake of interest, check the shower heads, there will be a large accumulation of plaque – these are the elements from plumbing system.
Water hardness by calcium and magnesium
From a scientific point of view, there are two types of hard water. The first – temporary – is caused by the content of these metals’ bicarbonates in the liquid.
Therefore, it is often called carbonate. The second type of stiffness is permanent or non-carbonate. It is a consequence of the increased content of sulfates and chlorides of calcium in the hard water.
How does the presence of calcium and magnesium in water affect our lives?
Regardless of the type of hardness minerals, the content of magnesium, calcium and their hard minerals in hard water has several negative consequences. The first and most obvious of them is the formation of plaque on the heating elements of a boiler, kettle or boiler, as well as plaque on plumbing.
Another consequence of the high concentration of calcium in the hard water is the increased consumption of detergents during the washing process.
In addition, clothes or bed linen become stiff to the touch after drying, which gave the name to the term in question.
The result of these unpleasant phenomena is quite obvious and consists in reducing the efficiency of washing, additional costs for the purchase of detergents and reducing the service life of household appliances.
Do not forget about the harm that hard water containing calcium causes to the human body when used for drinking and cooking.
Numerous scientific studies have proven the negative effect of increased concentrations of magnesium and calcium ions in water on the spine, joints, teeth and the work of the genitourinary system.
Therefore, it is not surprising that the issue of water softening, as the process of reducing its hardness is called, should be given the most serious attention when installing autonomous water supply systems at home.
What is soft water?
Soft water does not contain minerals and other impurities. This type of water cannot form a limescale, since the harmful minerals that form deposits are completely removed. The benefits of soft water in your home are obvious – improved water supply, healthier skin and hair, and so on.
Do not confuse soft water with conditioned water. Conditioned water still contains hard water minerals, but in a modified form, so they can no longer stick to surfaces and form scale.
What is meant by softening water?
The need for mitigation with water softener. It should be carried out in order to:
- Remove metallic or bitter taste.
- Eliminate the very possibility of precipitation, so that water can be bottled or used for the preparation of alcoholic beverages, juices, and other food products.
- Protect household appliances from scale: excess salt will surely be deposited on the walls and heating elements of boilers, washing machines, kettles and will first lower their productivity (and therefore increase the cost of electricity for heating by 15-20%), and then provoke a breakdown.
- Minimize the consumption of powder and other detergents containing surfactants. It is with surfactants that undesirable impurities will interact, binding them and reducing their effectiveness.
- Get rid of plaque on the surfaces of faucets and faucets, toilet tank, bidet housing and other plumbing fixtures, as well as tiles. Deposits not only look ugly and rub off badly, but also gradually destroy even solid materials.
- To prevent clogging of industrial systems – scale reduces the throughput and heat transfer coefficient of pipes, gradually clogging them, which results in an increase in fuel consumption for equipment maintenance.
And, most importantly, softening should be carried out to protect your body from the negative effects of excess salts.
Reverse osmosis system
In this water softener, the working medium under a pressure of 3-4 atmospheres passes through a special plate that passes H2O molecules, but stops foreign particles. It turns out a kind of reverse osmosis water softener.
Advantages of this water softener:
- An impressive degree of purification – about 98% of impurities are removed.
- Complex effect – all harmful substances are blocked in general, and not only those that increase stiffness.
Minuses of this water softener:
- It is necessary to create excessive pressure in the system and maintain it at the proper level.
- It is necessary to additionally carry out mineralization so that the water can then be drunk or used for cooking.
- This implies relatively high costs – first for the purchase of equipment, then for regular replacement of components.
- Low regeneration process.
At the same time, the reverse osmosis system absolutely no need to worry about the fact that as a result of the action of such a membrane water softener the so-called useful salts, allegedly carrying a positive effect, will not enter the food.
The body will get everything it needs from products – meat and fish, fruits and vegetables, milk and juices.
Ion exchange system water softener
According to this water softener, charged particles of magnesium, calcium and other organic compounds and hardness ions are replaced by sodium ions. The compound turns out to be already soluble, that is, not forming deposits, and, most importantly, harmless. Such a liquid can be safely consumed, it does not reduce the service life of household appliances.
Thermal water softener for water systems
This is the easiest way to water softener with your own hands, which consists in banal boiling.
When the liquid is heated to a high temperature, soluble salts – most often bicarbonate and calcium sulfate – break down into carbon dioxide (evaporates) and sediment (remains on the walls and bottom of the container).
This option is the most convenient in everyday life and as easy to implement as possible: the technology is simple and clear.
All that is required is a heat–resistant tank of suitable volume and fuel. But there are also disadvantages, which are relatively low productivity, the inability to remove magnesium compounds and, most importantly, the need to remove the precipitate separately.
Magnetic water softener
The liquid is affected by a constant field: it changes the structure of salts, the molecules of which cease to form stable bonds. As a result, the deposits not only do not settle on the surfaces of the tank, but even help to loosen the existing scale. After that, they are attracted by special catchers and are removed to the sump intended for them.
Advantages of this water softener:
- Comparatively high efficiency at low intensity of the process.
- Focus on all pipelines and household appliances, with the ability to clean rust.
- Improving the performance of washing machines and dishwashers.
- quick regeneration process.
- if used as shower water, you’ve got the softer skin.
Shortcomings of this water softener:
- The need for constant human control.
- Efficiency is only at low flow (at a speed of up to 0.5 m/s) and medium hardness water.
- There are limitations on the range of the catchers.
- Implementation is relatively expensive.
Chemical treatment water softener
The essence of the method is to add substances to the working medium that will react with soluble compounds and cause them to precipitate. Which ones exactly? There are quite a lot of options – it can be:
- their combination,
- special water softeners,
- salt free water conditioner,
- synthetic splitters.
The choice depends on the specific field and case. To protect a washing machine, dishwasher, heating element or other household appliance, some components are suitable, others are needed for cleaning for drinking water.
Dignities of this water softeners:
- It is possible to remove not only insoluble, but also turbid impurities.
- salt-free water conditioner is easy to find, as are many other substances.
- Effective result with high performance.
- suitable as shower water
Disadvantages of this water softeners:
- As a result of the reaction, there is always a precipitate that needs to be removed.
- It is necessary to strictly adhere to the dosage and not exceed the concentration of the active substance, otherwise the interaction process may go wrong.
- The stock of splitters must be replenished regularly, and this is an additional expense, plus, it is important to keep them out of reach of children and pets.
- Low water pressure.
- Most chemicals make hard water undrinkable.
How to remove calcium in water with water softeners of defending?
It is used to purify hard water contaminated with calcium salts with particle sizes from 1 micron and above.
The principle of the method is known and understood by everyone. Under the influence of gravity, lime settles to the bottom of the container.
The advantage is that the method is simple, uncomplicated and does not require any consumables to perform cleaning. Negative sediment should be removed periodically, clean hard water should be poured, contaminated water should be poured.
At normal water flows rates, the method requires special tanks-clarifiers for settling, having very significant dimensions, additional pumps. Therefore, when solving the issue of well hard water treatment for a cottage, this method is not even considered.
As a reactor, you can add a water conditioner.
Does boiling water remove calcium?
In boiling water, lime precipitates in the form of scale. The method belongs to the easiest, simplest and accessible to almost everyone.
The disadvantages of the method are the complexity of subsequent descaling and low productivity. But yes, this method will work and you will be able to remove calcium from the hard water. Calcium is a limescale build up.
Use a deep pan as a hot water heater, so it will be more convenient for you to pick up the plaque. This hot water filtration system allows you to increase the filtration scale buildup to jug water filter.
How do I purify hard water at home?
In order to get rid of calcium at home, three methods are well suited:
3) jug water filter (they are made of coal, which will easily take away all the hard water minerals, so you will get clean water)
The first two methods are less resource-intensive, they do not require any monetary investments, but they have their disadvantages. If you don’t want to spend a lot of effort on the process of removing calcium from the water, then just put a jug with a water filter.
What kind of water filter is best for hard water?
Ion exchange filters are best suited. They have the best result in water purification than other filters. They also have many advantages related to installation, operation and convenience of purchase.
Will a water filter get rid of hard water?
Yes. This is what filters do. Reverse osmosis and ion exchange filters are best suited for this task (they’re all a carbon filters). Due to its structure and the activated carbon in the composition, all metal particles are magnetized to the coal and thus the water becomes clean.
Should you filter hard water?
The answer is definitely yes. Hard water contains a lot of chemicals and metals that can have a negative impact on the action of our body. Therefore, be sure to use water filter to get drinking water.