Hard Water


What Is Hard Water & How To Treat It

Does This Look Like Your Shower Head?

Benefits Of Treating Hard Water

  • Softer and cleaner skin with less dryness and itch.

  • Silky smooth hair, less tangle, and frayed ends.

  • About 50% less soap when washing dishes, clothes and yourself.  

  • Clothes last longer.

  • Less time cleaning and longer time in between.

  • Scale elimination in water heating appliances.


Here in Southern California, our water is really hard water.  Hard water will clog pipes, ruin water heater, and cause your faucets to seize. 

Does Your Shower Look Like This?

Hard Water What Is It?


Hard water is water that has high mineral content (in contrast with "soft water").   Water described as “hard” is high in dissolved minerals, specifically calcium and magnesium.


Hard water is not a health risk, but a nuisance because of mineral buildup on fixtures and poor soap and/or detergent performance.


Water is a good solvent and picks up impurities easily. Pure water — tasteless, colorless, and odorless — is often called the universal solvent. When water is combined with carbon dioxide to form very weak carbonic acid, you get even better solvent results.


As water moves through soil and rock, it dissolves very small amounts of minerals and holds them in solution. Calcium and magnesium dissolved in water are the two most common minerals that make water “hard.” The degree of hardness becomes greater as the calcium and magnesium content increases.


So hard water is formed when water percolates through deposits of calcium and magnesium-containing minerals such as limestone, chalk, and dolomite.


Hard-drinking water is generally not harmful to one's health but can pose serious problems in industrial settings, where water hardness is monitored to avoid costly breakdowns in boilers, cooling towers, and other equipment that handles water. In domestic settings, hard water is often indicated by a lack of suds formation when soap is agitated in water, and by the formation of limescale in kettles and water heaters. Wherever water hardness is a concern, water softening is commonly used to reduce hard water's adverse effects.

Sources of hardness

Water's hardness is determined by the concentration of multivalent cations in the water. Multivalent cations are cations (positively charged metal complexes) with a charge greater than 1+. Usually, the cations have a charge of 2+. Common cations found in hard water include Ca2+ and Mg2+. These ions enter a water supply by leaching from minerals within an aquifer. Common calcium-containing minerals are calcite and gypsum. A common magnesium mineral is dolomite (which also contains calcium). Rainwater and distilled water are soft because they contain few ions.[2]


The following equilibrium reaction describes the dissolving and formation of calcium carbonate :


CaCO3 (s) + CO2 (aq) + H2O (l) ⇋ Ca2+ (aq) + 2HCO3− (aq)


The reaction can go in either direction. Rain containing dissolved carbon dioxide can react with calcium carbonate and carry calcium ions away with it. The calcium carbonate may be re-deposited as calcite as the carbon dioxide is lost to the atmosphere, sometimes forming stalactites and stalagmites.


Calcium and magnesium ions can sometimes be removed by water softeners.[3]


Temporary hardness.


Temporary hardness is a type of water hardness caused by the presence of dissolved bicarbonate minerals (calcium bicarbonate and magnesium bicarbonate). When dissolved these minerals yield calcium and magnesium cations (Ca2+, Mg2+) and carbonate and bicarbonate anions (CO32-, HCO3-). The presence of the metal cations makes the water hard. However, unlike the permanent hardness caused by sulfate and chloride compounds, this "temporary" hardness can be reduced either by boiling the water or by the addition of lime (calcium hydroxide) through the softening process of lime softening.[4] Boiling promotes the formation of carbonate from the bicarbonate and precipitates calcium carbonate out of solution, leaving water that is softer upon cooling.


Permanent hardness


Permanent hardness is hardness (mineral content) that cannot be removed by boiling. When this is the case, it is usually caused by the presence of calcium sulfate and/or magnesium sulfates in the water, which do not precipitate out as the temperature increases. Ions causing permanent hardness of water can be removed using a water softener, or ion exchange column.


Total Permanent Hardness = Calcium Hardness + Magnesium Hardness


The calcium and magnesium hardness is the concentration of calcium and magnesium ions expressed as equivalent of calcium carbonate.

Total permanent water hardness expressed as equivalent of CaCO3 can be calculated with the following formula:


Total Permanent Hardness (CaCO3) = 2.5(Ca2+) + 4.1(Mg2+).


Effects of hard water


With hard water, soap solutions form a white precipitate (soap scum) instead of producing lather, because the 2+ ions destroy the surfactant properties of the soap by forming a solid precipitate (the soap scum). A major component of such scum is calcium stearate, which arises from sodium stearate, the main component of soap:


2 C17H35COO- (aq) + Ca2+ (aq) → (C17H35COO)2Ca (s)


Hardness can thus be defined as the soap-consuming capacity of a water sample or the capacity of precipitation of soap as a characteristic property of water that prevents the lathering of soap. Synthetic detergents do not form such scums.


A portion of the ancient Roman Eifel aqueduct in Germany.  In service for about 180 years, a deposit of scale up to 20cm thick built up within it.


Hard water also forms deposits that clog plumbing. These deposits, called "scale", are composed mainly of calcium carbonate (CaCO3), magnesium hydroxide (Mg(OH)2), and calcium sulfate (CaSO4).[2] Calcium and magnesium carbonates tend to be deposited as off-white solids on the inside surfaces of pipes and heat exchangers. This precipitation (formation of an insoluble solid) is principally caused by thermal decomposition of bi-carbonate ions but also happens in cases where the carbonate ion is at saturation concentration.   The resulting build-up of scale restricts the flow of water in pipes. In boilers, the deposits impair the flow of heat into water, reducing the heating efficiency and allowing the metal boiler components to overheat. In a pressurized system, this overheating can lead to failure of the boiler.   The damage caused by calcium carbonate deposits varies on the crystalline form, for example, calcite or aragonite.


The presence of ions in an electrolyte, in this case, hard water, can also lead to galvanic corrosion, in which one metal will preferentially corrode when in contact with another type of metal when both are in contact with an electrolyte. The softening of hard water by ion exchange does not increase its corrosivity per se. Similarly, where lead plumbing is in use, softened water does not substantially increase plumbo-solvency. 


In swimming pools, hard water is manifested by a turbid, or cloudy (milky), appearance to the water. Calcium and magnesium hydroxides are both soluble in water. The solubility of the hydroxides of the alkaline-earth metals to which calcium and magnesium belong (group 2 of the periodic table) increases moving down the column. Aqueous solutions of these metal hydroxides absorb carbon dioxide from the air, forming the insoluble carbonates, giving rise to the turbidity. This often results from the pH being excessively high (pH > 7.6). Hence, a common solution to the problem is, while maintaining the chlorine concentration at the proper level, to lower the pH by the addition of hydrochloric acid, the optimum value is in the range of 7.2 to 7.6.



San Diego Pure Water has more water & salt saving softening and water conditioning systems than any other company in California. That means lower costs in the long and short term!  Plus our fully-trained and licensed installers and service team guarantees reliability and efficiency from people who care about your health and wellbeing.   We will beat any comparable system equipment price buy 10%.  Call 760-298-7041 for a free consultation.


Soft Water Benefits:
There are many benefits to using soft water.
Conditioned water enhances your home life in ways both subtle and significant. Tap water tastes better. Towels and sheets feel better. Glassware gets a renewed sparkle. Tile shines, and faucets gleam.  Soaps and shampoos have a richer lather that rinses more completely.  Detergents and cleaning agents perform better.   Plumbing, water fixtures, and all water-using appliances like; washing machines, dishwashers, water heaters, and steamers will all last longer!   Soft water makes cleaning products last longer too.   Use only 2 tablespoons of your favorite automatic dish soap in the closed cup only of the dishwasher. In the washing machine ½ the amount!    For hair washing use much less.   Your whites will be whiter.   Your clothes won’t wear out as fast meaning, less lint!   Your skin and hair will be softer and silkier.   Soft water is also a time saver when it comes to cleaning.   Significantly reducing soap scum build up in the bathtub and shower means less time down on your hands and knees!

Are you tired of scale and scum in your home and on your water fixtures?  Are you interested in the best methods for removing Hard Water from your life?


Click this button below for an in-depth discussion on:


How To Treat Hard Water!

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Protect Your Family & Home

We would love to talk to you about your water and how to effectively purify it at a price within your budget.  


We do make regular water softeners for those that need the most

economical solution available.  Plus we have combination units that work great the soften and filter your water at the same time.


For a free consultation and expert explanation on how to

remove toxins from your water and your life


Please call 760-298-7041 or fill out the form above


We really want to help you to build a healthy life!


San Diego Pure Water

Eco-Friendly Scientific & Sustainable Filtration Technologies


The Smart Choice For Your Water Treatment!


Your Health and Well-Being Is Our Top Priority!


Tel: 760-298-7041


13771 Danielson St, STE A, Poway, CA 92064

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We Provide Every Form Of Water Treatment!

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