Water containing large amounts of dissolved minerals like calcium and magnesium is known as hard water. It can be seen in any water, even well water. It’s a natural result of minerals accumulating through the water cycle. Many people do not understand the health effects of drinking and using hard water in our daily routine. It’s not a fatal risk but more of a nuisance that causes certain inconveniences. Let’s learn more about the alkalinity of water and signs to identify hard water in your home.


Alkalinity is a measure to determine the water’s capacity to neutralize acid and maintain the same pH in all circumstances. Freshwater contains around 20-200 mg/L alkalinity levels. Many environmental factors affect water alkalinity. The highest amount of water alkalinity derives from calcium carbonate leaching from the rocks and soil. Wherever soil is eroded, limestone breaks down and releases a large amount of CaCO3 that runs off into surface water.

Issues with High Alkalinity

Hard water is the kind of water that consists of many minerals dissolved in it, primarily calcium, magnesium, and sometimes iron. It results from bonding an atom of water with carbon dioxide that forms a weak carbonic acid. This is why groundwater starts accumulating dissolved minerals when it flows over limestone. Once the alkalinity level exceeds a certain amount, it creates hard water.

Signs that Show You Have Hard Water

  • You can easily identify hard water because of the annoying consequences that we experience in our homes. The water pipes can get clogged due to the build up of hard mineral and corrosive deposits, otherwise known as scaling.
  • You might experience that your bar soap does not lather well in the shower but starts spreading soap scum over the doors and walls. Next time, when you take out a glass from the kitchen cabinet, double-check to look for a film of soap scum and mineral deposits on the exterior.
  • Hard water can turn your clothes faded and stiff after a washing cycle. Hard water makes the clothes look worn out and old very quickly after the first use.
  • It’s common to see rust formations on the porcelain sinks, tubs, and toilets following a highly alkaline water supply to your home. The high mineral content in water causes rust.
  • The water suddenly gets a metallic taste which is a result of high iron content. Bacteria react with magnesium to create sulfates that may lead to the water smelling like rotten eggs.

Hard Water and Water Health

Pipes experiencing excessive scaling can also harbor the most favorable environment for bacterial growth and pathogens. Those with weaker immune systems, such as older adults and babies, are specifically more prone to the diseases caused by these harmful bacteria. In addition, younger children are susceptible to developing eczema when consistently exposed to hard water.

Test Your Drinking Water

Hiring a professional water testing company, such as AquaKnow, can help ensure that you and your family drink only the healthiest and safest water. To learn about our company and the wide range of services provided, click here to visit our website.