What to Do About Calcium Buildup in Your Plumbing System
A funny thing about life is that what’s beneficial for one person or thing can actually be harmful to another. Take, for instance, calcium. We need the mineral to build and maintain strong bones and teeth. But on the other hand, calcium can be detrimental to your plumbing system – often in the form of hard water.
In this article, we’re covering the effects of calcium deposits on your plumbing – and what you can do about them.
What is hard water?
Water that comes out of the tap is more than H2O. There are always some levels of minerals and other elements, whether they’re put there by the water treatment process or they were pick up by groundwater. When you have “hard water,” that means you have high levels of certain minerals like calcium, magnesium, and potassium. Overall, these minerals aren’t harmful to human health – but they can problems with your plumbing.
Hard water makes it more likely that calcium deposits will accumulate in your pipes, drains, and appliances, which can cause backups or breakdowns.
Is it possible to remove calcium deposits from pipes?
Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a product we could flush through the pipes to easily remove calcium deposits stuck on the inside walls? Sadly, this isn’t possible because it would impact your drinking water. There are some drain cleaners that are marketed for breaking down calcium or limescale, but they have toxic chemicals and are not a long-term solution.
How to deal with hard water and calcium deposits
There are methods for dealing with hard water and calcium deposits so they don’t become a major issue.
- Soaking faucets and showerheads in vinegar to remove calcium deposits that are blocking the flow. You can fill a plastic Ziplock bag with water, attach it to the faucet, and let it sit overnight.
- Have a water softener system installed. These systems are hooked up to the water supply as it enters the house. They remove hard minerals or replace them with different minerals such as sodium that create a better balance.
- Replace metal pipes with PEX. Calcium has an easy time attaching to metals such as copper or galvanized steel, which can eventually lead to these kinds of pipes becoming corroded from the inside. As a water-safe plastic, PEX is more resistant to the effects of hard water.
Plumbing service in The North Shore Area
Calcium deposits are a common plumbing occurrence but that doesn’t mean you have to sit around and wait for a problem to occur. For solutions dealing with hard water or older pipes, talk to the knowledgeable team at Waldman Plumbing and Heating, Inc. To schedule a consultation, call us today at (781) 780-3184.