Hard water contains a high concentration of dissolved minerals. These minerals do not harm health but can cause a host of plumbing issues. Over time, the minerals in hard water can build up on the insides of pipes and appliances, reducing water flow and efficiency. Learn how Houston’s hard water can affect your pipes and how maintenance protects your plumbing.

Mineral and Soap Scum Buildup

When hard water flows through the plumbing system, it can deposit minerals on the pipes’ inner surface, a process known as scaling. Over time, scaling can accumulate, leading to substantial mineral buildup within the pipes. This mineral buildup can result in several problems, including reduced water pressure, clogging, and increased stress on the pipes that can lead to leaks.

When the minerals in hard water react with soaps or detergents, soap scum forms. This scum then travels down drains, but soap scum is not easily soluble in water and tends to stick to the walls of pipes, leading to accumulation over time. The buildup of soap scum reduces the diameter of the pipes, restricting the flow of water and potentially causing blockages. This buildup can become more problematic in showers and bathtubs, where soap and other particulates like hair and dirt often mix, exacerbating the issue.

Pipe Corrosion

Alongside blockages, Houston’s hard water can cause pipes to corrode. Minerals in hard water can chemically react with metal surfaces and produce rust and other types of corrosion. Corroded pipes can result in leaks, reduced water pressure, and discoloration or an unpleasant taste in the water. In severe cases, corrosion can even lead to pipe failure.

Property owners can install water softeners to prevent corrosion caused by hard water. Contact Houston plumbing contractors to replace compromised pipes and prevent more extensive damage to your plumbing system and property.

Leaks and Ruptures

Hard water can cause the pipes to wear down, making them susceptible to leaks or ruptures. Scale buildup can lead to leaks in plumbing, as the accumulated minerals narrow the pipe’s diameter and increase pressure within the system. Over time, this heightened pressure can result in weak spots that eventually cause leaks.

Corrosion can also lead to leaks, as the process gradually eats away at the pipe material, making it thin and fragile. This weakening can then lead to the formation of tiny holes or cracks, allowing water to leak out.

Hard water in Houston poses significant challenges to plumbing systems, from scaling and soap scum buildup to corrosion and leaks. If you notice reduced water pressure or a buildup of white scale on faucets, showerheads, and around sinks, you may have hard water. Installing a water softener and seeking professional plumbing assistance are effective means to protect your home or business.