Your plumbing system is designed to do a number of remarkable things. Your pipes bring water where you need it throughout your home, your drains carry the water and waste away to your sewer line, and your water heater provides you with hot water on-demand as opposed to having to pre-heat it. All of these things are great, but unfortunately plumbing systems are not immune to problems. Problems can come up for a number of different reasons, but few people stop to consider one of the most common and important reasons why your plumbing system may experience an issue: your water quality.
The water that reaches the average home isn’t usually as pure as you might think—while it is safe to use, it usually contains chemicals, small amounts of dirt, and substances like magnesium or calcium (a condition known as hard water). And this can have a pretty substantial impact on the health of your plumbing system as a whole.
Here are four things that can happen with your plumbing system if your water quality is poor as well as a few great reasons to make the investment in a water treatment system.
Clogs in Plumbing Lines
Have you ever noticed that white residue on your faucets and fixtures around your home? Have you seen water spots on glassware that comes out of the dishwasher or other things that have water spots dry on them? These are indicators that you have hard water, and hard water doesn’t just impact what you can see around you: it also impacts the plumbing lines it flows through. Hard water can cause mineral buildup to accumulate inside metallic plumbing lines, including copper or steel lines. As this buildup accumulates, it begins to block the line, eventually creating a stubborn clog that slows or stops water flow altogether. This can create leaks in water lines, increase water pressure in other areas of your home, damage plumbing fixtures, and so much more. These are also tremendously difficult to deal with, as feeding clog removal tools into water lines is substantially more difficult than feeding them into drain lines.
Mineral Buildup in Your Water Heater
If you’ve ever flushed your water heater after a year or two of use, you’ve probably found that water isn’t the only thing that comes pouring out of your heater tap; chunks of mineral buildup and residue also emerge. You can usually see a few of these chunks if you empty several gallons of hot water out of your tank into a bucket. This is a fairly normal occurrence in any home that has a hard water issue: these granules and crystals that pour out of your faucet are an accumulation of dirt, calcium, magnesium, and potentially even metal particles from the walls of your tank or the anode rod in it.
However, these chunks can have a significant negative impact on your water heater. Too much buildup and residue in your water heater can prevent your heater from properly warming the water to your ideal temperature, and that means inconsistent temperatures, shorter lifespans, increased energy usage, and so much more. All of those things contribute to added wear and tear on your water heater that shortens its lifespan and lead to you having to replace your heater more often. Flushing your heater regularly can help you reclaim some of that useful life back, but ultimately you won’t fully restore your water heater’s true potential unless you significantly improve your water quality.
Increased Leaks & Cracks in Water Lines
Inclusions in water do so much more than just impact its texture; they can also impact your water’s pH level. pH is a measurement of a liquid’s acidic or alkaline qualities, with a 7 on the scale being true “neutral,” or what pure water is measured as. However, water that absorbs other chemicals and materials often strays away from this true neutral pH level, and that can have consequences on your plumbing lines. For example, water that is more acidic (lower on the pH scale) can actually erode metal plumbing lines faster, resulting in leaks and cracks. Water that’s too alkaline (above 7 on the pH scale) can bring about strange tastes and other assorted issues. A water purification system can help keep your water as close to true neutral as possible, and that leads to ideal functionality and durability in your plumbing system.
Water Pressure Problems
Any of these issues we’ve listed before that can happen as a result of poor-quality water can also impact your home water pressure. Blockages in plumbing lines reduce water pressure and even prevent certain appliances from working properly. Leaks and cracks reduce water pressure as well as cause damage to your home itself. Sometimes a clog or blockage may be positioned in such a way that it actually increases waster pressure in a line, resulting in additional wear and tear on things like gaskets, seals, and more. All of these things can be actively prevented with higher-quality, cleaner, and purer water that you can get with a water purification system.
Learn more about how to improve your in-home water quality from the experts at All Pro Plumbing, Heating, Air & Electrical by calling (909) 253-0664 today!