Difference Between Soft Water And Hard Water Pdf

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Water Hardness

Water may be sometimes be described as being hard water and soft water. The distinction rests on the amount of dissolved minerals within the water. Hard water contains a high amount of minerals, and soft water contains little to none.

Water accumulates dissolved solids as it moves through rocks and other substrates, like limestone, gypsum or dolomite. Calcium and magnesium are particularly soluble in water, and if these naturally occurring minerals are within the geographical area, the residents surrounding the water source will have hard water.

In the United States, areas of the East Coast generally have soft water, and those in the southwest have hard water. Rainwater, since it has not percolated through soil substances like groundwater has, is considered soft. The characteristics of hard water and soft water are determined by the amount of minerals in water, measured in milligrams per liter or in grains per gallon. Hardness also depends on the pH and temperature of the water.

The American National Standards defines soft water as containing less than Common contributors of water hardness are calcium, Ca, and magnesium, Mg.

Both elements are alkaline earth metals found in Group 2 on the periodic table. These cations easily dissolve in water. Calcium carbonate , CaCO 3 is a common substance in rock formation, especially of limestone, a type of sedimentary rock and dolomite, CaMg CO 3 2 , also a sedimentary rock. Calcium carbonate is also found in the shells of marine organisms and eggs. When rainwater with dissolved carbon dioxide, CO 2 , filters through calcium carbonate, the calcium ions dissolve in the water.

The following chemical equation describes this process:. The properties of hard water are described as temporary and permanent. Temporary hard water contains bicarbonate, HCO 3 -. Permanent hard water contains bicarbonate ions with other ions like sulfate, SO 4 Boiling does not precipitate out the permanent hardening species, and sodium carbonate, Na 2 CO 3 , would need to be added. When hard water is heated, it often leaves a coating on pots or containers. The calcium carbonate precipitate, CaCO 3 , is called scale.

While being frustrating to clean, it is not a health concern. The precipitate can build over time; however, and this may affect the life of appliances like dishwashers and washing machines and any plumbing pipes. The build-up constricts the space where water is able to flow, and appliances and pipes would need to be replaced. As mentioned above, hard water contains dissolved minerals that can cause problems for consumers by leaving deposits in plumbing and appliances.

Hard water also interferes with the effectiveness of many household cleaning products. A surfactant lowers the surface tension of water allowing it to maintain contact with a solid surface, like clothing or a bathroom sink. The ions interfere with the surfactant's process, and this often requires additional laundry or cleaning agent to complete a task.

The minerals in hard water also combine with soap to make a sticky or hazy film on dishware and in bathtubs, showers and sinks. This film can also coat clothing, skin and hair, making clothing seem dingy, causing dry or irritated skin or hair that is dull and unmanageable. Hard water does have an added health benefit.

Calcium and magnesium are important minerals the body needs for the growth and function of bones and muscles. These minerals also regulate blood pressure and enzyme actions. Consuming hard water may be a source of these minerals. Soft water does not have the negative effects of mineral deposits on household appliances and plumbing pipes.

It lacks the mineral taste of hard water and does not leave residues on skin, dishes or other surfaces. A household water softener works by ion exchange. When the hard water is passed through an ion exchanger, it flows by layers of polymer plastic beads that are covalently bound to anion groups, such as:. As the water passes by these beads, the calcium and magnesium ions displace the sodium or potassium ions.

The benefits of water softeners are cleaner laundry, longer-lasting appliances and no sticky soap buildup. Consumers use less laundry detergent and other types of cleaners and detergents. Clothing is brighter, and sinks, tubs and showers require less cleaning. Water appliances such as boilers, water heaters and dishwashers typically run more efficiently and need less maintenance as soft water does not cause scale buildup in pipes and plumbing fixtures.

Soft water users often report hair and skin feel less dry and flaky. The disadvantages of water softeners include the high cost and effort involved in maintaining a water-softening system.

A water softener and its installation may cost thousands of U. Water softeners are water-intensive in the regeneration process, using up to 25 gallons of water per day. The flushing of water softeners with a salt solution can have negative impacts on the environment. This water, with its high sodium content, is not recommended for watering plants, lawns or gardens. Health-wise, softened water contains more sodium than hard water, and this can be problematic for people who must limit their dietary salt intake.

Because much of the calcium and magnesium have been removed, soft water does not provide a source for these minerals in the diet. Rosann Kozlowski is currently a freelance writer and tutor. She has a Master's Degree in Chemistry from the University of Oregon and has previously worked in the pharmaceutical industry and has taught at the middle school, high school, and college levels. About the Author. Copyright Leaf Group Ltd.

Soft water

Orders made before 12 noon will be delivered the next day. We do not deliver on Sundays or Public Holidays. Our retail store is open Mon — Sat 11am — 5pm. The result is water with sodium ions instead of calcium ions. You will not know if the water is soft or hard by just looking at it. How does soft water become hard water?

Soft water is surface water that contains low concentrations of ions and in particular is low in ions of calcium and magnesium. Soft water naturally occurs where rainfall and the drainage basin of rivers are formed of hard, impervious and calcium-poor rocks. The term may also be used to describe water that has been produced by a water softening process although such water is more correctly termed softened water. In these cases the water may also contain elevated levels of sodium and bicarbonate ions. Because soft water has few calcium ions, there is no inhibition of the lathering action of soaps and no soap scum is formed in normal washing. Similarly, soft water produces no calcium deposits in water heating systems.

Water may be sometimes be described as being hard water and soft water. The distinction rests on the amount of dissolved minerals within the water. Hard water contains a high amount of minerals, and soft water contains little to none. Water accumulates dissolved solids as it moves through rocks and other substrates, like limestone, gypsum or dolomite. Calcium and magnesium are particularly soluble in water, and if these naturally occurring minerals are within the geographical area, the residents surrounding the water source will have hard water.

Hard Water vs. Soft Water: Which One Is Healthier?

Although water is typically crystal clear, it contains minerals and chemicals. This article will look at the differences between the two types of water, as well as the pros and cons of each and what to know about water softening. The hardness of water is determined primarily by the amount of calcium and magnesium it contains. Higher levels of these and other minerals make water hard.

The Difference Between Hard & Soft Water

The main difference between hard and soft water is the mineral content. Minerals commonly found in hard water are chalk, lime, calcium, and magnesium.

The Real Difference Between Hard & Soft Water

Perhaps you have on occassion noticed mineral deposits on your cooking dishes, or rings of insoluble soap scum in your bathtub. These are not signs of poor housekeeping, but are rather signs of hard water from the municipal water supply. These ions do not pose any health threat, but they can engage in reactions that leave insoluble mineral deposits. These deposits can make hard water unsuitable for many uses, and so a variety of means have been developed to "soften" hard water; i.

At APEC, we strive to provide the best drinking water available to everyone. Even if it means offering a free system to those in need. Hard water As rainwater falls, it is naturally soft. However, as water makes its way through the ground and into our waterways, it picks up minerals like chalk, lime and mostly calcium and magnesium and becomes hard water. Since hard water contains essential minerals, it is sometimes the preferred drinking water. Not only because of the health benefits, but also the flavor.

You may have even looked into whether the water being piped into your house is hard. Water hardness is a relatively simple concept that can have quite a large impact. While there are downsides to hard water, you may have been dealing with the impact of hard water your whole life and never realized it. By shedding light on what makes water soft or hard and the real impact of hard water, you can make an informed decision about whether a home water softener system is right for you and your family. It seems odd to talk about a liquid in terms of whether it is hard or soft. The reasoning behind the nomenclature of these terms is not readily apparent from the outside, which has led to a great deal of confusion over the years. Put simply, water hardness is related to mineral in your water.


Types of Hard Water. • Temporary hardness: –Caused by a combination of calcium ions and bicarbonate ions in the water. –Contain metal ion and CO. 2.


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