How Colorado’s Hard Water Can Damage Your HVAC System & What to Do About It

hard water damage hvac

Did you know that “hard” water can damage your HVAC system?

This little-known fact has cost many homeowners a lot of trouble—and money. Since we have hard water here in northern Colorado, our team is taking it upon ourselves to educate as many homeowners as possible about this potential problem.

Hard water can damage your water heaters, built-in humidifiers (and the portable ones too, though we don’t usually consider them part of your HVAC system) and pretty much anywhere the water regularly runs or gets filtered through.

In today’s post, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know about hard water, its impact on your HVAC system and other parts of your home, and what to do about it. But first, let’s quickly establish the difference between “hard” and “soft” water so that we can lay a foundational understanding of why these problems occur in the first place.

The Difference Between Hard and Soft Water—and Why it Matters

how to prevent hard water damage to dehumidifier

Whether or not a water source is considered hard or soft is generally determined by the level of minerals found within the water, usually calcium, lime, chalk, and/or magnesium particulates. Therefore, fresh rainwater is naturally soft. Your water supplier (most likely the city or county you live in) should make available yearly reports concerning your water’s quality and contents. You may have to look for this online or make a specific request.

The mineral deposits in hard water will eventually cause a buildup of deposits anywhere that plumbing is involved—such as your water heater or a built in humidification system. If you’ve ever noticed a white buildup around your drains, faucets, or shower head, that’s a reasonably certain indication that where you live has hard water.

If you want to be sure, there’s a quick and easy way to test your water’s hardness without any special equipment or supplies.

Testing Your Water’s Hardness Level is Easy and Cheap

The easiest way to test for hard water is to see how it interacts with soap. Take an empty, clear water bottle and fill it up about halfway with water from your tap. Add a couple drops of your usual liquid dish soap, tighten the cap, and shake the bottle for just a few seconds.

Observe the bubbles: if they’re mostly sitting at the top of the water, that’s a strong indication of soft water. If the water looks cloudy and not many bubbles have formed at all, then you likely have hard water.

How Best Buy Heating and Air Can Help Restore Hard Water Damaged HVAC Systems

hard water damaging hvac system

If portions of your HVAC system are already damaged by hard water, please don’t delay in scheduling a service appointment with us. Damaged components can often lead to additional problems, ultimately costing you more—as we always say, prevention is the best cure. But that’s not the only way damaged HVAC equipment can cost you.

Hard water damage can lead to inefficient appliances, meaning that your energy bill will be higher. While we’re on the topic, make sure to check out our post HVAC Tips & Energy Saving Tricks for New Homeowners in Colorado for more tips on how to save each and every month (especially if you’re new to the area!).

Providing Exemplary Service to Northern Colorado Whenever You Need Us

Whether you need a repair or a replacement, our team of experts is here to help. We can also perform an inspection for you to determine if damage has taken place, either from hard water or any other cause.

If you’ve never had an annual inspection, now is a good time to start—our professional technicians will scour your entire system to discover and mitigate trouble before it starts. We’ll perform voltage tests, ensure moving parts are properly lubricated, check for blockages and debris, test your safety controls, measure refrigerant temperatures, and much, much more. Our inspections are thorough—if there’s an issue, we’ll find it and help you solve it.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us today, or if you’re ready for us to come out, you can request a service appointment here.

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