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PLUMBING SYSTEM INSPECT DIAGNOSE REPAIR
AGE of PLUMBING MATERIALS & FIXTURES
AIR DISCHARGE at FAUCETS, FIXTURES
ANTI SCALD VALVES
ANODES & DIP TUBES on WATER HEATERS
BACKUP PREVENTION, SEPTIC
BACKUP PREVENTION, SEWER LINE
BACKWATER VALVES, SEWER LINE
BATH & KITCHEN DESIGN GUIDE
CHEMICAL CONTAMINANTS in WATER
CHEMICAL ODOR SOURCES
CHLORINE IN DRINKING WATER
CLOGGED DRAIN DIAGNOSIS & REPAIR
DEBRIS in WATER SUPPLY, Water Heater
DEPTH of SEPTIC TANK
DRAIN & SEWER PIPING
FAUCETS & CONTROLS, KITCHEN & BATH
FAUCETS, OUTDOOR HOSE BIBBS
FLOOD DAMAGE ASSESSMENT, SAFETY & CLEANUP
FLOOR DRAIN / TRAP ODORS
FLUSHOMETER VALVES for TOILETS URINALS
GAS PIPING, VALVES, CONTROLS
GALVANIC SCALE & METAL CORROSION
HARD WATER - SOFTENERS
HEAT TAPES, Heat, Insulation prevent Freeze-Up
LEAD POISONING HAZARDS GUIDE
LEAD IN DRINKING WATER, HOW to REDUCE
METHANE GAS SOURCES
MIXING / ANTI-SCALD VALVES
MUNICIPAL WATER PRESSURE IMPROVEMENTS
NOISE / SOUND DIAGNOSIS & CURE
ODORS GASES SMELLS, DIAGNOSIS & CURE
ODORS IN WATER
ODORS, SEPTIC or SEWER
ODORS SEWER GAS in COLD WEATHER
ODORS, SULPHUR SMELL SOURCES
ANIMAL or URINE ODOR SOURCE DETECTION
PIPING IN BUILDINGS, Clogs Leaks Types
PLUMBING FIXTURES, KITCHEN, BATH
PLUMBING NOISE TRANSMISSION CONTROL
PLUMBING VENT DEFINITIONS & CODES
PLUMBING VENT DEFECTS & NOISES
PUMPS USED in BUILDINGS
PUMPS, WATER REPAIR
RELIEF VALVE LEAKS
RELIEF VALVE, TP VALVE, BOILER
RELIEF VALVE, TP VALVE, STEAM BOILER
RELIEF VALVE, WATER HEATER
RELIEF VALVE, WATER TANK
REPAIR BURST LEAKY PIPES
METHANE GAS HAZARDS
SEPTIC SYSTEM INSPECT DIAGNOSE REPAIR
SHUTOFF VALVE LOCATION, USE
SULPHUR & SEWER GAS SMELL SOURCES
SWEATING (CONDENSATION) on PIPES, TANKS
TOILETS, INSPECT, INSTALL, REPAIR
WATER, WELLS, WATER TANKS: TESTING GUIDE
WATER PRESSURE LOSS DIAGNOSIS & REPAIR
WATER PUMPS & TANKS
WATER SOFTENERS & CONDITIONERS
WATER SOURCE ALTERNATIVES
WATER SUPPLY & DRAIN PIPING
WATER SHUTOFF VALVE LOCATION, USE
WATER SHUTOFF VALVE, WELL PUMP
WATER TESTS, CONTAMINANTS, TREATMENT
WELLS CISTERNS & SPRINGS
WINTERIZE A BUILDING
Hard water or high mineral content water supply: how to recognize that you need a water softener by simple visual inspection of fixtures in the building . Here is a description of what to look for and where to find it in diagnosing hard water conditions.
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Hard water is not just an aesthetic concern in the shower. Very hard water can clog pipes [photo of scale build-up in a water pipe] and water heating equipment (especially tankless coils such as the ones we show here) leading to costly repairs.
Hard water is not normally health concern people although the treatment of hard water using a conventional ion-exchange (salt) water softener can, especially if improperly adjusted, place salt (NaCl) into the water supply at a level which people on low-salt or no-salt diets may wish to avoid.
We discuss this point further at HOW WATER SOFTENERS / CONDITIONERS WORK.
Separately at WATER TESTING GUIDE we describe easy tests you can make to actually measure the hardness of the building water supply.
Here are some visual clues that the water supply at a building is hard
There is a water softener installed - look for the water softener treatment tank and salt tank, usually installed close to where water enters the building or close to the water pressure tank and pump controls if a private well is in use.
Hot water pressure is noticeably less than cold water pressure in the building.
Since minerals precipitate out of hard water faster when the water is heated, we expect hot water piping to clog with minerals faster than cold water piping.
Signs of tankless coil clogging from hard water: When a tankless coil is installed, since that's where our water is the hottest, often the tankless coil clogs before other plumbing materials.
Our photo at left looks up into the mouth of a bathroom faucet spout, showing minerals deposited by three years of exposure to hard well water.
Stained plumbing fixtures such as the bath tub shown in this photo often tell a lot about the history of a building as well as the condition of its water supply.
Hard Water Lime Deposits in Other Problem Locations
White lime deposits have been reported on roofs where leaky swamp coolers were installed - WHITE STAINS on ROOFS or select a topic from the More Reading links shown below.
Continue reading at WATER HARDNESS: HOW TO MEASURE or select a topic from the More Reading links shown below.
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