Hard Water? Soft Water? What's the difference?

Water is a essential part in our daily life. A large part of people's life is related to water such as drinking water, washing clothes, taking a shower, cooking and so on.

Thought people use water every day, not many people notice the water can actually be divided into 2 types: hard water and soft water. Because of the latitude and topography distribution in Europe, most water in Europe is hard water, which makes it easy for water pipes, faucets and shower heads to generate limescale. Over the time, limescale tend to make water produce more impurities, block the water pipes, and dissipate heat of water heater. Moreover, drinking hard water is more likely to cause stomach upset. Since hard water has so many disadvantages, is it better to drink only soft water? It is not necessarily the case. The most suitable water for human is actually the water that contains 50 - 150mg/L calcium and magnesium in water, which is too hard and too soft.

How to identify if your water is hard water or soft water? 
As to the taste, soft water tastes sweeter while hard water is bitter. Another easy way to identify is by looking at sud formation with soap. There is less lather formation when soap is used with hard water compared to soft water.
Other than using the taste and formation to tell the difference between hard and soft water. You can also scale them.

  • Soft water: 0 - 60 mg total hardness in 1 liter
  • Moderate soft water:  60 - 120 mg total hardness in 1 liter
  • Hard water: 120 - 180 mg total hardness in 1 liter
  • Very hard water: more than 180 mg total hardness in 1 liter
The most suitable hardness for human body usually range from 50-150mg per liter.

How to soften hard water?
Hard water can be softened by reducing the concentration of calcium, magnesium and other minerals. For kitchen use or drinking purpose, you can boil water to remove the some part of the hardness. After boiling your water and let it cool for hours, you will see white minerals settle in the bottom. Or you can install water softeners or water filter with ion change features to reduce the hardness of your water. 

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