hard water
Published On: 15 August 2020Categories: Latest News, Plumbing

Our Calgary plumbers have spoken before about the difference between hard water and soft water, but it’s a topic that keeps coming up because Calgary has some of the hardest water in Canada and that affects homeowners in numerous ways. In fact, it can cost big bucks over the year(s). Now we want to start off by reminding everyone that hard water is 100% safe to drink and bathe in. It’s not dangerous at all, but our soaps, detergents, appliances, and plumbing systems aren’t built to effectively handle hard water — which is where the extra expenses come in.

Soap & Detergent.

Let’s start with the small fish. Hard water doesn’t dissolve or activate soap as effectively. This means, you’ll need to use more shampoo to wash your hair, more soap to wash your dishes, and more detergent with every load of laundry. All this extra, wasted cleaner adds up. By some calculations, you could be spending as much as an extra $400 a year on extra soap, shampoos, detergents, etc. if you have several family members. Of course, this will depend on your family’s specific habits, but suffice it to say that all that lost soap can add up quickly!


The real cost of hard water though is in the appliances. Appliances are expensive, and they just aren’t built to handle the kind of minerals running through Calgary’s tap water. They collect on the sides of pipes and hoses and they build up as soap scum and lime deposits that shrink diameters and clog up your plumbing. This is all very hard on your plumbing system and appliances. The minerals wear down the inner parts of your fixtures, making them less and less efficient until they finally break. The lifespan of many plumbing fixtures can be effectively halved when using very hard water.


Expected lifespan with soft water: 9 years.

Expected lifespan with very hard water: 5.5 years

Washing Machines

Expected lifespan with soft water: 10 years.

Expected lifespan with very hard water: 7.5 years

Water Heaters (gas)

Expected lifespan with soft water: 10 years.

Expected lifespan with very hard water: 5.5 years

Water Heaters (tankless)

Expected lifespan 20+ years.

Expected lifespan with very hard water: unclear. With annual maintenance and descaling, effects may be minimal.

Calgarians pay good money for their appliances, and we expect them to work efficiently for at least a decade or so. Unfortunately, hard water can nearly halve the lifespan of some appliances, like dishwashers and gas water heaters. An easy solution that completely prevents this problem is to add a water softening system to your plumbing system. A water softening system effectively removes minerals from the hard Calgary water, so that you are left with only pure, demineralized water. No minerals, no build-up!

Contact the Calgary plumbing experts at Plumbing Paramedics today to learn how a water-softening system could save you a ton on appliance replacements.

Call us at (403) 452-2911 or Book Now an appointment.

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