Many people live in areas with naturally hard water. Hard water is defined as a mineral content higher than 7 grains per gallon or 120 milligrams per liter. Water softeners are plumbing appliances designed to remove some of the minerals from your Nixa, Missouri, home's water. If you don't know the mineral content of your water, here are the following three signs that you need a water softener for your home.

Scale Buildup

Minerals in hard water cause a buildup. This buildup is called scale, and it consists of calcium and magnesium. According to the Minnesota Department of Health, the mineral scale may build up in your pipes, reducing the flow of water. It also builds up in your appliances, including your washing machine or dishwasher. You may also notice scale forming on water faucets, tea kettles or humidifiers. Water softeners use ion exchange to remove those minerals.

Water Stains

Hard water also causes stains on your sinks, bathtubs and toilets. It can also leave orange stains on your laundry. The stain usually appears to be orange. Your clothing may also fade faster and take on a grayish tint. Mild staining can be treated by cleaning with white vinegar to dissolve the minerals. A water softener that uses potassium chloride pellets will be more effective at preventing stains on your home's plumbing fixtures and your clothing.

Brittle Skin, Clothing and Dishes

Hard water reduces your skin's moisture. You may notice chronically dry skin and hair. Your clothes may feel crusty after washing them. This is because the fabric absorbs the minerals in the water. Glassware and porcelain dishes often develop brittleness when washed in hard water. The glasses and dishes become more fragile, and they break more easily. If you've noticed your dishes breaking without even dropping them, it could be due to hard water.To learn more about how a water softener could benefit your home, call Lorenz Plumbing Heating & Air Conditioning today.

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