pipe problems

    Published: March 16, 2015

    The Root of Your Pipe and Plumbing Nightmares

    Pipe Nightmares

    When most people experience water flow problems, they chalk it up to clogging related to hair or other particles. In reality, however, many water flow difficulties stem from hard water, which promotes mineral buildup that can congest piping.

    Because hard water contains a large amount of dissolved minerals, it can cause lime scale buildup within a pipe, resulting in pipe blockages or diminished water availability. In some cases, dissolved minerals can even eat through pipes, forming small holes that promote leaks and water damage.

    Decreased Flow

    Decreased water availability is the most common result of hard water. As hard water scale builds up within pipes, less water is able to pass through. This is usually most noticeable in faucets and shower heads, which may begin to dribble instead of spray. At the same time, lime scale can also interfere with the faucet’s shutoff mechanism, resulting in constant dripping even when the handles are turned to the off position.


    Sometimes, hard water can result in a complete pipe blockage that prevents any water from passing through. Because they form more rapidly in warm or hot water, scale blockages occur more frequently in pipes leading from hot water appliances. Hot water heaters are especially prone to buildup and may begin to function less efficiently as scale begins to coat the hot water heater elements.

    Avoiding Problems

    Most homeowners remain unaware of the negative effects of hard water until substantial damage has already occurred. As hard water minerals erode metal plumbing, pipes may become weak and develop holes. When these tiny holes develop behind walls and other inaccessible areas, water damage and mold can develop, resulting in potential health problems and significant repair costs.

    Fortunately, you can significantly reduce the impact of hard water by installing a Pelican NaturSoft® water softener alternative with salt free technology, which effectively neutralizes dissolved minerals in water. In addition to protecting your home plumbing and appliances, these devices also help reduce soap scum, stains, and other problems associated with hard water. Most importantly, they help prolong the life of your home’s water systems and reduce the risk of major repair expenses.