Is Well Water Hard Or Soft?
To answer if well water is hard or soft you should first understand what makes water hard. Water becomes hard when minerals like calcium and magnesium latch onto the oxygen and hydrogen molecules. Well water is not inherently hard, but it is more likely to be hard because the water is coming from the ground instead of dedicated reservoirs. Water stored in the ground will take on the attributes of the soil surrounding it, meaning well water may have excess minerals stored in it.
Well Water Source
A well used to be a long and wide shaft that would be dug deep into the soil to reach the water table beneath the ground. A water table is a collection of water that seeps through the ground from precipitation and nearby bodies of water. The water table usually sits atop a hard bedrock layer which, depending on the makeup of your local geology, can contain water-soluble minerals.
Wells are now drilled to be smaller in size and can reach deeper water deposits but still suffer from the same quality issues. When you have a well drilled or are using an existing well on a new property, it is important to conduct a well water test. Well water can change in chemical composition over time and it is important to keep up with monitoring your water quality.
Where Is The Water Table?
The depth of a water table depends on the geological features of your land. The United States Geological Survey has a useful tool that lets you check the depth of the water table from monitoring stations across the country. Some well survey stations may not be close enough to your property to give an accurate representation of the depth of your water table, but it will help you understand the levels you may observe.
Near a body of water
If you are located near a body of water such as a stream, lake, pond, or any sort of collection of surface water, your water table will be closer to the surface. Surface water will seep through the soil and saturate the surrounding area.
Atop a hill or mountain
If your land is located atop a hill, a groundwater source will be harder to find. Groundwater and precipitation will flow downhill to lower elevations with the help of gravity. Some pockets of groundwater can be found on a hill, but the pockets will be harder to rejuvenate and may be seasonal.
Flatlands have a high water table because the water does not have anywhere to move except to seep into the soil. The agricultural success of the great planes heavily relied on a large amount of water stored in the water table below the surface.
What Does Hard Water Look Like?
Hard water is not easily distinguished by looking at it. The best way to spot hard water is to watch for the signs of it. Hard water will leave behind minerals and discoloration in sinks, on shower heads, and in toilet bowls. Rust stains in your water fixtures are also a strong sign that you have hard water because the minerals may be eating away at your home’s internal piping.
You can feel the difference between hard and soft water in the shower. Hard water will make it more difficult to clean your hair with soap and will leave behind scum. Soft water makes it easy to wash material off of your hands because the water molecules are free to attach to soap and dirt particles.
Well Water Test
A well water test should be conducted to ensure that the water you are drinking is safe and clean. Issues with wells can arise quickly with shifts in geological activity or the weather. Recent fracking operations can disrupt well water quality and can turn water toxic. In order to ensure that you and your home is safe, you should conduct a water quality test.
Get Your Free Water Analysis
Jason’s Water Systems can conduct a free on-site water analysis that will help you determine if your water is safe. Our Analysis will also test to see if your water is hard or soft. If you are unsure about the quality of your well water, contact Jason’s Water today!