How Hard Water Damages Plumbing in California

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How Hard Water Damages Plumbing in California

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California’s hard water can damage household appliances
California’s hard water can damage household appliances

Due to California's geographical makeup, many areas of the state experience the effects of hard water.

Hard water can cause irreversible damage to a home's freshwater plumbing, so it is important to stay updated on water hardness levels in your local area.

In this article, we will explain what hard water is and how it affects plumbing in California, identify which cities in the state have the highest levels of water hardness, and discuss why repiping is the most effective solution for removing hard water damage from your California home.

What Is Hard Water and How Does It Affect Plumbing in California?

California's hard water significantly affects plumbing systems across the state. Hard water is characterized by high levels of dissolved minerals, primarily calcium and magnesium, which accumulate in pipes and fixtures, leading to scale buildup.

This buildup restricts water flow, decreases water pressure, and can cause clogs in pipes, ultimately diminishing the performance of plumbing systems. We have an article that breaks down how hard water can damage plumbing systems.

what you see here is also inside your pipes.
What you see here is also inside your pipes.

Household appliances like water heaters, dishwashers, and washing machines are particularly susceptible to damage from hard water, as mineral deposits can coat internal components, reducing both efficiency and longevity. Additionally, plumbing fixtures such as faucets and shower-heads experience aesthetic and functional damage due to mineral deposits.

Understanding the impact of hard water on plumbing and implementing appropriate measures is crucial for maintaining the performance of your California home's plumbing systems.


Which Cities in California Have the Highest Levels of Hard Water?

Hard water levels across California can vary significantly, with moderately hard water in Los Angeles being quite different from the levels in San Francisco, which has some of the softest water in the state.

We've compiled a list of the five areas in California with some of the highest levels of hard water (Note: Anything above 121 ppm (parts per million) is defined as hard water, while anything about 181 ppm is considered very hard).

California's Hard Water Capitals

  1. San Diego: San Diego's water supply comes primarily from local reservoirs and the Colorado River. While the water is treated before distribution, it still retains high levels of minerals, leading to hard water levels of 241 ppm (parts per million).
  2. Santa Barbara: Santa Barbara faces hard water levels of around 391 ppm due to the areas reliance on groundwater sources, which often contain elevated levels of calcium and magnesium minerals.
  3. Santa Clarita: Like many of the Los Angeles Counties, Santa Clarita experiences very hard water, with an average of 271 ppm.
  4. Glendale: With a hardness level of 360.3 ppm, Glendale suffers from extremely hard water, primarily sourced from local groundwater wells.
  5. Ventura County: Ventura County not only has the hardest water in California but also some of the hardest water in the entire country, with certain areas reaching upwards of 666 ppm.

You can check the water hardness data in your area by searching your zip code at Hydroflow USA.

One option to help minimize the effects of hard water is by installing a water softener, which can mitigate the effects of hard water and prolong the lifespan of household appliances. For further details, you can refer to our article outlining the best ways to minimize the affects of hard water.

However, if your home's freshwater plumbing is already damaged by the effects of hard water, there is no effective way to remove it.


What is the Most Effective Way to Remove Hard Water Damage in California?

If your home's plumbing has already been damaged by hard water, there is no effective way to remove scale buildup, so it must be replaced. While installing water softeners can mitigate the effects of hard water, they won't remove pre-existing damage inside a home's plumbing.

Repiping with materials that are less susceptible to hard water, such as PEX, can help counteract the effects of hard water on your plumbing. Combining repiping with water softener solutions is the best option. (Note: No material is immune to the effects of hard water; however, PEX is more resistant than most other options.)

At Repipe Specialists, we have been replacing plumbing damaged by hard water for many years. Our repipes are typically completed in as little as one day, with a return visit on the second day for wall patching if needed. We handle everything, including permits and inspections.

Repiping can also address potential hidden problems, enhancing the overall performance of your plumbing and eliminating the need to constantly adjust water pressure to compensate for underlying hard water issues.

With our expertise, homeowners can ensure their plumbing is equipped to withstand the challenges of hard water in California, providing long-term peace of mind and protection for your home's plumbing.

Contact us to have one of our local repipe consultants provide a free consultation and quote, delivered in-home or remotely.


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With over 75,000 repipes completed, we've perfected our One-Stop Repipe™ for your home.

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Get a Quote for Repiping Your Damaged Pipes in California

Here at Repipe Specialists, we've fully replaced plumbing damaged by hard water in thousands of homes across the USA with modern Uponor PEX tubing. We continually get positive customer feedback from customers about their whole home repipe experiences. We often exceed their expectations on:

  • Speed: Our repipe crews typically complete a repipe in a day, returning on another day for wall patching.
  • Convenience: Through our One-Stop Repipe™ Process, we handle everything from permits, to wall patching, to inspections.
  • Cleanliness: Our crews are trained to protect your home while working (we cover all surfaces with protective sheeting), and to clean up fully at the end of each day.
  • Peace of Mind: Repipe Specialists is a fully licensed plumber in every state we operate in, and we back all of our repipes with a lifetime warranty.
  • Financing programs: To help take the sting out of unplanned repipe expenses, we offer several financing programs.
  • Price: As a specialist that performs hundreds of repipes a week, we can deliver high quality repipes at a lower cost vs generalist plumbers. We have an article that cover repipe cost factors in detail. Our quotes typically range from $4,500 to $15,000 depending on the size and complexity of your project.

Schedule a free in-home consult, and one of our local repipe consultants will explain all your repipe options and provide you with a written, fixed-price quote. Fix hard water damage in California, repipe with PEX.


About Repipe Specialists

Expert Repiping at an Affordable Cost

Since our founding in 1991, we've been completing residential and multi-family building repipes to the highest standard.

With over 75,000 repipes completed, we've perfected our  One Stop Repipe™ process: providing you with a high quality and convenient repipe experience while offering significant savings compared to traditional plumbers - plus, our work is guaranteed for life.

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