Water Quality

hard water stains

Hard Water

Calcite, gypsum, and dolomite rocks dissolve into water and add “hardness”. These “hard minerals” are a common water quality problem and cause scaly buildup in appliances, plumbing, laundry, and even skin and hair!

Hardness is measured in “grains per gallon” or gpg. The national average is 4-5gpg. City water in our area is often 10-20gpg. Many wells, especially those north of Billings, can go well over 100gpg!

Best treated with: Water Softener, Whole House Reverse Osmosis

Common Hard Water problems:

  • Spotty, etched, cloudy glassware
  • 50% increase in appliance & plumbing repairs
  • Up to 29% more energy used by water heater
  • Up to 75% more soap and detergent

total dissolved solids

Total Dissolved Solids

Total Dissolved Solids, or TDS, is a measurement of the organic and inorganic matter in your water. These contaminants may be from man-made or natural sources.

Total Dissolved Solids are measured in “parts per million”. 0ppm would be pure water (hydrogen + oxygen).

The EPA has set a standard of 500ppm for dissolved solids. City water in our area often ranges from 300-500ppm. Well water in our area can actually have over 1700ppm TDS!

Best treated with: Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water System, Whole House Reverse Osmosis

Common Total Dissolved Solid problems:

  • Poor-tasting water
  • Cloudy-looking ice cubes
  • Increased corrosion in plumbing and water heater

Chlorine in drinking water

Chlorine

Chlorine is a common germicide used in city water treatment plants. Chlorine is stable, low cost, and very effective at killing bacteria.

Unfortunately, adding chlorine to water can create potential health risks. Disinfection byproducts may be created that have carcinogenic effects at high enough levels.

Chlorine drives moisture out of skin and hair. Sensitive skin is often helped by removing Chlorine.

Chlorine also oxidizes rubber – shortening the life and increasing leaks from seals and gaskets.

Best treated with: Whole House Filter

Common Chlorine problems:

  • Poor-tasting water
  • Dry skin and hair
  • Damage to rubber seals in plumbing and appliances

rust stains

Iron

Iron is another common mineral in groundwater. Iron is also measured in parts per million (ppm). Iron stains begin at 0.3ppm.

Many wells, and even some cities in our area have over 2ppm Iron (roughly 7x over the staining limit).

Iron can be found in multiple forms. Dissolved iron can be removed by a Water Softener. Oxidized Iron and Iron Bacteria must be removed by an Iron Filter.

Common Iron problems:

  • Rust stains
  • Metallic taste and smell
  • Increased salt use by Water Softener