Does Tacoma, WA Have Hard Water?

Understanding Hard Water in Tacoma, WA

Water hardness is a common concern for homeowners and residents across the globe. In the United States, certain regions are more prone to hard water than others due to the geology of the area and the source of the water supply. In this article, we delve into the subject of water hardness, focusing on Tacoma, Washington and the surrounding areas.

What is Hard Water?

Before we look specifically at Tacoma, let's understand what hard water is. Hard water contains a high mineral content, particularly calcium and magnesium. While these minerals are not harmful to human health, they can cause issues with household appliances, plumbing systems, and detergents' effectiveness. Hard water can lead to build-up of scale in pipes and equipment, reduce the lifespan of appliances, and cause skin and hair to feel dry.

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Water Hardness in Tacoma, Washington

Water Source and Mineral Content

The primary water source for Tacoma is the Green River Watershed, a protected surface water supply in King County. This water undergoes a rigorous treatment process before it is supplied to homes and businesses in Tacoma. According to the Tacoma Public Utilities, Tacoma's water hardness ranges from soft to moderately hard. The average hardness level is approximately 50 parts per million (ppm) or 3 grains per gallon (gpg), making it relatively soft compared to other areas of the country.

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Seasonal Variation

It's also worth noting that water hardness in Tacoma can vary slightly with the seasons. During the winter months, when the water source is primarily from rainfall, the water tends to be softer. In contrast, during the summer months, the hardness level may increase slightly due to the higher proportion of groundwater in the supply.

Considerations for Tacoma Residents

Home Appliances and Plumbing

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While the water in Tacoma is generally soft to moderately hard, residents may still experience some effects of hard water. For example, over time, even moderate hardness can lead to some scaling in water heaters and other appliances. Therefore, it's important to maintain and clean appliances regularly to prevent build-up and extend their lifespan.

Personal Care

In terms of personal care, Tacoma residents are less likely to experience the dry skin and hair commonly associated with hard water. However, individual sensitivity varies, and some people may still benefit from using moisturizers or water softening products.

Practical Tips for Managing Water Hardness

Even though Tacoma's water hardness is relatively low, some residents may still want to take steps to manage it. Here are a few tips:

– Regularly clean and descale appliances that use water, such as coffee makers and dishwashers.
– Consider installing a water softening system if you notice persistent issues with scale build-up or dry skin and hair.
– Use a dishwasher rinse aid to improve the effectiveness of your dishwasher in case of slightly harder water.

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In essence, while Tacoma, WA does not have excessively hard water, it's always beneficial to be aware of your water's quality and how it can affect your home and personal care.

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About the Author: Grady

Lifelong bacon junkie. Lifelong internet fanatic. Hipster-friendly travel aficionado. Twitter lover. Avid food buff. Incurable travel trailblazer.