Drain Cleaning: 3 Tips To Consider When Removing Calcium Buildup

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If your local water source contains a lot of natural minerals, it is considered as hard water. As the water travels through your plumbing, minerals from the water, especially calcium, will cling onto the walls of your plumbing and slowly accumulate. Over time, calcium buildup, in particular, can have detrimental effects on your plumbing. It can cause blockages, premature deterioration and other problems. Cleaning your drains regularly can help prevent calcium buildups and is highly recommended. Here are 3 tips to consider when cleaning calcium buildups from your drains.

Flush White Vinegar Down the Strains

Before you opt for more complicated cleaning procedures, flush white vinegar down the affected drains first. The active ingredient in white vinegar is acetic acid, which is a weak acid that can dissolve minor calcium deposits. Acetic acid possesses descaling properties. If the calcium buildup in your drain is considered as relatively minor, flushing white vinegar down the drains several times and letting it sit overnight should be sufficient.

White vinegar is not only harmless to human beings and pets, but is also relatively inexpensive in comparison to store-bought cleaners. After flushing white vinegar down the drain, some professional drain cleaners will recommend rinsing the drains with high pressure washing services. This will remove any white vinegar residues that may be coated on the plumbing and any calcium buildups that were left behind.

Use CLR and Other Strong Chemicals with Caution

Be wary of plumbers who recommend using CLR and other strong chemicals for removing the calcium buildup without discussing other options first. Although CLR and other strong chemicals may be very effective, they should be your last resort if you have aluminum or copper plumbing, as the chemicals are extremely acidic and will take the finish off of the plumbing. This can lead to premature deterioration and other complications.

Due to the extremely acidic nature of CLR and other strong chemicals, make sure you wear appropriate safety gear when using them as a cleaning agent. CLR needs to be diluted with water before it can be used, and the drains should be rinsed with cold water afterwards to neutralize the solution.

Avoid Hefty Cleaning Jobs in the Future by Installing a Water Softening System

If you've just spent hours removing calcium buildup in your drains, you'll probably never want to do it again. You can lessen the effects hard water has on your drains by installing a water softening system in your home. The plumber from the drain cleaning company will be able to tell you whether a water softening system is needed based on the mineral content present in your local water source.

Water softening systems are able to remove minerals, like calcium and magnesium, from your water supply using a process known as ion exchange. The gist of it is that these minerals carry a positive charge. These minerals will be attracted to the beads in the mineral tank of the water softening system, which carry negative charges. Sodium then collects on the beads later on in the process to replace calcium and magnesium.

Conclusion

Calcium buildup is a common problem in many households, and is one of the main causes for reduced water flow. Further complications can be easily avoided by getting your drains cleaned and inspected regularly. If you are diligent, you can easily catch the calcium buildups before they accumulate to the point where they become a big problem for your plumbing. It's best to get your drains cleaned by professionals in order to make sure that no spots are missed, and that all of the calcium buildup is removed. Click here for more information on solutions for removing calcium buildup.

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2 October 2015

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