How to Remove and Prevent Limescale

Removing Limescale

It’s amazing how common minerals can destroy your kitchen gadgets and make your shiny new plumbing fixtures look like junk! If you have “hard water,” you’re probably sick and tired of limescale deposits clogging your faucets and showerhead. If it seems that it takes longer and longer every morning for your coffeemaker to finish brewing, you need to learn how to remove and prevent limescale from returning.

What is Limescale

Limescale is a heavy, cakey buildup of minerals, mostly calcium carbonate, but with a little magnesium as well. “Hard water” is water that is rich with these minerals. And unfortunately, these minerals become concentrated and dry on plumbing fixtures as a white, chalky mess.

Downsides of Extra Minerals

Calcium is an essential nutrient for people, but we really need it in our bones, not caking the inside of our water pipes. Limescale also builds up on our bodies, and some say it builds up inside us, to.

  1. Dulls hair

  2. Makes skin itchy

  3. May cause kidney stones

As far as our plumbing fixtures, limescale:

  1. Clogs showerheads and hose sprayers

  2. Turns rusty and stains fixtures and tiles

  3. Destroys heating elements in water heaters and electric kettles

  4. Damages clothing in washing machines

  5. Reduces water pressure

Removing Limescale

Luckily, removing limescale is relatively simple and inexpensive. You may have seen a plethora of products in the grocery store that remove this buildup. However, everyday cleaning vinegar is the safest, cheapest, and most effective solution.

Removing limescale from surfaces

To remove limescale from the surface of plumbing fixtures, soak a cleaning cloth in white vinegar and place it on the crust buildup for about 30 minutes.

Removing limescale from appliances

For electric kettles, mix a solution of half and half white vinegar and water. Let the solution soak in the kettle for 30 minutes and then wash thoroughly with soap and water. Repeat if some limescale remains.

For drip coffeemakers, run the 50/50 solution through the brewing cycle after removing the filter and coffee basket. Run clean, clear water through several times to rinse.

Removing limescale from pipes

It can be difficult to remove limescale from the inside of your plumbing pipes, but you can use white vinegar in your sink drain, washing machine, and dishwasher regularly to prevent heavy buildup.

Removing limescale from water heaters

Your water heater can suffer from limescale buildup on the heating elements, which makes it less efficient and less effective over time. Regularly draining and flushing your water heater can help prevent excess buildup.

Preventing Limescale

Unfortunately, if your public water supply delivers “hard water” to your home, you’re going to spend a lot of time cleaning with vinegar.

The only long-term solution is adding a water softener to your home. Make an appointment today with the pros at Benjamin Franklin Plumbing in Nashville for an estimate. You don’t have to spend every weekend smelling like pickles for clear pipes, shiny faucets, and smooth skin.