Water Quality in the State of Maryland
Maryland is a small state on the upper east coast with many bordering states (Virginia, Delaware, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Washington D.C.) and 4,431 miles of Atlantic shoreline. Often called “America in Miniature”, Maryland has a diverse topography, with a variety of mountains, beaches, sand dunes, farmlands, forests, and a wide variety of weather. In the Baltimore region, the primary source of drinking water comes from surface waters such as streams and reservoirs. Communities in the coastal plain region, such as Cambridge, rely on aquifers for their potable water.
Water Hardness by City
Maryland has an average water hardness of 118 PPM. This is considered hard by USGS measures. Baltimore, the most populous Maryland city, has very hard water at 185 PPM. Some slightly hard water citiesare Annapolis (70 PPM ) and Frederick, with 99 PPM.
For more information on the water hardness in specific cities, please see the table below.
PPM = Parts Per Million
mg/L = Milligrams Per Liter
gpg = Grains Per Gallon
Agriculture and Water Hardness
Agriculture is Maryland’s largest commercial industry, contributing 8.25 billion annually to Maryland’s economy. The state’s major agricultural products are poultry and eggs, grain, horticulture, milk production, cattle and calves, vegetables and melons.
As much of Maryland has water rich in calcium (the primary source of water hardness), many farms and food processing plants experience issues related to scale buildup in their irrigators, production, and mechanical equipment, due to the mass quantities of water flow every day. In addition, contaminants polluting soil and waterways have increased greatly over the past few decades and there is a greater need for waste and chemical control. Many farmers are looking for eco-friendly solutions that can increase the quality and yield of their crops while saving water. Read more about howHydroFLOW can increase crop yield.
Solutions to your Water Quality Problems
Fixing your water quality issues in the state of Maryland will depend on your specific water source. It is best to test your potable water supply in order to get a better understanding of your water quality. Testing is relatively cheap. The test results will allow you to understand if your potable water has issues that need to be addressed. Common solutions to water contamination problems may include a water filtration system, a reverse osmosis system or other whole home water treatment solutions.
A problem that almost all Maryland residents will have to deal with is hard water. One old-fashioned, inefficient, expensive and unhealthy method to treat hard water is with a salt-based water softener. Most people don’t realize that if you’re using a water softener you are basically removing calcium and magnesium from your drinking water and adding salt to your diet. In addition, many states are banning the use ofsalt-based water softeners.
Alternative water treatment solutions such as “water conditioners” have been gaining popularity in recent years because they are cheap to operate and the best eco-friendly solution for hard water. Hydropath technology, which powers theHydroFLOW water conditioners is by far the most efficient and cost-effective eco-friendly solution to deal with hard water problems. To learn more about howHydroFLOW solves the problems created by hard water, please check out ourtechnologypage. You might want to read this blog that explains the difference between water conditioners and water softeners:Water Conditioner vs. Water Softener Blog.
What should city water hardness? ›
A water softener can resolve this problem. The membrane manufacturers will often specify what the maximum hardness concentration can be, but the industry rule of thumb is that hardness should not exceed 120 to 170 mg/L (7 to 10 grains per gallon).How do I know my water hardness level? ›
Quick In-Home Testing
Fill the bottle one-third full, add a few drops of pure liquid soap and shake vigorously for a few seconds. If there is a distinct lack of fluffy bubbles and the water appears cloudy and/or milky, your water is hard.
Montgomery County water is softened to approximately 9 grains per gallon (157 mg/L), and many of our customers do not find it necessary to use a water softener.
General guidelines for classification of waters are: 0 to 60 mg/L (milligrams per liter) as calcium carbonate is classified as soft; 61 to 120 mg/L as moderately hard; 121 to 180 mg/L as hard; and more than 180 mg/L as very hard. Sources/Usage: Some content may have restrictions.Why is city water so hard? ›
It's a natural result of minerals like calcium and magnesium accumulating during the water cycle, and it can happen with well water and even city water. The more calcium and magnesium dissolved in the water, the harder the water becomes.How do I test my local water hardness? ›
Use a High-Quality Hard Water Test Kit. A home water test kit is the simplest (and probably the best) way to check your water for hardness minerals. A regular kit usually includes water test strips and a color chart. You can purchase a test kit from a local home improvement store or a reputable online retailer.How does hard water affect your hair? ›
Hard water contains minerals that create a barrier, preventing moisture from getting to the hair. Hair washed in hard water may become excessively dry, leading to other problems in the future. With continued use, hard water may lead to weakened hair strands and follicles.What does a water hardness of 7 mean? ›
Testing your water
3–7: Water between 3–7 gpg is moderately hard, causing spotty dishes and dry skin. 7–11: Hard water is packed with minerals at 7–11 gpg, and you likely deal with crusty faucets and pipes and possibly reddish rings on your porcelain from excess iron.
Maryland has an average water hardness of 118 PPM. This is considered hard by USGS measures. Baltimore, the most populous Maryland city, has very hard water at 185 PPM. Some slightly hard water cities are Annapolis (70 PPM ) and Frederick, with 99 PPM.What does a water hardness of 15 mean? ›
14+: Extremely hard water is anything over 14 gpg. Glasses are extra spotty, skin feels super squeaky, dry and scaly. Soap scum will become an issue and there will be scale buildup everywhere. You will need to use far more soap to get clothes, dishes and people clean.
Is 26 gpg hard water? ›
Grains per Gallon
Between 1 and 3.5 gpg is considered slightly hard. Between 3.5 and 7 gpg is considered moderately hard. Between 7 and 10.5 gpg is considered hard. More than 10.5 gpg is considered very hard.
Virginia water hardness is considered moderately hard according to USGS water hardness measures, with an average water hardness of 72 PPM. Some examples of cities with soft water are and Norfolk with a hardness level of 47 PPM and Chesapeake with 41 PPM.Is it safe to drink tap water in Maryland? ›
In conclusion, although Maryland tap water is safe to drink, home water treatment systems can almost always offer you another layer of protection.Which state has the most hard water? ›
The Southwest is home to a great deal of very hard water. New Mexico, Utah, and the western half of Texas are all hammered with calcium and magnesium. Some of the other very hard water states include Wisconsin, Indiana, and Florida.What level of hardness requires a water softener? ›
The decision to soften is a personal choice that can affect your home and the environment. If your water's hardness is greater than 7 grains per gallon or 120 mg/L, then you might need a water softener to ensure your appliances run well and to improve the taste, smell, or look of your water.Is 70 hard water? ›
In general, water with less than 60 ppm can be considered soft, water with 60-120 ppm moderately hard, and water with greater than 120 ppm hard.How do you reduce water hardness? ›
Using a water softener is the easiest way to convert hard water into soft water. Here are some of the benefits of using a water softener: Hard water leaves white spots behind. But, using the water treated with a water softener can rinse the residue of soap keeping the dishes clean and no white spots left on them.How do you fix hard city water? ›
The most common way to treat hard water is with a Water Softener. This is a water filtration system that filters out the hard water minerals in your water. Was the water travels into the filter, it passes through a bed of resin that traps the calcium and magnesium, which are then replaced with sodium ions.Can a water filter make hard water soft? ›
What's Water Filtration? A water filter doesn't treat water hardness like a softener. Instead, it removes chemicals and contaminants like pesticides, herbicides, chlorine and biological organisms. Some of these chemicals and organisms may be naturally occurring; others may come from pollution sources in your region.Is Bottled Water Hard or soft? ›
Bottled water is hard water as it contains lots of dissolved minerals. Hard water can cause problems in the home for example the build up of lime scale in kettles but it does have the benefit of tasting nice. There are two main types of bottled water, spring water and mineral water.
What ppm is considered hard water? ›
Hardness is a measure of the magnesium, calcium, and carbonate minerals in water. Water is considered soft if total hardness is less than 75 ppm, moderately hard at 75 to 150 ppm, hard at 150 to 300 ppm, and very hard at 300 ppm or higher.Are water hardness test strips accurate? ›
Test strips can serve as an initial screening tool, providing info on water pH and hardness, but they don't offer a clear picture of the level of contamination. If you're truly worried about dangerous stuff your home's drinking water, start elsewhere.What is the pH of hard water? ›
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends pH levels between 5.5 and 9 for household drinking water. With 7 being a true neutral, that means that hard water will typically fall closer to 9 while soft water will fall closer to 5.5.Can hard water cause hairloss? ›
Hard water does not lead to hair loss directly but can lead to hair breakage after prolonged use. Research studies prove that hard water does not have a direct effect on the tensile strength and elasticity of hairs.Does hard water cause hair thinning? ›
One study involving 70 males found that hair lost strength when exposed to hard water, compared with deionized water. As a result, this led to hair breakage. And when the hair is weak, it thins. Hard water can even make your hair colorist's job harder, says Mara Roszak, celebrity hairstylist and salon owner.What does water hardness of 12 mean? ›
What is considered hard water? Soft water is 0-3 gpg (grains per gallon). Medium water is 3-7 gpg. Hard water is 7-12 gpg. Anything over 12 gpg is very hard, and a water softener is recommended.Is hard water OK to drink? ›
Hard water has no known adverse health effect, WHO says at its Geneva Conference. In addition, hard water, particularly very hard water, could provide an important supplementary contribution to total calcium and magnesium intake.What is water hardness value E? ›
A Clark degree (°Clark) or English degrees (°e or e) is defined as one grain (64.8 mg) of CaCO3 per Imperial gallon (4.55 litres) of water, equivalent to 14.254 ppm. A French degree (°fH or °f) is defined as 10 mg/L CaCO3, equivalent to 10 ppm.Is 70 ppm water hard or soft? ›
Hardness is measured in either parts per million (ppm) or grains per gallon (gpg). Less than 4 gpg (70 ppm) is considered to be soft. Over 10.5 gpg (180 ppm) is considered to be very hard.What is normal water hardness ppm? ›
The hardness of water is determined by the milligrams of calcium carbonateper litre and is reported it in parts-per-million (ppm). In general, water with less than 60 ppm can be considered soft, water with 60-120 ppm moderately hard, and water with greater than 120 ppm hard.
What is a good hardness level for water ppm? ›
Hardness is a measure of the magnesium, calcium, and carbonate minerals in water. Water is considered soft if total hardness is less than 75 ppm, moderately hard at 75 to 150 ppm, hard at 150 to 300 ppm, and very hard at 300 ppm or higher.Is bottled water Hard or soft? ›
Bottled water is hard water as it contains lots of dissolved minerals. Hard water can cause problems in the home for example the build up of lime scale in kettles but it does have the benefit of tasting nice. There are two main types of bottled water, spring water and mineral water.Is it better to drink hard or soft water? ›
Drinking hard water versus soft water is not a health hazard. In fact, the National Institutes of Health have found positive health benefits for drinking hard water, as calcium and magnesium play important roles in improved heart function, digestion, blood sugar regulation, even cancer-fighting.Is 21 ppm hard water? ›
Hard Water Classifications
Soft: 0 - 17.1 parts per million (ppm) Slightly hard: 17.1 – 60 ppm. Moderately hard: 60 - 120 ppm. Hard: 120 - 180 ppm.
Hard water contains minerals that create a barrier, preventing moisture from getting to the hair. Hair washed in hard water may become excessively dry, leading to other problems in the future. With continued use, hard water may lead to weakened hair strands and follicles.Is 10 a hard water? ›
Between 1 and 3.5 gpg is considered slightly hard. Between 3.5 and 7 gpg is considered moderately hard. Between 7 and 10.5 gpg is considered hard. More than 10.5 gpg is considered very hard.What is the hardness of rain water? ›
As a comparison, rainwater has a hardness of less than 5 mg/L.How much hardness can a softener remove? ›
An average softener should remove 4000 grains of hardness for every One pound of salt used. Always ask the suppliers to compare various softeners available in the market.Is 15 ppm hard water? ›
7–11: Hard water is packed with minerals at 7–11 gpg, and you likely deal with crusty faucets and pipes and possibly reddish rings on your porcelain from excess iron. 11–15: Considered very hard, water at 11–15 gpg exhibits all the signs of hard water all the time. 15+: Extremely hard water is anything over 15 gpg.