Water Heaters & Water Quality

Evaluate your home's water quality with these tips and tricks

State seeks to provide water heating solutions for your home that fit with your unique lifestyle and needs. In addition to offering expertise on water heating, we work to provide additional resources on water quality tips and groundwater temperature, which are factors that impact your water heater's performance.

Your Home's Water Quality

What to consider when
purchasing a hot water heater

Water quality in your home impacts your water heater, and understanding the water quality you have is a great step toward figuring out the best water treatment and heating solution for your needs.

Identifying Your Water Quality

To determine your water quality, take a look at the water in your state, area code, and neighborhood. This information is accessible through online government resources, such as the annual Consumer Confidence Report (CCR), which includes details about water quality from each water supplier. Look for this information from the EPA or from your water supplier directly. Once you've briefly reviewed the water quality where you live, you can move forward with a test of your home's water quality. A plumbing contractor can also complete these tests, which measure water hardness, pH levels, lead, bacteria and more for you.

Hand filling up a glass of water.

Environmental and Location Factors

You should also consider your home's location and the incoming groundwater temperature in addition to water quality when determining the water heating solution that best fits your home's needs. A more powerful water heater may be needed in a cold climate, for example, to get the desired amount of hot water.

The Effects of Water Hardness and Scale

What is water hardness?

The amount of dissolved materials (typically calcium and magnesium) in the water determines its hardness measurement. When more minerals are present in the water, it is considered harder, which can lead to increased scale buildup. Water softening systems are helpful in preventing scale buildup in areas with particularly hard water.

How does this impact me?

Over 85% of American homes have hard water, and the leading cause of tankless water heater failure is scale buildup due to hard water. You're more likely to experience scale buildup in your faucets, water heaters, and other water delivery systems if you have hard water, which can lead to decreased water heater efficiency. This impacts not only performance, but costs as well, and can lead to significant damage from overheating.

How can I help protect against scale buildup

The Product Preservers® Anti-Scale Filter System helps mitigate scale buildup and its impact for tankless water heaters. The water filter system promotes the formation of inactive scale crystals, which don’t stick to the heat exchanger as they flow through the water heater.

Sacrificial anodes in tank water heaters can interact with hard water and create an aluminum hydroxide gel that reduces heating efficiency. However, the Product Preservers Powered Anode System helps you make your water heater last longer as the system adapts to your water type to give it the best protection possible.

The Importance of Water Filtration

Water treatment can range from a luxury to a necessity in accordance with where you live and the TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) rating of your water. To provide clean water in your home and work toward healthier living, contact your local plumbing contractor to discuss the role of water filtering and softening in your home. If you do need to install a water filter, your next decision involves whether to install a whole home filter, which filters all water used, or a drinking water filter, which is installed only at a source and filters that water only.

Additional Reading

State water heaters come in a large range of sizes. Discover the factors to consider when making your decisions.

Learn more about water heater sizingkeyboard_arrow_right

Gas water heaters require venting upon installation. Depending on your home, there are many different options.

Learn about vent configurationskeyboard_arrow_right

Discover the innovative design features A. O. Smith engineers use to keep your water heater both functional and safe.

Learn more about water heater safetykeyboard_arrow_right
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Contractor Resources

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