Imagine moving into your new home only to discover that the water is so hard that if you don’t soften it all of your fixtures and water using appliances will be ruined! There are also the effects of hardness on your hair and skin. Now, imagine that you are told that–absent what amounts to a new construction project and additional expense–you can’t put in a water softener. Moreover, the problem may not just be hard water. You may be one of the many with sensitivity to chlorine or chloramines that might be used as a disinfectant by your water utility. Or maybe you just don’t like the water’s taste or smell.
While not our first time encountering it, we here at Rocky Mountain Water Conditioning have had recent, back-to-back experiences where the installation of a whole-home water conditioning system is not feasible due to the layout of the walls, ceilings, plumbing and utility rooms. In both these homes a major construction project would have been required to install a water softener to remove hardness throughout the home. In both examples no one shared the water quality with the new homeowner–or even if they were somewhat aware of the problem–no one shared that a water softener–a relatively simple fix for the water’s hardness–would be prevented by the home’s construction. Both of these instances could easily have been addressed prior to the home’s completion, but were not.
Water quality is frequently taken for granted. If the prospective homeowner has not lived somewhere before with water quality issues they may have no idea if they need to be concerned. Often people moving from a different locale have no idea what kind of water quality they may or may not be moving into, whereas buyers from nearby areas may at least be aware of rumored concerns. Even with an awareness of the problem, the vast majority of people don’t know what the installation of a water conditioning system entails–that leads to the hardest problem to solve–installation. Rocky Mountain Water Conditioning can provide a water softener, or other type of whole-house water conditioner, but without access to the water supply, a drain and electricity the installation of the water softener or water conditioner is not feasible. Simply precluding access to any one of the three requirements will prevent installation.
So, you might wonder, why don’t home builders or Realtors tell you about the problem in advance so it can be addressed? It probably comes down to wanting to sell you the house. Why create an objection that might kill the deal? Moreover, if the water meets the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) water quality requirements–which do not regulate hardness, taste or odor–then there is no material or legal reason to disclose or discuss the issue(s). Often, they may not be aware just how easily and inexpensively water quality problems be addressed.
The average home price in the Denver, CO metro area is about $500,000. The cost of a water conditioning system–depending on just what is sought to be accomplished–is roughly $3000-$5000. That’s 1% or less of the cost of the house! And substantially less than what it usually costs to add a finished basement, premium flooring or cabinetry, upgraded roofing, etc. So, explaining that a water softener might be desirable at a stage at which its installation can be assured, seems like a pretty minor issue. The prospective homeowner will appreciate it.
What should you do to ensure that you’ll be able to protect you appliances, fixtures, skin and wallet (the costs of hard water can be significant) from hard water? Here are a few simple recommendations:
1. Do your homework. You have probably already researched electricity, gas and television providers; schools; and grocery store locations. Every public water system must produce an annual report that provides details about its water. It’s called a Consumer Confidence Report (CCR). Generally they don’t make much (or any) mention of hardness levels, but they will tell you about the disinfectant(s) in use and you may see other things in the report that you have sensitivity to.
2. Ask questions! Talk to people who have already moved in. Ask your builder and Realtor about the reputation of the water in the area. Call Rocky Mountain Water Conditioning for a free water test as soon as water is available to the house.
3. Be proactive. Once you know that you might have problem water, plan with your builder to be certain that the walls, ceilings and plumbing are laid out in a manner that’s conducive to putting in a water conditioning system. Even better–have the water conditioner put in before the work is complete. Rocky Mountain Water Conditioning will even delay payment so that your system can be paid for at the settlement table.
There is absolutely no reason that bad water should ruin your new home! It just takes a little foresight and planning. We can help. Simply call us at 888-741-1711 or email our Water Quality Association Certified Master Water Specialist Tom Kinnane at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rocky Mountain Water Conditioning is a woman owned family business, licensed by the State of Colorado and fully insured. See more information at www.rmwaterconditioning.com.