Water hardness explained
Why does water hardness vary?
Water hardness can differ across our region as it depends on the soil and rocks from where your water is taken. For example, water that has been held in chalk or limestone will tend to be harder and is mainly found in the east of the region. On the other hand, water from moorlands tends to be softer and is mainly found in the west of the region.
Our Yorkshire Grid system means that we can transport water around the region to meet demand. This can mean that your water hardness is not always the same as the source may vary.
Does hard water have any health benefit?
An adequate daily intake of calcium is essential for normal growth and health. Foods such as dairy products, beans, eggs, nuts, cauliflower and spinach contain calcium. The hardness of water has a small but beneficial effect on a healthy diet.
There is no known health risk associated with hard water and we don’t investigate or collect samples for hardness. If you require, we can provide detailed information about hardness in your area. We don’t soften water at any water treatment plants.
We’re responsible for supplying clean, wholesome water. Our customers, both domestic and industrial, may want to alter the hardness of their water. We leave it up to you to decide whether artificial water softening is the right choice.
You might choose to fit softening equipment at home. This can be done provided it’s in accordance with the Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations 1999 (formerly known as the Water Byelaws). You must keep an unsoftened supply for drinking purposes, as the softening process adds sodium to the water.
We don’t advise on whether or not a water softener can be fitted. For advice on the installation of filters, softeners and other devices, please contact British Water.