Is well Water Hard or Soft?

Owning a private well is a norm in the United States and all over the world. Being a primary source of water, you may have looked upon whether the well water is hard or soft and which one is safe for drinking.

But before we find out if water is hard or soft, we need to see what makes the water hard or soft and what difference it has in our lives. Water, being a basic necessity, is essential for all of us to know about its properties, and this article will help you learn about whether well water is hard or soft?

Hard and soft water

Water is being classified into two categories. The basic element that differentiates between both types is the quantity of dissolved minerals contained by the water.

Talking about hard water, it usually contains a high amount of minerals, generally calcium and magnesium. On the other hand, soft water does not have calcium or magnesium. However, you will find a higher concentration of salt in soft water. The greater the level of minerals, the harder it becomes.

Well water source

Talking about the well water, it does not come from the dedicated tank; rather, it’s taken from the ground. The ground properties and attributes vary from place to place, and thus the quantity of minerals differs for each well.

How to identify if water is hard or soft?

You cannot identify the water if it is hard or soft by just observing or looking at it. One way of determining it is by doing the laboratory test; you can get the exact amount of minerals present in water, and based on that, you can tell if the water is hard or soft.

You also get a sign of identification when you do the dishes or wash your clothes. If water is hard, the soap will form scum, and you have to wash your hands a little longer. Other than that, you will be seeing spots on your dishes and mineral stains on your clothes if the water is hard. Similarly, the hard water will cause blockage in pipes as mineral deposits and residue will form along with time.

In contrast, soft water will not cause mineral deposits, scum, or any kind of stains. When drinking soft water, you might get a slight sodium taste.

Well water is hard or soft?

As now you know what makes the water hard or soft, what about the well water. Typically, the well water is not hard, but considering the source and location of the well, the water may become hard due to the excessive presence of minerals. Water quality will be influenced by the ground and the soil surrounding it, and it may have minerals present. So, without investigating signs or by doing a laboratory test, it is difficult to talk about the water characteristics exactly. Well water tests will let you know if well water is hard or soft, and you will also get to see if it is safe for drinking or not. This raises a question; is hard water drinkable? Let’s find out.

Can you drink hard water?

There is no harm or health risk related to consuming hard water. Instead, it is preferred for drinking as it contains essential minerals that help you grow and fight against diseases in one way or another. Additionally, hard water has a good flavor because of the presence of minerals. However, despite the benefits, some people may have problems with dry water and may result in dry skin or hair problems.

Besides that, if water is too hard or contains a high amount of minerals, then it may not be safe to drink as anything extra may cause problems.

Similarly, soft water is also drinkable, but as it contains a high rate of sodium, you may want to avoid it if you have blood pressure or other similar problems.


As far as the characteristic of well water is concerned, you can only identify it either through laboratory testing or by analyzing the signs when you will use the water. Well water is not only used for drinking but also for different household activities such as cooking, cleaning, and washing. The properties of water have their effects, and thus it becomes necessary that you get it checked if the water is hard or soft.