Calcium buildup — not only is it icky to look at on the outside, but it can cause pretty costly plumbing repairs on the inside as well. When hardness minerals crystallize and adhere to your pipes and faucets, they narrow the waterways, making it more difficult for water to flow. In the business, we call this crusty, green, gunk limescale, and we don’t like it any more than our customers do!
Fortunately, if you’ve been noticing these hard, white and green deposits often, there are several steps you can take now to ensure you banish them from your plumbing once and for all.
How to Remove Limescale From Your Pipes
- Step 1: Shut off your water main — but before you do, grab a large pot and fill it with water first. You’ll need one pot of water per sink or shower drain that you plan to clear. (We suggest you do them all!) You may need to allow the DIY solution to sit for a while, so be sure you can forgo water for a bit before you begin.
- Step 2: With your water reserved in pots and your water main off, it’s time to empty out those pipes. Turn on your taps completely and allow any remaining water to pour out and down your drain. You’ll want to flush your toilets as well.
- Step #3: Start concocting your limescale removing solution in your sinks one ingredient at a time. First pour one cup of baking soda down each drain, then pour the vinegar slowly, filling it as much as you can. Keep in mind that best results take about 3 hours, so now it’s just a waiting game!
- Step #4: While you wait, give your faucets and showerheads a good cleaning too. The easiest way to remove buildup is by putting your vinegar and baking soda solution in a bag and tying it around your fixtures. That way, it can sit and soak along with your pipes.
- Step #5: Finally, it’s time to blast away the remnants with some boiling water. That’s where those pots you set aside earlier come into play! Heat them up and pour your boiling water down each drain quickly to create a forceful wave of water. (Just be careful of the splashback! We recommend doing this step with gloves and long sleeves in, just in case.) Then just clean up, turn your water valves back on and voila!
Prevent Further Limescale Buildup With Soft Water
Simple.. Or is it? If that sounds like a ton of work to you, we’d have to agree. In fact, we can think of one way to banish limescale and calcium buildup with a lot less effort required. Yeah — we’re talking about a whole house water softening and filtration system. Our Kinetico water softeners will ensure that no hardness minerals are allowed to invade your pipes in the first place, making cleaning them out a thing of the past.
For more information, check out our blog: Water Softener FAQs: Common Water Softening Questions Answered