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Close up of hard water stains sitting on a dripping tap.

How to Deal with Hard Water Residue When Doing the Laundry

Do you live in a hard water or a soft water area? Do you actually know what the difference is? Don’t worry if you don’t – it’s a mystery that few have cracked. Luckily, we’re used to identifying the signs of hard water residue and know how it can affect your laundry. If you’re tired of crispy clothes and a lack of bubbles from your detergent, then follow our advice and put those pesky hard water deposits in their place once and for all.   


So…what is hard water residue?

Hard water is not an alternative name for ice. It’s just normal liquid water that has a high concentration of naturally-occurring minerals dissolved in it. These are picked up from the rocks your water flows over on its way to your tap and are perfectly safe to drink and use. 

The only problem is that when the water evaporates, limescale – a hard water build up – can be left behind. These hard water deposits are usually found in kettles, dishwashers, and washing machines and sometimes the stains transfer onto your clothes. Hard water can also make it hard for your detergent to do its job.


What can you do about hard water? Laundry detergent and washing advice

Now you know what it is, it’s time to learn how to deal with hard water deposits when it comes to your laundry. It’s actually very simple – all you should need is the right laundry detergent for hard water and a closer look at your dosing.

  1. Use a high quality laundry detergent. Persil liquid makes a great laundry detergent for hard water, as it’s designed to be effective in both hard and soft water. You can use either biological or non-biological detergents with hard and soft water too. 
  2. Use the right dose of detergent. This is where most people go wrong. If you live in a hard water area then you may need to use more detergent than someone in a soft water area. Check the dosage instructions on the packaging for specific guidelines.
  3. Consider using a water softener. You can buy these in your supermarket – they usually come in tablet or liquid form and go in your detergent drawer before the detergent. There’s some debate over how necessary these are when it comes to preventing hard water build up in your machine but they may allow you to use less of your detergent in each wash. 
  4. Install a water filter. This is a costly option but can be worth it if hard water deposits are a recurrent problem. Remember, this build-up doesn’t just cause staining, it can also damage your washing machine. Installing a new filter could help keep those pesky minerals at bay while using a hard water laundry detergent dose will prevent any nasty surprises on your clothes.


So, next time your clothes feel a little stiff or you notice the tell-tale white marks of limescale and hard water residue, give these steps a try and see if they help alleviate your hard water problem.

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