With 1-in-3 Brits claiming hard water has got worse over the past year in their homes, limescale is on the rise in UK households according to a survey conducted by Oust and 4Media. As a nation that’s renowned for loving a hot brew and hot water in high demand during winter, household appliances and plumbing are under more pressure with limescale lurking and becoming a nuisance. Which means having a few home remedies for limescale up your sleeve can help keep your home limescale free for 2020.
The research found the effects of hard water costs Brits £25.8m due to damage and disrepair of appliances like irons, pipes, showerheads, boilers and kettles. Limescale can be found in kettles, dishwashers, showerheads, boilers and pipes. Once hard water is heated it creates a chalky off-white crust that creates limescale that is hard to clean off and makes appliances look tired and worn.
There is a solution. Reducing or getting rid of limescale doesn’t need to take hours of hard labour scrubbing – it can take just 10 minutes with the right home remedies for limescale! From grimy irons to annoying residue in your morning brew, limescale build-up can be easily managed with these handy tips.
Home remedies for limescale
1. Use a limescale descaling product
Did you know that limescale build-up starts from the first time you use your appliance? Oust All Purpose Descaler works in just 10 minutes to remove 100% of all limescale on a range of small household appliances including kettles, irons, coffee machines – to name a few. Just pop it in the appliance and let it do the hard work for you. The key to preventing limescale damage is regular descaling of appliances or surfaces. If you live in a hard water area it is advised to descale every 3 months and every 6 months in soft water areas.
2. Vinegar and limescale
Build-up of limescale on chrome fixtures like taps and showerheads can cause dullness and if left untreated chipping or peeling. One of the best ways to remove limescale from taps and a shower head is to fill a plastic bag with white vinegar and attach it to the affected area. Ensure the area that requires attention is soaked so it is able to dissolve the limescale. Return in ten to fifteen minutes and see the surface shine. For stubborn stains, soak the limescale for at least an hour or overnight
Vinegar can also be used to descale your kettle. Pour some white vinegar with water to the kettle and bring it to boil. Turn it off and allow the mixture to stay in the kettle for 30 minutes to an hour. Once you’re done, empty it and fill it with fresh water. Boil the kettle a few times to ensure there’s no lingering taste of vinegar.
3. Drain your water heater to prevent limescale
Limescale is produced by the heating of hard water and therefore can form in your hot water heater. By draining the tank a couple of times each year along with regulating or lowering the water temperature can help avoid build-ups of limescale.
Read the Wise Living guide to how to keep your home free from condensation.
4. Purify water before boiling
Shockingly, Brits swallow 338,000 kilos of flaky limescale in their hot drinks each year as a nation. If you’re sick of the little flakes of limescale in your morning coffee and just want to enjoy your cuppa, pre-treat the water by boiling it or by using a purifying filter – it’s one of the best ways to prevent and remove limescale from a kettle. This will remove some of the minerals from the water that cause limescale. Another home remedy for limescale is to empty out your kettle once you’ve finished using it as leftover water encourages the build-up of limescale.
5. Use lemon to remove limescale
Lemons can be used to get rid of limescale around various parts of the house, and are one of the best home remedies for limescale. It also leaves a refreshing smell once you’re done using it. For taps and showerheads, use half a lemon and wedge it onto the affected area for a few hours.
Tackle limescale in your kettle by filling it with water and small pieces of lemon. Boil the kettle with the lemon and water inside and leave it for an hour. Rise the kettle with clean water, and it should be good to go.
6. Use baking soda to remove limescale
Removing stains from your shower glass can be tricky but can be done using this home remedy for limescale by combining white vinegar and baking soda in a spray bottle. Let the mixture sit on the glass for a few minutes then wipe with a clean cloth or paper towel. For any stubborn spots, make a thick paste of baking soda and water and apply it to the affected areas and leave it there for a few minutes. Then rinse well and wipe dry.
Read the Wise Living guide to reducing air pollution at home.