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WW-INQUIRY: White Deposits from Water

After boiling water, there are white flakes in my ice cubes, my dishes and plumbing fixtures. Find out why below.

What is the white stuff I am seeing?

South Bend's water is very hard water. These white flakes or deposits are caused by naturally occurring calcium carbonate and magnesium carbonate. When the water is boiled, frozen or dries on dishes and fixtures, these minerals come out of solution and appear as white solids.

What can I do about it?

  1. Using a water softener can prevent mineral build up on your dishes and faucets, but it is best to avoid drinking and cooking with softened water because it may become corrosive if the softener is not set properly.  
  2. Using a pitcher or faucet filter before using hard water in a coffee maker, for ice, or for cooking can remove some of the minerals.
  3. Hard water stains and mineral build up on dishes, in coffee makers, and on faucets can be cleaned with a mild acid solution like vinegar.  

Is it harmful?

These mineral deposits are not harmful, but can be hard to clean from dishes, coffee makers, faucets, etc.

How do I get more information?

For additional information, call 311 or email waterquality@southbendin.gov

For 311:

Please review the material in the KBA with the caller.  If they have additional questions, forward them to the water quality staff at 9670.

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