How To Clean Calcium Buildup on a Faucet
Calcium buildup on a faucet is not just an unsightly problem; it can cause a decrease in water flow over time. When calcium builds up on a faucet head, it is time to take action.
The good news is that cleaning calcium buildup on a faucet is easy. In this guide, homeowners can learn what causes this grime to build, how to tackle it based on the severity of the buildup, and how to stop calcium from building up in the future.
Why Does Calcium Build on Faucets?
While calcium can build up on any faucet, it usually happens in areas where there is a high concentration of minerals in the water. Often referred to as “hard water,” as this type of water moves from the pipes to the faucet head, dissolved calcium salts flow through the faucet. When the water is turned off, some of these minerals are left behind.
As time goes by, this calcium can begin to accumulate, leading to what is commonly referred to as limescale or calcium scale.
White and chalky in appearance, this buildup will detract from the appeal of the faucet head, as well as contribute to a slower flow of water when the calcium deposits are left to accumulate for long periods.
How To Tackle Calcium Buildup
Depending on how much calcium has built up on a faucet, there are a few different methods that can be used to remove the grime. The following tactics are easy, DIY solutions for limescale buildup of any kind.
For Small Amounts of Buildup
- Soak the spout with vinegar. Vinegar is a powerful but extremely safe solution for removing calcium buildup. Simply soak the aerator in a bag of vinegar, attaching the bag around the faucet head with rubber bands. Remove the vinegar bag and run water through the faucet. For homeowners with hard water, perform this task once a month to prevent major buildup from ever occurring.
- Apply lime juice to the area. Another effective, environmentally friendly solution for small amounts of buildup is to scrub the aerator with lime juice. Juice a fresh lime into a bowl and use an old toothbrush to apply the lime juice to the faucet head. Scrub the aerator and the spout with lime juice and rinse. Test the water flow and look to see if any of the chalky substance remains.
For Heavy Amounts of Buildup
- Use a formulated limescale remover. When the calcium buildup is too great for the above methods, it might be time to turn to an industrial cleaner. Formulated limescale removers, such as Multi-Use CLR or Lime-A-Way, are designed to remove heavy buildup of calcium, limescale, and rust. Make sure to follow the product’s specific application and safety instructions.
- Replace the aerator. In some cases, it is impossible to remove enough calcium buildup to allow for proper water flow. In this case, it might be necessary to install a new aerator. Be sure to find an aerator designed for your faucet’s specific model.
How To Stop Limescale from Forming
While calcium buildup is a common problem, there are ways homeowners can help prevent the limescale from ever forming.
For starters, consider installing a water filtration system. Filtered water will not contain a heavy concentration of minerals, which means no limescale is left behind.
Secondly, for homeowners with hard water, it is important to stay on top of cleaning the spouts. This can help prevent heavy buildup from occurring, making it easier to tackle the issue when it’s still small.
Find a Faucet Replacement With Kingston Brass
Often, when calcium buildup becomes impossible to remove, it is time to replace the faucet aerator. The good news is that Kingston Brass carries a variety of faucet replacement parts, including aerators in numerous styles and designs. This makes it easy to restore water flows back to normal and to remove the unsightly appearance of limescale.