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  • Alkalinity vs Hardness

    Can someone explain the difference between alkalinity and total hardness. I am reading a water report and both are measured in CaCO3.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Brewberosa View Post
    Can someone explain the difference between alkalinity and total hardness. I am reading a water report and both are measured in CaCO3.
    Alkalinity is the measure of the ability to neutralize acid, and is an aggregate of all the bases in the water. It's converted to the equivalent in CaCO3 because different bases have different capacity to neutralize acid, and converting it to the same alkalinity that you'd measure if ALL of it was CaCO3 allows an apples-to-apples comparison.

    Similarly, total hardness includes both carbonate and non-carbonate sources, but it's reported as an equivalent CaCO3 for the same reason.

    Note, the treatment methods for modifying your total hardness differ based on the type of hardness, and if your water report doesn't tell you the values of each, you'll probably need more information.

    Regards,
    Mike Sharp

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