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Calcium Hardness Test: A How-To-Guide

Did you know white calcium deposits on heat transfer equipment can cause increased energy use and loss of cooling capacity?


This happens when hardness is too high in the tower systems, or when it's out of balance with other water parameters. Additionally, plugged tower fill and distribution deck nozzles can lead to uneven water flow across the tower and lower performance. These issues can cause wear and tear on chillers and cooling towers.


If you are having these issues in your equipment, you may need to conduct a Calcium Hardness Test.


Don't know how? Our Water Treatment Chemical Engineer, Ben Feeney, will break it down for you with six quick steps to save you time and stress:


Step 1: Fill vial with 25 ml of your sample.

Step 2: Add five drops of Calcium Buffer into the vial, and swirl.

Step 3: Add two scoops of Calcium Indicator Powder. Then swirl vial again. Your solution should be turning purple. Don't panic, this is what you want.

Step 4: Add Hardness Nitrate Agent drops one at a time. Count each drop while swirling. The color should transition from purple to blue. Once it starts to turn blue, make a note of the number of drops that you've added.

Step 5: Add a drop of Hardness Titrant one at a time and watch if the color continues to change. If the color does not change, then the number of drops added is your "end point."

Step 6: Take your "end point number" and multiply by 10 to get the parts per million of Calcium Hardness.


What Else Do I Need to Know?

  • Expensive and dangerous acid cleaning may be necessary to remove deposits once they adhere to equipment.

  • Water softening is an option to reduce calcium hardness in your incoming water. Our Boland experts can step in to help design the system with you.

We've got your back on tackling these issues. Our Water Treatment team will set you up with a scale inhibitor chemical water treatment package to help keep the calcium off of where it doesn't belong: your condenser tubes.


You can reach our team at (240) 306-3000 for immediate help.

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