The Student Room Group

Is limescale unhealthy for you?

I’ve grown up with my parents who hate tap water and I only drink bottled water but they go to the extreme of putting bottled water into the kettle to avoid limescale and to be fair, it does work it’s just a hassle.

I’m staying at my boyfriends mums house and her kettle has SO much limescale. I told my boyfriend it’s gross and was worried it’s harmful but he said it’s absolutely fine and when I googled it said the same. But the tea does taste a bit funny compared to home. Could this be placebo?

I’m well aware most people don’t do what my parents do - even at work there is some limescale in the office kettle but no where near as bad as my mother-in laws! It’s growing everywhere! My mum suggested buying a kettle to use there and leaving it there.

It’s just white stuff all over their kettle to me it’s just gross. Because when you have a shower you clean the limescale so why doesn’t the same apply with a kettle?
Pour half a cup of vinegar in and let it soaks or stir it a bit. Limescale will be gone quickly.

Unless you (or your family members) have kidney stones, limescale isn't harmful.

The "funny" taste is just minerals in the water - it's completely fine (in fact good), that's also why some bottled water brands taste different.
Reply 2
Original post by Anonymous #1
I’ve grown up with my parents who hate tap water and I only drink bottled water but they go to the extreme of putting bottled water into the kettle to avoid limescale and to be fair, it does work it’s just a hassle.

I’m staying at my boyfriends mums house and her kettle has SO much limescale. I told my boyfriend it’s gross and was worried it’s harmful but he said it’s absolutely fine and when I googled it said the same. But the tea does taste a bit funny compared to home. Could this be placebo?

I’m well aware most people don’t do what my parents do - even at work there is some limescale in the office kettle but no where near as bad as my mother-in laws! It’s growing everywhere! My mum suggested buying a kettle to use there and leaving it there.

It’s just white stuff all over their kettle to me it’s just gross. Because when you have a shower you clean the limescale so why doesn’t the same apply with a kettle?


You'll be fine drinking it.


Does limescale cause health problems........
While limescale is not harmful in drinking water to your health, it can do serious damage to your home. The minerals in water can accumulate in your plumbing system and pipes and create limescale on the inside of the pipe. This increases the water pressure in the pipe and can make it harder for water to push through.


Is it OK to drink water with limescale......
Limescale found in hard water is not harmful to drink, in fact some prefer the taste compared to soft water. Hard water is known to be beneficial for health. Most mineral waters for sale contain minerals such as calcium and magnesium as they are good for your body and immune system.


Is limescale from kettle harmful.......
Drinking from a kettle with limescale is safe. There has been no evidence of this being harmful if you drink it in your tea or coffee. It can, however, impact the taste and leave chalky white build-up floating in the drink.
Reply 3
Part of the taste of the tea will be from the minerals dissolved in the water; but bear in mind that different brands of tea also have different tastes. So if you drink PG Tips in one place and Typhoo in another, you can expect a different taste (even with the same water).

Too much scale in a kettle makes it less efficient (and hence boiling the water takes more energy) as the coating of scale on the element makes transmitting the heat from the element to the water take longer.

I live in an area where the water is hard enough to cause scale to deposit in the kettle, and I descale it every 3 months or so using a product from a supermarket, being careful to follow the instructions.

I'm not descaling because of health concerns or anything like that -- I just don't like getting flakes of limescale at the bottom of my cup of coffee!
(edited 4 months ago)

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