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Water Hardness in Pennsylvania Cities

Water hardness, which primarily means the concentration of dissolved substances like calcium and magnesium, can greatly differ across Pennsylvania. The commonwealth, situated towards the eastern seaboard, often experiences varied water hardness levels, unlike regions such as the Midwest which are prone to higher hardness levels.

Concentrating on Pennsylvania, the specific hardness measurements gathered from several towns and cities show an inclination towards moderate to high hardness levels, compared to the national average. As such, Pennsylvania’s water is generally classified in the ‘moderate to hard’ category. This feature has significant implications in areas such as the water’s taste and the effectiveness of cleaning substances like soaps and detergents. It is worth noting that these hardness levels can vary and are subject to change based on local geological conditions and differences in water sources.

The cities analyzed in this dataset exhibit varied hardness levels in their water supplies, determined in Parts Per Million (ppm) and Grains Per Gallon (gpg). Cities such as Allentown, Lancaster, and Wilson, report particularly high hardness levels, surpassing 250 ppm, or 14.60 gpg. Conversely, cities with lower hardness levels include Pittsburgh, Scranton, York, Wilkes-Barre, and Hazleton, which display hardness levels below 100 ppm, or 5.84 gpg. Several cities such as Reading, Erie, Bethlehem, Hermitage, Franklin Park, and many others do not provide data for water hardness.

CityHardness ppm (mg/L)Hardness gpgInformation SourceNotes
Philadelphia133.07.6Link
Pittsburgh93.05.4Link
Allentown256.815.0Link
Readingn/an/aLink
Erien/an/aLink
Scranton27.01.6LinkTwo sources mentioned, used the Lake Scranton numbers because that is the lion’s share of the source. Groundwater is much harder per report, 110-450 ppm
Bethlehemn/an/aLink
Lancaster188.311.0LinkTook median of range listed
Harrisburgn/an/aLink
York89.05.2Link
Wilkes-Barre29.01.7Link
Altoonan/an/aLink
State College42.42.5LinkAs Calcium
Norristown153.09.0Link
Bethel Park93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
Chester125.07.0Link
Hazleton22.51.3Link
Monroevillen/an/aLink
Easton58.03.4Link
Williamsportn/an/aLink
Plumn/an/aLink
Lebanonn/an/aLink
Pottstownn/an/aLink
Chambersburg10.00.5Link
New Castle123.07.2Link
Baldwin93.05.4Link
Murrysvillen/an/aLink
Carlisle168.09.8Link
West Mifflin93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
Phoenixville167.09.8Link
Lansdalen/an/aLink
West Chester125.07.0Link
Johnstownn/an/aLink
McKeesport93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
Hanovern/an/aLink
Hermitagen/an/aLink
Franklin Parkn/an/aLink
Greensburgn/an/aLink
Whitehall51.43.0Link
Wilkinsburgn/an/aLink
Dunmore27.01.6LinkCovered under Scranton
Ephrata142.08.3LinkTook median of range
Indiana102.06.0Link
Pottsvillen/an/aLink
Kingston29.01.7Link
Coatesville77.04.5Link
Butler86.05.0Link
Washington93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
Sharonn/an/aLink
Meadvillen/an/aLink
St. Marysn/an/aLink
Bloomsburgn/an/aLink
Jefferson Hills93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
New Kensingtonn/an/aLink
Yeadonn/an/aLinkAqua PA Main System Which Serves Philly suburbs
Lower Burrelln/an/aLinkCovered by New Kensington
Emmausn/an/aLink
Elizabethtownn/an/aLink
Wyomissingn/an/aLink
Lansdownen/an/aLinkAqua PA Main System Which Serves Philly suburbs
Waynesboron/an/aLink
Darbyn/an/aLinkAqua PA Main System Which Serves Philly suburbs
Munhall93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
Nanticoke29.01.7Link
Northamptonn/an/aLink
Berwick227.013.3Link
Columbia94.05.5Link
Brentwood93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
East Stroudsburgn/an/aLink
Bristoln/an/aLink
Uniontown78.94.6Link
Morrisvillen/an/aLink
Canonsburg93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
Sunburyn/an/aLink
Middletownn/an/aLink
Lititzn/an/aLink
Mechanicsburg192.011.1Link
Oil Cityn/an/aLink
Quakertownn/an/aLink
Conshohocken153.09.0LinkCovered under Norristown in zip code
Warren79.04.6Link
Perkasien/an/aLinkReport mentions hardness, but doesn’t quantify
Aliquippan/an/aLink
Economyn/an/a
Beaver Falls147.08.6LinkCovered under Ellwood City in zip code
Collingdalen/an/aLinkAqua PA Main System Which Serves Philly suburbs
Carbondale23.51.4LinkCovered under Forest City in zip code, took average of range
Jeannetten/an/aLink
Old Forge30.51.8LinkSources from NEsbitt Reservoir
Lewistownn/an/aLink
Swissvale93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
Pleasant Hills93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
Mount Joyn/an/aLink
Castle Shannon93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
Doylestownn/an/aLinkTwo different reports, neither has hardness
Lock Haven132.07.7Link
Hatboron/an/aLink
Brookhaven125.07.0Link
Wilson250.014.6LinkGets water from New Jersey across the Delaware River
Bellevue93.05.4LinkPart of greater Pittsburgh per zip code
Top 100 Indiana cities by population and their reported water hardness
ppm = Parts Per Million
mg/L = Milligrams Per Liter
gpg = Grains Per Gallon

Hard water can cause issues such as mineral buildup in plumbing and appliances, reduce the efficacy of soaps and detergents, and affect the taste of the water. A tried and true solution is the use of a water softener. A water softener, like the ones from DROP, could be a worthwhile investment.

These devices work by replacing the calcium and magnesium ions that cause hardness with sodium ions, resulting in softer water. With innovative features, easy installation, and efficient operation, DROP smart water softeners provide a solution to hard water issues, extending the lifespan of appliances, improving water taste, enhancing soap effectiveness, reducing scale build-up, and increasing the overall water efficiency in your home.

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