Usually, the tap water that you bath, cook, and drink come from different sources ‒ either from surface water sources such as rivers, lakes, and streams or underground sources such as aquifers. However, there are a large number of pollutants found on the water such as bacteria like e.coli, toxic algae, general dirt, lead, sulfur, and iron that are known to lead to various health issues that range from gastrointestinal, reproductive, and even neurological disorders.
While it’s true that water aids digestion, flushes out toxins in the body, helps in weight loss and hydrates the skin, you’re not sure if the liquid you’re consuming from the tap is safe.
So, how will you know whether or not the tap water you’re using now is safe enough for you and your family to drink?
Check Your Water Source
First and foremost, you need to call the water local utility officials in your area and ask about the safety as well as the source of your water. The Environmental Protection Agency (also known as the EPA) is a regulatory agency of the government that identifies contaminants in drinking water to protect the health of the public.
As a guide, here are some questions to ask:
- Is the source groundwater or surface water? As the name suggests, groundwater is sourced deep within the ground. Examples are huge reservoirs, which are naturally formed in the surface of the earth. Technically, the water is cleaner because the ground serves as a natural filter. Also, because of the soil’s natural filtration, the groundwater is free from a parasite like a cryptosporidium than surface water. Meanwhile, the surface water that flows from streams, lakes, rivers, and other water reservoirs are more likely to pick up pollutants along the way.
- When was the last time the water is tested?
- What are the results of the water being tested by the EPA? Utility companies provide consumers with the necessary information about the contaminants in the water since its required by the law.
- What is the primary disinfectant? Is it chlorine?
- Aside from chlorination, what are the other disinfectant procedures used?
Test The Waters
If the water is coming from your well, and you’re still unsatisfied by the community water testing, you can opt to do it yourself. To be safe, it’s best that you use an EPA-certified testing laboratory in your area. Depending on how extensive you want your water to be examined, the cost usually ranges from $25 to $100.
Sometimes, tap water that has a high concentration of sodium may be a cause of concern for people who are on a low-sodium diet. For example, if you’re consuming tap water and your doctor has advised you to take a low-sodium diet for medical reasons, then it’s also best to get your water tested as well for the sodium content.
Consider Water Treatments
There are a lot of water treatment options available that you can consider to address your problems:
Filtration is a process of removing different kinds of impurities and contaminants from the water is a water filter. A water filtration system functions to either use a biological method, chemical, or physical barrier to effectively filter the water and making it safe enough to drink.
If you choose this method, there are different water filtration systems available in the market designed to fit your family’s needs. “Studies show that young children, infants, and pregnant women are particularly vulnerable to unsafe water consumption” – according to Efilters Website in the United States.
Water softeners functions to reduce the hardness or the number of minerals found in the water. More often than not, ions such as sodium and potassium tend to replace the magnesium and calcium ions and are mainly responsible for creating the hardness in the water.
Distillation is another process used to remove the impurities and solid contaminants behind. As water undergoes boiling, the steam is usually collected and then condensed separately in a different container.
Disinfection is a process that is used by a lot of cities to clean their water supplies effectively. Disinfection usually deactivates or kills most pathogenic microorganisms either through the physical or chemical process.
Chemical disinfectants are usually chlorine, ozone, and chlorine dioxide. On the other hand, physical disinfectants are in the form of radiation, UV light, and heat.
Filters and other purification systems remove contaminants in the water, making it safe to drink. While other systems may use carbon channels to get rid of heavy metals and lead, other systems strip out contaminants using reverse osmosis systems.
Without a doubt, filters are not only convenient but cost-effective as well. You can safely use it for drinking, in the kitchen, for outdoor activities, and when travelling.