Making Sure Your Home Water is Safe to Drink

If you live in a country with a high score Human Development Index, you probably don’t think much about water. Those countries put a great deal of capital into infrastructure programs that always include sound water treatment systems. People lucky enough to live in that situation often think that water quality is simply a given; not something to be overly concerned about. The fact remains that the intake of water is second only to that of air in importance to sustaining our lives.

To a great extent we are water, as it constitutes up to 60% of our bodies. Even a small amount of chemicals in our water has a huge impact on our health and well being.

Read: 7 Popular Statements About Water Which Might Not Be True

Here a three basic tips to make sure your water is healthy and pure.

  1. Water Softeners

Hardness, when we use the word in the context of water, refers a high mineral content. This occurs when our drinking water filters through deposits of limestone, chalk and other minerals near its source. This results in water that has a high concentration of minerals such as calcium and magnesium. The worst effect of hard water is actually on our homes, where calcification can block shower heads or even cause problems with water heaters. Thankfully it’s a simple matter to purchase a good water softener to remove these minerals.

Different studies draw different conclusions about the effects of water hardness on humans, with some showing that a little hardness can act as a dietary supplement for certain minerals, while another study claimed a link between hardness and eczema as those minerals can damage the protective outer layer of our skin. The good news is that if you’re concerned about the effects of water hardness in your home, a good softener system is easy to find.

  1. Water Purifiers

Water purification systems are becoming increasingly common and for good reason. Since 1974 with the passing of the Safe Drinking Water Act, which gave the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) the authority to set public drinking water standards in the United States, American water at least has been safeguarded to some degree by the government. Those standards, however, are not as rigorous as some would like, nor are they implemented flawlessly. Contaminants may still accumulate in our water due to pollutants like pesticides, fertilizers and manufacturing byproducts.

With the amount of water that people use every day for drinking and bathing, even the small amounts of contaminants allowed by law can add up to a major health concern. Luckily, there are a wide variety of water filters available on the market. These often take the form of portable units that are easily affixed to water bottles and faucets, but massive whole-house water filters also exist and might be worth consideration.

  1. Water Testing

You can’t find a problem that you’re not looking for. Since most biological contaminants are destroyed through rigorous public filtration systems, many people never even think to test their water for other pollutants. The EPA actually recommends regular testing, especially if you believe that your plumbing system might be contaminated with lead. Testing is recommended every year for coliform bacteria as well as nitrates, especially if there’s a baby in the house. You should test water for nitrates before the child’s birth and again within the first six months of their life. Testing becomes an even greater concern if your home draws water from a well. In that situation you’re personally responsible for ascertaining the quality of your water.

The truth is that you can’t pay close enough attention to the purity of your water. Certainly the governments in most advanced countries have done an excellent job safeguarding the quality of our water. It is, however, partly our responsibility to be diligent in making sure that what our families put in our bodies is as safe as can be. We are what we drink!

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Kevin Gardner

Kevin Gardner loves writing about technology and the impact it has on our lives, especially within businesses.