Theoretically, the largest water suppliers i.e. metropolitan systems provide the best quality drinking water as they have resources and equipment for mandated and frequent testing.
Sadly, there is no assurance that all of the water utilities adhere with regulations. Moreover, all testing is not accurate and all contaminants are not on list.
What Type of Contaminants Might Be In Water?
Water problems generally arise from otherwise innocuous contaminants which affect the taste, odor and colour of water. Some of these substances are iron, manganese, sulfur and chlorine. Such problems can be easily combated by an activated carbon filter.
However, your drinking water has harmful levels of pollutants, and thus it needs to go through advanced water treatment technology, which is appropriate for elimination of toxins.
For ease in discussion, toxic pollutants can be grouped into four different categories namely inorganic chemicals, organic chemicals, microbiological organisms and radionuclides.
- Organic Chemicals
Organic chemicals consist of pesticides, resins, synthetics, solvents and other chemicals called volatile organic chemicals(VOCs). These chemicals are mostly linked to nervous system, cancer, kidney and liver disorders.
A particularly awful compound, trihalomethane i.e. THM can be made after water leaves any treatment plant and chlorine works with the decaying plant and animal matter, thereby creating chloroform, which is a suspected carcinogen.
- Inorganic Chemicals
Inorganic chemicals consist of asbestos, nitrates and nitrites, fluoride and metals like mercury, arsenic, and the most harmful chemical lead. Most of these occur as natural mineral deposits. However, others such as lead and copper, percolate into the water as it goes through pipes and regimen by water utility doesn’t get rid of them.
Nitrites and nitrates are produced by farming or industry. Inorganic chemicals are generally related to various health issues. Lead mainly causes brain damage, and is especially toxic for pregnant women and infants.
Moreover, radon gas is the common radionuclide that naturally occurs in numerous regions, which includes Western mountain states and some parts of Northeast.
It has been found that around 17 million people have water with high levels of radon , that can enter air through steam and showers. Microbiological contaminants such as viruses, bacteria and protozoa are generally killed by treatment and chlorination.
Cysts, like giardia and cryptosporidium are more defiant to municipal treatment. Generally, problems of bacterial pollution take place when water supply is contaminated by waste, or if water treatment system breaks down. Cyst problems occur during heavy storm runoff as well.
How To Test Your Drinking Water
Usually, free water testing offers are provided to ensure that you purchase a water treatment device after few careful staged tests. It is always test it yourself to be sure of the purity of water, rather than getting it tested in independent lab.
It is better to test your water for lead, as it can percolate into the water from an old plumbing. These days, you get lead test on Amazon for a much cheaper rate. You also get a lot of brands to choose from.
Tony Callison is an ardent web blogger, and this article has been written by him. If you are looking for a top quality water tester online, then search for lead test on Amazon. They offer various test kits at reasonable prices. Such drinking water test kits are quite helpful in detecting harmful pollutants in water.