Posted: February 08, 2018
Homeowners express a variety water quality concerns ranging from aesthetics to contamination fears. It’s unfortunate that many people, out of frustration or ignorance, never find a suitable solution to their water worries. There is no reason to let “bad water” ruin your healthy lifestyle or damage your largest single investment-your home! Take a look at these common water-quality issues homeowners face every day:
- Tap water that tastes and smells like a swimming pool, due to chlorine disinfectants
- Discolored well water from tannins
- Rotten egg odors from hydrogen sulfide
- Premature water heater failure
- Red stains in the sink, tub and toilet due to iron
- Blue-green copper stains in the toilet and shower
- Crusty hard-water mineral build-up on faucets and shower heads
- Grit-clogged faucet aerators, dish washers and washing machines
- Nitrate contamination in well water
Source of Nitrite: Nitrite (N2O-) is a nitrogen-containing chemical similar to nitrate. Nitrogen in fertilizers, animal waste from farms and decaying plant materials can introduce nitrite into groundwater. Malfunctioning septic systems can also be a source of nitrite in well water. Nitrite can be found in municipal water but it mostly occurs in well water.
Health Effects of Nitrite: Nitrite reduces the blood’s ability to carry oxygen. This causes a condition called methemoglobinemia. Babies and pregnant women are particularly susceptible to nitrite poisoning. Ingesting nitrite can have a negative impact on the development of the child. Blue Baby Syndrome causes the infant to turn blue and suffer from lack of oxygen.
How to Remove Nitrite: A WECO reverse osmosis filtration system will remove nitrite along with nitrate, taste and odor-causing chemicals like chlorine and
Source of Hydrogen sulfide: Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is a colorless gas with a “rotten egg” smell. It is sometimes called sewer gas or sulfur water. Certain bacteria decompose organic matter and release hydrogen sulfide gas into groundwater. Wells contaminated with manure or human waste can also have H2S problems. Turning the water heater thermostat too low allows bacteria to grow inside the tank and produce the smelly gas.
Effects of Hydrogen sulfide: Hydrogen sulfide can give water a bitter taste and offensive odor. High hydrogen sulfide levels may also corrode plumbing, washing machines and ruin laundry.
How to Remove Hydrogen sulfide: A WECO reverse osmosis filtration system will remove hydrogen sulfide along with taste and odor-causing chemicals like chlorine and hydrogen sulfide and heavy metals including lead and
E. coli in Water
Source of E. coli: E.coli (Escherichia coli) is a group of naturally-occurring bacteria. Some strains are harmless while others affect human health. These come from animal waste that contaminates the water supply. The presence of E. coli in water is used as an indicator of possible contamination with the harmful bacteria strains.
Health Effects of E. coli: Harmful E. coli strains produce toxins that causes symptoms including pneumonia, stomach cramps, bloody diarrhea and vomiting.
How to Remove E. coli: A Polaris Scientific Ultraviolet Disinfection System is recommended to counteract E. coli contamination. The Polaris system will kill the bacteria as water passes through the UV radiation, rendering the water safe to consume. The Polaris UF system can be used on residential and commercial applications.
Cryptosporidium in Water
Source of Cryptosporidium: Cryptosporidium is a single-celled protozoan parasite. Outbreaks occur when water sources are contaminated with human feces. The parasite is highly resistant to chlorine disinfection. Water run-off from land and faulty septic systems are main routes of contamination of drinking water. Water sources include lakes, streams and wells.
Health Effects of Cryptosporidium: Cryptosporidium infestations usually causes diarrhea. Other symptoms of infestation include loss of appetite, bloating, stomach cramps, nausea, muscle aches and low-grade fever.
How to Remove Cryptosporidium: A Polaris Scientific Ultraviolet Disinfection System is recommended to counteract Cryptosporidium contamination. The Polaris system will kill the parasites as water passes through the UV radiation, rendering the water safe to consume. The Polaris UF system can be used on residential
MTBE in Water
Source of MTBE: MTBE (methyl tertiary-butyl ether) is a volatile, clear, liquid used as a gasoline octane booster. MTBE can get into drinking water when gasoline is repeatedly spilled on the ground or from leaking underground fuel tanks. MTBE’s offensive taste and odor makes the water undrinkable. The most common situation is well water contamination with gasoline from leaking underground storage tanks.
Health Effects of MTBE: MTBE is a suspected carcinogen. Drinking, bathing and showering with MTBE is not recommended. MTBE easily evaporates from the water, entering the nearby air. Bathing
Source of Legionella: Legionella (Legionnaires disease) is a respiratory disease caused by bacterial infection. The bacteria are found in nature but can be found inside hot water heaters and large plumbing systems. The bacteria enter the body through mist droplets that are inhaled. Showers can be a source of contact.
Health Effects of Legionella: The bacteria cause symptoms including fever, chills, cough, or muscle aches. It is particularly harmful people over 50, smokers and immune-compromised individuals. The infection may lead to lethal pneumonia.
How to Remove
What is TDS?
TDS stands for Total Dissolved Solids. TDS is a general measure of the amount of substances dissolved in lakes, streams and tap water. Theses “dissolved solids” include mostly inorganic salts like sodium, calcium, magnesium, potassium cations and chloride, bicarbonate, carbonate, phosphate, sulfate and nitrate anions.
How do these substances get into the water supply?
When water percolates through underground rock formations and soil, some of the natural minerals dissolve into the water. Depending on the amount and type of minerals in the rock and soil, the ground water could very high, very low, or somewhere in between in mineral content. Water treatment facilities sometimes add chemicals to prevent the water from being acidic or corrosive. The more substances dissolved in the water, the higher the TDS.
How is TDS measured?
Source of Algae: Algae are tiny plants that grow in water and in moist places. Lakes, rivers and reservoirs contain algae as part of the natural ecosystem. Sometimes algae will grow at a very fast rate when provided with nutrients like phosphate. This can cause taste, odor and health problems when drinking water is pumped from these open sources of water.
Effects of Algae: When algae die they release taste and odor-causing chemicals like geosmin, creating a musty taste and odor to water. While most algae cause aesthetic problems, certain types of algae release harmful chemicals called microcystins. Microcystin-contaminated water has killed pets, birds and livestock. There is growing concern that algae blooms can cause
Sediment in your water supply will reduce water flow by clogging faucet aerators and water filters. Rust, sand and grit damages dishwashers, washing machines, coffee makers and toilet fill mechanisms. A sediment filter captures abrasive sediment before it damages appliances and clogs plumbing. A whole-house sediment filter protects every faucet and water outlet in the home.
- Read the installation instructions that came with the filter. It will give you an idea of what you’ll need to connect the sediment filter to the main water supply. Installation is a DIY project but a plumber is recommended if you are unfamiliar with plumbing practices.
- Select a near the incoming water source. Ideally the filter can be located where it is easy to access during cartridge changes. Be sure to leave about four inches of clearance below the filter so the housing can be removed.
- Turn off the main water supply.
- Turn off power to the water