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Is tap water really safe? In this blog we’ll go over a nationwide study determining the amount of contaminants in our water. Educate yourself on this matter and protect yourself and your loved ones from dangerous compounds found in tap water.

Violations

In 2015 the NRDC conducted a nationwide analysis to determine how safe our tap water really is. They found that over 77 million Americans were at risk of dangerous contaminants within their water. This violates the 1974 Safe Drinking Water Act which is supposed to prevent such violations. These include dangerous compounds such as lead, trihalomethanes, arsenic, radium, and many other pollutants dangerous to your health. Yes, that’s right, almost a quarter of our population were at risk due to negligence of water treatment plants according to NRDC.

Charlotte, NC  was in violation of DBP or “Disinfection by product”. This occurs when disinfecting materials such as chlorine react with organic compounds to form new materials known as Trihalomethanes which can be dangerous to humans. These compounds are known to cause cancer, if consumed.

Everyday we put our trust in water treatment facilities to give us the cleanest water possible, though it may protect us, sometimes there are errors. Absolute faith shouldn’t be placed with those that would harm us, as an American you should take steps to protect yourself from errors such as this. You can send your water to be tested at a lab or have us come out and take a sample to ensure you are getting the best water possible. Place a filter in your home so that errors like this do not affect you or those around you.

Volatile Organic Compounds

VOCs are organic compounds that can evaporate at room temperature entering your body through inhalation or ingestion. When a material like gasoline, cleaning supplies, and other VOCs are improperly disposed of they enter the water supply by seeping into the groundwater contaminating wells and some city water pipes. PCE (perchloroethylene), MTBE (methyl tert-butyl ether), THM (Trihalomethanes) are the three most common found in your drinking water. PCE is used in solvents and cleaning supplies, MTBE is used in gasoline, and THM are by-products of chlorine. The only sure way to remove these from your drinking water is to install a carbon whole house filter.

Disinfection by-product

Trihalomethanes are created after chlorine comes into contact with organic matter within the water supply creating compounds such as chloroform, bromoform, dibromochloromethane, and bromodichloromethane all known as trihalomethanes. These chemicals are dangerous to humans when consumed in large amounts and are regulated by the EPA and FDA. Chlorine is always added to city water to try and remove harmful bacteria that may cause you harm. An after effect takes place creating these new compounds. Chlorine protects us so much it would be impossible to remove at this point. Without a better solution to removing the coliform found in tap water.

Even if you trust in your water treatment facility there are compounds created as a by-product of chlorine cleaning the water. After the water leaves the treatment plant chlorine may interact with organic matter on the way to your home.

The only way to protect yourself from these compounds is to get a whole house filter. A carbon filter can remove these harmful chemicals before they ever have a chance to affect you. If you worry over the thought of having contaminants in your water then you could have us come take a water sample to ensure you are not at risk of harmful pollutants. We can send samples to a lab and have it tested for such contaminants. Don’t put yourself at the mercy of water treatment plants because nothing is foolproof. Be safe rather than sorry.

Coliform

Coliform bacteria are in all mammals digestive tract, meaning that if coliform is present in your water supply then you may have feces in your water. Chemicals present in your water supply take time to really harm you while an unknown bacteria can wreak havoc on your body soon after ingested. When consumed you will experience diarrhea, vomiting, fatigue, fever, and many other side effects. The only sure way to rid your system of bacteria is to add a UV filter with chlorine tablets placed throughout your water supply to rid yourself of all bacteria in your home. The UV light will destroy the DNA of the bacterium while the chlorine tablets destroy what’s already in your water system. Test your water to ensure you have removed all contaminants before removing tablets.

Radium

Radium is a naturally occurring radioactive material found in rocks below the surface. It is dangerous and can cause cancers and other health effects you don’t want to deal with. Radium will naturally dissolve into groundwater and aquifers contaminating the water supply. If you have a well you are more likely to have radium occur in your water due to little regulation of an at home well. Be safe and test your water. If you have radium, a water softener is necessary to remove the pollutants from your water supply. The only sure way to remove radium is by using a water softener or a reverse osmosis system. Learn more about filters here.

Arsenic

Arsenic is a naturally occurring metalloid compound found in the ground coming from the soil, rocks, groundwater and industrial processes such as smelting of metals can release arsenic into the air. Arsenic is an extremely dangerous chemical that can kill over a long period of time in small doses. Wells have higher levels of arsenic than city water due to being natural in the earth. Reverse osmosis will remove arsenic from your water protecting you over the long term.

Stay Educated

There are several things that can harm you even with the protection of the EPA or FDA, things slip through the cracks as you’ve seen already. Though this was far more than a crack becoming a ravine that had been left unattended. Educate yourself on the health effects of everyday life and you’ll come out a happier healthier human being. If you want complete protection against the unknown compounds in your water supply we can help you out. Superior Plumbing and Drains, LLC is full of experts who can inform you on what type of filter you may require. Call us anytime, we are your 24 hour plumber known in Charlotte and its surrounding areas as a trustworthy brand protecting the public from harmful pollutants in your water supply.

Sources:

https://www.cdc.gov/safewater/chlorination-byproducts.html

https://www.nrdc.org/resources/threats-tap-widespread-violations-water-infrastructure

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1257669/

https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-10/documents/ace3_drinking_water.pdf

https://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/drinking/private/wells/disease/arsenic.html

https://www.cdc.gov/biomonitoring/pdf/Arsenic_FactSheet.pdf

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Superior Plumbing and Drains, LLC is a North Carolina plumbing company who provides services to clients in the following areas: Monroe, Wingate, Marshville, Peachland, Unionville, Indian Trail, Stallings, Weddington, Waxhaw, Jaars, Mineral Springs, Roughedge, Alton, Pineville, Matthews, Mint Hill, Fairview, Charlotte, Harrisburg, and Huntersville.

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