Most Americans get their drinking water from pubic treatment facilities. This leads us to automatically assume that the water flowing from our taps is clean and safe to drink. How can we be sure that it is? There are thousands of chemicals that are used every day that end up in our lakes, rivers and aquifers. Some of these chemicals include solvents, pesticides, pharmaceuticals, cleaning agents, weed killers etc.
There are a number of sources that can degrade the quality of your water. Some contaminants get into the water supply when people dump them down their toilets or sinks, some chemicals can show up from runoff through farming or mining. It can also come from landfills and improper storage and disposal at manufacturing plants. The water supply can also be filled with harmful bacteria like E. coli. While some of these contaminants can be removed through the sewage treatment process, they can still make their way into the waterways that surround your home. The water treatment facility where you live is responsible for properly processing the water, removing all the toxins that can make your water unsafe to drink.
EPA Safe Drinking Water Standards
The number of harmful substances that can exist in your drinking water is regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency. The EPA sets what the concentration level of chemicals and minerals are acceptable in drinking water in order to be considered safe to drink. You can search the EPA website for a report on your municipal water system. This report will include:
• The source of your drinking water
• The risk of contamination
• A list of regulated contaminants and their levels
• Possible health risks from these contaminants
• Steps your water treatment facility is taking to correct problems
This report can be a great resource, but it can’t give you a complete picture about the quality of your water. The water is only tested once or twice a year and contaminant levels can fluctuate. Contamination that exceeds EPA regulations can also happen in between testing periods. Therefore, the report may not include spikes in certain contaminants. Another area of concern with these reports is that only a few of the chemicals that can be found in drinking water is measured or regulated by the EPA. You can have you water tested by an independent water testing laboratory. These laboratories can test for a wide variety of contaminants. They have been able to detect antidepressant medications, gasoline additives and artificial hormones. These can occur in trace amounts and there is no way to know how a combination of them can affect your health. Because many of the unmeasured contaminants are colorless and tasteless, they can go undetected as they pass into the water you drink. The EPA won’t test for these because they don’t regulate these chemicals, making independent testing a good idea.
Water Testing & More in Golden Gate Estates, Naples, Cape Coral, Fort Myers & Lehigh Acres, Florida
The EPA recommends that you have your water tested once a year to get an idea of what you may be drinking and if there are any changes over time. Contact AAA Water Team to have your water tested today!