Is Your Well Water Really Safe?

When I read this story I immediately thought about just how vulnerable well owners are about having their well water contaminated by decisions out of their control.

In this case the head of North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services’ (DHHS) toxicology area, Dr. Megan Davies, resigned after eight years in the position.

Her resignation centered around a report released to the public about the elevated levels of hexavalent chromium in samples taken from well water. This report, and testimony given by one of the toxicologists involving well owners who live near Duke Energy coal ash pond, led the heads of both the DHHS and the Department of Environmental Quality to accuse the toxicologist of misleading the public about the level of contamination.

You can see more details here.

The bottom line of this story is that these department heads and political appointees seem to be protecting the polluters over the welfare of the well owners.

 

‘When you get a drink of water out of the tap, you expect certain things’

Sidney-IA-Water-Testing-IssueIf you live in a small town that supplies your drinking water, this could happen to you…

‘When you get a drink of water out of the tap, you expect certain things’ | Local News – KETV Home

It reinforces our mantra, “Take control and manage the quality of your drinking water.”

That mantra is say that you need to know what’s in the water coming into your home, whether it’s an apartment or a house. So, our advice—have your water tested by a professional water testing lab.

That’s the best way to know if you have a problem or not. And, if you do, you can then treat for that problem yourself—usually at a fairly inexpensive investment.

The Sidney Public Works Director faces felony charges for not properly testing the city’s drinking water and then submitting false reports that said he did.

Source: ‘When you get a drink of water out of the tap, you expect certain things’ | Local News – KETV Home

Could This Happen to You? Law Prevents You From Knowing if Your Water is Unsafe!

Illustration by Skillet Gilmore

Illustration by Skillet Gilmore

This is really disturbing news. The North Carolina Assembly has a bill that they are considering that will prohibit local health departments from issuing public advisories when the municipal water contains contaminants below the state or EPA clean water standards!

I couldn’t believe this could happen. If this legislation passes, then it can happen in other states.

We are at risk, our family is at risk, especially our children and the elderly.

The original article by Jane Porter can be found by clicking here.

 

Could Your City Water Department be Hiding Something From You?

Man-Filling-Water-Cup

The lead fiasco that happened in Flint Michigan keeps popping up in the news as new facts are uncovered.

This one involves the lead water testing performed by the city’s water department. It turns out, people in the department used some creative ways to make sure the real level of lead in the water was not reported.

As a result of these findings, a criminal complaint has been filed against Michigan’s Department of Environmental Quality.

Here are the main points brought up in that criminal filing:

  • First, they didn’t include households they knew were serviced by lead pipes.
  • Then, for “technical reasons”, they omitted the test results for two water samples found to contain the highest level of lead.
  • Finally, the instructions for taking the water samples said to run the cold water for five minutes—this is called “pre-flushing”. And then wait six hours before drawing the water samples from the faucet.

This last one is a bit controversial because it’s not against the law to pre-flush, but it’s also not considered “best practice” according to an EPA official.

The article I read on these findings sent requests to more than 50 of the largest water department operators in Michigan asking them if they pre-flush before taking the water samples. They heard back from 41, and all but three reported back that they do pre-flush.

So, here’s my concern—should city water departments be required to takes water samples without pre-flushing? Let me know what you think.

If your home is on city water, should you be concerned about this one way or the other?

Well, you might be, especially if you know the water is traveling to your home through lead pipes.

We recommend that you have your water tested for lead, among a bunch of other health-related contaminants, so you know if the water coming out of your tap is safe to drink…

…or if you need to put a treatment system, like a specialized water filter, in place to get rid of specific contaminants.

That way, regardless of how your water department does its testing, you know that the drinking water coming out of your tap is safe to drinking and cook with.

We’ve put together a special test for people on city water and we’re offering it right now at a very reasonable price of only $129 including shipping both ways if you’re in the continental U.S.

In this test, we target 174 parameters (plus any untargeted volatile organic compounds found in the water sample). You can read more about it at ‘Bang-for-the-Buck’ City Water Test.

You can read, and listen, to the original article where I found this information at Michigan Radio

As always, I welcome you comments on this important topic.

Tips for Preparing to Start Using a Dormant Well

ajk-1736Because you don’t know what’s been sitting in dormant well, you need to do a few things before you start using the well for drinking, cooking and bathing.

Here are the simple steps:

1. Run the water out of a hose for 24 to 48 hours.

2. Chlorinate the well, preferably with calcium hypochlorite:

a. It’s highly concentrated (65 to 73% chlorine)
b. Granular form is fast dissolving which makes it easier to disperse completely in the well water.
c. It’s more effective when organic matter is present.
d. Has a longer shelf life than other forms of chlorine
***IMPORTANT***
Test the pH level of the water before adding the chlorine. If it is above 7, add acid, such as muratic, phosphoric, sulfamic, or sodium bisulfate, to the water. You want to bring the pH down to 6-6.5.
DO NOT CHLORINATE YOUR WELL IF THE pH is below 4 (the water can turn to chlorine gas, which can be dangerous in high concentration).

3. Purge the well again—this time use the spigot off of the pressure tank. Turn the spigot 1/3 the way open. Let it drain for at least 6 to 8 hours.

4. Test for pathogenic bacteria. Also, note if the water emits a Sulphur (rotten egg) smell. If either of these are present, chlorinate the well again, and retest.

5. If the bacteria and/or Sulphur sell is not present, test for chlorine before using for drinking, cooking and bathing.

If you want to know more about the science and techniques behind chlorinating your well, we’ve got a free video that you may want to watch. Just go to this web page and put in your first name and email address and you’ll get immediate access to the video: http://drinkingwaterspecialists.com/www-get-free-video/

The Shocking Truth About City Water

City-Drinking-WaterMunicipal water companies need to dose the water with a disinfectant that kills pathogenic bacteria such as e-coli—usually it’s chlorine or chlorine mixed with small amounts of ammonia which react to form chloramine (also called combined chlorine). The Environmental Protection Agency requires that a some of the disinfectant, called a “residual”, remain in the water as it’s being delivered to our homes. They do this every day after testing the level of bacteria. Some days they need put in a heavier dose of chlorine because the bacteria count is high.

One of by-products of the disinfectant, whether it’s chlorine or chloramine, are trihalomethanes (THM). It turns out that chloramine does not produce as much of these contaminants as chlorine.

Chloramine is toxic to fish and amphibians because it comes into direct contact with their bloodstream. For this same reason, people on dialysis machines must remove the chloramine because the water also comes into direct contact with the bloodstream.

While chloramines are generally not considered a health concern for humans, they can introduce an undesired taste and odor to the water. The most effective non-chemical method of removing chloramines is by running the water through activated carbon.

Long-term exposure to THMs has been linked to increased risk of problems in infant-birth delivery, certain diseases of the heart, and an increased risk of cancer, especially bladder cancer. The EPA sets a maximum level of Total THMs for drinking water to 80 parts per billion (µg/L).

The best solution for reducing the amount of THMs in city water is to use an activated charcoal filter. Some filtration units also include ion exchange and adsorption in addition to the activated charcoal filter.

Here’s a great demonstration on just how quickly chlorine-infused water can enter our bodies through our skin:

 

If you would like to explore a variety of treatment solutions, from whole-house to under-the-counter point-of-use filtration systems, we can help you.

Even before you do that, you may want to check out this web site—just click on the button below. Come back to us after that if you want more help.

Drinking Water Specialists

Lead-Tainted Water in Schools

School kids - Lead-tainted WaterThis ‘lead’ thing is getting serious! Now the focus is on lead-tainted water in schools.

Maybe none of this would have come to light at almost the same time if there hadn’t been the screw-up in Flint Michigan surrounding high levels of lead in their drinking water.

While the Flint problem was caused by a bad decision and ineptness of their city leaders, other places around the country are finding they have problems because their water delivery infrastructure is so old.

Schools, where are children spend most of their day, are becoming a major focus of concern. Many are so old that their pipes and faucets probably contain some level of lead—which could be leaching into the water as it pass through.

Read more about this lead-tainted water problem…

Here’s an article from Mother Jones that highlights the problem found in several older cities in the Northeast part of the U.S.

It’s downright scary!!

Read the original article

If you are concerned about the possibility of lead in your drinking water, you should have it tested. We can help you with that at DrinkingWaterSpecialists.com

How Does Lead End up in Your Tap Water?

We are getting calls from all over the U.S. since high levels of lead were found in the Flint Michigan water system. While most people know that lead can dangerous to our health, especially for infants and children, they don’t really know how lead can enter their water supply.

This is true whether you water comes from a municipal water company or from your private well.

This video, put out by USA Today, shows you how even water coming from a municipal water company where it has been treated can end up coming out of your household taps with elevated levels of lead.

The first step you need to take is to have your drinking water tested for lead and other contaminants. If the test shows you have a problem with lead and/or any of the other contaminants, you now can look for ways to treat for those specific problems.

When asked which of our informational water tests we recommend we normally suggest our ‘Bang-for-the-Buck’ Essential Indicators Water Test. It covers most of the parameters you need to know about when it comes to understanding just how safe and clean your water is.

What You Need to Know About Slime-forming Bacteria

Rotten_Egg_SmellHas the well water coming out of your tap ever smelled like rotten eggs?

If so, then you have slime-forming bacteria in your well water.

Fortunately, it’s not a danger to your health. However, it forms a layer of slime on water pipes and other surfaces it passes across such as water filters. This reduces the useful life of the filters.

It can corrode pipes, cause “rotten egg” odors, and turn the water black.

This video tells you what you need to do to counteract these bacteria in your well.

Lead in Flint Michigan’s Drinking Water

If you live in an older city with aging lead water pipes, you may have lead in your water.

The water problems in Flint Michigan have brought out the fact that even if your water company is producing safe, clean water, the old lead pipes that carry the water to your home may be leaching that lead into your home.

I’ve put up a video that address what you need to know if you do live in a city and want peace-of-mind that the water coming out of your tap is safe and clean to drink and cook with.