6 Tips for Better Home Water Quality

6 Tips for Better Home Water Quality

Photo via iStock.com.

Some 75 percent of North American residents have growing concerns over the quality of their water, according to recent surveys, and people are interested in steps they can take to reduce potential health hazards for their familiesl

"August is national water quality month, and there are a few simple things that area residents can do to reduce water pollution and runoff," said Mike Nicholson, owner of Nicholson Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning. "One thing to keep in mind: Just because it disappears, doesn't mean it goes away."

Nicholson offers residents these tips to help preserve the quality of water in the community:

  1. Know what you are putting down the drain: Be aware of what goes down the drain and how it affects the water supply. Medications, detergents, creams, lotions and soaps all end up in the water supply. Consider switching to environmentally friendly and non-toxic household cleaners and personal care items.
  2. Properly dispose of hazardous chemicals: Motor oil, pool chemicals, insecticides and prescriptions should be properly disposed of to ensure they do not end up in the local water supply.
  3. Manage stormwater runoff: The No. 1 cause of water pollution in the United States is stormwater runoff. Rain or snowmelt collects everything from dirt and bacteria to chemicals as it runs into the storm drains. These drains then deposit the untreated water into the local rivers, lakes and streams.
  4.  Pick up trash and pet waste:Ensure the trash is always placed in the garbage can or recycle bin. Put pet waste in the garbage or flush it down the toilet. Scooping up pet waste keeps the bacteria from running into storm drains and water supplies. The best thing you can do is tie it in a recycled-plastic pet-waste bag and throw it in the trash.
  5. Do not overwater the lawn: Overwatering can increase the flow of fertilizers deep into soils and eventually groundwater supplies, which are an important drinking water source. Walk on the grass to determine if it needs water; if your footprints remain, it is time to water.
  6. Have the water quality inspected: In many areas, residents rely on private wells for their water source. Unlike public water systems, which are regulated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), private wells are not. Residents that use private wells need to take special precautions to ensure the water that enters their home is safe for their families. Homeowners that are concerned about the safety of their water should contact a professional to test the water. Once the water is tested, and any contaminants are identified, the expert can recommend a water treatment system to improve the water quality and provide peace of mind. There are many options for water filtration systems that range from whole home systems to a simple point of use system that can be easily installed under the kitchen sink. A filtration system will not only improve the safety of your water but also the taste and odor.

Research presented at the American Chemical Society demonstrated that showering leads to greater exposure to toxic chemicals in tap water than drinking the water does. A person can absorb up to 8 glasses of water through the skin during a quick 10-minute shower. Due to this fact, it is imperative that water that enters the home is safe and free from contaminants. The tips above provide an example of what everyone can do to protect and preserve the quality of water in their homes.

Read more about home water quality and filtration.

Topics: Going Green, Healthy Homes, Sustainable Communities, Wastewater Treatment, Water Filtration & Water Quality, WaterSense

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