People today are more concerned than ever about contaminants in the water that enters their homes. And they have good reason to be cautious in this regard: lead in drinking water is often a serious problem, even with the best reduction efforts under 1986 and 1996 regulatory requirements. We’ve previously looked into the issue of lead in your drinking water and the dangers it poses. It’s one of the main reasons we strongly recommend all homeowners arrange to have professionals test their water and find what water treatment systems will help.
Water testing, however, is broader than hunting for lead only. When you schedule professional water testing in Cincinnati, OH with our team, you’ll receive a complete rundown on all the contaminants in your water supply that can pose problems for household health and the plumbing system.
What You Can Learn from Potable Water Testing
The process of testing a home’s potable water is simple: our specialists take samples of water from multiple places around the house. These representative samples go to a lab, where they undergo multiple tests over approximately a week. These tests look for the following:
- pH levels: This is a measure of the concentration of hydrogen ions in water. A neutral level is 7. Higher means alkalinity, lower means acidity. The U.S. EPA recommends a range between 6.5 and 8.5. Elevated levels can cause skin, eye, and mucous membrane irritation. Lower levels creates corrosive effects and can also harm the plumbing.
- Lead: As this is often the primary concern for homeowners, search for lead traces in tap water is one of the highest priorities of any testing. The EPA action level for lead is greater than 15 parts per billion.
- Hardness: This is the measure of the presence of hard water minerals that leave limescale in pipes and can cause significant plumbing damage. These minerals include magnesium, gypsum, and various calcites. Although not harmful to drink, you’ll want to have these minerals counteracted with a water softener to protect the plumbing.
- Nitrate and Nitrite: Often found in ground water and the source of a number of health complications.
- Sulfur compounds: These compounds are the source of the unpleasant “rotten egg” smell in water.
- Chemicals: A variety of different chemicals can seep into freshwater pipes through the ground. The most common are pesticides.
- Heavy metals: These include arsenic, copper, chromium, mercury, and iron. (Lead is also grouped under this testing.)
When the testing is complete, you will receive a full breakdown of what’s in your water. This is when the water testing professionals can advise the best water treatment systems to remove impurities or reduce/raise pH levels. There are many different types of treatment systems: standard filters can remove larger particles that cause turbidity (cloudy water), reverse osmosis systems can target heavy metals and nitrates, and water softeners deal with hard water minerals.
If you’ve never had the water in your home tested, all it takes is to speak to our professionals and they’ll set up the appointment.
Ken Neyer Plumbing, Inc. serves Cincinnati, OH and the surrounding areas. We have 24-hour service available.