Water Quality is an Essential Part of Life
We have all heard the term “water quality” before but might not necessarily understand just what it means. In a vague sense, we all understand that it means having cleaner water to drink and use, but past that vague description, we might not be as educated about it as we need to be.
When talking about water quality, there are a number of different things that you should be aware of and questions that you should be asking. Here are a few things that you should be aware of when dealing with water quality.
Why is water quality important?
Water quality is important for a few reasons. The first is that we need water for our very survival. Water is an essential portion of our lives, both for drinking and cooking purposes. Having drinking water that is contaminated and unclean can lead to health effects that can be small in nature all the way up to death. Having clean drinking water cannot be understated.
It is also worth noting that less than 3% of the planet’s water is potable and available. That is a lot of water across the globe that is totally unusable for consumption. So it is important that the water that is available is clean and free of contaminants.
What are the 6 indicators of water quality?
Temperature and dissolved oxygen. Water temperature is important because it has an effect on the rest of the variables in the quality of water. As water temperature increases, the overall solubility of the oxygen within will begin to decrease. Essentially it is the hotter the water, the less oxygen that is in it. This is an important thing to keep in mind.
Conventional variables. Knowing what other things are in the water is an important aspect. This is why water is often checked by its pH levels. The pH measurement will take stock of any contaminants in the water and just how it could affect anyone who drinks it. A rating of 7 is neutral and anything below 4.5 or above 9.5 is usually lethal to organisms in the water. They can also have effects on biological processes like reproduction. Knowing the pH levels is essential to getting clean water.
Metals. What may surprise you is that there are many metals that are in different sources of drinking water. This isn’t a bad thing, necessarily: metals like zinc, copper, and manganese can help in the biochemical process that sustains life. But they can also be severely toxic to aquatic organisms if they are delivered in higher concentrations.
Nutrients. Depending on where you get your water from, you can find a litany of different nutrients in the water. Phosphorus is one of the most common nutrients and depends greatly on the climate. It is important to know which nutrients are in the water and in what concentration.
Industrial Chemicals. Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are chemically stable compounds that are produced for a variety of different commercial and industrial applications. Despite the fact that they were banned in 1977, they are still found in plasticizers as well as electrical wire insulation.
There are also things like Dioxins and furans that have organochlorine compounds that are also found in the air and soil in small doses. It is important to know the level of these industrial chemicals and what effect these have on the overall quality of the water that you are consuming.
Hydrocarbons. Most drinking water will contain a number of different compounds called hydrocarbons. Things like PAHs, naphthenic acids, and other human sources can become introduced into the water supply. Knowing the effects that these can have in different concentrations can go a long way towards getting towards a cleaner, clearer water quality.
How is water quality measured?
There is a litany of factors that come into play when determining the overall quality of the water that we are aiming to consume. Things like pH levels and turbidly are important to know but there are others that are measured against federal mandates. This is important because we have to know what is in our water due to the possible effects that they can have.
The Environmental Protection Agency works in coalition with other municipalities to ensure that tap water throughout the United States is safe to consume. The EPA is most often responsible for delegating responsibility for drinking water standards to the various states and tribes throughout the country.
Water filtration systems are becoming all the more popular to help ensure that our drinking water is clean and clear. Calling the professionals at Wicked Plumbing install or repair those systems is one of the best moves that you can make. We don’t just handle water heaters and clogged drains; we do it all.
Call us today at (508) 272-1196 to schedule your appointment with us today.