Putting Your Water to the Test
Water quality testing is important for a number of reasons such as checking for contaminants, improving odor and taste and also to classify your water as pure, hard or soft. There are two important water quality testing criteria that can determine the safety and purity of your water:
1. Total Dissolved Solids
Defined as any minerals, salts, metals or ions dissolved in water, Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) is measured in parts per million (PPM). The dissolved solids come from sources such as:
- Organic materials - leaves, silt, plankton, industrial waste, pesticides, road salts
- Inorganic materials - rocks, metals, minerals, salts
- Lead or copper from pipes
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which regulates public water supply, allows for a TDS maximum contamination level (MCL) of 500 PPM. Anything above 1,000 PPM is considered unfit for human consumption. High levels of TDS are in direct relation to the presence of sodium, chlorides and potassium. Reducing TDS levels to 50 PPM or less not only ensures the safety of your drinking water, but it also improves the appearance and taste. Reverse Osmosis home filtration systems have a high rate of success in water treatment by reducing TDS and helping to improve the appearance and taste of drinking water.
For more information regarding TDS levels in your water, please contact your Aerus Water Specialist.
2. pH Balance
Known as "pure hydrogen", pH balance is important in water quality testing to determine the acidity or the alkalinity your water.
Measured on a scale of 0-14, a pH value of 7 means that your water is neutral or "pure." A normal pH range for water is 6.5 - 8.5.
Water with a pH value lower than 6.5 is considered acidic or "soft." This means your water could have any of the following characteristics:
- Contain metal ions - iron, manganese, copper, lead
- Cause premature damage to metal piping
- Have a metallic or sour taste
- Stain laundry
- Leave a "blue-green" staining in sinks
Water with a pH value greater than 8.5 is considered alkaline or "hard." This means your water could have any of the following characteristics:
- Alkali or bitter taste
- Forms deposits on dishes, utensils and laundry basins
- Difficulty in getting soaps and detergents to lather
- Forms insoluble precipitates on clothing
- Hard water does not pose any health risks when consumed
For more information regarding the pH value of your water, please contact your Aerus Water Specialist.