Most of us take easy access to clean, safe drinking water for granted nowadays. Indeed, the average American household uses 300 gallons of it every single day. We rely on it to stay hydrated, take a shower, do the dishes, water plants, do our laundry, and, most important of all, make our morning cup of coffee!
That’s why being able to recognize contaminated water signs is so important. With this insight under your belt, you’ll be able to spot any problems with your water supply early on and take action to resolve the situation ASAP. Sound like a plan?
Well, you’re in the right place! Today we’re going through the tell-tale signs of contaminated water and what you can do about it. Enjoy!
- Bad Smells
One of the clearest indications of water contamination comes in the form of awful odors! Nobody wants to turn on their tap and get a whiff of rotten eggs, right? But if that’s what’s happening, then you know for sure that something isn’t right.
Remember, clean and contaminant-free water is scentless in nature. You should run it from the faucet and smell nothing at all! If there’s any trace of sulfur or a sewage-like smell, you should avoid consuming water from that particular sink until the situation’s resolved.
The most likely cause of the bad smells is a build-up of bacteria in the drains. Feel free to try the DIY solution by flushing them with baking soda and vinegar. However, the easiest and most effective solution is always to call a plumber.
- Bad Taste
Another sure-fire sign of water contamination is when it starts tasting ‘funny’. Do a taste-test by pouring yourself a glass of water and taking a sip. If the flavor’s different from usual and your palate registers it as ‘unpleasant’, there’s a good chance you have a problem.
Now, water can start tasting bad for a variety of reasons, and the taste itself often reveals the issue. For example:
- A metallic taste often derives from old and rusty pipes,
- Saltiness can be a result of irrigation issues (that increase chloride levels), and
- The taste of dirt can be a result of anything from dirty faucets to environmental factors.
If you’re concerned by the taste, then try letting the water run a while before filling your glass. This should clear the pipes of anything that’d otherwise end up in there! A high-quality filtered water dispenser could be a worthy investment too.
Oh, and the problem persists (or you’re still concerned by it), then consider calling someone to test your water for toxins.
Few things are more distressing than pouring a glass of dirty, murky, and discolored water from the tap. After all, you’re used to drinking water that’s beautiful, clean, and clear! But there’s a silver lining:
Unlike other contaminated water signs, this one’s obvious! You recognize in an instant that there’s an issue and can pour the glass away without consuming something that could be harmful. The same can’t be said for problems that are harder to spot.
Once again, there are numerous potential causes of water discoloration. Some sediment could have come through the pipe, for example, or your plumbing system may have built up an excess of rust. Sometimes it’s a result of changing pressures in aging city water lines.
Filters and iron removal solutions are possible solutions to the problem. You could also call a pro to come and test a) whether the water’s safe and b) whether your plumbing system’s at fault.
- Low Pressure
Have you experienced a sudden and severe drop in the water pressure inside your home?
If so, we’d suggest seeking professional plumbing support as soon as you can. Aside from the practical inconvenience of low pressure, it has the potential to draw contaminants (such as harmful chemicals) back up into your supply of drinking water.
By the same token, as we saw above, unexpected increases in water pressure can cause trouble too. The spike in pressure can force sediment through the pipes or deliver unwanted elements from the city’s water lines. In these instances, water filters and pressure reduction valve installation are viable ways to resolve matters.
- Noticeable Changes to Your Skin, Hair, & Laundry
Most people know what happens if you drink contaminated water (nausea, gastrointestinal issues, and so on). Yet unlike the signs of drinking contaminated water, the signs of bathing/showering in it tend to show up in issues with your skin, hair, and laundry.
The most common complaints revolve around dryness, dullness, and/or brittleness. For example, hard water (even though it isn’t a health hazard) is known to clog your pores over time, which causes dryness and irritation. Washing your hair and clothes in it all the time will lead to similar drying effects to occur.
As for your laundry, contaminated water can impact how your clothes feel after each wash. Your garments may seem stiff or unclean when you remove them from the machine.
Of course, there are myriad potential reasons for these changes to your skin, hair, and laundry! But if you suspect they’re the result of contamination, be sure to seek an expert’s input to test out your water supply.
Don’t Forget These Contaminated Water Signs
Having access to a clean and safe supply of drinking water is essential to everyday life. With hundreds of gallons of water being used per day by the average American family, it’s fair to say we’d be lost without it!
That’s why it’s imperative to recognize contaminated water signs when they appear. By identifying them and taking remedial action ASAP, you can reduce the impact it has on your life. We hope the tell-tale signs we’ve highlighted in this article will help you do exactly that.
Are you looking for more information and advice on staying safe and healthy at home? Read through similar articles on the ‘Home Improvement’ section of the website now.