Drinking fresh water

A Deep Dive Into Common Drinking Water Problems & Solution

You smell rotten eggs, but you’ve checked your fridge, garbage, and even the dog. Guess what, it might be your water! Smelling rotten eggs from water supplies is not uncommon when a problem arises. So what’s that all about? In today’s post, we trace some common water problems and a good course of action.  

Water is life. We all depend on it, and its quality matters. Water treatment is all about finding the source of the problem and the right filtration system. 

Water Filtration and Water Treatment Problems in the U.S. 

Most cities in the United States do a fair job of providing water filtration, but occasionally problems with the system arise. The most well-known example of the last couple of years, of course, is the problems that arose in Flint, Michigan in 2014. This scandal certainly made headlines and got people all over the country thinking about their water. 

A Water Crisis Led to Renewed Awareness 

Of course, Flint, Michigan was an extreme example of municipalities failing their citizens. Images of dark brown water and sludge made quite an impact across the nation.  And yet, according to a report by Business Insider, every year between 1982 and 2015 between 9 million and 45 million Americans might have gotten their water from a source that fell short of EPA standards. 

According to the report, rural areas seem to struggle the most in maintaining their water supplies, big cities also face mounting issues and costs when it comes to replacing failing and old infrastructure. They reported on 12 cities that have faced criticism on their water, here are just a few of them: 

Pittsburgh: In 2017, residents were warned to boil their drinking water as low levels of chlorine were found in the supply. This meant that the water could be swimming with a parasite called giardia. The parasite is likely to cause stomach problems. 

Milwaukee: In 2018, reports emerged that Milwaukee officials held off properly warning residents about high levels of lead in the water supply. 

Detroit: Several Detroit public schools tested positive for led or copper in 2018. According to experts, children that are exposed to high levels of lead can suffer brain damage. 

Brady: This small town in Texas had some questions about their orange, brown, and green water, which indicated a high amount of radium in their water supply. 

Common Water Problems & Solutions 

So while most cities in the nation are not facing a constant threat, the recent attention paid to some of these failures has made people far more conscious about their water supply. 

The Rotten Egg Water Smell 

It’s never pleasant when the smell of rotten eggs seeps into your home. What’s worse, is suspecting that the smell is coming from your drinking water. It can be quite alarming! The smell tends to come from high levels of sulfur bacteria and hydrogen sulfide gas. This level of chemicals can slowly corrode metal pipes and to problems down the line. 

So what do you do if you smell rotten eggs? 

Troubleshoot the problem. If only the hot water causes the smell, this might be a water heater problem. If the smell also emerges from the cold water, it can potentially be a problem with the water softener. If rotten egg smell continues in both the hot and cold taps, this may indicate more of a problem with the water supply itself. 

The Metallic Taste 

If your water begins to taste a little like metal this indicates high levels of iron or other types of metals like manganese, lead, zinc, copper in the water. In homes with well water, the iron taste can become even more prominent.  In homes that have aging infrastructure, metals can sneak into the water supply through the aged piping. Higher than normal levels of iron may make the water taste funny but won’t have an immediate health effect. Lead and zinc, of course, are a different story. 

What to do with metallic tasting water?

One way to remedy the metallic taste is by installing a filtration system in your home. You want a system that catches the water as it is coming in through your home and distributed to the various taps. This way, you’re covered. 

Chlorine Taste and Smell 

Chlorine is used to kill harmful bacteria in your water, but you also don’t want it to taste like bleach. If this is the case, it likely has high levels of chlorine. The EPA regulates how much chlorine should be used and usually the chlorine is not present in your water as it reaches your house. Cities are instructed to use chlorine to kill pathogens and depending on how far away your water must travel or other factors, it may often leave a residual bleach taste. 

What do I do when I taste bleach?

So there’s not much you can do about regulating or changing the amount of chlorine that the city puts in the water. Sometimes, due to a variety of factors, your water may have stronger lingering chlorine tastes. The best solution is installing a water filtration system as well. Water filters will remove some of this extra bleach smell. 

Get Quality Water Treatment for You and Your Family 

Here, at Sun Tech Services, we specialize in bringing clean water to the Las Cruces-El Paso area and community. Here in the Southwest, we experience a lot of problems with hard water, and so we specialize in softening water and ensuring the residents of the area have the healthy drinking water they deserve!

Have questions about your home’s or your business’s drinking water? Want to learn more about what we do? Call us here at Sun Tech Services today. 

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