A report by the EPA suggests that the average American consumes 88 gallons of water each day. Clean water is essential for cleaning, drinking, and cooking. However, the following factors can impact water quality in your home.
1. Agricultural Pollution and Runoff
Whether your water supply is from a private well or municipal supply, it may still be prone to pollution. The bacteria and toxins in wastewater can find their way into the well. The contamination can be due to water runoff from melting snow or rainfall.
In the United States, agricultural activity is the leading source of freshwater pollution. Farming generates a significant amount of nitrates. When it rains, the chemicals are washed off into rivers and lakes. The toxins may also impact groundwater systems.
Nitrates and other chemical compounds used in farming can cause serious illnesses, especially in children. Infants below six months may experience shortness of breath if they drink water with high levels of nitrates.
Organic compounds from chemical and agricultural waste can also contaminate your water supply. They may introduce toxins such as chlorobenzene, which can cause kidney, eye, and liver complications.
The NPDWR (National Primary Drinking Water Regulation) has set standards to limit contaminants in drinking water. A water quality test is the surest way to establish whether your water supply is contaminated. You can talk to Tarpy Plumbing, Heating & Air’s plumbers for dependable water quality analysis in your San Diego home.
2. Blockages and Leaks in Your Drainage System
Sewer blockages, pipe leaks, faulty septic tanks are some drainage system sources of contamination. Sewers are complex systems that may contain many different types of toxins. Harmful bacteria, nitrates, and heavy metals are common pollutants that can be harmful to your health.
Overflow from your drainage can contaminate nearby water systems. If you have a septic tank, proper care and maintenance are critical to prevent a health hazard. According to statistics, septic tanks contribute approximately 1% of groundwater contamination.
Substandard installation of surrounding percolation systems can allow wastewater to escape out of the septic tank. The way you treat the leach field is another factor that can increase the risk of hazards. Excessive use of detergent and chemical compounds can limit the anaerobic capacity of the system.
To reduce the risk of issues developing in your septic systems, you should arrange regular inspections and maintenance. Pumping out the sludge can be done once every three years or more frequently, depending on your water usage.
3. Water Usage and Its Impact on Water Quality
The design and installation of your home’s drainage and plumbing system should match your water usage capacity. Overusing water can trigger complications that will eventually cause contamination.
Excessive use of water can adversely impact the sewer and septic systems. The more wastewater flows down the drains, the longer it will take to percolate. As a result, fewer toxins are broken down, eventually getting into water systems.
Your home’s water usage can also strain your drainage system. Clogging may force water to back up into your kitchen sink and bathtub. In turn, the wastewater introduces heavy metals, nitrates, and other toxins into your plumbing.
Your drain may also succumb to tree roots invasion. They can squeeze the piping, weakening the joints and causing leaks in the process. The more the drain leaks, the higher the likelihood that more tree roots will burst into the pipes.
You may notice the following signs when your drainage system is faulty. You should consult our highly professional plumbers for a thorough inspection and repair.
- Flooding under downspouts and gutters
- Frequent incidences of drain clogs
- Signs of erosion on your yard
- Pools of water in the crawlspace
The cause of the drainage problems is sometimes unique for each property. The gradient of the slope or soil grading can affect the performance of the system. To avoid further risk of contamination, you can talk to Tarpy Plumbing, Heating & Air plumbers for trusted plumbing solutions in San Diego.
4. Water Hardness and Mineral Buildup
In San Diego, the water hardness level is approximately 276 parts per million (PPM). According to the water hardness scale, levels above 180 ppm are rated as very hard.
Hard water contains minerals ions such as calcium and magnesium. While minute quantities can benefit your health, large amounts can impact your home’s water quality.
If your home has hard water, you may notice that chores such as washing and cleaning are much harder to complete. That’s because soap takes longer to lather. As a result, you will be using more water and soap, which can increase your utility bills.
Water hardness can also shorten the lifespan of your water heating equipment. Hot water will speed up the accumulation of minerals on the inner lining of the tank. Your water heater may work harder to generate the same amount of hot water.
Hardness will also speed up corrosion which encourages bacteria to spread inside your equipment. One way to address the problem conclusively is to acquire a water softener. If there is already damage to the heating equipment, Tarpy Plumbing, Heating & Air’s plumbers in San Diego can offer lasting solutions.
5. Contamination From Outdated or Faulty Plumbing
Pipes and water fixtures could also be the primary source of contamination in your home. Lead service lines have been outlawed since the mid-80s. But there are still houses with outdated plumbing that may contain lead pipes and fixtures. Local authorities consider it to be the responsibility of homeowners to replace such piping.
Lead can seep into your drinking water as it flows through the plumbing. Unfortunately, Lead is not easy to detect in the water. It is tasteless and odorless. That’s part of the reason poisoning can continue for a long time before you can identify it.
Furthermore, lead can cause complications with mental and physical development. Some fixtures may have up to 8% lead even though they are advertised as lead-free. Additionally, faults like cracks and clogs can impact the quality of water in your home.
When to Conduct a Water Quality Test
A water quality test can give you a clearer picture of the contaminants present in your home’s water supply. But there are signs that may suggest the quality of water is deteriorating. Discoloration, unusual odor and taste, are some of the indications the water is unsafe for consumption.
If there has been an oil spill or sewer overflow near water systems, you may want to perform a water quality test. Homes with infants, nursing mothers, pregnant women, or ill occupants should test the water once a year.
Once you determine the contaminants present in the water supply, you may acquire a suitable filtration system. The type of system you choose will depend on unique factors such as your budget, water usage, and your preferences.
For example, a whole-house filtration is suitable for households with multiple occupants. For smaller homes, a point-of-use system may be sufficient. But many homeowners choose a combination of the two systems.
Contact Tarpy Plumbing, Heating & Air’s team in San Diego when you suspect there are contaminants in your water supply. Our plumbers have a reputation for timely and professional services. We have a BBB accredited team that offers 24/7 service and is always ready to respond when you call. Other services we provided include air conditioning and furnace repair and installations. Get free estimates and financing with approved credit. Contact our A+ rated team for exceptional services in San Diego.