Did you know that 85% of drinking water was found to have contaminants in a study conducted almost 10 years ago? If that’s not bad enough, only 60% of the water going into homes is regulated according to EPA standards. While technologies have certainly improved since that time, this still presents a significant problem.

It’s ultimately up to homeowners to insure that their water is safe. This is a step that the majority of the population does not take. Testing and filtering your tap water is an essential step to guarantee the safety of your family. There are government regulations in place that are designed to protect the public water supply from bacteria. However, it’s certainly not foolproof. Additionally, those with well-water are not being protected by those regulations at all.

4 way water filter chartYou should have a thorough water test done at least once per year. We also recommend that you use home water testing kits on your water at least once per month since they are inexpensive.

With that in mind, here are some of the issues that create the biggest concern.

Lead

Lead is quite toxic and it can damage your health, even at extremely low levels. The two most common ways that lead gets into the water supply is through aging household pipes and the erosion of deposits that happen to be near a source of water. The amount of time water is exposed to lead directly impacts the amount found in water.

Chlorine

Used by most public water utilities to remove microorganisms from water, chlorine can actually be absorbed through the skin when bathing. It has the potential to seriously dry skin and hair, causing irritation. It can also irritate your eyes and nose. Even though this is a great way to get rid of microorganisms, it does not come without a cost.

Chloramines

These pop up when ammonia is added to water that has already been treated with chlorine. They are generally used as a second form of disinfectant and when chloramines and chlorine are both added to drinking water, they combine with other materials that naturally occur in water. The result is disinfectant byproducts (DBP’s) which are shown in numerous studies to increase an individual’s risk of cancer.

Mercury

Mercury is a liquid metal that can be found in random natural deposits. There are a number of ways that mercury can find its way into your drinking water. Industrial runoff, landfill runoff, and even natural erosion are a few. Being exposed to high levels of mercury over an extended period of time will lead to kidney damage.

Pesticides

Pesticides can survive in water all throughout the treatment process used by most local utility companies but it cannot survive filters designed to remove them. This one is quite dangerous, which is why society has started swapping over to organic pesticides. Still, be very careful here. If you live in an area where pesticides are heavily used, then you should install a home water filtration system to remove them.

The safest way to make sure that your family is safe from all contaminants on this list is to have it tested at least once per year by a professional.