Arsenic in water in this region is natural; it is an element of our earth’s crust. New Hampshire has a lot of arsenic in the water. In fact, 1 in 4 houses on a dug well in the southeast part of the state have actionable levels of arsenic in their water. More and more attention is being called to this very real water quality problem in the region. Long term exposure to arsenic has been related to cancers, cardiovascular disease, immunological disorders, diabetes and neurological issues.
Coliform bacteria can be plant or soil bacteria but this family of bacteria also includes pathogenic organisms. E coli bacteria that comes from the intestines of warm-blooded animals and represent a serious water quality problem.
The taste and smell of chlorine are unappealing and can also dry out your skin and hair. While municipalities use chlorine to disinfect the water supply, it should be filtered out before you use it to eliminate these effects.
Public water supplies, especially those fed by surface water, will sometimes use Chloramines as the disinfectant. These chemical compounds are a mixture of chlorine and ammonia. Chloramines are considered safe to drink but many people prefer to remove them prior to drinking. Certain water using applications may be less tolerant of chloramines, so some people prefer to remove them prior to creating beverages or raising fish.
Hard water dries out skin and makes hair brittle. It causes soap scum in tubs and showers and spots on faucets, fixtures and dishes. It also causes scaling in appliances and water heaters, which results in a reduction of efficiency, costly repairs, high operation costs and premature replacement.
As the name implies, a metallic taste to your water indicates the presence of metals such as iron, copper, manganese or zinc. Iron and manganese are often naturally occurring and are predominantly found in groundwater. We have a lot of it here in NH. Copper and zinc can come from an aging water distribution system or the corrosion of copper plumbing and brass fittings.
Acidic water is not something that you want your family consuming or running through the plumbing in your home. Dissolved copper will be left behind in showers and sinks, leading to a blue-green stain after the water evaporates, and weakening the plumbing system over time. Lead and copper can dissolve into the water leading to a “penny-like” taste to the water, and causing the water to flunk the health related parameters for lead and copper content.
Organics and Tannins in your water are cause for concern and should be explored. The term organics refers to a large category of natural contaminants that are related to the decomposition of natural organic matter, such as plants and trees. Sometimes organics are called tannins, lignins, or humins and they are associated with tastes, odors and color.
PFAS are man-made chemicals used in products worldwide since the mid 50s. Like most of the health related contaminants we deal with, there is no taste or odor or color associated with PFAS. Scientific studies show that exposure to PFAS can lead to adverse health outcomes in humans. The only way to know is to test.
Radon is a colorless, odorless gas that exists due to the radioactive decay of uranium, a common element in our bedrock. Radon gas dissolves into groundwater and then is released into the air when the water is used within a home or building. Inhaled radon is known to be the second leading cause of lung cancer in many countries, second only to cigarette smoking.
Many homes in the region are plagued by a rotten egg smell in their water. This is hydrogen sulfide, which can be caused by the metabolism of a non-harmful bacteria called “sulfate reducing bacteria.” In this area we also have hydrogen sulfide gas that is caused by a natural chemical reaction in deep wells.
Uranium is a natural element of the earth’s crust found in some parts of New England. The concentration of uranium in water is typically very small, but varies from region to region; depending on the type of minerals in the soil and bedrock. For example, in granite bedrock, the average concentration tends to be higher, thus why we have quite a bit of uranium in the drinking water here in New Hampshire. Uranium in drinking water has been linked to kidney damage, cancers and other health concerns.
With over twenty years of experience in treating water that has been impacted by spills of volatile organic compounds, synthetic organic compounds, MtBE and oil compounds from drinking water Secondwind Water Systems is your local source for specialty water treatment.