Across the nation and around Long Island, concerns are being raised about the safety of our drinking water. From lead found in the water supply in Flint, Michigan, to concerns about lead in several Long Island school districts, and the ongoing situation involving contaminated groundwater at a site in Bethpage, the news has been sobering. If you’re a homeowner, you know that the most important responsibility is the safety of your family and Tragar knows that making sure your drinking water is safe is protecting them. So we want you to know about our drinking water and how installing a whole-house water filtration system can give you peace of mind.
How Contaminants Get into Our Water
The first thing you need to know about safe drinking water on Long Island is how we get our supply. Unlike other areas of New York state which rely on reservoirs, Long Island acquires most of its drinking water from aquifers, according to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). Aquifers are natural rock formations which can transfer groundwater. Although aquifers are formed naturally, contaminants can slip into the water supply. One concern for many Long Islanders is a solvent called Trichloroethylene (TCE). This is the contaminant that is present in the groundwater at the Bethpage site.
There are many other contaminants that can also get into drinking water. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), tap water may be contaminated by chemicals such as arsenic that occur naturally. Other dangers include viruses, bacteria, and parasites. Man-made contaminants such as pesticides and runoff from sewers and septic systems can also get into groundwater. Sediments from soil runoff can also affect the water supply.
The Danger of Lead Exposure in Drinking Water
One particularly dangerous contaminant that has been in the news recently is lead. Children are particularly vulnerable to lead exposure, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Exposure to lead can result in behavior problems, hyperactivity, lower IQ, learning disabilities, slow growth and anemia. Pregnant women are also at risk because lead exposure can reduce growth of the fetus and premature birth.
Public water supplies are regulated by the EPA to monitor the levels of lead in our drinking water, but lead does get into the water supply. Homes built before 1986, which may have lead pipes, are particularly at risk, according to the EPA. Corrosion of these pipes caused by the wearing away of metal can put lead in the pipes. The EPA and local authorities monitor those levels and the maximum amount of lead content that is considered safe and allowable is a weighted average of 0.25 percent calculated across the wetted surfaces of pipes, pipe fittings, plumbing fittings, and fixtures and 0.2 percent for solder and flux.
Sometimes the system fails. In Flint Michigan, pipes began to corrode after that city switched its water supply from Lake Huron to the Flint River, according to CNN. Even though the water supply was later switched back, the change had triggered a massive corrosion of Flint’s water pipes leading to dangerous lead levels contaminating their water.
Whole-Home Filters from Tragar Can Keep Your Family Safe
While Flint might be an extreme example of the dangers to public water supply, installing a whole-house water filtration system from Tragar can give you peace of mind about contaminants invading drinking water in your home. Our Aquasana filters are NSF certified to remove lead and 65 other contaminants. They’re built to filter thousands of gallons of water before a replacement is needed. Our most popular filter, the Aquasana Rhino, is built to filter 600,000 gallons of water or enough for the time span of 6 years.
There’s a lot that can get into our drinking water and you want to keep your family safe from all of it. Getting a whole-house water filter is a great way to do that. Contact us for a free estimate.