Despite the fact that municipally supplied water is tested regularly for safety and quality, it’s not a bad idea to check your own water supply at least once a year. Water contamination can occur anywhere along the way to your drinking glass, even in your own water pipes. Of course, in addition to toxic or poisonous contaminants – which users of private wells are bound to monitor regularly – individuals might also be concerned about water hardness, or common elements such as chlorine or fluoride.
Whether you live in a house or a condo, you should at least know the source of your water, and how to confirm its quality. To satisfy your concerns, you can buy a testing kit, or check if your public health office will test your sample for you. If, instead, you choose to purchase your drinking water, either in bottles or from a service company, make sure that it too, is tested regularly.
Here are three tips to keep your drinking water as safe as you can:
- Properly dispose of household hazardous wastes. Take toxic chemicals like weed killers, pesticides, thinners, strippers, wood preservatives and cleaning chemicals to a hazardous waste collection center. Do not dump toxic chemicals down the drain or on the ground.
- Properly dispose of pharmaceuticals and personal care products including out-of- date and other leftover prescription and non-prescription medications.
Conserve Water — Turn off the faucet when you’re brushing your teeth, shaving or washing your face and you will save two to three gallons of water each minute. Install low-flow faucets and fix leaky faucets right away. Clean vegetables and fruits in a pan of water — not under a running faucet. Run the dishwasher and washing machine only when fully loaded. Make every drop count!