In developed countries, tap water is generally considered safe, and thanks to strict EU and national water safety regulations, tap water in the United Kingdom is one of the safest in the world. The municipal water treatment process, however, is not a fail-safe technology and water palatability is not necessarily a top priority for each and every water supplier company, hence, water taste and odour issues brought about by water chlorination and water hardness levels are not always taken into account by water suppliers who are usually more focused on disease prevention.
While disease-related incidents due to drinking tap water are not frequent, tap water is usually avoided as a source of drinking water chiefly due to reasons having to do with its taste. What do you have to remove from tap water to improve its taste and to make it healthier?
Chlorine is one of the top culprits for the bad taste of tap water, but unfortunately it’s indispensable in the treatment process of water as it’s used to destroy microorganisms like bacteria and viruses. Almost all water filters have the capability of removing chlorine, except for ultraviolet water filters, which only address water’s microbiological issues. Affordable water filters like the Doulton HIP Ultracarb Water Filter System will not only remove chlorine, but several other contaminants as well including lead, asbestos and pathogenic bacteria.
Hard Water Treatment
Chemical disinfectants are not the only ones responsible for the off taste of water. Hard water can also taste quite peculiar, not to mention the disruption it may cause in your kitchen appliances. Water filters like the Ecosoft 6-Stage Non-Pumped Reverse Osmosis System with Alkaline Filter can deal with water hardness issues, raising the pH level of water and significantly improving its taste.
The presence of fluoride in your tap water depends on the area you live in. Not all water companies add fluoride to tap water, but in areas in which fluoridation does occur, removing fluoride can be achieved with the help of water filters like the Watts EZFITPRO-300 Under Sink Water Filter Kit 15mm Push Fit, which removes fluoride thanks to its activated alumina filter cartridge. Fluoride is a toxic substance and while its presence in the municipal water supply is closely monitored, long-time exposure to fluoride can have adverse health effects.
Other contaminants: Giardia, Cryptosporidium.
Chlorine is not capable of killing any and all types of bacteria. Giardia and Cryptosporidium are the typical examples where higher doses of chlorine may be required to knock out these bacteria. However, higher doses may not be preferred for water treatment due to health concerns associated with chlorine. Therefore, water filters like the PurePro RS4000 that can remove these types of bacteria as well are preferable over systems that are not capable of removing bacteria. In some areas, other contaminants may also be present in tap water. Heavy metals, volatile organic compounds, industrial solvents, insecticides, pesticides and other contaminants may also end up in your tap water.
The best course of action is to make an analysis of your tap water with the help of home water test kits to get an idea of what types of contaminants are making your tap water less safe and less tasty for consumption. Use this information to purchase a water filter system that removes these unwanted contaminants.