Drinking tap water with a strange aftertaste is not just unpleasant, but it can be harmful for your health as well. Given that there are more than 316 contaminants registered in water supplies, detecting a salty taste in your tap water is not as rare as you would think. In case you notice the unusual taste, do not worry, the presence of the salty aftertaste is not an insolvable problem and getting rid of it can be done quite easily.
The only questions you have to answer are the following: what can be the source of the salty taste, and what are the solutions you can use to solve the problem and have great-tasting water again?
Basically, there are two main reasons why your tap water tastes like salt: the high concentration of chloride ions and high concentration of sulphates in your water source. Firstly, the most likely reason is the high concentration of chloride ions. This change in the taste of your water source may be caused by industrial waste or irrigation drainage. If you are living in a coastal area, you may be familiar with the problem of detecting a salty taste in your tap water, and the reason may be that seawater is entering your local water supply. Secondly, another reason can be the high concentration of sulphates, usually magnesium sulphate and sodium sulphate. Both of these may occur naturally as the groundwater and rainwater moves through the earth, helping sulphates make their way straight into the local water supplies. The high concentration of these two sulphates can also be a result of industrial waste or shale, but it can be a sign of a breakdown of sulphide ores as well.
After detecting the strange salty taste of your tap water and finding the source of the unpleasant change, you may wonder whether the tap water you are used to drink in general is healthy or harmful. Unfortunately, the answer is that it’s harmful. First of all, consuming tap water with a high concentration of sulphates can have laxative effects, leading to diarrhoea. The high concentration of chloride ions may be also harmful, and it’s especially damaging for pipes and boilers. Water containing too much chloride ions may cause the corrosion of pipes and may discolour stainless steel sinks as well. Consuming tap water with high concentration of chloride ions and high concentration of sulphates can be harmful on the long term, so in case you noticed the salty taste in your tap water, it is a good idea to get your tap water and your water supply tested as soon as possible.
What can you do to get rid of the salty taste and improve the taste of your tap water? Installing a water filter to remove the contaminants causing it is a good start to improve the taste of our tap water.