|Coliform bacteria||0||Diarrhea and vomiting|
|Nitrate Nitrogene||10 mg/l or less||Infant Blood Problems|
|Nitrite Nitrogene||1 mg/or less||Infant Blood Problems|
|Arsenic||10 ug/l or less||Cancer/ Low birth weight|
|Radon||4000 pCi/l or less||Cancer|
|Uranium||20 ug/or less||Kidney Problems|
|Iron||.30 mg/l||See more here|
|Maganese||.05 mg/l||See more here|
|Hardness||75 mg/l||See more here|
|PH Levels||6.5 – 7.5||See more here|
|Copper||1.3 mg/l||See more here|
|Sodium||100 mg/l||See more here|
Iron and manganese are minerals found in drinking water supplies. These minerals will not harm you, but they may cause reddish-brown or black stains on clothes or household fixtures. Under guidelines for public water supplies set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), iron and manganese are considered secondary contaminants. Secondary standards apply to substances in water that cause offensive taste, odor, color, corrosion, foaming, or staining but have no direct affect on health. The standard Secondary Maximum Contaminant Level (SMCL) for iron is 0.3 milligrams per liter (mg/L or ppm) and 0.05 mg/L for manganese. Private water supplies are not subject to federal standards, but these standards can be used as guidelines to evaluate the quality of water from wells or springs. The four forms of iron and manganese commonly found in drinking water are ferrous, ferric, organic and iron bacteria. Normally, water appears clear when first drawn from the cold water faucet. If yours is not, it may contain ferric iron or organic iron. Both color the water. Ferric iron precipitates or settles out. Organic iron does not settle out. In well water, insoluble iron oxide is converted to a soluble form of ferrous (dissolved) iron. Ferrous iron is colorless, but when in contact with air, it oxidizes readily, creating reddish- brown, solid particles that then settle out as ferric oxide. Manganese is similar to iron but forms a brownish-black precipitate and stains. Manganese is less commonly found in groundwater than iron, rarely found alone in a water source, and generally found with dissolved iron.
The presence of iron and manganese in water is not considered a health problem. In fact, small concentrations are essential to human health. However, high concentrations of iron may give the water an unpleasant metallic taste while still being safe to drink. When iron combines with tea, coffee, and alcoholic beverages, it produces an unappetizing inky, black appearance and a harsh, offensive taste.
Hard water interferes with almost every cleaning task from laundering and dish washing to bathing and personal grooming. Clothes laundered in hard water may look dingy and feel harsh and scratchy. Dishes and glasses may be spotted when dry. Hard water may cause a film on glass shower doors, shower walls, bathtubs, sinks, faucets, etc. Hair washed in hard water may feel sticky and look dull. Water flow may be reduced by deposits in pipes.
Dealing with hard water problems in the home can be a nuisance. The amount of hardness minerals in water affects the amount of soap and detergent necessary for cleaning. Soap used in hard water combines with the minerals to form a sticky soap curd. Some synthetic detergents are less effective in hard water because the active ingredient is partially inactivated by hardness, even though it stays dissolved. Bathing with soap in hard water leaves a film of sticky soap curd on the skin. The film may prevent removal of soil and bacteria. Soap curd interferes with the return of skin to its normal, slightly acid condition, and may lead to irritation. Soap curd on hair may make it dull, lifeless and difficult to manage.
When doing laundry in hard water, soap curds lodge in fabric during washing to make fabric stiff and rough. Incomplete soil removal from laundry causes graying of white fabric and the loss of brightness in colors. A sour odor can develop in clothes. Continuous laundering in hard water can shorten the life of clothes. In addition, soap curds can deposit on dishes, bathtubs and showers, and all water fixtures.
Hard water also contributes to inefficient and costly operation of water-using appliances. Heated hard water forms a scale of calcium and magnesium minerals that can contribute to the inefficient operation or failure of water-using appliances. Pipes can become clogged with scales that reduces water flow and ultimately requires pipe replacement.
For piping systems fed by water from a private well, one of the most common causes of corrosion is low pH. A low pH is water with a pH of less than 7.0 pH. Signs of acidic water are corrosion of fixtures, pinhole leaks, blue staining (from copper pipes) or rust staining (from iron pipes).
Common causes for acidic water are acid rainfall due to atmospheric carbon dioxide and other airborne pollutants, runoff from mining spoils, and decomposition of plant materials. Acidic waters can be high quality and are typically low in buffering calcium minerals, but are high in dissolved carbon-dioxide gas, which can cause the low pH or acidity.
Treatment is accomplished by neutralizing the water with the use of an automatic calcite neutralizer. These water filter tanks are filled with a blend of calcium and magnesium carbonates made from naturally occurring minerals, which dissolve into the water, making it less corrosive. Calcite is a white granular mineral that adds calcium to the water raising the pH and increasing the alkalinity. Periodically, (once or twice a year for a typical residential application) more mineral is added to the filter tank.
In some cases, instead of dissolved carbon dioxide causing the low pH or acidity, the acidity is caused by mineral acids, either natural or from mining or other industrial wastes. Often the pH is very low, less than 5.0. Treating this type of water requires injection of soda ash or sodium hydroxide with a metering pump, and generally, the neutralizing type mineral filters described above will not work well on this type of water.