The Threat Posed By Sediments in Water
Water is vital to survival and although water can now be available with a simple gesture at the tap, not everyone is connected to the municipal supply. As convenient as it is for some, it can be quite inconvenient to others, especially when having to deal with the task of cleaning the water themselves.
One of the most readily evident issues with a private water supply, such as a well, is the amount of sediment it contains. Even water from the municipality can come with some form of sediment contamination and be quite the issue for many. An in depth look into the threat that can come from sediment in a water supply will certainly make the case for home water filtration.
What is sediment?
A blanket term like sediment encompasses a wide range of elements that can be found in drinking water. These elements form naturally from materials broken down by erosion and natural weathering. Included in this list of elements that make up sediments are rocks, sand, minerals, organic particles of microbes, and even plants.
In well water, sediments usually make the water look cloudy or milky. Sometimes it can settle at the bottom of a glass or container or continue to float around in the water. These sediments, easy to spot with the naked eye, are called suspended solids. Furthermore, certain residue in water becomes visible only after coming into contact with air. In this case, the sediment is called dissolved solids.
The effects and dangers of sediment in water
Water quality can be severely affected by sediment, in more ways than we may think. The first and most evident effect sediment has on water, is the unappealing appearance. Additionally, sediment in the water that is used in the household will undoubtedly damage the plumbing, fixtures, any water appliances like water pumps, and even clog up the plumbing system. A reduction in water flow usually announces a clog is being created somewhere in the pipe system.
Organic contaminating sediments are not a health threat, but they do damage water appliances and plumbing. These types of sediments can be an even greater annoyance as they can stain clothes and create deposits on dishes, and bathroom furnishings like on the shower windows or tub.
If left untreated, these sedimentations can damage the pipes so much in time that they develop into greater risks, like potential lead contamination, depending on the age of the pipes. Thus, even if the presence of sediment on its own is not a great health concern, it can lead to other issues, especially in more extreme cases with older pipes that can be scraped.
What can be done to treat sediment contaminated water?
Firstly testing the water source for sediment or turbidity may not be needed since it’s visible with the naked eye. Testing for other contaminants that are not visible is usually needed when other factors come into play like odor or taste.
Removing sediment from water will require installing a water filter either in the well or at home. Depending on budget, size, or water volume needed, different kinds of filtration systems are available. Sediment filters offer a wide range of methods for cleaning out water. Some of them include aeration, ionization, reverse osmosis, and even chlorination.
Depending on where the filter needs to be used it can be installed at either the entry point inside a home or the point of use. With a private well, a point of entry install will most likely be the optimal choice, so that all the water that enters the home is cleaned before use. For tap water coming from the municipal source, a point of use filter is the best choice, especially if space is limited.
Deciding on which variation of the many types of sediment water filters to choose from is not a small feat. Luckily, much of this information and subsequent comparisons of different products by both use and budget can be found online: check Water Masterz as an example.
How to select a water filter?
Firstly it’s important to consider the overall quality of the water source and personal preference. It’s essential to choose a filter that can remove the necessary amount of sediment to make the water usable, and still provide enough pressure for cleaning. It can also be quite useful to think long-term about consumable water filter cartridges, which can easily be provided to your location.
Knowing what method of cleaning a filter can employ will help one decide which fits best. Each different type of filter cleans out more or less sediment depending on what it uses as a filtering medium. In order to determine the amount of sediments filtered, experts came up with what is called a micron range.
Some filters use a screen mesh as a filtering medium and that usually ranges from 100 to 500 microns. It can remove rocks and sand or other larger particles. A micron cartridge medium will range from 0.5 to 100 and thus remove finer sediment than sand. Backwash filters range in between 5 and 10 microns and are even self-cleaning. Lastly, an ultrafiltration membrane filters lower than 0.15 microns, and this includes bacteria.
Tackling the issue of cleaning out sediment from drinking water is, at first glance, a tricky one. But with enough insight into the best water filtration methods out there, it can be a breeze. The effects of sediment-laden water can have on the household are not only surface level, and it won’t be pleasant to deal with clogs that can overflow or with damaged pipes. Investing in a water filter will not only improve drinking water quality but prolong the life of water appliances that can be damaged by the constant flow of sediment filled water.