Managing and Removing Chlorine in Erie’s Drinking Water
Recently, Erie’s water management organization, Water Works, announced their intention to increase the levels of chlorine introduced to public drinking water reservoirs. The new mandate is aimed at reducing high levels of bacteria in the drinking water supply and should help the city meet statewide regulations governing bacteria levels.
The Use of Chlorine in Drinking Water
We are all familiar with the use of chlorine in swimming pools or spas to kill bacteria and maintain the cleanliness of these facilities. However, it may surprise you that chlorine is also used by municipalities as a disinfectant to ensure that drinking water is free of harmful bacteria or other germs. Due to its high toxicity, chlorine can effectively kill off these microorganisms in very small doses without harming humans, thus making it an ideal sanitizer. As a result, water chlorination prevents waterborne illnesses and diseases.
Is Chlorine in Drinking Water Harmful?
While Erie’s proposed chlorination increase will still be well below the concentration considered harmful to humans, this news might be a bit startling to some individuals. High levels of chlorine can have adverse effects on both water quality and human health. Prolonged exposure to chlorine can irritate the eyes and the sensitive skin around your nose and mouth. If ingested, chlorine can cause an upset stomach or cramping. It can also cause damage or dryness to your hair and scalp.
Even though limited exposure to chlorine is unlikely to cause any serious health concerns, it can still diminish water quality. Chlorine has a distinct odor and taste, and at high enough concentrations, it is not only noticeable but also extremely unpleasant. Too much chlorine in drinking water makes it no longer enjoyable and can cause us to turn to other unhealthy or sugary beverages to quench our thirst.
The fact of the matter is, Erie’s decision to add more chlorine to the drinking water supply is not an inherently bad idea. It will ensure that our drinking water is safe and sanitary for our use. However, once water has been disinfected through chlorination, the chlorine no longer serves a purpose right before the water is consumed.
How to Remove Chlorine from Drinking Water
The good news is that removing chlorine from drinking water is a rather simple process. One method for removing chlorine from your drinking water is to install a whole house water filtration system like our Dechlorinator or a whole house reverse osmosis water filtration.
Reverse osmosis purification works by forcing your tap water first through a semipermeable membrane and then through sediment and carbon filters. During this process, chemicals, such as chlorine, are removed from the water. However, reverse osmosis does more than remove chlorine. It will also filter out pesticides, bacteria, hard minerals and other toxins from the water. These impurities are left behind as the tap water passes through these three filters and are then flushed down the drain. Since reverse osmosis filtration is one of the best and most effective methods for purifying water, it will also provide you with some of the best tasting drinking water right out of your home tap.
What’s in Your Home’s Water?
Erie’s plan to increase chlorine in the drinking water supply will bring about many benefits to the community. It will contain and control threatening bacteria and prevent devastating outbreaks of disease and infection. However, increased measure to protect and sanitize our water does not necessarily mean that we have to compromise its taste and quality. We can still have safe, delicious and chlorine-free water right in our own homes. With the right water filtration systems, you can rest assured that you’ll be drinking the cleanest water there is.