Lead is a type of metal found naturally in the environment and has been used for decades in house paints, gasoline and plumbing fixtures. The amount of lead in the earth surface has gradually decreased starting from the mid-1970s due to less usage of the metal. When lead enters a person’s body in high concentrations, it leads to the severe brain, red blood cells, kidney and nervous system damage. The following steps explain on how one can get rid of lead from drinking water.
Flush before drinking
Anytime that your water in the tap hasn’t used for over six hours, it is recommended to “flush” the cold water. This process can take short duration if there has been recent heavy water usage such as toilet flushing or showering and it could take as long as two minutes if no recent heavy water usage.
Test your water before consumption
Having your water tested for lead is the only trusted way to confirm that water in the household is lead-free is to have it tested by a competent and certified laboratory. The water supplier may not provide information or assist with testing. Testing is highly recommended for apartment dwellers; this is because flushing may not be effective in high rise buildings with lead soldered piping.
For consumption, use Cold water
It is recommended to use water from the cold-water tap for cooking, drinking and for making baby formula. Hot water has a higher likelihood of containing more lead than cold water tap. Hot water dissolves contaminants more quickly than cold water.
Use water treatment devices or fillers
Many of the water treatment devices and filters are certified by independent organizations for effective reduction of lead, but it is important to note that devices not designed to eliminate lead will not work.
It is also important to approve the assertations of manufacturers of filters and treatments devices by confirming with approved companies that provide lists of the devices that they have certified.
Use lead-free materials
Most of the lead contamination comes lead-based pipes and solders in the household and not from the water suppliers. Using only lead-free materials in all plumbing, repairs, pipes or new faucets reduces the possibility of lead contamination.
In summary, the above methods work well in minimizing lead levels found in domestic water. The surest way to get rid of lead from drinking water is by use the lead-free material in all plumbing and also ensuring that you get a certified laboratory to have your water tested.