Understanding Your Water
Common issues and answers
Water touches practically every room in your home. Its quality affects how your water tastes and smells, the food you cook, how your skin and hair feel and even how your appliances, fixtures and plumbing look and last. There are so many ways that better water can make a difference in your life. We invite you to learn more.
Many mistake the telltale signs of hard water and blame the problems on inadequate cleaners and detergents and poor performing appliances. Or they resign themselves to the fact that these problems are simply a way of life. Dry skin and hair, bathtub ring, spots on glass and silverware, dull, dingy clothing, disappointing performance and a shortened life expectancy of water-using appliances are all problems frequently caused by hard water. Most don’t realize how much time, money and energy is spent fighting the hard water battle.
Take the first step and find out how hard your water is and if there are any other issues. Your local Kinetico water professional will be glad to arrange for a free, in-home water analysis.
Cloudy, murky or grayish water is usually caused by dissolved or suspended solids. This is also known as “turbidity.” Water can become turbid naturally or from land disturbances such as construction, storms and urban runoff.
The turbidity of your water can range from low to high. But even if your water looks clear, it could still contain a high level of dissolved solids. That’s why, whether your water is turbid or not, we recommend you have it tested. A Kinetico water professional will perform a free water analysis and plumbing audit. Based on the results, they’ll recommend appropriate treatment approaches if needed.
In its pristine state, water is colorless, tasteless and odorless.
So, if your water tastes or smells funny, you owe it to yourself to find out why.
Chlorine Taste and Smell
Since the 1850s, chlorine has been used as a disinfectant to kill harmful bacteria in water itself or the pipes that transport it. It has helped end a number of major threats to public health. Although chlorine in water is essential at the treatment plant and in the water distribution system, it is no longer necessary once the water reaches your home.
Though chlorine is vital for stopping the spread of disease, its benefits come at a price. Chlorine tastes and smells bad. It dries skin and hair, fades clothes (bleach is made of chlorine) and can dry out the rubber seals in appliances, shortening their lives.
Kinetico’s chlorine removal systems eliminate chlorine from your water. Call your local Kinetico water professional to set up a free in-home water analysis and to discuss your options.
Earthy or Musty Taste and Odor
These types of complaints are generally the result of compounds released due to decayed vegetation and are typically associated with different forms of algae. They are most prevalent in supplies that use surface water as their supply. While not toxic, they are nonetheless unpleasant and can be offensive at very low concentrations.
“Rotten Egg” Smell
Another common source of smelly water is hydrogen sulfide. Hydrogen sulfide is a colorless corrosive gas that has the characteristic odor of rotten eggs. It is most commonly found in groundwater supplies and often is noticed coming from hot water tanks. It can occur naturally from deep in the ground or can be produced by sulfate-reducing bacteria. It can affect the taste of food and beverages, making them unpalatable. If present in high enough concentrations, it can leave an unpleasant odor on hair and clothing. It can also accelerate corrosion of metal parts in appliances. Because it is a gas, testing for it usually has to be performed onsite.
As the name implies, a metallic taste to your water indicates the presence of metals such as iron, copper, manganese or zinc. Iron and manganese are often naturally occurring and are predominantly found in groundwater. Copper and zinc can come from an aging water distribution system or the corrosion of copper plumbing and brass fittings.
Water is a natural solvent, and given the needed time and conditions, it will dissolve anything it comes in contact with. That’s why, depending on where you live, your water can contain iron or manganese, which can cause rusty-orange or black staining. It can even alter hair color. Or if you have water that has a low pH, you can see the telltale, blue-green stains. You’ll see the stains on clothes, fixtures, sinks, tubs, water-using appliances and toilets. Quite frankly, the stains can appear on anything the water comes in regular contact with. These stains are very difficult to remove, if you can get rid of them at all.
Your local Kinetico water professional will be happy to perform a free, in-home water analysis to see what’s causing stains in your home. From there, they will suggest options for treatment if needed.