Archive for December, 2021

Is Tap Water Safe To Drink In Orange County?

Posted by Rayne Water

 

*Reviewed by Ken Christopher, Senior Vice President at Rayne Dealership Corporation

If you’re one of the many residents of Orange County, you’re probably too busy enjoying the beautiful weather to spend much time thinking about your tap water. But it’s worth putting some thought into.

Water is one of the most essential elements to ensure your health and wellbeing. Your brain needs water to function properly, and you do as well. Even a little bit of dehydration can cause your focus, recall ability, and general brain efficiency to falter.1 

Clearly, ensuring your drinking clean water is important. You may have a water softener and think that is all you need, right? The answer is no. There are a number of factors that go into ensuring that your drinking water is up to standards. So, is tap water safe to drink in Orange County? Usually, the answer is yes, especially in Anaheim, Irvine, Santa Ana, and Mission Viejo, where water quality reports confirm that tap water meets standards. In this guide, we’ll address potential pollutants and possible solutions pertaining to your drinking water.

What is Safe Water?

Knowing that your water is technically “safe” to drink doesn’t give you an understanding of what contaminants aren’t in your tap water—or which ones still might be present. 

As such, let’s explore the regulations set by the Safe Water Drinking Act (SDWA). Also enforced by the Environmental Protection Agency, these standards mandate that public water systems treat and test their water to limit the presence of:2

Limiting these chemical components and testing to ensure that the water quality is up to public health standards ensures that the water coming out of your tap and into your coffee, tea, or boiling soup is safe for you to consume. However, water quality does help to ensure that the water coming out of your tap is safe for you to drink. But there’s more to water quality than these standards alone.

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Water Quality in Orange County

While Southern California, and specifically Orange County, has struggled with saltwater infiltration in the past, the water quality throughout Orange County is safe to drink. In fact, some of the water drunk by Orange County residents is recycled water, filtrated by the Groundwater Replenishment System. The Orange County Water District ensures that this wastewater is filtered for inorganic materials and then treated with UV light to ensure purity.3

Now, where does Orange County get its water from exactly? While some of the public water system is sourced from the replenishment system, the majority of Orange County’s drinking water supply comes from the Orange County aquifer. Since most of this water comes from rainwater, it needs little to no treatment. However, some federally-regulated contaminants may still be in the water, including:

Despite the presence of certain contaminants, the Orange County Water District ensures that the water is distributed in compliance with federal and state regulations to ensure high-quality drinking water for Orange County residents. 

The Safe Water Act Doesn’t Cover Everything

The EPA is committed to ensuring that your water is generally safe to drink and will hold your county to its standards through a regular water quality report. But that’s about as far as the EPA and SWDA extend to ensure you have safe drinking water. They don’t focus on a lot of other factors that can affect your water, such as:

Restricting the number of contaminants found in your water supply doesn’t mean it will be completely contaminant-free. And why drink water with less lead when you could drink water with no lead? The EPA’s standards also don’t account for how your water will taste.

To further improve your water’s quality and taste, consider investing in a water system to help filter and purify it. The best filters, such as our Reverse Osmosis Systems, will eliminate any sediment, residual harmful contaminants, and salt that may be in the water. It will also make your water look, taste, and smell better, offering a finished product that’s superior to bottled water.

Double Check Your Water Quality

In addition to investing in a filtration system, you can also test your drinking water quality at home by purchasing a water test that tests for:4

There are also a couple of different kinds of tests that come in the larger kits you can buy, including:

Enjoy High-Quality Water with Rayne Water

Water is essential, which means you deserve water you can trust. However, if you’re uncertain about the quality of your tap water, it’s worth investing in a filtration system that filters out harmful contaminants that may sneak into your drinking water.

Enter Rayne Water. Our Reverse Osmosis System is exactly what you need to drink confidently from the tap and ditch those bottled water bills. Not only will it purify your water to make it better than bottled water, but it also fits conveniently under your sink to keep it out of sight.

Keep your water crisp, clean, and fresh with Rayne Water. 

If you’re interested in water softener in Irvine, Anaheim, Santa Ana, Mission Viejo and surrounding areas in Orange County. Don’t hesitate to ask us regarding your water supply and treatments for your home or business.

Sources: 

  1. Psychology Today. Why Your Brain Needs Water. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/you-illuminated/201010/why-your-brain-needs-water
  2. EPA. Drinking Water Regulations. https://www.epa.gov/dwreginfo/drinking-water-regulations
  3. Business Insider. A California county has some of the purest tap water in the US. Here’s how it filters out sewage and chemicals so effectively. https://www.businessinsider.com/orange-county-purest-drinking-water-filtered-sewage-2019-10 
  4. Safewise. How to Test Water at Home with a Water Test Kit. https://www.safewise.com/best-water-testing-kits/

Expert Reviewer – Ken Christopher

Where Does Orange County Get Its Water From?

Posted by Rayne Water

Most people probably feel they have bigger things to worry about than how their water travels to their faucet. But the subject is worth thinking about. There is more to ensuring your water is safe than just investing in a water softener. Where your county acquires its water and its water storage can affect your tap water’s cleanliness, quality, taste, and appearance.

So, as an Orange County resident, where does your water come from? The answer depends on whether you live in north and central Orange County or south Orange County. Since the county supplies its residents with water from local aquifers, the Colorado River, and the Sierra Nevada, the mix of water you’re supplied depends on your location.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover the many sources of Orange County drinking water and how to determine whether or not your tap water is drinkable. Let’s jump in!

North and Central vs. South Orange County

While it might seem logical to assume that everyone in Orange County would use the same water from the same place, this theory couldn’t be further from the truth. There is not much surface level water to utilize in Southern California. There’s a clear divide between where north and central Orange County gets their water and where south Orange County has its water supplied.

The difference largely depends on how much imported or recycled water different parts of the county receive. Since both Northern California and Southern California are currently experiencing a drought, imported and recycled water is a must since groundwater sustainability is not currently possible. But parts of the county are still supplied with local groundwater while others aren’t given groundwater levels. The breakdown is as follows:

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How Does Location Affect Water Quality?

Hearing your water source is from a river or a mountain might make you automatically assume that it’s clean. But that isn’t the case. So, is tap water safe to drink in Orange County? Well, nutrient pollution and untreated wastewater are serious pollutants commonly found in natural water sources.3 But what does that mean for you and your water?

If you live in the north and central parts of Orange County, you’re more likely to find small amounts of the following contaminants in your water due to groundwater contamination:4

On the other hand, if you reside in south Orange County, you could have small amounts of these contaminants in your imported water:

While your home’s drinking water might have different trace contaminants based on where it came from, the solution is the same. If you’re worried about what’s coming out of your tap, look for a water filtration system. The best drinking water systems will remove all the impurities from your water. It may also be beneficial to find a filtration system that’s space efficient to avoid taking needed space in your kitchen.

Is the Water in Orange County Drinkable?

While these pollutants might sound concerning, we do want to reassure you that your Orange County tap water is generally safe to drink, no matter where in the county you might live. Water quality reports, from the California Department of Water, report that the county’s major cities, such as Irvine, Anaheim, Santa Ana, and Mission Viejo, have tap water that meets EPA standards.

These standards ensure that all public water systems must test and treat their water regularly for:

However, these regulations don’t require the complete elimination of these chemicals, only that they don’t exceed certain thresholds. To ensure that your water is completely free of pollutants, it might be worth investing in a home water system.

Take Control of Your Water Quality with Rayne Water

Orange County gets its drinking water from a variety of sources, from natural underground aquifers to imported tap, and the Orange County Sanitation District works hard to ensure you are safe. But, if you’re worried about potential contaminants in your tap water, you might feel as though you don’t have a lot of options. 

Rayne Water is here to help. Our Reverse Osmosis Water system can completely filter your water, removing chemical and organic contaminants. We also offer space-efficient models designed to neatly fit under your sink.

Take control of your water quality today with Rayne Water.

Sources: 

  1. Orange County Water District. How water works in Orange County. https://www.ocwd.com/learning-center/how-water-works-in-oc/
  2. The Orange County Register. Where OC Gets its Water. https://www.ocregister.com/2015/12/22/where-oc-gets-its-water/
  3. NRDC. Water Pollution: Everything You Need to Know. https://www.nrdc.org/stories/water-pollution-everything-you-need-know#common
  4. Water Education Foundation. Pollutants and Groundwater. https://www.watereducation.org/aquapedia/pollutants-and-groundwater

What Are Phoenix Water Hardness Levels?

Posted by Rayne Water

If you’ve noticed white stains on your glasses and silverware or a slimy feeling while washing your hands, there’s a good chance your water has excessive hardness levels, especially if you don’t have a water softener. While water hardness poses no threat to human health, its aesthetic impact and effect on the taste of your drinking water can be a source of annoyance in your daily life

If you live in Phoenix, you might already be intimately familiar with the issue of water hardness. According to the city’s Water Services Department, sampled hardness levels for 2020 ranged from 9.9-16.1 grains per gallon, meaning that Phoenix residents are faced with some of the hardest water in the country.1

In this blog, we provide important insight on Phoenix water hardness and drinking water quality in Phoenix as well as information on how to purify the tap water you depend on every day.

What Is Water Hardness?

According to the United States Geological Survey, water hardness refers to the measurement of dissolved minerals, mostly calcium and magnesium, present in a source of water. The following guidelines provide classifications for water hardness:

While hard water might not sound very appealing to the consumer, it actually contains some nutritional benefits. According to the World Health Organization, the added calcium and magnesium in hard water can actually be a healthy supplement for those whose diet is otherwise deficient in these necessary minerals.2

Water hardness most commonly affects groundwater due to the movement of water through mineral-rich soil and rock, but it also affects surface water sources such as lakes, streams, rivers, and ponds. 

Although it is harmless to human health, hard water can damage water supply lines and kitchen equipment such as dishwashers and coffee makers due to the buildup known as scale. Additionally, hard water can shorten the lifespan of clothing and other washable items.

Last but not least, water hardness is often associated with an undesirable taste in people’s drinking water. For all of these reasons, many industrial and domestic water users choose to invest in filtration systems that purify their water of dissolved minerals while keeping it free of contaminants.

Water Softener Systems starting at only $35/mo. Try before you buy!

Water Hardness in Phoenix

For residents of Phoenix, Arizona, water hardness is a common cause of frustration. Using the city’s own numbers for the year 2020, hardness levels in sampled drinking water ranged between 9.9 and 16.1 grains per gallon. Converting that to the guidelines provided by the USGS, puts Phoenix’s water hardness levels between 169.5 and 275.6 mg/L. 

In other words, Phoenix’s water ranges from hard at best to well over the standard for very hard at worst.

To mitigate water hardness, Phoenix’s water supply undergoes a water treatment process that removes large sediments and debris from the water using screens. Smaller sediments are then collected using a chemical coagulent that aggregates tiny particles so that they fall to the bottom of the basin.3

However, Phoenix provides some seriously hard water to its residents, despite its treatment processes and meeting EPA standards for levels of federally-regulated contaminants in its drinking water.

While only 2% of the city’s water is sourced from groundwater—where water hardness typically derives—it’s clear that the city’s surface water sources, which comprise 97-99% of Phoenix’s water supply, is particularly mineral-rich.

Somewhere along the journey from snowmelt to kitchen tap, these waters pick up enough magnesium and calcium to generate some of the highest water hardness levels in the country.

Now that we know Phoenix has some particularly hard water, what can be said for the safety of the city’s drinking water supply?

Can You Drink Tap Water in Phoenix?

You may be wondering, “Is Phoenix tap water safe to drink?” The short answer is yes. The city of Phoenix must comply with EPA regulations when it comes to monitoring federally-regulated contaminants within the drinking water supply, which are anything other than water molecules.4

Most contaminants in drinking water come from animal waste, agricultural and industrial runoff, and sometimes even household plumbing systems—particularly if they’re older or corroded. However, other contaminants occur naturally. 

While the tap water in Phoenix is safe to drink, it still may contain some harmful contaminants. More specifically, Phoenix’s Water Services Department conducted a 2020 water quality report that found quantities of certain potentially harmful contaminants:5

In addition to such potential risks as gas stations, landfills, dry cleaners, agricultural runoff, wastewater treatment, and mining, Phoenix’s drinking water is also threatened by climate change—particularly in relation to the region’s 22-year drought, which is draining significant resources from the Colorado River. 

Overall, Phoenix provides dependable clean drinking water to a population of 1.6 million and counting. In terms of hardness, however, the city’s water can certainly be improved to ensure its residents peace of mind and fresh-tasting water when they turn on the tap.

How to Treat Phoenix Tap Water

To provide extra protection from potential contaminants and to reduce the hardness of their drinking water, many Phoenix residents invest in water filtration systems for their homes and businesses. 

These systems, including water softeners, salt-free systems, and reverse osmosis systems, can filter out harmful contaminants and reduce water hardness to ensure your water remains healthy and tastes good to drink, all while reducing your dependence on environmentally-hazardous plastic water bottles.

To decrease the hardness of your water supply, you might want to invest in a water softener. These systems remove mineral ions from your water through a process known as ion exchange. 

While a salt-based water softener uses chemicals to trap hard minerals in the system’s resin bed, a salt-free water softener is a chemical-free system that conditions water to prevent it from sticking to surfaces, thereby reducing stains and scaling.

Beyond improving the taste of your drinking water, water softening systems provide the following benefits to home and business owners:

Since water hardness is typically thought of as an aesthetic issue as opposed to a matter of personal health, it’s easy to dismiss water softeners as an extraneous addition to the many appliances and systems you rely on to keep your home or business functioning the way they should. 

The truth is, however, that investing in a water filtration system can go a long way in preventing expenses down the road for costly repairs and even replacements to your plumbing system. Not only that, but water softeners and other filtration systems can provide peace of mind through their added protection to the water you depend on. 

With so much uncertainty swirling around the effects of climate change and the environmental impact of potential contaminants, it’s important to weigh all of your options when it comes to purifying your water.

Better Water Quality with Rayne Water Conditioning

While the hardness levels of water in Phoenix are high, the city regularly monitors drinking water to ensure that it meets EPA standards and is safe for its 1.6 million residents. However, to mitigate mineral build-up in your morning coffee and evening tea, it’s beneficial to invest in a water softener system to remove any unwanted mineral ions.

At Rayne Water, we bring nearly a century of experience to the table to ensure the safety of your home’s drinking water. Contact us today to learn more about our water filtration systems and see if one of our water softeners could help you reduce water hardness levels to provide the purity you need.

Just because Phoenix offers some of the hardest water in the country doesn’t mean you can’t take steps to protect the taste of your tap and the integrity of your plumbing appliances. Find a Phoenix water softener or any water solution with Rayne Water today.

Sources: 

  1. City of Phoenix. 2020 Water Report. https://www.phoenix.gov/waterservicessite/documents/wsdprimarywqr.pdf 
  2. World Health Organization. Hardness in Drinking-water. https://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/dwq/chemicals/hardness.pdf 
  3. City of Phoenix. ​Understanding Phoenix’s Water Quality. https://www.phoenix.gov/waterservices/waterquality
  4. United States Environmental Protection Agency. Types of Drinking Water Contaminants. https://www.epa.gov/ccl/types-drinking-water-contaminants 
  5. Buzzfeed News. People In Arizona Are About To Face The West’s First Major Water Crisis.   https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/caitochs/colorado-river-shortage-arizona-drought 

 

Is Phoenix Tap Water Safe?

Posted by Rayne Water

For many of us, the act of going to the kitchen tap to fill a glass of water isn’t something we think twice about because we have water softeners and filtration systems in our homes. While it may be convenient, it doesn’t exactly seem like a luxury compared to most things in life. 

The truth is, however, that access to clean drinking water is a relatively new development in the scope of human history. In fact, a 2017 study from the World Health Organization found that 2.2 billion people—29% of the world’s population at the time—lacked access to safe drinking water.1

While Phoenix tap water meets EPA quality standards for federally-regulated contaminants, the threat of groundwater shortages and risks to surface water sources present unique risks to the safety of drinking water in Arizona’s largest city.

What Drinking Water Contaminants Does Phoenix Monitor?

Despite having some of the safest water supplies in the world, the United States still fails to guarantee clean drinking water to all Americans and faces compounding crises of aging infrastructure, an underfunded Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and nearly 32 million cases of waterborne diseases each year.2

In compliance with EPA regulations, the city of Phoenix monitors its drinking water supply for a number of federally-regulated contaminants. These substances, which can affect the Phoenix water quality, are derived from a number of sources. The EPA’s Safe Drinking Water Act defines “contaminant” as anything other than water molecules.3

While some contaminants occur naturally, others can enter drinking water through human and animal waste, agricultural and industrial runoff, and corrosion of household plumbing systems.

In its 2020 Water Quality Report, the Phoenix Water Services Department found safe levels of the following regulated substances in the city’s drinking water:4

In addition to the above federally-regulated contaminants, Phoenix monitors its drinking water supply for several unregulated contaminants that may pose a risk to human health at excessive levels. These substances include:

While Phoenix’s drinking water meets all EPA standards for regulated contaminant levels, both the presence of unregulated chemicals and the possibility of contamination from environmental and industrial factors could be cause for concern in the city’s water supply.

To get a better idea of these risks, it is important to understand the sources of Phoenix’s municipal water supply.

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Where Does Phoenix Get its Water?

Located in the Sonoran Desert, Phoenix is one of the hottest and driest cities in the United States. Despite receiving just 8.03 inches of rain per year, the city manages to provide clean, fresh drinking water to its population of 1.6 million and counting through a blend of water resources including surface water and groundwater.7 These water sources are highly dependant on a city’s environment and climate:

According to the city’s Water Services Department, Phoenix received 97-99% of its 2020 drinking water supply from surface water that began as snowpack, while just 2% of drinking water was provided by the city’s 20 groundwater wells. 

Possible Threats to Phoenix’s Drinking Water Quality

Despite meeting the EPA’s standards for federally-regulated contaminants, the city still faces a number of environmental and anthropogenic threats to its drinking water supply. In accordance with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality’s 2005 source water assessment, Phoenix’s Water Services Department lists the following potential risks to its drinking water:

To counteract these risks, the city continuously monitors its surface and groundwater sources for possible contaminants. If it measures a contaminant at or near the EPA’s maximum contaminant limit, the city’s Water Services Department either treats the source or removes it from service until quality can be guaranteed.

Phoenix’s drinking water also faces threats associated with climate change. A 22-year megadrought has led to the first federally mandated limit to water supply in United States history.9 In 2022, this will mean a 20% loss in water supply from the Colorado River. 

While this cut will mostly affect the state’s farmers, it could have implications for drinking water as growing demand for groundwater and an overburdened CAP aqueduct lead to further shortages in the future. 

How You Can Ensure Clean Drinking Water at Home

With so many factors to keep in mind, it can be easy to feel helpless when it comes to preserving the quality of your tap water. As a homeowner and as a citizen, however, you have several ways of exerting control over your drinking water and, in turn, your own peace of mind.

If you have concerns about the risk of contaminants and the impending effects of federally mandated cuts to Arizona’s water supply, it’s important to educate yourself about these issues. Reach out to your representatives about and ask how they plan to keep Phoenix’s drinking water both clean and available for the foreseeable future. You can even ask about other water factors including, “What are Phoenix’s Water Hardness Levels?

Additionally, you can invest in a water filtration system to provide you and your family with added security while avoiding overdependence on environmentally-hazardous plastic water bottles. These systems, including water softeners, salt-free systems, and reverse osmosis systems, can filter out harmful contaminants and reduce water hardness to ensure your water remains healthy and tastes good to drink.

Better Water Quality with Rayne Water Conditioning

If you live in Phoenix, Arizona, you should count yourself lucky. The city provides clean drinking water to its growing population despite facing some seriously harsh environmental conditions. 

But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be aware of the risks of potential contaminants. Luckily, Rayne Water provides drinking water filtration systems and residential water softeners so you can ensure your drinking water is top quality.

Treat yourself to the best drinking water; get a Phoenix water softener and treatment systems with Rayne Water.

 

Sources: 

  1. World Health Organization. Drinking-water.  https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/drinking-water 
  2. The Conversation. The US drinking water supply is mostly safe, but that’s not good enough. https://theconversation.com/the-us-drinking-water-supply-is-mostly-safe-but-thats-not-good-enough-115028 
  3. United States Environmental Protection Agency. Types of Drinking Water Contaminants. https://www.epa.gov/ccl/types-drinking-water-contaminants 
  4. City of Phoenix. 2020 Water Report. https://www.phoenix.gov/waterservicessite/documents/wsdprimarywqr.pdf 
  5. United States Environmental Protection Agency. Drinking Water Health Advisory for Manganese. https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2014-09/documents/support_cc1_magnese_dwreport_0
  6. Environmental Working Group. City of Phoenix. https://www.ewg.org/tapwater/system.php?pws=AZ0407025 
  7. U.S. Climate Data. Climate Phoenix – Arizona. https://www.usclimatedata.com/climate/phoenix/arizona/united-states/usaz0166 
  8. United States Environmental Protection Agency. Groundwater. https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/documents/groundwater.pdf
  9. Buzzfeed News. People In Arizona Are About To Face The West’s First Major Water Crisis.   https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/caitochs/colorado-river-shortage-arizona-drought