In cities and suburbs in the USA consumers obtain their water from public water utilities which are required to purify water to meet the standards in the Safe Drinking Water Act. In our opinion, no one should rely on these standards, but at least someone is keeping an eye on the water quality.
But more than 15 million households (about 60 million people) in the USA drink water from private wells which are not monitored by a water utility. Homeowners who get their drinking water from a private well have the responsibility to ensure their water is safe. Unsafe drinking water may be unpleasant to drink, it may smell, or even more importantly may cause illness, not only for family members but pets and livestock as well.
Wells are usually installed by professional well-drillers who have expertise on where to drill and how to seal and cap the wells. However, all private well owners are fully responsible for the quality of their well water. It is up to the well owner to monitor their well water supply. This should include an annual third-party water analysis.
Here are some of the problems that can occur with a private well.
Bacterial contamination: A recent study of private wells in Maryland and Pennsylvania included that 25% of the well had E.Coli bacteria – a strong indicator of fecal contamination from livestock or possible a leaking septic system. E-Coli comes in many variants, some of which can cause severe illness and even death in extreme cases.
Hardness: Hard water is very common and can best be seen as scale inside pots and pans, and a water ring around the bathtub. Hard water is caused by inorganic calcium and magnesium. Hard water can reduce the life of your appliances and can reduce flow in water lines.
Agricultural chemicals: There are a wide range of chemicals used on the farm, including fertilizers and pesticides. Many animal-rearing operations are using antibiotics. Residues from crop-dusting and various chemicals can, and many times do, end up in the drinking water.
Iron and sulfide contaminants. If you get the smell of rotten eggs from your drinking water you likely have sulfides in your water and if you get a reddish brown color in your water or in bath-tub rings is is likely an indicator of iron contamination.
Whatever the contaminant, you will find a well designed and rugged water distiller will remove the contaminant and will deliver to your sink through a separate faucet the freshest, cleanest, great tasting water possible. That’s why so many farmers own a Pure Water distiller.