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We are all aware that water is an essential part of our lives. It maintains bodily functions, carries nutrients to cells and helps us stay hydrated and energized. We also use water daily throughout our homes for cooking, bathing, cleaning and laundry, but how much do you know about the quality of water that’s pouring out of your taps?
Many people assume that purifying water via boiling is sufficient enough, or that since our water is treated from a public source, that it will remain clean from point to point. However, there are many factors that can lead to contaminated water, thus affecting the quality of water you use and consume.
In conjunction with its fourth annual ‘Drinking Water Week’, 3M Malaysia aims to turn the tap on water quality awareness, and how Malaysians can ensure the water flowing through your homes is cleaner, clearer and better tasting for improved family health and wellbeing.
Why is water quality important?
Water quality refers to the basic and physical characteristics of water that determine its suitability for human consumption. Unsanitary or unfiltered water for example can contain a number of viruses and harmful germs that can be detrimental to your health and lead to diarrhea, bacterial dysentery, cholera, typhoid and many other contagious illnesses. If you are using contaminated water to stay hydrated, to cook and to wash with, you will inevitably expose yourself to these diseases.
Treated water only half the challenge
The water that most consumers use comes from a public source of water. While our government follows stringent processes to ensure its cleanliness, contamination can still occur in the process of being transported from the source to our taps. For example, contamination can happen if the pipes bringing our water are old, broken or corroded. This can lead to large pollutants such as sand, mud and rust, to chemical contaminants and bacteria not visible to the naked eye passing through our homes. The condition of internal piping in a home and its water storage tank can also affect water quality.
This is also why some homes may experience brown or yellow water when turning on the tap. While leaving the taps running for a while can help to clear the dirty water out, it’s also a sign that the water pipes or storage tank is dirty and needs replacing.
Is boiling enough to kill all contaminants?
Boiling water is one of the most common traditional ways of purifying water to make it drinkable and to use with cooking. However, despite the amount of faith put in it, you might be surprised to know that boiled water does not remove contaminants. Dirt, pollutants and toxic chemicals are not affected by temperatures and since boiling reduces the volume of water, the concentration of these pollutants increases.
Although boiling is a simple and cost-effective way to kill germs, remove chlorine-organic compounds, and soften the water, it cannot make the water completely safe for drinking or cooking, which can be best done by water filters.
Selecting the right water filter for your home
When it comes to investing in a water filter, consumers are encouraged to understand the effectiveness and capabilities of the filtration system such as the type of contaminants it can remove – bearing in mind that essential minerals are beneficial in water. The filtration system should also be certified by a reputable, independent source, is easy to install and offers convenient access to purchase replacement cartridges
If this is your first time installing a water filter, it is recommended to have both a point-of-entry (outdoor water filter) and a point-of-use (indoor) water filter. The outdoor filter can remove large sediments, while the indoor water filter removes smaller sediments to give you added confidence in every glass of water you drink. Remember, expensive doesn’t always mean it is effective and a complicated system may not result in better performance.
For 3M Malaysia, every drop matters and believes everyone has the right to safe and clean water. With more than 80 years of filtration expertise, 3M has combined innovation and technologies in applied fields to solve the toughest water issues. Its drinking water systems provide cleaner, better tasting water by reducing common contaminants that may be in water. These systems fit easily under a kitchen sink and operate through the existing faucet or a dedicated faucet. While its whole house filtration systems are large capacity systems that can filter the water used throughout the entire home, thus improving the taste and smell of water. The systems also help capture sediment, dirt, and rust to improve the appearance of water. Additionally, all of 3M water filtration systems are in line with one of most respected names in the industry – National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) standards.
So, no matter where your water comes from, it’s important that it is filtered as a precautionary step to improve water quality in a home, and to ensure that there is minimum risk to your loved ones.