WATER QUALITY & WATER FILTRATION OPTIONS
Residents of Hanover, Massachusetts have been faced with some water quality concerns with the public water supply which may require a water softener or water filtration system. Several of these issues are also experienced by private well owners, not coincidentally since the Hanover Water Department gets its water from nine groundwater wells. Most of the reports have been brownish color in the water, brown staining of clothing and fixtures and some reports of Trihalomethanes detected above the EPA maximum allowable level. Having received numerous calls about these issues, this write-up is intended to shed a little more light on what is going on without getting too deep into the chemistry and touch on water filtration and/or water softener options.
CAUSES & SOLUTIONS
Trihalomethanes (THM) are a group of four chemicals that are formed along with other disinfection by-products when chlorine or other disinfectants used to control microbial contaminants in drinking water react with naturally occurring organic and inorganic matter in water. This is mostly associated with surface water supplies, exposed to the environment in which organic matter is more likely to finds its way into the water (leaves, sticks, etc.) It is an unintended consequence of using chlorine to protect or disinfect water supplies. In fact, many towns have switched to chloramines (a chlorine, ammonia compound) for disinfection purposes. This seems to solve the Trihalomethane formation problem but poses other potential issues which is creating controversy in some towns.
SOLUTION: Trihalomethanes can be effectively removed with a specific type of Granular Activated Carbon, a proven, common water filtration technology and system.
DISCOLORATION & STAINING
Discoloration and staining can be caused by many things in the water supply. In Hanover, the source has been determined to be elevated levels of manganese and iron, minerals that are common in Massachusetts water supplies. Aging pipes can accumulate these minerals on its interior surfaces over time and release various amounts in the water supply as pH and temperature levels change. In addition to this, natural levels exist in the source water which will also make its way throughout the water distribution system.
SOLUTION: Manganese and Iron can be removed with water filtration systems for sediment removal and water softener (Ion Exchange) technology. Particulate manganese and iron will be removed with the proper micron rated sediment filtration, while dissolved iron and manganese can be removed with a water softener. For more information on manganese, see the link at the Water Technology Magazine article at: Manganese in Water Article in Water Tech.
BAD ODORS & TASTES
In addition to the above systems described, there are many other types of systems to remove bad tastes & odors, sediment and many other objectionable minerals and contaminants that may be present in the water. For more detailed information on bad odors and tastes in your water, see the link at: http://h2ocare.com/bad-odor-taste-water/.
PUBLIC WATER SUPPLY
The town of Hanover’s Water Department has an informative website describing the sources of water being treated and distributed as well as other useful information. The Annual Water Quality Report can be found at: Hanover Annual Water Report. Town water reports typically come out within 6 months of the end of the previous calendar year.