The Mystery of Tap Water: Unraveling Its Composition
We use it all the time, for washing dishes, for showering, for cooking, for drinking, for rinsing stuff, for soaking other stuff, etc. So many uses, yet we don’t often appreciate how handy it is to have taps throughout our homes providing water on demand 24/7, all year round. Here, Imber’s founder, Federico, shares some reflections on the prospect of drinking unfiltered tap water in a big city.
The Enormous Water Consumption
“I live in London, a BIG city. I’m thinking, ‘where is all this water coming from?’ With 10,000,000 people needing water every day, and yet never running out, how much water is that??? Well, apparently, in London alone, we use more than 2.6 billion liters of the stuff every day.”
The Source of It All
Another question arises: where does this massive quantity of water come from every day? That’s 78 billion liters a month! Not just any water—it has to be the kind you can drink without risking your health. Most of our water comes from rivers, such as the Thames and the Lee.
Water gets stored in 30 reservoirs, designed to ensure a constant supply even in droughts. After being stored for up to 3 months, the water goes through sand filters to remove particles and chlorine is added to kill bacteria and other organisms.
Unveiling the Contents of Tap Water
Ever wondered if you’re drinking a bacteria’s cemetery? Well, you kind of are! Where does all this dead organic matter end up? Ask your kidneys—they work to process whatever you consume.
This explains the yellowish substance at the bottom of my distiller after every cycle of distillation. The closest resemblance I could think of was pee, but apparently, it’s just dead organic matter. Phew!
And then you have the hard residue—the white stuff that encrusts the bottom of your distiller and won’t come off easily (recommendation: use citric acid). The colors might vary depending on the water’s properties, but it’s unmistakable.
Distiller VS Brita Filter: The Showdown
Using an Imber water distiller, we compared Brita filtered tap water to distilled water. Read on to find the results.
As you are on the Imber website, you likely have an interest in water, especially the purity of the water you consume. You may already be using a filter system like Brita for your tap water. Filtering water makes it better, right?
Our view is that although filtered water is an improvement over water straight from the tap, it isn’t pure or optimal for supporting your well-being.
The Experiment: Distilled Water vs. Filtered Water
We ran a test to see how effective a Brita filtration system is at removing impurities. We filtered 4 liters of tap water from Parma, Italy, and then distilled those 4 liters.
The pictures below show the results. As you can see, the residue from the filtered water is less than in its unfiltered state, but it still contains impurities. Distilled water, on the other hand, showed a significant reduction in residue and contaminants. The difference was striking, leaving no doubt that water distillation is a superior method for obtaining pure water.
Make the Switch to Distilled Water
The white, hard residue left behind by the distillation process might look unpleasant, but it serves as a powerful reminder of the importance of drinking distilled water and avoiding direct tap water consumption. Distilled water not only tastes better, but it also eliminates harmful impurities that could potentially harm our health in the long run.
So, if you’re concerned about the quality of your water and the potential health risks associated with tap water consumption, investing in a water distiller could be a wise choice. With distilled water, you can enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’re drinking water free from harmful contaminants, bacteria, and other unwanted substances.
- Thompson, S., Walker, C., & Williams, K. (2003). Water and Sanitation for Disabled People and Other Vulnerable Groups: Designing Services to Improve Accessibility. Loughborough University. Retrieved from http://www.lboro.ac.uk/well/resources/fact-sheets/fact-sheets-htm/Water_Sanitation_Disability.htm
- Water Quality & Health Council. (n.d.). Water Filtration Facts and Figures. Retrieved from https://www.waterandhealth.org/safe-drinking-water/water-filtration/water-filtration-facts-and-figures/