Pour a glass, take a drink, and your water tastes like a swimming pool. That's chlorine you taste. Municipalities add chlorine to water to remove unwanted bacteria and viruses as the water flows from their treatment plant to your home. Once it reaches your home, the chlorine is no longer needed. A Hague WaterMax water softener can remove the chlorine and leave you with great tasting water.
Chlorine is commonly used as a disinfectant in drinking water treatment plants due to its effectiveness in reducing the risk of waterborne diseases. While chlorine is generally safe at the levels used in water treatment, there are a few concerns associated with its use. Here are some common issues related to chlorine in drinking water:
- Taste and odor: Chlorine can impart a noticeable taste and odor to the water, which some people find unpleasant. However, these sensory aspects can be reduced through techniques like activated carbon filtration or by allowing the water to sit uncovered in the refrigerator.
- Disinfection byproducts (DBPs): When chlorine reacts with organic matter in water, disinfection byproducts (DBPs) can form. Examples of DBPs include trihalomethanes (THMs) and haloacetic acids (HAAs). While the presence of DBPs is a concern, water treatment plants carefully monitor and regulate chlorine levels to minimize the formation of these byproducts and ensure compliance with regulatory standards.
- Skin and respiratory irritation: Chlorine can cause skin irritation and dryness, as well as minor respiratory effects such as coughing or throat irritation in some individuals. However, these effects are generally minimal at the levels found in treated drinking water and are typically not a cause for significant concern.
It's worth noting that water treatment plants follow strict guidelines and regulations set by government authorities, such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the United States, to ensure that chlorine levels in drinking water are safe for consumption.
If you have specific concerns about the quality of your drinking water, it is recommended to contact your local water utility or health department for information and guidance, or schedule a free water test.
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). (2020). National Primary Drinking Water Regulations. Retrieved from https://www.epa.gov/ground-water-and-drinking-water/national-primary-drinking-water-regulations
- World Health Organization (WHO). (2017). Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality: Fourth Edition Incorporating the First Addendum. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/9789241549950