Most people turn on their faucets to get the water they need from their local municipal water supplier, understanding that it must meet minimum federal standards for cleanliness. But, there are different grades of water used for a wide variety of tasks, and some of them are not safe for human consumption. In this article, we will explore three different grades of water and show you what they are typically used for.

  1. Utility Grade

This water meets the minimum federal standards for safety, and it’s supplied by the local municipality. Utility grade water (as the name would suggest) is used for tasks, such as watering parks, cleaning streets, and flushing public toilets. It’s an ideal water to use for non-contact tasks, and it can be supplied via a hose or suitable faucet. This water is not filtered, it meets minimum safety standards, but it should not be used for drinking or used topically on human skin. Utility grade water often contains chemicals and other pollutants that could make a person ill if they ingested it.

  1. Work Grade

Think of this as the next step up in quality from utility grade water. Work grade water has received some filtration, and it’s often used in applications, such as laundry, cleaning, bathing, showering, and washing dishes. Work grade water is usually found in locations, such as laundries, restaurants, hospitals, and car washes, where cleaner water of a higher purity grade is better for cleaning. Work grade water can be consumed, but this would be a very poor alternative when compared to a better drinking grade quality water.

  1. Drinking Grade

This grade of water is purified for drinking, and it can be delivered to the drinker in a number of different ways. Some people prefer bottled water, some us a pitcher they keep in their refrigerator and others are happy to drink from their faucet. There are four types of drinking grade water available for consumption.

  • Mineral Water: The FDA has stated that mineral water sold here should contain 250 parts per million (ppm) content minimum from an underground source. This helps to maintain the purity, and mineral water is packed with good mineral content.
  • Spring Water: This is usually found in a bottled format, but it’s not as pure as the advertising would suggest and many well known spring water products contain as many contaminants as you might find in a utlility or even a work grade water.
  • Distilled Water: This is water that has undergone distillation where all of the salt and mineral content has been removed leaving behind pure water. Although distilled water is very clean, it lacks any of the healthy mineral content that a body needs and many people find it unpalatable to drink because it tastes bland.
  • Purified water: The basic water supplied to the faucet in your home is safe to drink, but it can contain many contaminants that have entered the water supply after filtration due to cracks and break in the water supply line. For this reason, many homeowners install a home water filtration system to ensure that they have a steady supply of high quality purified drinking water.

By EcoWater Systems.
EcoWater Systems of Nebraska is the largest water treatment company in the state and is a member of Water Quality Association.