Buying a new home is exciting; there is a lot to consider, but don’t neglect your water needs, or you could regret it. A home inspection will tell you a lot about the property, but water testing isn’t usually included, and this can have a dramatic effect on your decisions. Getting a water test is essential; it will tell how hard the water is, if iron is present and if there are other contaminants. This will help you to make informed decisions about how you could correct these issues with water treatment systems.
What Factors Affect Water Quality?
There are a number of different factors that will affect the quality of the water supplied to your new potential home. The first key factor to consider is a private well or a municipal water supply.
Although private well users are in the minority, they still constitute a pretty large block of water consumers. If your new home has a private well, you will be solely responsible for the health and condition of your water supply. This means that you need to maintain the well and test the water regularly for contamination.
If your home is connected to the municipal water network, you have access to water that is cleaned to a decent standard. Most water treatment plants use chlorine or chloramine to disinfect the water, and basic filtering removes a lot of sediment. But, the minerals that cause water hardness are not removed, and contamination can occur. If there are cracks or breaks at any point along the water delivery network, bacteria and other contaminants can enter the water supply.
What About the Location?
It’s true that the geographic regions will have a huge impact on the type of water you receive in your new home. Certain areas are more prone to hard water problems than others where the water may be softer. Another problem is the presence of naturally occurring contaminants, including iron, manganese, arsenic, and lead. If your home is located near areas where agricultural or industrial activity occurs, this can lead to higher levels of water pollutants. It isn’t unusual to find toxic PFOA chemicals in private wells and municipal water pipes.
What About the Age of the Home?
If you’re considering buying a property that’s older, it’s important to check the plumbing pipes and fixtures. Older materials can be prone to failure, but if you have lead pipes, they are toxic and must be replaced. This can be used as part of a negotiation to make sure your pipes are safe to use. Replacing an entire plumbing system is expensive, so make sure you have a thorough understanding in advance.
The Importance of Professional Water Testing
Water testing kits are inexpensive and easy to use, but the results are not accurate enough for your needs. It’s important to invest in professional water testing and have your water analyzed in a laboratory. Then you can ask your local certified water treatment specialist about water treatment systems that can improve the quality.