+ Why do I need water monitoring throughout the year?
Contaminants enter our drinking water from many points in the distribution system and can become health threats if left unaddressed. Leaching from older pipes and source water contamination are very common threats.
Failures in private premise plumbing are often overlooked. The unique characteristics of premise plumbing, versus municipal distribution systems, comes from their proximity to service lines, higher prevalence of cross connections, higher surface area to volume ratio, and susceptibility to extreme temperatures. The municipality is not responsible for any failures of plumbing on private property and they cannot regularly detect contamination issues in your tap water that results.
+ Why should I pay for water testing when the city does it for free?
City testing is available in many municipalities free of charge. However, depending on where you live, the number of parameters screened for varies. Many municipalities only offer free testing for lead. Others provide very comprehensive tests, but it could take up to a week to receive test results. This type of testing is not feasible for addressing contaminant threats as they emerge.
+ Isn't a water filter all I need for protection against contaminants?
The water filtration market is notable for its variety. Many manufacturers and filtration technologies are on the market. Some of the most common options, such as countertop pitchers and fridge dispensers, are also the least effective at filtering contaminants. Popular countertop pitchers claim to deliver clean water, but are ineffective at removing harmful heavy metals.
Reverse osmosis systems that install under the sink are costlier and remove substantially more heavy metals, but assessing filter and membrane performance is tricky at best. Before the Water Shield there was no effective way to determine ideal filter replacement times.
+ Will the Water Shield work with my existing filtration system?
The Water Shield integrates with all existing filtration systems as its primary function is in detecting water quality before it flows through taps. However, it works most effectively with under the sink filtration systems, such as reverse osmosis, where it can advise on filter/membrane performance by measuring changes in total dissolved solids (TDS). It does not alter, treat, or filter your water.
+ I buy bottled water because it's naturally sourced. Why should I test and drink tap water when I don't know where it's coming from?
Bottled water is not always naturally sourced. In fact, many popular water bottle brands come from the same municipal sources as your tap. Water bottles not only produce millions of CO2 during production, but take up to 1,000 years to decompose in nature.
Your tap water's source is often disclosed if you visit your municipality's website. Municipal reports on standards, treatment and testing procedures provide additional insight into your water before it is delivered to your property.
+ Was the water crisis in Flint an isolated incident - should I be concerned where I live?
The water crisis in Flint, Michigan received extensive news media coverage and happened as a result of municipal negligence in performing due diligence, quality testing, infrastructure maintenance, and communication with residents. Overall, this is an isolated incident as most cities do a good job maintaining infrastructure, meeting standards, and communicating with residents.
However, the Natural Resource Defense Council has exposed chronic underreporting of contaminant issues across America. Nearly 77 million people in the US were served by 18,000 community water systems that violated at least one Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) rule. In that year, 80,000 violations of SDWA rules took place.
+ If I ingest trace amounts of heavy metals does it still impact my health?
Heavy metal ingestion has differing impacts depending on the duration and frequency of exposure. Acute exposure can lower energy levels and hamper the functioning of most bodily organs. Repeated, long-term exposure can lead to progressive physical, neurological, and muscular degenerative processes that resemble diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, multiple sclerosis, and muscular dystrophy. The onset of cancer has also been linked to chronic heavy metals exposure.
+ Don't we pay taxes for the city to treat and test our water?
Most community water systems that serve residents have established procedures in place for water treatment and testing. Testing of water samples occur throughout different points in the process during treatment, pumping and distribution. However, cities cannot regularly test for the final product that is delivered to each and every tap because it infeasible and costly. With the Water Shield, the information collected at taps can be used to diagnose private water issues and support smart infrastructure management.