How to Test pH of Water Without a Kit Using a Red Cabbage
Cut up or grate a red cabbage and place it into a clear glass bowl. Boil about two cups of distilled water in a separate pot. Pour the boiled water over the cabbage. It should just cover the cabbage. Stir occasionally with a wooden spoon and leave the cabbage in the water for about 30 minutes.
A chemical reaction in the cabbage causes the pigment molecules to change the color of the distilled water. Next, strain off the liquid which has become a purplish red color. This liquid is now your pH indicator solution.
Pour a small amount of the water you are testing into a separate clear plastic or glass container. Put a few drops of your indicator solution into the water you are testing.
The watercolor will change and give you either an acidic (red or pink), a neutral (purple), or a basic alkaline (greenish-yellow, blue, or bluish-green) color measurement. Match the color of your water against a color chart to determine the approximate numerical value on the pH scale.
The numbers on the pH scale range from 0 to 14. Pure water has a pH neutral level of 7. Numbers lower than 7 indicate an acidic level, and numbers higher than 7 show a basic or alkaline level.
Try experimenting with other vegetables and fruits to make pH indicators such as red onion, blueberries, plums, turmeric, apple or grape skins. You may also use red rose petals.
You can also make your own pH testing strips from the cabbage juice indicator. Use filter paper such as coffee filters, or acid-free art paper. Immerse the paper into the cabbage juice indicator you have made. Soak the paper until thoroughly wet. Remove the paper and allow it to dry in a neutral environment free of acids or alkaline condensation.
After it has thoroughly dried, cut the paper into strips. Use a cotton swab to smear a sample of the water you want to test on the test strip. Then compare the color of the strip to the pH color chart.
BACTERIA IN WELL WATER SYMPTOMS? CAN BACTERIA IN WELL WATER MAKE YOU SICK?
Wondering if the water you’re drinking is making you sick? With bacteria in well water at it’s highest in CT, read in on this post to protect yourself.
You likely have bacteria in your well water if you have not had it tested in the past two years. Here at Mosman Wellworks, we encourage our clients to do yearly maintenance to protect the people drinking the water. Unsafe water can lead to gastrointestinal issues, dangerous fevers, internal clamps and an extreme case of diarrhea.
If you’re in immediate need of water testing in CT, get started by contacting us to schedule a free bacteria test.
COMMON BACTERIA IN WELL WATER SYMPTOMS:
Symptoms are commonly found in the young and elderly, because of this it can be a very dangerous situation as they likely don’t have the health capacity of a full grown adult.
Can bacteria in well water make you sick? yes, household well water that is contaminated likely holds coliform bacteria and E-coli. These microorganisms can be the cause of enteric diseases.
How do you know if well water is safe to drink? the only way to find out if your water is clean to drink is to contact a reputable well water contractor such as Mosman Wellworks. Anyone who tells you elsewise with guesses, no data behind it, or is not a well water professional – run away!
What are the most common symptoms of infected well water? Common infected well water symptoms include:
- flu-like symptoms
- fever symptoms
- abdominal cramps
- loss of energy
- severe flu
If you’re feeling any of these symptoms above, you need to contact us today to receive a free bacteria testing of your well water. Mosman Wellworks covers the state of Connecticut and we don’t charge for travel time like most companies. Check to see if you’re water is infected by filling out the form below to schedule your offer.
Is it Safe to Drink the Water from Your Bathroom Tap?
Sometimes, you wake up thirsty in the middle of the night. And in this drowsy state, the kitchen can seem like it’s miles away. The nearest place where you can quickly find water is, of course, the bathroom. So drinking water from the bathroom tap in your en-suite or family bathroom basin may seem perfectly sensible. But is it?
1. Is it Safe to Drink Water from Bathroom Tap at Home?
If you’ve ever drunk water from the bathroom tap in your home, you may have noticed that the water in your bathroom tastes slightly different from kitchen water and is often at a slightly warmer temperature. But is drinking the water you use to brush your teeth every day really such a bad idea? Let’s consider a few facts:
- According to research conducted by Brunel University, London, each time you enjoy a life-sustaining glass of tap water, you could inadvertently be drinking a very low dose of other people’s medications. The reason being today’s pharmaceuticals are stable and long-lasting. Although the dose of this cocktail in tap water is reliably consistent, a significant amount of these prescribed drugs that people excrete goes out into wastewater. Eventually, a proportion of these drugs – although, in very low doses – re-enters the domestic supply, unchanged through the sewage filtering system. This problem is not restricted to tap water only. In Israel, scientists tested the urine of people who were consuming crops irrigated with treated wastewater. The results showed the presence of significant levels of carbamazepine, an epileptic drug.
- According to Hafren Dyfrdwy Limited (formerly Dee Valley Water Limited), the water in your bathroom taps has usually been stored in a tank in the loft. Hence, unlike the water in your kitchen tap, this water isn’t fresh from the mains. And this water has possibly been retained in the plumbing system of your home for a while. It’s possible that this water contains small amounts of dust and debris from the storage tank in your home.
2. Is it Safe to Drink Water from Bathroom Tap in Hotels?
The major worry with bathroom tap water in hotels is that older buildings usually have lead piping in the bathroom, which can make the water dangerous to drink. Even if the hotel has been newly constructed, the plumbing system may have copper pipes which have been joined with lead solder. Whilst water from the mains does not have time to absorb any lead from the pipes, water that has been stored in a tank – as it’s most often the case in hotels – which includes bathroom tap water and potentially any hot water taps in the bathroom, the water has probably been in the plumbing system of the hotel for a while. Chances are this stagnant water in the pipes has absorbed tiny amounts of lead.
Next, lead isn’t the only issue. A tank stored in a neglected area can potentially be intercepted by small creatures like vermin and birds. It’s not a pleasant thought. But it is a possible source of contamination and something over which you have no control in a hotel. You should be careful, especially if the tap water smells funny or looks suspicious.
3. Are There Any Countries Where it’s Safe to Drink Water from Bathroom Taps?
Drinking water straight from bathroom taps poses a health risk. Despite advances in sanitation worldwide, there are more than 180 countries where tap water is considered unsafe for tourists. In these countries, it would be doubly unsafe to drink water from bathroom taps. If you get it wrong, you could face a string of harmful and potentially-fatal infections. However, the local populace will have a higher level of immunity to the common pathogens in the water supply than tourists who are on a brief visit. One factor you need to be alert about is that while the natives are unaffected by the unsafe drinking water, it may not be the same for tourists.
4. Which are some of the Countries Where it is Safe to Drink Water from Taps?
The top countries in regards to the best quality of tap water include:
- United Kingdom
- New Zealand
The tap water in these countries is doubtless among the cleanest and safest in the entire world.
Your bathroom tap water is perfectly fine to brush your teeth and to wash up. As long as you’re not swallowing the water, you’re unlikely to get lead poisoning. Just be extra aware of small children – when they are brushing their teeth, remind them to spit. And if you’re likely to get thirsty in the night, bring a glass or bottle of kitchen tap water with you to bed.
What are the alternatives to drinking tap water?
If you’re in a high-risk group or you live in a city where water quality is compromised, there are alternatives:
- Bottled water
Bottled water may be a good temporary solution if your tap water is contaminated, but only if you choose a brand of verified quality. The FDA regulates bottled water as a food, which means it requires identification of the source and regulates allowable levels of contaminants, requires good manufacturing practice standards for boiling and bottling, and regulates labeling. However, the FDA doesn’t have the ability to oversee a mandatory testing program like the EPA does with public water suppliers; it can only order a recall once a problem has been found—so there is no guarantee that every bottle sold is safe.
In 1999, the NRDC conducted 1,000 separate tests of more than 100 brands of bottled water and concluded that bottled water isn’t necessarily any purer or any safer than city tap water, and some brands even contained elevated levels of arsenic, bacteria, or other contaminants.
In addition, bottled water costs hundreds or thousands of times more per gallon than tap water, so if you’re going to make the investment, choose a trusted brand. The International Bottled Water Association links to major brands’ quality reports.
You may also want to consider the environmental impact a long-term bottled water habit can have: Aside from the energy and fuel involved in manufacturing bottles, about 75 percent of bottles end up in landfills, lakes, and oceans, where they fail to decompose. If your tap water supply is not in danger, consider purchasing a refillable bottle instead.
Note: If you prefer carbonated bottled water but are concerned about its reputation for inhibiting calcium absorption, don’t be: There is no evidence to support this claim.
Filters and bottled water are about the same in terms of safety and cleanliness. There are four main types:
Activated carbon, which can remove certain organic contaminants
Ion exchange units, which can remove minerals like calcium and magnesium that make water hard
Reverse osmosis units, which can remove nitrates, sodium pesticides, and petrochemicals
Distillation units, which boil water and condense steam, creating distilled water
If you invest in a filter, choose one that removes the specific contaminants you’re concerned about. Also be sure the filter is independently certified by the Public Health and Safety Organization or a similar organization. Finally, maintain the filter at least as often as the manufacturer recommends.
Note: If you want to filter all contaminants from all of the taps in your home, you’ll need a “point-of-entry” filter. Otherwise, a “point-of-use” filter on the kitchen sink will do.
Boiling tap water can be effective, but it depends on the contaminant(s) being targeted. High temperatures can kill germs, but can’t affect lead, nitrates, or pesticides. In fact, boiling can actually increase the concentration of those contaminants because it causes the volume of water to decrease while the level of contaminants remains constant.
Can Your Tap Water Kill You?
Your tap water might not be as clean as you thought. The Environmental Working Group recently found that the drinking water in 31 out of 35 U.S. cities tested positive for hexavalent chromium, a possibly cancer-causing toxin.
The dangers of the chemical were brought into the spotlight as the focus of the 2000 film Erin Brockovich, which was based on the true story of how the Pacific Gas and Electric Company accidentally contaminated Hinkley, Calif.’s drinking water with hexavelent chromium. A judge ordered the company to pay $333 million in damages, to be divided among the 648 plaintiffs who incurred illnesses as a result of chromium poisoning. Hexavalent chromium’s status as a carcinogen, however, is still under review by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Depending on the results, the EPA will consider placing a limit on how much of the substance can be allowed in drinking water.
Scientists are still determining the risk that hexavalent chromium poses to humans, but here are three toxins and pollutants found in tap water that have been proven to make you sick or worse.
1. ArsenicA semi-metal element
Arsenic is odorless and tasteless. It can get into drinking water from natural ground deposits or as runoff from agricultural and industrial practices, including mining and coal burning.
Arsenic disrupts the cellular process that produces adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the molecule in charge of transporting energy throughout your body’s cells so they can perform the tasks that keep you alive. If the dosage in the body is high enough, arsenic poisoning can eventually cause multi-system organ failure and lead to death.
The EPA has set a limit on arsenic in drinking water at .010 parts per million (ppm). (For example, 1 ppm equals 1 milligram per liter, or about the equivalent of one drop of chocolate in 14 gallons of milk.)
2. Radon A well-known carcinogen
Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that is odorless and tasteless. Produced by the breakdown of uranium and thorium in soil, rock, building materials and water, it poses a threat when inhaled in a gas, but also when it dissolves into a water supply.
Under the Safe Drinking Water Act, government reports have confirmed that radon is a serious public health threat and that that drinking water containing radon is related to increased risks of cancer deaths. The Centers for Disease Control estimate that 30 to 1,800 deaths per year are attributed to radon from household water.
The EPA suggests that individual water systems reduce radon levels in drinking water to 4,000 pCi/L or lower (picoCuries per liter, a standard unit of radiation).
Everyone is aware of the warnings about eating lead paint chips or have heard cautions about children’s toys that are tainted with the metal, but lead’s presence in tap water poses a threat as well. Natural lead deposits can erode into a water supply, but it mainly gets into drinking water as a result of corrosive plumbing materials that contain lead. This makes it difficult for the EPA to control or filter leaded water, since it can be caused by a house’s old plumbing system. Drinking lead-laced water can cause damage to the brain, red blood cells and kidneys, especially in young children and pregnant women. The EPA has established a lead limit of 0.015 ppm in drinking water.