Have you ever wondered whether or not it’s safe to drink rainwater?
Clean rainwater has a pH of between 5.0 and 5.5 making it slightly acidic. When rain falls through the atmosphere it may combine with sulphur dioxide or nitrogen oxide by-products from power plants, cars planes and industry making the rainwater more acidic. You would have heard of acid rain and its pH is around 4.0. A decrease in pH value from 5.0 to 4.0 means the acidity of the water is 10 times greater.
- Most rainwater is perfectly safe to drink, and it may be cleaner than the city water supply.
- Rainwater is only as clean as the roof it fell on and the tank it is kept in.
Actually, rainwater supplies water for most of the world’s population!
Rainwater can be contaminated by:
- Bird and other small animal droppings (for example lizards, mice, frogs and possums)
- Other debris including dead animals and insects containing microscopic organisms
- Air pollution from any nearby industrial emissions or heavy road traffic
- Industrial or agricultural activities generating dust and pesticide spray drift
- Smoke or other emissions from bushfires or wood heaters
- Storage in a water tank or pipe work that is not clean.
Keeping this in mind it would be a good idea to filter and disinfect rainwater that is being used for drinking. Being more acidic than town water think about adding corrosion protection to solve pipes and fittings from corroding and extending the usable life f hot water systems and appliances in the house.
Your rainwater storage tank will have healthy water and unhealthy water stored at all times. The healthy more oxygenated water will always be at the top of the tank with the unhealthy deoxygenated water being at the bottom of the tank.
So which water are you drinking oxygenated or deoxygenated? Most if not all tank companies will have the tank outlet at the bottom of the tank. Why? Because it is easier for them to supply them like this. They may have a small pipe that sticks up away from the tank by 100 or 200mm, but at the end of the day your pressure pump is pumping unhealthy deoxygenated water into the house. That’s why at times your water may smell and taste not so good. So have a chat to your local plumber and see if he can setup a system using a float to allow you to drink the healthy water at the top of the tank.
The Clean Water Co offers a range of tank water solutions including corrosion protection, filtration and UV disinfection.