charlotte water quality

30 Jan. 18

Local News: Charlotte Water Quality and Supply

Charlotte, like many cities across the South, is becoming a destination for singles and growing families alike. This has increased the strain on natural resources and risked the integrity of Charlotte water quality. Currently, the greater Charlotte area uses just under 190 million gallons of water per day. If that number surprises you, hold on. By 2065, water usage is predicted to increase to almost 420 million gallons a day. Where will most of this water come from? The Catawba-Wateree River system.

This river system serves not just Charlotte, but also hundreds of thousands of square miles across several states. The Catawba-Wateree is relied upon by residents from Morganton, North Carolina all the way down to Camden, South Carolina. It’s the fourth most stressed river system in the United States.

One way to deal with the coming water supply crisis is to use water saving measures around the home. This can include installing low-flow toilets and high-pressure showerheads, planting drought resistant grass, and even simple measures like turning off the sink tap while brushing your teeth. All of these can cut your household water bill and help reduce water pollution.

Did you know that reducing your water consumption can also help increase water quality in the area? It may sound strange, but it’s true. High water consumption stirs up sediment in the Catawba-Wateree system, and water evaporation will increase the water contamination Charlotte will experience.

However, there’s another important way you can reduce water contamination. You can take steps to prevent pollution and increase the quality of water available for your family and for others. Some common sources of water contamination include:

Fertilizers and pesticides

These can enter the water supply from many sources. One obvious one is through farms. However, businesses that maintain a front lawn, golf courses, and homes that spray pesticides on their flower and vegetable gardens all contribute to contamination. You can reduce the levels of fertilizers and pesticides you add to the water table in several ways. These include using the minimum amounts possible, exploring alternative or organic options, and buying less toxic blends.

Sediment and minerals

Some of these particles aren’t exactly toxic, but they affect your water’s taste and clarity. Even worse, they can build up along your water lines and in your appliances. If you leave these alone, they may end up clogging and damaging your ice maker, dish washer, and other items around the house. A physical barrier water filter can help here.

Acidic water

Water with too low of pH is acidic. This acidity can cause corrosion, particularly with copper pipes which are not designed to deal with this hazard. Corroded copper pipes will leach steady traces of copper into your water. This can lead to discoloration, particularly of sinks and bathtubs, and may change the taste of your drinking water. There are filters that can adjust the pH balance of your water. Otherwise, check the pipes regularly for signs of corrosion.

Hard water

This common household annoyance can, if left untreated, lead to expensive and time-consuming repairs. Hard water, or water that’s infused with calcium and magnesium, causes lime scaling. Once this builds up in your pipes, it can affect water pressure, create hard-to-remove blockages, and clog or damage appliances. A water softener like the Kinetico Premiere Series may be the solution here.

Arsenic and heavy metals

Unfortunately, as high-profile news has shown time and time again, your home may not be immune to dangerous levels of arsenic and toxic heavy metals. One of the things that makes Arsenic in the water so dangerous and difficult to deal with is that it can come from a large number of sources. It’s found in trace amounts in the natural world and also is introduced into the water table by human activity. Certain specialized filters can give you peace of mind with this problem.

Other common sources of pollution

Here are some things you may not have thought of that can pollute the water table:

Batteries. The acids and heavy metals in these are dangerous; don’t dispose of them in a landfill. Instead, look for used battery drop-off bins at local businesses or recycling centers.

Engine oil. If you change your own engine oil, lay down tarps or paper to keep spills on the ground to a minimum. While you’re at it, dispose of your used oil safely. Check for local facilities that will take it off your hands.

Yard waste. Do regular checks to make sure that there aren’t any bits of trash lurking at the edges of your property. When it breaks down, it can leach into the water supply.

Bonus points. If you’re feeling really proactive, volunteer to clean up along a waterway or by the roadside. Remember that pollution is everyone’s problem. You can be part of a bigger solution.

What Can a Home Water Filtration System Do for You?

All of these measures can help in the long term, but what about today? Your household water is likely already contaminated. It may not be up to illegal or dangerous levels, but contaminated drinking water can still affect your home and health. Some of the ways it can affect your house are:

  • causing damage to appliances like your water heater or dishwasher
  • corroding or blocking pipes, potentially causing copper to leak into the water or damaging the system enough that it needs replacement
  • skin irritation from sediment or minerals
  • water that is generally unpleasant to look at, smell, or taste
  • lime scale building up in water fixtures around the home

Quality Water is a family owned and operated business with 15 years’ experience serving the Charlotte area. We can start with a free water analysis to work out which contaminants in water are affecting your home and provide a free quote for filtration solutions. We offer various water filtering systems at a range of prices. Some of these can give you a steady supply of fresh, clean-tasting drinking water. Others are high capacity systems that can supply all the water your entire household needs.