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How To Spring Clean Your Water Supply!

January 28th, 2008 by Wai Loong (2 Comments)

Nothing phenomenal in my post this week, but if you ever care about your health this New Year, then you need to read this article in full!

I’m dead serious and I’ve evidences to back my claim (you’ll see why later). 😉

Spring cleaning is a must if you’re an organized person. I’m the kind of person that insists on organization. Perhaps, it’s a personal philosophy to keep it that way – sort of to put life in perspective, in orderly manner so as to keep sane from the chaotic world I live in.

I’ve never doubted the amount of effort I need each week to clear the rubbish accumulated around my house. Be it New Year Eve or Chinese New Year, you’ll probably find me trashing things out each fortnight. Interesting, my parents and elder brother doesn’t seem to believe that – or at least until it becomes completely unbearable for them.

Argh! Do you have siblings like that too?

Darn… and it’s been almost a year and half since I’ve made a serious effort to clean up the water supply to my home.

Have you ever consider how important your drinking water supply is?

I did and I can assure you that not many people care about the water they drink. Folks are much more bothered about the food they take, forgetting that more than 70% of their body runs on fluid- and water is the main component of that.

It’s pretty hard to convince folks unless there are solid evidences, something ordinary folks can appreciate from a single observation. Personally, I can understand that, for I too was not comfortable with the concept of impurities in the water we consume.

And that statement is especially true in Singapore, the country where I live in.

Singapore has an excellent reputation in its advancement in water treatment and research. Hyflux, Singapore’s homegrown utility business, made its reach long enough to catch the attention of gigantic and emerging economies like China and India. As demand in water supply is predicted to skyrocket in the next few years, clean water supply will become a very much demanded resource.

In fact, Singapore has been feeding its resident with “NEWater” for the past few years and no one has ever complained about its quality. In fact, you’ll be completely disgusted with “NEWater” if you realized that it’s recycled water from waste water, *gasp* including those that you passed out.

Before you start to protest, lab tests have long proven that such treated water is completely safe for consumption and is about 99.999% close to that of standards required for pure water. The only thing is it does not contain much minerals and so it has to be pumped back to reservoirs.

Now, the big question for you is:

Q: How Do You Spring Clean Your Home Water Supply?

Isn’t “NEWater” safe enough already?

Am I trying to challenge the strict water standards Singapore public utilities are adopting?

Of course not! In fact, I’m not crazy enough to challenge that, unless I’ve earn a PhD in water related expertise.

So is “NEWater” safe?

A: Yes, “NEWater” is safe only until it reaches the distribution center. Beyond that, no can 100% guarantee.

Now, that’s a pretty bold statement isn’t it?

Why not 100%?

The water that arrives at your tap at home has to pass through several water distribution channels. I’m no expert at this but rest assure that this is very similar to electricity distribution, which I’m rather familiar with.

Since the water that flows out of your tap transits different stages, isn’t that common sense to conclude that any contaminations may arrive at your tap too?

I’m not even talking about biological contaminations here. I’m no expert in this . I’m talking about basic stuffs, such as fine metal particles that may settle down due to aging in water storage container and pipes. That’s why residences have to pay maintenance fee to HDB to upkeep these, among many other essential facilities.

Unfortunately, small metal particles usually escape these filters. Furthermore, very few folks really go all the way out to replace their copper pipes that transports water from these public distributions pipes to pipes running into their house.

Hence, it IS easily possible that heavy fine metal particles may find their way into your drinking glasses.

So are you willing to let your kidneys do the filtering?

I hope I did not scare you.

Even my father did not believe it until I showed him the proofs:

WTS: Water Treatment System snapshot 01

In the photos above, I laid out my 1.5 year old carbon activated filter on the left hand side and a brand new one I bought last week on the right. Anyone can tell the vast difference between the two. Those fine particles that made the left filter brownish are copper contaminations!

You don’t need a be a rocket scientist to understand my point here. My father even argued that those brownish particles are water minerals! Come on, anyone can understand that minerals CANNOT be seen with the naked eye without the assistance of a microscope.

WTS: Water Treatment System snapshot 02

I took a closer shot of the contaminations around my retired carbon filter. Noticed that my brand new filter is still wrapped in plastics.

WTS: Water Treatment System snapshot 03

I unwrap it and took another shot. The new carbon filters no longer comes shipped with the plastic gauze to reduce cost of manufacturing, so claimed by the manufacturer.

WTS: Water Treatment System snapshot 04

An angled view of the filter from the bottom up.

WTS: Water Treatment System snapshot 05

Finally, a horizontal shot of the retired dude in a closer shot.

WTS: Water Treatment System snapshot 06 WTS: Water Treatment System snapshot 07

WTS: Water Treatment System snapshot 08 WTS: Water Treatment System snapshot 09

The above shots are thumbnails of the used and new Ultra Violet lamps used in my water treatment system to exterminate 99.9% of biological bacterias before the final treated water output can be safely consumed.

There are a lot more things I about the water that we all drink after sufficient private reading and research. Even more amazing are the healing properties of water… maybe I can share some of these amazing articles in my future posts?

There I am!

I’ve just taken some small steps to spring clean the water supply to my home!

What about yours?

I trust you’ll truly enjoy an exciting week of spring clearing tasks ahead and I’ll catch you again next week before Chinese New Year!

Good cleaning and live a life with passion!

Essential Resource Links:

  1. NSF Consumer Information: Residential Plumbing
  2. NSF Consumer Information: Drinking Water
  3. Mr NEWater – Features – Water For All
  4. GE Water & Process Technologies Global R&D Centre in Singapore

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2 Responses:

Yen Thim Wai on February 3rd, 2008 at 12:19 am

Hi Wai Loong,

I am taught since young to boil the tap water for drinking water. In fact, you can drink straight from our HDB tap water but recommended one is to boil the tap water for drinking water.

Wai Loong on February 4th, 2008 at 12:02 am

Boiling water is supposed to kill bacterias and other living bio-organism in the water. UV light have been proven scientifically to achieve more than what heating can do to certain bacterias that cannot be killed at 100 degC. Furthermore, UV is lower cost in terms of electricity usage in Watts… so it’s a lot more environmentally friendly.

Sure, you can drink straight from the tap, but given my proofs in the photographs above, you are taking in fine (heavy) metal particles into your organs. Prolonged intake can be harmful, if not hazardous to health. Didn’t your mum teach you to wrap a piece of cloth around the tap and change it often?

Those brownish stuffs you see in the photos are but just one of the many contaminants you will find in our tap water. At the present moment, water scientists have discovered over 100 types of contaminants that may be present in drinking water that you may not be aware of.

Of course, the quality of tap water will vary across the country.

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About Insights, Inspirations, Tranquility, Peace and Harmony

Ng Wai Loong

Wai Loong is an electronics engineer by profession. He currently resides in Singapore, a thriving hub at the heart of South-East Asia. When he is not so stress out on the computers or laboratory, he enjoys value reading, jogging at his own pace and blogging in his spare time. Other times, he likes to catch up with some close friends over a cup of latte or teh tarik. As a gift from this friend, you are invited to interact freely with him on his personal blog.

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