Unsafe Tap Water: Signs of Water Contamination

Is your home’s tap water safe? While we expect our municipal supply to be clean, certain warning signs can indicate unsafe tap water. Recognizing these red flags early allows you to take swift action to protect your household.

In this article, we’ll cover 5 major signs that may mean your tap water has become contaminated.

1. Water Discoloration

One of the clearest indicators of unsafe tap water is discoloration. Tap water should appear crystal clear. A yellowish, brownish or unnatural hue likely signals the presence of contaminants. Rusty colored water usually contains excessive iron or manganese. Cloudiness or haziness also points to problems.

2. Foul Odors

Take note if your tap water gives off an unusual odor, like:

  • Rotten egg smell – hydrogen sulfide gas
  • Bleach scent – too much chlorine
  • Gasoline fumes – volatile organic compounds
  • Moldy odor – bacterial growth

Unpleasant smells are a telltale sign of contamination and water treatment issues. Don’t drink water with odd aromas.

3. Poor Taste

Along with smell, pay attention to any odd tastes from your taps. Examples include:

  • Metallic flavor – excess iron, copper or lead
  • Salty or soapy taste – high sodium, manganese or other dissolved minerals
  • Bitterness – organic matter or other pollutants

An unexpected taste usually means contaminants are present. Even a slight off-taste warrants concern.

4. Weak Water Pressure

If your home’s water pressure drops noticeably, contamination buildup inside pipes and fixtures may be to blame. Sediment, bacterial slime and mineral deposits can obstruct flow. Lower pressure allows more contaminants to enter from backflow.

5. Skin and Hair Changes

Does your family’s hair and skin become excessively dry after bathing? This signals harsh contaminants like heavy metals, sulfur compounds or strong chlorine in the water. Also watch for unusual skin irritation.

Stay vigilant about your tap water’s look, smell and taste. Investigate any changes and promptly test your water if you have concerns. Safe water is too important to ignore warning signs. We offer water delivery services here at Arizona Water Delivery that provide contaminant-free drinking water for better health.