The Most Common Contaminants in Household Water

The Most Common Contaminants in Household Water

water-hands“Do I need to have a water treatment system installed for my house?” It’s a question you may have asked yourself, as many other homeowners have. The tricky part about answering the question is there is no such thing as a “universal water treatment system” that removes all possible contaminants from the freshwater sent to a house. Some water treatment systems are more broad in scope than others, but it’s important to know what’s actually in your water so experts like our team will know the best way to treat it.

To find out what’s in your water requires scheduling water testing with us. Below we’ve listed the most common types of contaminants that we may find based on these tests:

Hard water minerals

One of the main concerns we look for in household water is hardness level. This is a measure of the amount of hard water minerals suspended in the water. These minerals include magnesium, gypsum, and a range of calcites. Although not harmful to drink, they can inflict damage to plumbing and appliances and make it difficult to wash and keep clean. A water softener in Glendale, AZ is the best way to counteract hard water.

Heavy metals

No, we don’t mean the rock music style. These are metals with an atomic number greater than 20 that can enter the water supply through the soil. They include arsenic, cadmium, chromium, copper, nickel, lead, and mercury. Your eyes probably widened a bit when you saw lead, because this is one of the major worries with municipal water supplies and is particularly harmful for children to drink. The toxicity of the different heavy metals ranges, but it’s best to have as few as possible of any of them, and there are different water filters and purifiers (such as the reverse osmosis system) that can eliminate them.

Hydrogen sulfide

Have you ever noticed an unpleasant “rotten egg” smell coming from your household water? Not a nice thing to have in your home. This is the smell of hydrogen sulfide, one of several sulfides that can get into the water supply. It isn’t harmful, but it’s definitely something you want to get rid of.

Biological contaminants

This group includes all types of microbes and microbiological contaminants, such as bacteria, viruses, and protozoans. These can lead directly to serious illnesses, as well as nuisances such as bad taste and odors from the water. There are a number of water treatment systems that deal directly with these biological hazards.


Many types of chemicals in the soil can end up seeping down into the freshwater system, and some can even originate in water treatment plants. Among the chemicals found in freshwater are chlorine (a byproduct of chemical treatments), chloramines, bleach, pesticides, herbicides, and synthetic pharmaceuticals. 


This is good, old-fashioned dirt. It may not be the most sinister-sounding item on this list, but you certainly don’t want it in your water. 

We have the tools to provide your family with fresh, safe, and good-tasting water. Make an appointment for water testing today to get started.

Trust to The Trusted Plumber in Glendale, AZ and the surrounding areas.

This post first appeared on

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *