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Groundwater Contamination: Mercury


Detecting and Treating Mercury in Water

What is Mercury?

Mercury is a naturally occurring metal which is not commonly found in high concentrations in drinking water. However, contamination can occur, primarily through industrial discharges and the weathering of rocks.

Where does it come from?

Mercury can enter water sources through both natural processes and human activities. It can be released into water bodies through industrial processes, coal combustion, and the breakdown of minerals in rocks and soil. Once in water, mercury can transform into methylmercury, a more toxic form that bioaccumulates in aquatic organisms.

Is Mercury a health hazard?

Mercury contamination in drinking water is a concern, particularly in its methylmercury form. Methylmercury can have neurotoxic effects, especially on the developing nervous systems of fetuses and young children. While the levels of mercury in drinking water are generally lower than those found in fish, continuous exposure should be minimized to prevent adverse health effects.

When should I test?

Testing for mercury in drinking water is not typically a routine practice for individual households. Public water suppliers regularly monitor and adjust mercury levels to meet regulatory standards. However, if you live in an area with known industrial discharges or potential mercury sources, or if you have specific concerns about water quality, arranging independent testing may be advisable.

If my water tests positive, what should I do next?

If your water tests positive for elevated mercury levels, consider the following steps:

Use alternative water sources: Avoid using water for drinking or cooking until the issue is addressed. Seek alternative water sources to minimize exposure.

Contact U.S. Water: Our Quick Change Reverse Osmosis filtration removes about 95% to 97% of mercury from water at the point of use, virtually eliminating the risk of mercury poisoning, or for a whole-home solution, ask about ouractivated carbon filtration systems.

Stay informed: Stay updated on local water quality regulations and guidelines. Regularly check for advisories or recommendations from relevant health and environmental authorities.

While mercury contamination in drinking water is relatively rare compared to other sources, being aware of potential risks and taking appropriate measures is crucial for ensuring the safety of your water supply.

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Although your groundwater quality may change, you will always enjoy a clean, refreshing water supply courtesy of our highly efficientQuick Change Reverse Osmosis Water System.

The Right Solution Starts with an Accurate Test

U.S. Water offers comprehensive well water testing services through itsWisconsin state-certified water testing lab. This ensures the most accurate testing and, with our test facility onsite, you are guaranteed a fast turnaround time. In addition to our basic analysis, we offer a full range of certified water tests and well inspection services.

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