Easy Ways to Improve your Water Quality

Posted on 08/14/2014

The Environmental Protection Agency says 40% of our nation's waterways have quality issues. Since we all need water to live it's important to pay attention to ways we can reduce pollution and keep our water safe. August is Water Quality Month, a great time to show our appreciation to this life-sustaining source by improving water quality at home and in our communities.

Test Your Water
Buying bottled water when your tap water is safe is like sending money down the drain. But an affordable at-home test kit will tell you just what's coming out of your tap. Test for chlorine, nitrates, iron, copper and more with the Pro-Lab Water Quality Test Kit. It's less than $10 at Sears.com.

Install a Faucet Filter
If you're concerned about the quality of your drinking water install a faucet filter to protect yourself from lead, pesticides, chlorine and more. The New Wave Enviro 10 Stage Drinking Water Filter is $94.99 at Drugstore.com and will clean 1500 gallons of water. No plumbing is required and it attaches to your faucet in seconds.

Don't Flush Medications
When you're done with a medication or your prescription has expired, don't flush it. Those pills will contaminate water sources. Instead participate in the National Take-Back Initiative on September 27 and find a collection site in your area.

Clean Up
An easy (and free) way to keep your community's water clean is by cleaning up any spills or leaks from your car. Materials left on your driveway will get washed away from rainwater, contaminating water sources. Fertilizers and chemicals used on lawns can end up in the same place.

Stop Using Anti-bacterial Soap
The FDA says they're not convinced that anti-bacterial soaps are any better than normal soap, but research shows these products are harmful on the environment. According to Smithsonian Magazine, when we use antibacterial soaps the ingredient triclosan goes down the drain and traces have shown up in streams and waterways. That's bad news because triclosan can harm algae and other plant life.

By Alison Storm

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