Can I Use Tap Water To Refill My Bottled Water Cooler?

So you’ve invested in a water dispenser for your home or your office – good going! Now, you’re getting a little tired of paying for those bottles of water to be delivered to your home or office each week – and you want to know if you can refill your own bottles with tap water. Well, you’ve raised a valid question – let’s address it :-)

Refilling and Fitting Bottles with Tap Water

Your first hurdle may be filling your 20 odd litre water-bottle; some of them are fitted with caps and covered with replaceable stickers after the supplier refills each bottle. In a case like this, it might be easier to do if you have a similar sticker you can place over the previous puncture. Make sure this is fitted properly or the exercise could end in disaster. If your supplier uses “whole” bottle lids, this might be even harder to achieve. Whatever method you use, make sure the material you use to re-seal the bottle will not leave any mess, residue, glue or funny taste in your water.

Will Tap Water Damage my Water Cooler?

Most water supplying companies warn against using tap or regular filtered water in the water cooler; this isn’t necessarily to push their sales up, but more to keep the life span of you water cooler in check. See, when you use tap water or filtered water, you’re not guaranteed to have removed all the particles necessary to keep your machine in tip-top shape. The tap water likely contains lime-scale building components. Having a lime-scale build up in your water cooler has direct effects on the taste and quality of the water dispensed from that machine, including an off-taste as well as visible build-up on the metallic components of the machine that water has come into contact with.

Is there another alternative?

Simple answer; always! Why bother refilling your own bottles, finding the right size sealing cap and struggling to get that hefty bottle back onto the dispenser without spilling it everywhere. Consider this; if the taste and premium quality of your water is not a major concern to you – which, if you are already doing this – is not – then why don’t you get rid of your free-standing water dispenser and opt for a plumbed-in unit? It’s bound to save you hassle, time and energy. See, it will be fitted by a professional; it contains an internal water filtration system – so even though you’re still drinking tap water – it will have been through a few purification processes already, so even that small step-up upgrades your water quality significantly. Also, some plumbed-in machines have fancy options! Some cool and heat your water – while the higher ranges can go so far as carbonating your water. Why limit yourself by refilling your own water bottles when you could optimise your situation?

Should I refill my own water bottles?

Answer this for me: is the quality of your water and the taste of utmost importance to you? If you even hesitated and possible gravitated towards “no” – then I would suggest immediately considering a plumbed-in unit. It’s not wrong to have a different want or taste to the next person – so choose what your priority is and there will certainly be a solution that fits your lifestyle and pocket.

Contact us today to try a water cooler! :-)

Why Is My Water Brown?

Eww! I know it’s happened to me a couple of times, but has it ever happened to you? You switch your bathroom tap on to brush your teeth and disgusting brown, murky water comes gushing out. Ok, one benefit is the smell of chlorine may be a little less overpowering, but still, the water is freakin’ brown! Ever wondered why?

What Causes Brown Tap Water?

The first and largest cause form brown water coming out your tap is damaged or recently replaced water pipes; rust becomes dislodged from the water pipes and finds it’s way into your home supply. This can happen when pressure in the pipes changes during repairs,  if there’s a drop in water pressure or when the water is switched off and back on again. Now, when water is already “in the pipeline”, all pre-treatment from Rand Water has already been carried out. So if you don’t have a filter fitted to your tap, or you’re not using a water system which re-purifies and filters your water before it’s dispensed – you’re 99% certain to be faced with this yucky looking water. In the strictest terms – it’s OK to drink. But rather don’t, because it tastes gross and can contain higher amounts of iron than you want to ingest. However, the other less common reason for brownish water may be that your heating element is packing up; galvanised iron plumbing corrodes with time and can release discoloured water. Check that out if your problem persists.

How Do I Get Rid of Brown Water?

You want it gone and you want it gone now; but how? If this problem is persistent, check your heating element. However, if there is nothing faulty with the heating element, your local municipality can’t pinpoint the exact issue and you’ve just “had enough”, we’d recommend the immediate quick-fix. Add a cartridge-type water filter to your taps and (if possible) shower heads. In the meantime, make use of hand-washing method for your lighter clothes as the rust present in the water may stain your lighter fabrics in the washing machine. A water softener may be used for low to moderate concentrations (your water is brown, but it’s still “see through”); an oxidizing filter may also be used for higher concentrations, a pH adjustment may be necessary. Manganese concentration may also be a viable option for treating brown coloured water. These will alleviate the inconvenience of brown water, at least to your home supply.

Brown Tap Water: Nothing Serious

It’s really nothing to panic about; you just need to be smart in your treatment methods as well as where you use the water. Because of it’s staining properties, remember to keep hand washing your lighter clothes until the issue is resolved; use filters and water softeners in your home – and consider alternative sources of drinking water. Water discolouration is not our biggest water worry!

Share your water stories below!

Water Treatment Around The World Purification and Recycling

Water Treatment Around The World – Purification and Recycling

It’s always interesting to see how the rest of the world are making their water systems work – and what exactly their standards of water purification are.

Australia has some amazing purification plants that turn grey water into usable, clean water.

The best part is that they use only Bio-Friendly materials and systems!

When it comes to water treatment around the world, purification an recycling go hand in hand with sustainability and growth. Up-cycling grey water at home, installing desalination plants and harvesting rain water may add to our plight to improve our water sustainability – but when is it the right time to start?

What do you think OUR best way to sterilize water is? Do you think our general water purification methods are up to scratch?

 

Home Water Purification Systems: Options, Explained

So, you’ve been watching Carte Blanche, reading our articles and asking around. You may have asked friends or family what your best option is when it comes to buying water systems, because you realise the reality we are facing is rather bleak in terms of water stability in South Africa. We take a look at various options for you to purify, store and have clean drinking water on-tap and readily available for your convenience.

Home Water Purification: Cartridge Filtration

This would likely be your cheapest and least time-consuming water purification method at home. Consider buying a retail, home-based water filter; this can either be your regular activated-carbon type of cartridge, or another tap-fitted filtration system. It’s a plug-and-play option which, when combined with a fridge-based water container, can provide you with a storage, cooling and simple filtration system.

Home Water Purification: UV Purification

This is a relatively uncommon water purification method, but I believe some light needs to be shed on it. My reason for mentioning this is that the UV water filtration system uses a hollow-fibre ultra filtration membrane technology which filters impurities as small as 0.025 micron. This means you are using a method of filtration that does not employ any type of chemical additive – which, in my books, is a clear winner. Another feature to mention is that this system can still purify your water without electricity – a concern we should address considering the issues we face as a country.

Home Water Purification: Non-Pump Reverse Osmosis

Another clear winner in my books for using non-chemical purification systems; reverse osmosis filtration system. They are gaining immense popularity worldwide and locally. They allow source water to be filtered through multi-stage processes and remove harmful contaminants like lead, radium, arsenic and chlorine. You can choose to have an on-counter, under counter or whole home reverse osmosis solution – which will likely be adjusted to suit your needs and budget.

Home Water Purification: Alternate Water Sources – Water Coolers

If you’re not up for the hassle that comes along with source water purification for your home, and are looking for uncompromised quality water, consider renting or buying a water cooler. You will have a cooling system at hand, easy dispensing and superior quality water available to you at any time of day. Make your decisions based on your consumption and wants; some coolers have limited functionality – like only dispensing cold water. Others have added hot water dispensing taps, some have a carbonation function. Also look at what your price for renting or buying thee coolers includes. For more info on how to choose your best water cooler – head on over and check out this article.

Necessities: Home water purification is no longer a “want”

We were taught from very early on in our lives the differences between needs and wants; with the issues we’re currently facing locally, I am starting to think that water purification and back-up storage systems are no longer classified a luxury purchase. Finding alternative methods to filtering, purifying and storing drinking water is imperative.

What are your unique ways of filtering and storing water at home?

If you’re interested in trying out a water cooler – don’t be shy to pop us a reply below or call 0861 278 292 :-)

Filter Water Coolers: How do filters in plumbed-in water coolers measure up?

Filter Water Coolers: How do filters in plumbed-in water coolers measure up?

You may have come across our recent article where we discuss the safety level and efficiency of water filters. Now, you may have some questions – or even some concerns – about our plumbed-in units and just how safe and efficient the filtration process is on those machines. We’d like to take this chance to not only set your mind at ease, but maybe even brag a little…

Water Purification Process

While we do offer floor-standing units which are suited to smaller requirements, and an unsurpassed level of water quality provided in a separate 21.8 litre bottle, our bottle-less (plumbed-in) solutions cover much, much larger requirements by making use of municipal supplied water. We all know the level of water quality in South Africa leaves a lot to be desired – so have a look at our 4 step full spectrum purification process used on plumbed-in units, below.

Water Purification: On-Site Purification

So, we fully understand the need for purified water, and some situations can be tricky. However, we offer an extensive treatment process, which includes a full building solution for the treatment of source water. Note that we treat the source water by means of filtration through the machine and not en masse. This comprises of pre-treatment, ultra-filtration, reverse osmosis, post-treatment and sterilisation. In English: no matter what source water you have, the water goes through a 5 step purification process in an internal filtration system, which, in comparison to your off-the-shelf filter solution, is worlds ahead. Instead of performing just particle, selected heavy metal and activated carbon filtration, these sophisticated systems engage filtration methods which are able to perform all of the above functions, along with reverse osmosis and sterilisation.

Water Purification: Under-Counter Treatment

This type of filtration is performed by the cartridge-type filters we have come to know. However, it is an industrial strength filter and will win against store-bought or retail strength filters any day of the week. Particulate filtration through these filters range from 0.5 microns to 10 microns – meaning any living, unwanted bacterial micro-organism from Cholera and E-Coli all the way through to parasitic micro-organisms such as Giardia are zapped out of your water. But it doesn’t stop there – this filtration is followed on by activated carbon filtration and UV sterilisation. Compare that to retail quality filters and you’ll understand our confidence behind these filters.

Water Purification: Nano Silver and Copper

The sterilising benefits of nano-silver have been increasing in popularity for quite some time. It’s no surprise this technology is being adapted and changed to have more applications. Some washing machines and dish-washers have nano-silver technology to further reduce any risk of bacteria growth in the appliances, so why should water coolers be any different? The machine itself acts as the sterilisation unit here – as soon as the water comes into contact with the copper or nano-silver impregnated components – bacteria is eliminated.

Water Purification: Non-Storage Bottleless Water

Some of the plumbed-in units contain no internal storage tank – the water is sourced directly and uses direct chill cooling. This means that there is no breeding ground for bacteria to thrive in and thus – reduces the risk of growth, spread or contamination. While this may not be an active filtration process – it all adds up in assisting the purification process.
There you have it – the long and short of how our bottle-less water coolers provide you with quality water, regardless of circumstance.

Water Sugar Content: An Undiluted Truth

You either know of, or you ARE the person who just does not drink water.

“But, I’ll rust” – that must be THE best excuse I’ve heard!

Back to the point; so many people think that drinking flavoured, carbonated water is the same as drinking plain water. They couldn’t be more wrong!

Have a look at how much sugar flavoured water actually contains.

Prepare to be shocked!

 

Initially published by Health24

Differences Between Hard Water and Soft Water: An Overview

I’m sure you’ve heard about hard and soft water at some stage; you’ve probably also heard about how hard and soft water can affect your water-containing machinery – like kettles, coffee machines and water coolers. But do you really know what the difference between hard and soft water is? We’ll explain :-)

What is Hard Water?

The broadest and most inclusive definition of hard water is the presence of calcium ions and magnesium in the water. Hard water makes foaming of soap and detergent difficult because of the presence of these minerals. Having calcium ions and magnesium in your water increases the chances of lime-scale build-up in machinery. How exactly does hard water become hard water? See, during the water cycle, when rain falls – it is naturally soft water, but in it’s course of flowing, it passes over grounds which contain minerals. The water then absorbs these minerals. Some may argue that hard water has a better taste, and it undeniably has a better health impact because it contains these minerals. The only two “dangers” or downfalls of hard water are household applications; hard water may leave dishes, hair and any other items that are washed in it to be left dull or not fully washed. The other issues come into play with mineral build-up in water-containing machines. We’d suggest using soft water for cleaning and washing clothes, and purified water for your appliances and drinking.

What is Soft Water?

Soft water is classified by the absence of other minerals – barring sodium. This explains the salty taste of soft water. Soft water allows detergents, shampoo’s and soaps to foam up beautifully and is thus recommended for household usage. Most of our tap water is processed, purified and has chemicals added – so it’s hard to pin point the level of hardness in anyone’s water supply.

How Do I Test Water Hardness?

This handy YouTube video demonstrates how easy it is to test your water hardness. In summary though – fill a clear glass with the water you wish to test. Fill another clear glass with bottled, purified water (which will be your “comparison” in this experiment; the bottled water should be soft). Add some oil-based liquid soap and watch how the water reacts. If it causes the water to become murky and it does not settle – you have hard water. An easy explanation is that you can see exactly how water reacts to soapy detergents. Add the same oil-based soap to the bottled water and see how it reacts. If the reaction is similar to your tap water (or whatever water you are testing) – it is soft water :-) If you want an even simpler way – there are water hardness test strips commercially available.

Is my Tap Water Hard or Soft?

There are so many questions flying around about the safety and quality of South Africa’s drinking water, that water hardness is hardly even a question we ask; however, according to Rand Water – our tap water is “moderately soft to slightly hard”. Well, that clears things up… In short – our water hardness is somewhere in-between. It’s a pretty good place for water to be, it allows for household use as well as drinking water.

Water Hardness Solutions

If water hardness is a problem in your home – we’d love to hear if you went the route of chemical water softeners or physically fitted water softening devices – and which you preferred :-)

Fluoride in Water: A very scary Truth

You may, or may not be familiar with the presence of fluoride in our drinking water and it’s potential threat’s. I mean, we buy toothpaste because it’s got fluoride, it’s a great mineral, right?

Why is Fluoride Bad?

This is a great question to start off with. Thanks to Mercola we have come across quite a comprehensive list of dangers of fluoride. Directly curated from point #3 of the dangers of fluoride mentions “Many assume that consuming fluoride is only an issue that involves your dental health. But according to a 500-page scientific review, fluoride is an endocrine disruptor that can affect your bones, brain, thyroid gland, pineal gland and even your blood sugar levels.”

There have been over 34 human studies and 100 animal studies linking fluoride to brain damage,3 including lower IQ in children, and studies have shown that fluoride toxicity can lead to a wide variety of health problems, including: Increased lead absorption, disrupted synthesis of collagen, hyperactivity and/or lethargy, muscle disorders, thyroid disease, arthritis, dementia, bone fractures, lowered thyroid function, bone cancer (osteosarcoma). Fluoride inactivates 62 enzymes and inhibits more than 100. It inhibits formation of antibodies, can cause genetic damage and cell death and carries an increased tumor and cancer rate. Now, bear in mind that is ONE factor of the dangers of fluoride. It’s also listed that “for Infants, fluoridated water provides no benefits, only risks”. This surely made every parent’s skin crawl upon reading it. Infants being fed formula containing fluoridated tap water may consume up to 100 times more than the recommended amounts – which can lead to dental fluorosis and possible reduced IQ levels. – with literally not one single benefit! Read up on why alternative water sources may be a good route to go for babies.

Why is Fluoride added to Drinking Water?

So, with all this information listed above and the clearly skewed ratio of benefits to dangers – why are we still adding fluoride to drinking water? This is incredible to me: it is to prevent tooth decay. Yes, you read that right. Fluoride literally has no other function than calcification – and is the only medicine added to drinking water. Yes, fluoride occurs naturally and small amounts of it are naturally absorbed into passing water – but other than what we have mentioned above – the addition of fluoride to water serves one single purpose – which has also been shown to be a false representation of information. Ingesting fluoride does diddly squat for your teeth!

What’s the Verdict?

In true neutrality, fluoride is neither beneficial nor deadly. Yes, in small amounts it may pass scrutiny and be passed off as safe; however, more and more evidence is suggesting that fluoride in water has no real health benefits. The alleged most comprehensive fluoride-related report can be found here – as published by the National Academies Press in 2006. (it’s over 500 pages so get comfy!)

What’s your opinion? Is fluoride harmful, beneficial or neutral? We love hearing from you!