How Does Water Get To Your Home or Business?
If your immediate thought was “Aquazania delivers my water” – then we love you! Yes, we do deliver your freshly squeezed water to your business or home – and we love that we can do that for our customers.
But the real question is – how exactly does that water even get to Aquazania, in order for us to process it from what it comes to us as – all the way through to the pure-tasting water you have delivered in your 21.8 litre bottles?
The water we consumer every day comes from one of two main water sources; ground water (underground) and surface water (lakes, dams etc.). Other sources of water we often do not even consider include the likes of snow melting, rain and recycled “grey” water. These types of water have limited use due to their possible contaminants but they are gaining popularity nowadays because of the water crisis our country has found itself in.
A sobering thought may be that a meagre ONE PERCENT of all water is accessible to the population.
Let’s quickly run through the two main water sources.
Rainwater and melted snow seeps into soil, collecting underneath the surface in pockets of space called aquifers. Once an aquifer is filled to capacity with the water catchment, it is called a water table. A drop in the water table indicates unstable factors – such as inconsistent rainfall or a drought that has depleted the resource and not had the chance to renew it.
This water source consists of water flowing through streams, lakes, rivers, reservoirs and the oceans. This type of water is often marvelled at for how clean and clear it appears – but beware – it can often be contaminated and thus not fit to drink. 97% of this water is found in the oceans, saline and undrinkable – and we have actually recently seen the opening of the very first desalination plant in Richards Bay South Africa. The remaining 3% of oceanic water – which is actually fresh water – is “locked up” in glaciers and ice.
So, how exactly does water get to my home or business?
Those enormous concrete pipes we see being lugged onto new properties are essentially the backbone to any water system. They house further piping which allows for the transportation of municipal water from the treatment plant, straight into our homes.
When these water systems are maintained, routinely replaced and generally well looked-after, an efficient system is generally going to be the result. However, as we’ve seen a huge decline in infrastructure maintenance and improvements over the years, from Flint (who are experiencing one of the largest lead contamination cases of recent history) all the way through to our very own beloved South Africa – where part and parcel of the drought we have (and still are) experiencing is due to poorly maintained water systems – your next best and safest bet is going to be to outsource your drinking water at the least – to a reputable, sustainable and safe water source.
So, once the water has been transported from either the underground or surface water catchment area, it is sent through to the water treatment facility. Processes at these facilities include disinfecting and “purifying” the water. The end goal of the water treatment facility is to take untreated water and make it potable – i.e. – relatively safe to drink.
The process to make the water potable involves systems such as the removal of debris, filtration of the water and disinfection of the water. Disease-causing micro-organisms are mostly removed, and thereafter the water flows out into the through a network of water pipes – commonly known as the water distribution system.
Public vs Private Water Treatment Facilities
Public / municipal systems are owned and operated by the cities or towns they serve and are under the auspices of a mayor or another elected official.
Private systems include individual wells (sometimes serving a single household) to small corporate associations that provide water to homes – or contain their own water divisions.
From The Pipes to Your Tap
Whether the water you use comes from the treatment facilities or a well (as we just discussed earlier) – the water is still going to come out your tap the same way. The key to having his last step run smoothly is to ensure your own homes plumbing is up to scratch, Unfortunately, metal pipes used in household plumbing often erode and allow lead an other contaminants to leech into your water supply. Ensuring your own plumbing is in tip top shape means even less of a chance of dirty or infected water.
Speaking for ourselves – we receive municipal water which is piped through to us via underground water transportation systems. Once we have received this water – it is held in large storage tanks, to allow for hard sediment to settle to them bottom. Then the magic starts to happen – where the water undergoes hard as well as mechanical filtration to remove [pretty much every other component other than the actual two Hydrogen and one Oxygen molecule. The water is purified, undergoes reverse osmosis, ozone sterilisation etc., and is then re-injected with great tasting minerals.
The bottles themselves are sterilised, so you’re guaranteed the cleanest and purest water you could ever imagine.
Information sourced from “Water Treatment for Dummies’ booklet.