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Should I Be Concerned?

If you live in a house built before 1986 (when the plumbing lead ban took effect), or if your water comes through pipes installed before 1986 from your community’s central treatment plant, you should be especially alert to the possibility of lead in your water. Lead is a health concern because it can accumulate in your body – leading to lead poisoning.  This can compromise your nervous system, damage vital organs, and stunt development.  In extreme cases, lead poisoning is fatal.  Lead in water can be a particular problem for more vulnerable people, including women of child bearing age, the very young and elderly, chronically ill, and the unborn.

Finding Lead in My Water

There are several options to test for lead in drinking water. You can:

For most of us, a lead level of 15 microgram/L or below is considered safe, but if members of your household are especially vulnerable to lead poisoning (see above), even a lower level might be dangerous.

Fighting Lead

You can choose from numerous tested and certified water treatment products available to reduce lead in drinking water. To find options, explore WQA certified products or find a local professional who will take you through the steps to treat your water.

Another way to reduce lead in your drinking water is by replacing faucets, showerheads, other plumbing fixtures, and pipes to ones that meet the new federal “lead free” requirement that will become effective in 2014. To find “lead free” certified products, explore WQA certified products.

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