Monday, July 14, 2008

How Good is the Water in Argentina?

A fellow expat, and soon to be local business owner, recently submited a water sample to an American water testing company called National Testing. She just received the report, and from what I can tell, the water in her sample was good. She took it from the tap in her home in Las Cañitas.

I would like to share the results of the test with you:

If you would like a copy of the test you can click on the image above.

Iron and manganese are common metalic elements found in the earth´s crust, and therefore, also found in water. They can affect the color and flavor of food and water. They may react with tannins in coffee, tea, and wine. In this report the local water supply got a 0.046 mg/L in Iron, way under the US national standard of 0.3 mg/L. Manganese squeeked by with a 0.04 mg/L against the national standard of 0.05 mg/L.

Copper also comes in way below the national standard of 1.3 mg/L at just 0.10 mg/L.

Zinc also comes way below its national standard clocking in at .067 mg/L against 5 mg/L.

There were three elements that did not state a national standard limit and only had a minimum detection level stated. Those were Calcium (19 mg/L), Magnesium (3.8 mg/L), and Sodium (21 mg/L).

Calcium and Magnesium are involved in affecting the hardness of the water, and since the hardness came in at 63 mg/L, this qualifies it as moderatly hard water, but well below the national standard of 100 mg/L.

Turbidity in the local water was 0.6 mg/L below the standard of 1 mg/L. Turbidity is the lack of clarity of brilliance in a water.

Total Dissolved Solids is used as an indicator test to determine the general quality of the water. In this case it came in at 130 mg/L, way under the national limit of 500mg/L.

Chloride, which gives water a salty taste, also comes in way below the national standards; 21 mg/L versus the limit of 250mg/L for example.

Total THMs came in at 0.06 mg/L against the national standard of 0.08mg/L. This test is important becuase it measures four chemicals that are formed as by-products of chlorination. These chemicals are Cancer group B carcinogens (they cause cancer in lab animals). The full name of the test is Trihalomethanes.

I am no expert in this topic. I just started snooping around based on the report received. Based on this report, it looks like the drinking water is safe and well within the US National Standards. The water might be a little hard, but that was kind of obvious to me when I first came down here.

Good-bye bottles!

** Note: The following are links for informational purposes only. I do not endorse any of these companies. **

AYSA - Water treatment plants of Buenos Aires
AABA - Atlas Ambiental de Buenos Aires

Companies that clean water tanks:
Antiplaga Norte

Companies that analyze water samples:
Entolux - this one does both the cleaning and analyzing
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