Most of the time, I never give much thought to the water we drink. It’s there when I turn on the tap, I don’t mind the taste of it… what’s to think about? Turns out, a lot.
There are a host of contaminants lurking out there, sneaking their way into water supplies and creating the potential to wreak havoc. Lead, for instance – lead lives not just in the natural environment, but can leech into our water from the pipes inside homes. If you live in an older house or apartment building, chances are high your plumbing uses lead pipes. And if too much lead makes it into your drinking water, it can cause everything from delays in mental and physical development in young children to severe kidney problems in adults. And lead isn’t the only culprit – bacteria, copper, chlorine, pesticides, and so many more uninvited guests could be hanging out in your pipes, not just waiting to hurt you and your family, but also potentially damaging the pipes themselves.
Over-the-counter kits are available to test the contents of your water. With one kit, I was able to perform tests for 23 different potential contaminants, without the mess of having to send everything to a lab for analysis. Almost all the tests have instant results (one bacteria test takes 48 hours), so you can quickly see just how safe your water is.
There are lots of products on the market that help you purify the water you drink – pitchers, faucet attachments, and even appliances – but they can often be costly and cumbersome to install or use. Bottled water is always an option, if you don’t mind all the additional waste (even recyclable bottles aren’t 100% free of environmental impact). But Pfister has stepped into the void with a new line of faucets featuring their Xtract™ technology.
Pfister’s Clarify faucet functions like any other faucet – except now you’re getting filtered water a 2x the speed of other filtering solutions. A quick and inexpensive install gets you up and running fast. You can opt for regular tap water or cold filtered water just by the position of the handle, and the Clarify’s pull-down head lets you target your water effectively. And for more styling options, the Lita faucet will soon join the Clarify in the Xtract™ line.
So how did our tap water do? For unfiltered water, not too bad. It’s certainly drinkable. But the hardness of the water was much higher than normal, as was the pH level, and more lead and copper showed up than I would like. Our new home might just have a Pfister Xtract™ faucet in its future…