The New Jersey Department of Education recently reported that 21 of the more than 800 school districts in the state that are required to rest their water fountains and other plumbing fixtures for lead contamination failed their inspections. Exposure to lead via water available in schools can have serious health effects on growing children, such as delayed brain development and behavioral problems.
Older plumbing systems in schools and other buildings throughout New Jersey are linked to high levels of lead contamination.
Does my District have a Lead Problem in its Water?
If you are a parent, the first thing that came to mind was probably how to determine if your child’s school district passed or failed its lead inspection. Not all school districts are required to comply with federal lead guidelines. Only those that provide their own water, rather than connecting to a municipal water supply, must show lead levels below 15 parts per billion in their water supplies to be compliant.
Inquire with your child’s district to find out how it scored in its lead inspection. If you do not trust your child’s district’s water, consider sending him or her to school with bottled water.
Testing your Home’s Water Supply for Lead Levels
Lead poisoning can happen at home as well. To determine the level of lead in your home’s water supply, contact your municipal water supplier to request a copy of their Consumer Confidence Report. Ask if the header pipe for your street has lead in it. If the lead supply in your water is greater than 15 parts per billion, take steps to reduce the lead levels in your water or avoid public water altogether. Even if the report states that your town’s water is safe, you should test your own water supply anyway. It is possible that lead contamination is occurring in your home’s pipes, rather than the main supply pipes.
What to Do About High Lead Levels in your Water
If there is a high level of lead in your water, run cold water through each tap for five minutes before using it. Hot water increases the amount of lead that transfers from pipes and faucets to the water supply. Boiling water will not remove lead like it removes other contaminants.
Consider using bottled or filtered water in your home. If you choose to install a water filter, do your homework. Not all filters work the same way or provide the same quality of water. Talk to your plumber about installing a filtering system that will keep you and your family safe.
Work with an Experienced New Jersey Plumbing Technician
Lead in your water can lead to health problems for you and your family. Be proactive and check your water supply regularly for lead and other contaminants. Work with an experienced plumbing technician and heating repair professional from Team Electric Plumbing & Air in Manalapan to ensure that the water you drink and use is safe. Contact our office today to set up your water quality evaluation with a member of our team. We provide an array of services focusing on water filtration, water softening, HVAC maintenance and repair, and all aspects of heating and cooling.