Oklahoma Specific Water Issues. What plagues our water? Warning signs, and how to fix'em.
Updated: Oct 31
Let’s face it... Some places were blessed with pure and clean drinking water…Oklahoma ain’t one of’em. The water quality here isn't the worst, but in Oklahoma, like many other regions, there are specific challenges associated with the drinking water. This article aims to shed light on the problems faced by residents, particularly in Oklahoma City, focusing on well water and typical issues that can be remedied by water softener systems. We will explore the safety of tap water, the warning signs of potential hazards, the importance of water testing, and the benefits of water treatment systems, such as reverse osmosis (RO) and water softeners.
The Problems and Warning Signs
Water challenges in Oklahoma City
Oklahoma City, the state capital, faces various drinking water challenges. While the municipal water supply undergoes treatment processes to ensure its safety, it still contains impurities that can affect its taste, odor, and overall quality. These issues arise due to the presence of dissolved minerals, such as calcium and magnesium, commonly referred to as "hard water."(see the next section) Although hard water is not harmful to consume, it can cause problems like limescale buildup in pipes, reduced appliance efficiency, and dry skin.
With that said, “the City’s annual Drinking Water Quality Report, known as the Consumer Confidence Report (CCR), shows that water tested during 2022 met the requirements from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality (ODEQ).” (source)
The CCR found 24 contaminants in the water.
Got hard water?
Why yes…yes we do! What is the hardness of the water in Oklahoma City? We can tell you from experience, Oklahoma City has hard water, with varying levels of hardness depending on the specific area. The hardness of water is typically measured in grains per gallon (GPG) or parts per million (PPM). The water hardness in Oklahoma City generally ranges from 10 to 15 GPG, which falls within the moderately hard to hard water category. This data can also be found at usgs.gov.It is advisable to have a water test conducted to determine the exact hardness level in your specific location. We can do that; just ask here >
Our well water has some issues too…
Many ‘Okies’ rely on private wells for their drinking water. Well water, though often free from some of the chemicals found in treated water, can present its own set of problems. Contamination from sources like agricultural runoff, septic systems, and natural geological conditions can occur. Common well water issues in our area include high levels of minerals, bacteria, nitrates, and other potential contaminants.
Tap water safety and warning signs
Tap water in Oklahoma City generally meets federal safety standards; however, some residents may prefer additional treatment due to taste, odor, or personal preferences. While tap water is typically safe to drink, certain warning signs might indicate potential issues. These signs include unusual taste or odor, discoloration, cloudiness, or changes in water pressure. If any of these signs are present, it is advisable to contact the local water utility for further investigation. We can also send out a tech to do a free water test. Just ask!
Remedying water issues with water softeners and RO systems
Water softener systems can effectively address the problems associated with hard water by removing excess minerals. These systems use ion exchange technology to replace calcium and magnesium ions with sodium or potassium ions, resulting in softer water. Softened water can alleviate issues such as limescale buildup and improve the performance and lifespan of appliances.
For those concerned about contaminants beyond hard water, installing a reverse osmosis (RO) system is recommended. RO systems use a semi-permeable membrane to filter out impurities, including heavy metals, chemicals, bacteria, and viruses. This process can provide an additional layer of protection, ensuring the water is safe and clean for consumption.
Get a professional water test
To ensure the quality and safety of your drinking water, it is essential to have it tested by a professional laboratory. Water testing can identify potential contaminants, such as bacteria, heavy metals, pesticides, and nitrates. Professionals collect samples and conduct various tests to provide a comprehensive analysis of your water quality. Understanding the results can help you make informed decisions about the appropriate water treatment system for your specific needs.
If you would like a free water test. Feel free to reach out to our service reps, and we will have a qualified tech come out to your home to give you better insight into the exact issues you are facing at your home in OK. Contact us here >
Addressing the challenges associated with drinking water in Oklahoma, particularly in Oklahoma City, requires awareness, proactive testing, and the appropriate water treatment systems. Water softeners and RO systems can effectively combat issues like hard water and potential contaminants which are a challenge that we as Oklahoma residents face. By ensuring access to clean, safe drinking water, residents can enjoy improved health, protect their appliances, and enhance their overall quality of life.
Publicly available data and sources on drinking water in Oklahoma City
Can typically be accessed through the official website of the Oklahoma City Utilities Department. Here are some potential sources of information:
The Oklahoma City Utilities Department Water Quality Report: Detailed information on the quality of drinking water, including its source, treatment processes, and results of water quality testing. It typically includes data on contaminants, compliance with regulatory standards, and any violations or advisories .Includes various water quality parameters such as turbidity, pH levels, disinfection byproducts, and the presence of contaminants.
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