Why Does Tap Water Taste Bad?
Water, a universal beverage and need, is often considered by most people to taste the same no matter where it's from. For the majority of the time, this is the case. However, you might notice that sometimes your tap water tastes bad. Perhaps it gives a bad aftertaste, or it has a funky flavor that you can't seem to pinpoint.
When your tap water suddenly tastes bad, it's normal to be alarmed.
In this article, we'll go over the possible reasons for water having a bad taste and the solutions for making it right.
The Four Possible Reasons For Bad Tasting Water
Here are the four reasons why your tap water may be tasting bad.
In case your residence is connected to the municipal water supply, your tap water may be treated with chlorine to eliminate contaminants. Chlorine treatment renders the water safe and clean to drink; however, it leaves a chemical taste of chlorine in it. Perhaps it's not as pungent as the odor and taste of pool water, but since some people may be more sensitive to it than others, they may notice it strongly.
2. Bacteria And Algae
In case your water is sourced from a well, it may have a musty or earthy smell and taste. This is due to the presence of bacteria and algae, naturally present in the water. And the soil through which water gets filtered before it gets into the well.
Usually, these contaminants of organic nature aren't harmful to health; however, they may give your water an earthy taste if they exist in extreme amounts. Moreover, bacteria and algae's growth in your plumbing and faucet may also cause bad tasting water from the tap.
3. Presence Of Metals
The copper or iron pipes in your home may also shed the inner lining and get dissolved on a molecular level in your water. This may lead to the water having a metallic or bitter taste. Moreover, you may also notice the taste being the strongest when you open the tap first thing in the morning and drink the water sitting in the pipes for some time.
Furthermore, a cause of concern is the presence of lead in your water. This may be due to the soldering in the old pipes in homes. If your building was built in the 80s, it is recommended that you have it checked for signs of lead.
4. Faulty Water Filtration System
Another reason for bad tasting water from the tap is if you've recently installed a reverse osmosis filtration system. There may be a change in taste due to the unique taste that filtered water has. Perhaps you may not be familiar with the taste of filtered water, and you may be thinking that the water has gone bad.
Another reason for bad tasting water is due to a faulty water filtration system. In case you've had your filtration system for a while now, and the water suddenly tastes funky, it may be that your system needs maintenance work.
This can also be location-specific. If you’re wondering why tap water tastes bad in Phoenix, for example, learn more here.
Tips For Getting Rid Of The Bad Taste In Tap Water
Here are a few ways you may get rid of the bad taste in tap water.
Boil Water Before Drinking
In case your tap water tastes and smells like chlorine, the best way to eliminate the taste and odor from the water is to boil it before drinking. You may store the boiled water in your refrigerator and consume it under twenty-four hours.
If you've been noticing earthy, fishy, or even decaying taste in your tap water, perhaps you're not alone. Talking to your neighbors would let you know if this is a common case in the area. Maybe there is great algae content in the water due to the presence of organic contaminants in the source water. Even though water treatment will remove the harmful bacteria and algae from your water supply, there may be a lingering taste.
Try A Water Filter
You may try an inexpensive pitcher to filter away the contaminants and flavors from your tap water. However, getting a house filtration system may be better for you in terms of performance and convenience. But beware that many local health departments require a permit for you to install a water treatment system.
Get In Touch With Your Local Water Utility
In case you're noticing a sulfur taste in your tap water, please be cautious. You may get in touch with your local water company to check if there has been a broken pipe that is leaking sewage into your water supply. This may also be the case when you notice a change in the color of your tap water or get the flavor of rust or chemicals in your tap water.
Get In Touch With A Plumber
You may get in touch with a licensed plumber in your area in case you've been noticing a continuous bad taste in your tap water. There may be a problem with your house's plumbing system, a private well, or the septic tank, which the plumber may rectify easily.
Sometimes your tap water suddenly tastes bad, and you're left wondering why.
In this article, we discussed the various reasons for bad tasting water from tap, and its remedies.
The reasons for bad tasting water may be the presence of chlorine in water, the presence of organic contaminants, such as bacteria and algae in the water, the presence of metals, such as iron and copper, and perhaps, a new or faulty filtration system.
You may take a few steps to make sure the bad taste goes away from your tap water once you've identified its reason.
For chlorination, you may boil the water. You may talk to your neighbors regarding the musty taste in water to see if they are having the same issue and get the water treated. Have a new water filter installed. Get in touch with your local water utility, or even your plumber for bad tasting water.