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Mecklenburg County

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Including the metro areas of  Charlotte, Gastonia, Lake Norman, Hickory, and Statesville

Scott Bachman Owner/Inspector
North Carolina Licensed Home Inspector #2563
ASHI Certified Professional Inspector #245829
Certified Environmental Consultant  - #PLP10605  

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 What Influences the Quality of Ground Water?

"Pure" water does not exist. All natural water contains some dissolved gases and minerals. Ground water quality is influenced by the chemical make-up of the geologic formations in which it occurs, and the length of time that it has been underground.

Overall, ground water is cleaner and purer than surface water. Most ground water moves very slowly and its long travel time in a dark cool environment means that it has few, if any, of the millions of microorganisms that are virtually always found in lakes or rivers. Ground water is usually free of sediment and constant in temperature. In addition, ground water is naturally protected underground and less likely to become polluted than surface water. However, ground water may be more mineralized than surface water because its slow movement gives time for it to dissolve minerals from the rocks it touches, allowing it to pick up various rock-related chemical constituents.

These constituents may include trace levels of iron, manganese, calcium, magnesium, sodium, bicarbonate, silica, sulfate, chloride, nitrate, and fluoride. Small amounts of these elements and compounds do not usually cause health problems in drinking water. In some cases, however, the levels may be high enough to affect the aesthetics of the water (e.g., staining, hardness) and must be reduced.

Some dissolved constituents can be removed or reduced with treatment equipment. Home water treatment is often a simple cost-effective solution to water quality problems, particularly in rural and suburban areas. Moreover, many persons using municipal water supplies supplement the municipal treatment with home water treatment units. In order to obtain good results most water treatment units require attention and maintenance. An improperly maintained treatment unit may be ineffective and may cause additional water quality problems.

Homeowners with wells have primary responsibility for the quality, and quantity of their water supply. It is recommended that the drinking water supply be checked with an inexpensive laboratory test each year. Water quality problems can usually be remedied with appropriate water treatment equipment. About 30 percent of the homes in the United States have some kind of water conditioning equipment to meet personal or recommended water quality standards.

Water testing may be done by private testing labs, county and state health laboratories, departments of health, and some local environmental consulting companies.

If you are buying a home, you should have a water test performed to determine the water quality supplied to the house. Detection Inspection, Inc. is qualified to perform water testing and can provide a low cost scientific water test. Request the water test when you schedule your home inspection.

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