The Huangpu River is the main source of the municipal filtration system in Shanghai. While the filtration plants disinfect the water that flows from our taps, the high levels of chlorine and the out-dated pipes, which can leak off lead particles into the water, do not make it ideal for drinking. Lien Vermeiren of CYGNUS Shanghai offers some advice about water safety.
Is bottled water in Shanghai safe?
While bottled water can be a reliable alternative to filtration, breaking your back with a 20-liter barrel, creating a playground for bacteria if you don’t empty the lot within a week or adding more waste to the environment are obvious disadvantages of drinking bottled water. In addition, hazardous BPA can leach from the plastic bottle into the water when exposed to lead during storage and transportation. It is recommended to buy directly from the water company or a recognized dealer to guarantee the source of your water.
Can water softeners and filters help?
Water softeners filter out excessive calcium, which hardens the water. Though not a big concern for health, it damages appliances and service pipes. For personal care such as bathing or brushing teeth, an activated carbon filter absorbs chlorine elements, which are quite aggressive on the eyes, body, skin and hair.
In order to have safe cooking and drinking water, it’s best to rely on Reverse Osmosis (RO) filtration which can take out all non-water particles, no matter how small, to make sure the water is contaminant free. Vermeiren recommends the BRAVO+, a RO water purifier unit that combines filter cartridges that are especially made for heavily contaminated water. The RO/carbon filter combination with additional sediment filters to protect the RO membrane gives pure water that is 100 percent safe to drink. A post-filter to re-mineralize the water is added to make the water more alkaline and nutritious. This type of filter will ensure that the water your family drinks is not only tasty, but also bacteria and chemical free.