Water is an essential resource for our daily lives, and ensuring its safety is paramount. Our drinking water, sourced from several water treatment plants, may still include hazardous contaminants, including TDS or total dissolved salts. TDS levels in water range from moderate to high, altering not just the flavour but also posing a myriad of health hazards. This necessitates the understanding of whether a low or high water TDS affects the quality of drinking water and what suitable filtration procedures are required to remove dangerous substances and make drinking water safe.
Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) is a common metric used to assess water quality. However, the misconception that low TDS levels equate to safe water can be misleading. This blog explores basic information that people must know about TDS which can contribute to a better understanding of water safety for domestic and commercial use.
What is TDS in water?
Water TDS is something we all hear about in our households, from the water filter companies and the salesperson who visits our house to install the RO. So much is the usage of the word TDS in our lives, that despite not understanding what it actually means in terms of water safety, we are inclined to fear that a low or high TDS simply relates to unsafe drinking water.
TDS is an abbreviation for Total Dissolved Solids, which is a measurement of all inorganic and organic components present in water and it is measured in milligrams per litre (mg/L) or parts per million (ppm). Minerals, salts, metals, Calcium, sodium, magnesium, potassium, iron, lead, arsenic, carbonates, bicarbonates, nitrates, sulphates, and chlorides or other contaminants that dissolve in water are examples of these things. Hydrocarbons, herbicides, insecticides, fulvic acid and humic acids, as well as a range of organics from industrial effluents, can all be found in the dissolved organic matter.
Therefore, high water TDS levels mean a higher concentration of dissolved solids and higher impurities, making the water quality poor, which can lead to potential issues for health. This also means that low TDS has less concentration of these harmful contaminants and hence less waterborne problems. While a low TDS level water is not considered harmful water for drinking, it also does not guarantee safe water. Considering, that TDS is not the sole marker for water safety, its quality is affected by various other factors as well, and relying solely on TDS can overlook crucial aspects of its safety.
So why is water TDS level considered important?
The water you usually drink may have high TDS levels of sodium, potassium, and chloride. Some of these substances also include toxic elements such as cadmium, nitrate, and arsenic, which if consumed, can cause many health concerns. Children are the most vulnerable to waterborne health issues since their immune systems are not completely developed which makes them exposed to pollutants. This necessitates the water in households to be tested for TDS testing.
Moreover, TDS levels in water have an impact on the flavour of your drinking water and it may taste unpleasant or salty depending on the type of dissolved materials in your water.
What does low TDS mean?
Because low water TDS means a low proportion of total dissolved solids, it is less likely to include pollutants such as chemicals, heavy metals, and minerals. In theory, this means that low-TDS water is safer to drink than regular tap water.
The World Health Organisation recommends that drinking water include at least 100 mg/L of TDS and optimal values of magnesium and calcium in water should be 20-30 mg/L and 40-80 mg/L, respectively. Studies also show that low TDS-level water can reduce salt and magnesium intake by 20%. Magnesium elements in drinking water help strengthen our cardiovascular systems and provide other health benefits. As a result, drinking and cooking with low TDS water can be harmful to your health, with issues such as weakness, muscle cramps, loss of appetite, numbness, abnormal heart rhythm etc.
Moreover, low water TDS has an acidic flavour that might interfere with the taste of food and beverages created with water. Low TDS levels in drinking water can also lead to digestive issues such as constipation and irritable bowel syndrome due to its acidic nature and it is also linked with an increased risk of heart disease.
Because water with a very low TDS lacks contaminants, it is more prone to drain metals such as copper from your water pipes. Although drinking modest quantities of most heavy metals is considered harmless, ingesting high levels of metals over time may have a range of long-term health impacts, including decreased energy levels, and lung, liver, and brain issues.
So, while drinking water with a low TDS level is not potentially harmful, it still carries its share of health risks that you should be aware of and must discuss with your water purifier/filter service provider. Moreover, as water is also likely to be contaminated with a variety of pollutants, including toxins from industries and the overuse of pesticides and fertilisers which cannot be tasted or seen, using a reliable water purifier is necessary to protect yourself and your family.
The simplest way your water purifier service provider uses to measure total dissolved solids is to test your water with a TDS water tester. For example, a TDS meter digital water tester reading of 100 ppm indicates that 100 of one million particles are dissolved ions and the remaining 999,900 are water molecules. This is considered a low TDS level as per the TDS meter.
Since, Total dissolved solids have an impact on the quality of your water, your health, your home plumbing system, and even daily tasks like cooking and cleaning, by testing your water for TDS with a TDS water tester, you can have a better understanding of the quality of your water and how it affects your daily life, enabling you to choose the most effective filtration system for your home.
There are various technologically advanced water purifiers on the market today that not only remove excess TDS levels but also have a slew of other smart features that are critical for removing hazardous substances from water. For instance, water purifiers with 100% RO and UV purification, allow 100% of the water to flow through the filtration system, ensuring that you consume absolutely safe and healthy water. Furthermore, the water is cleaned with UV radiation every four hours, which keeps the water clean at all times.
It is critical to our health to drink pure water with an alkaline pH value that is devoid of microbiological, and chemical poisons, and pollutants. As a result, it is critical to invest in a high-quality water purifier that provides healthy, clean, safe, and pure drinking water for you and your family.
Understanding water quality goes beyond Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) measurements. While TDS is valuable, it has limitations in assessing overall water safety. The Waltr Q - TDS Monitor provides accurate, real-time data, offering a more comprehensive understanding of water quality.
Waltr also offers other innovative products, such as the Water Level Monitor, Motor Controller and Borewell Scheduler, contributing to efficient resource utilization. Incorporating these solutions enhances water quality assessment and promotes responsible water management. Additionally, adopting water-saving tips in housing societies remains crucial for ensuring a safe and sufficient water supply for all.