Does Boiling Your Water Make It Safe to Drink?

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Have you ever wondered if you can boil all the bad out of your tap water? Many of us have been led to believe that steam floating toward the ceiling is a telltale sign of clean water. After it cools off, you tip back a glass without worry. Sure, it tastes flat and the process was a pain, but at least it’s safe to drink… or is it? 

Before you bring your water to a boil, read on to discover why you need more than heat to get complete protection from the dangers of tap water.

Boiling Only Kills Microorganisms That Can’t Withstand Heat

Boiling water only kills viruses, bacteria, and parasites that can’t withstand heat. That’s it. Nothing more, nothing less. For example: 

  • Bacteria such as E. Coli and Salmonella.

  • Waterborne viruses such as Rotavirus and MS2 Phage.

  • Parasites such as Giardia and Cryptosporidium.

The problem is there are hundreds of other dangerous contaminants lurking in tap water that aren’t fazed by boiling. Some even become more concentrated in the process.

Boiling Cannot Remove Hundreds of Contaminants Including Lead, Fluoride, & PFAS

Boiling water cannot remove a variety of heavy metals, chemicals, dissolved solids, and other contaminants found in tap water. That’s because these hazards do not evaporate in heat. 

The following is just a partial list of contaminants that remain in tap water, even after boiling it:

  • HAA5

  • Fluoride

  • Lead

  • Arsenic

  • Barium

  • Nitrate

  • Chromium

  • Pesticides

  • Perchlorate

  • Pharmaceuticals

  • PFAS

Not only do they survive in heat, many become more concentrated as water evaporates. It’s an unpleasant surprise most people aren’t aware of. For the record, our filtered pitcher and our other advanced filtration systems target most of the contaminants above.

You can view those certified test results here.

Even Worse… Boiling Makes Contaminants More Concentrated

When water reaches its boiling point, it slowly begins to evaporate. As the volume of water decreases due to evaporation, the concentration of heat-resistant contaminants in the remaining water increases. 

Since boiling reduces the volume of water, it increases the concentration of contaminants—taking it from bad to worse.

The viruses, bacteria, and parasites are gone, but other dangerous contaminants are there to stay if you don’t do more to protect yourself.

Under Normal Circumstances, Your Best Bet Is to Filter Your Water

Under normal circumstances, you can protect yourself from the dangers of tap water by upgrading to one of our advanced filtration systems certified to remove up to 99.9% of hundreds of dangerous contaminants. For your safety, you should only boil your tap water if there is a boil water advisory issued for your area.

During Boil Water Advisories, Follow the CDC’s Guidelines

Advisories are issued when specific disease-causing viruses, bacteria, or parasites have been found in public tap water sources by local health officials. If you’re wondering how these microorganisms sneak into our water supplies, here’s how contamination can occur: 

  • Water main breaks. 

  • Power outages. 

  • Sewage leaks.

  • Natural disasters such as fires, floods, and earthquakes.

  • Decreased water pressure.

During boil water advisories, we recommend following the CDC’s guidelines by boiling your water as well as filtering it with one of our advanced filtration systems.

Since there is no electronic database for current advisories, Google your area if you suspect there might be a local boil water advisory.

Always Protect Yourself

Chances are your tap water could be contaminated as tens of millions of Americans are affected every year. Even contamination that calls for an advisory can go unnoticed. In other words, you should always be protecting yourself from the dangers of tap water by filtering it. Remember, common contaminants aren’t removed by boiling your water. In many cases, they only become more dangerous in the heat.

The Bottom line: Boiling Water Isn’t All It’s Cracked Up To Be

To recap, boiling water only kills specific viruses, bacteria, and parasites from drinking water. It does not target any of the hundreds of heavy metals, chemicals, and dissolved solids known to contaminate tap water. Plus, it can increase the concentration of contaminants in your tap water.

Under normal circumstances, protect yourself by filtering your tap water with one of our advanced filtration systems certified to remove up to 99.9% of hundreds of dangerous contaminants including those that survive in heat.

If a boil water advisory is issued for your area, filter your water only after you have boiled it and allowed it to cool (filtered pitcher) or filter your water then boil the filtered water (3-stage under-sink filter or universal inline fridge filter). Always remember, boiling water does not remove hundreds of common contaminants found in tap water.

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