Thanks for taking the tap water quiz. Despite the fact that almost 2/3 of our bodies is made up of tap water most people know very little about it. We want to change this.
Below is an explanation of the results and more information about tap water, filtered water and where you can find out more.
Bottled Water Consumed and Money Saved
Bottled water seems cheap. A bottle often costs as little as 30 cents. But when you add it up over the months and years it becomes a lot of money. According to Statista the average Spaniard spends €139 on bottled water per year and a household €380.
For the purpose of the web quiz we’ve used the average individual and household consumption in Spain. However, the consumption is similar for bottled water consuming households in most of Europe and North America. On average each person consumes the equivalent of one 1.5l bottle per day. This may compromise of tea, coffee, drinking and sometimes cooking. Maybe you consume two 5l bottles per week instead but this is only slightly better in terms of environmental impact.
The cost savings are based on the yearly consumption of a specific bottled water brand with the cost of a TAPP water filter subtracted. See the cost calculator for more.
Bottles avoided is simply the estimated number of bottles consumed by your household.
Clean and tasty tap water
Most tap water in Europe and North America is safe to drink and some tastes really good. With a high quality water filter such as TAPP 2 Twist almost all public tap water will be clean and taste good. Faucet filters are particularly good for small kitchens.
But is filtered tap water really healthier than tap water or bottled water. The simple answer is yes.
Chlorine and Why the Water Tastes Bad
For the past 100 years chlorination of tap water has made it safer for human consumption. Chlorine and chloriamine prevent pathogens (bad bacteria and viruses) from contaminating our tap water and making us sick. The bieffects of this include taste and chlorine bi-products that may be cancerous if not controlled. Generally however the benefits vastly outweigh the risks.
Chlorine especially impacts the taste for areas that have hard or very hard tap water. This includes much of the Mediterranean which is why you may find the water tasting bad in Barcelona, Malaga, Naples or Nice. Thankfully this is easily solved with a water filter such as TAPP that removes 98% of the chlorine and bi-products.
How much microplastics do you drink?
According to multiple recent studies bottled water contains a lot of microplastics. On average bottled water consumers will drink the equivalence of 26 credit cards of plastic per year.
Tap water also contains some microplastics but considerably less. And if you filter it with a high quality filter then you will be completely safe from microplastics and many other substances.
Avoided CO2 emissions
Did you know that bottled water is behind 1.5% of the worlds CO2 footprint. It might not sound much but the entire aviation industry is 2.5%. The big difference is that bottled water can easily be avoided whereas aviation cannot if you want to travel around the globe.
The calculation is based on the most cited study of about 200 g per 1.5 liter bottle. This means that 800 bottles per year consumed by the average bottle drinking household is equal to 160 kg CO2 or the equivalent of driving 592 km with a car.
Water Quality and Taste per Location
Taste and water quality varies a lot depending on where you live. Good taste doesn’t necessarily mean that the water is clean and bad tasting water doesn’t mean it’s unsafe.
It’s a lot more complicated than this. As mentioned above high mineral water (hard water) typically tastes good but when mixed with chlorine like in Barcelona the taste suffers. Our database contains information about the tap water quality in most major cities in Spain. You will find for example that Madrid (post code 28014) is soft and tastes good thanks to the water source and the use of chloramine instead of chlorine.
Later this year we will make more information about water quality available.
Issues with tap water
The most common objections to drinking tap water in Europe are:
- Chlorine taste – simply it tastes bad and sometimes with the worry that chlorine consumption could be bad for the health
- Heavy metals – although uncommon today in Europe with lead and other heavy metals there are still risks. In the US it’s a much bigger concern.
- Limescale / calcium – limescale can be really annoying for the tea kettle, coffee maker and other appliances at home. There is also a common belief that it may increase the risk of kidney stones.
- Old/leeching pipes – how do we know if the city our building water pipes leech or corrode? The answer is that we don’t and therefore there is a major concern for many people.
Is the tap water safe for young children and infants?
Generally yes but the fact is that there is no safe level of lead, PFAS, nitrates, etc for infants. Therefore it’s better to be safe than sorry and filter the water.
Read more about filtered tap water for babies.
How can these issues be solved?
The good news is that a high quality water filter such as TAPP Water can prevent / solve all of these issues. TAPP 2 filters more than 80 contaminants from tap water.
How do water filters work?
For most people it’s enough to know that they work but find more information here about how water filters work.