Ideal pH Value of Drinking Water Explained!
Mar 01, 2017
If we have to tell you what pH value represents without diving deep into the chemistry and math of it, the explanation is simple. It is a measure of how acidic or basic an aqueous solution is. Solutions with a pH value greater than 7 are considered basic, while those with a pH value less than 7 are said to be acidic.
Here, we are only concerned about water—drinking water to be specific—and what it’s pH value means for us. Conveniently, pure water measures 7 at the pH scale, which means it is neutral—neither acidic nor basic (also referred to as alkaline).
If the water we drink is too acidic or too basic, your body won’t appreciate it. So, what’s the pH value requirement of drinking water for it to be considered safe? The Indian Standard for Drinking Water sets that level anywhere between 6.5 and 8.5. Water with a pH value lower or higher is not considered safe to drink. This value is also the accepted standard by the World Health Organization.
What Makes Water Acidic or Basic?
The pH value of water is determined by the things in it and the ambient temperature, which in turn affects what other things can get mixed in the water. Let us take the example of carbonated water or soft drinks to put that into perspective.
Carbonated water is carbon dioxide dissolved in water. Carbon dioxide is acidic and drops the pH value below 7. The amount of CO2 determines how acidic the water becomes. In fact, as the temperature of pure water is raised by 25 °C, its pH value drops by about 0.45. This happens because the temperature of the water dictates the quantity of atmospheric gases that can dissolve in it.
In case you’re curious, popular soft drinks Pepsi and Coca-Cola have a pH value of roughly 2.5. That’s highly acidic. Which is why carbonated drinks are considered bad for your health when consumed regularly and in large quantities.
You can make water acidic or basic by adding these common substances: baking soda, soda ash, calcite or lime, calcium carbonate, etc. They can turn water basic or alkaline. On the other hand, vinegar, citric acid or any other acid can turn water acidic.
How does pH Value of Drinking Water Affect You
No one likes the taste and feel of hard water. And hard water is basically basic because of all the magnesium and calcium minerals dissolved in it. These salts cause the water to have a high pH value. This water is bitter to taste. Also, there’s the fairly common scaling problem posed by hard water.
An indirect effect of a high pH value is that it makes chlorine less effective as a disinfectant in water. This compels us to add more chlorine, which in turn is not good for our health.
Coming to low-pH water or acidic water, it can be corrosive. In general, the lower the pH value of water, the higher its corrosive effect. Acidic water can corrode metal and other substances. When this water flows through metal pipes, it can leach harmful substances like lead and other heavy metals. If that does not sound bad enough, heavy metals mix more readily in water of low pH value. All these harmful substances ultimately end up in our body when we drink this water.
Here’s a fun fact, or rather an advisory.
We’ve all opened our mouths wide to drink rainwater at some point in our lives, let’s not deny that.But were you aware that rainwater is quite acidic?The dissolved carbon dioxide, sulfates and nitrates from the air give rainwater a low pH value of 4 to 5.5.
But hold on; many of us harvest rainwater, don’t we? There’s a possibility that this water is acidic depending on how soon you use it. As this water is left in the storage tank, it loses some of its dissolved gases, making it less acidic. The pH value of harvested rainwater can be anywhere between 5.5 to 8.7.
It’s time to make sure you’re drinking good water. You can even try renting Livpure Smart RO Water Purifier and save money.
Does Lowering or Increasing the pH Value of Water Make It Suitable for Drinking?
Here, it is important to mention that we should not judge how potable the water is simply by its pH value. Our stomach secretes hydrochloric acid to digest food, a highly corrosive acid with a pH value of 1.0 to 3.5. We regularly consume substances that are more acidic or alkaline than regular drinking water, such as lemon juice (pH of 2.4), vinegar (pH of 2.8), milk (pH of 6.2), orange juice (pH of 3.5), coffee (5.5), etc.
As a WHO report puts it, “a direct relationship between human health and the pH of drinking water is impossible to ascertain, because pH is so closely associated with other aspects of water quality, and acids and alkalis are weak and usually very dilute.”
So, the right way to look at the pH value of water is this. The pH value tells us how acidic or basic the water is, but it is the substances in the water that are making it so. And it is these dissolved substances in the water that can be harmful to us.
What makes water suitable for drinking is removing these harmful substances, which in turn brings the pH value back to the permissible levels.
High Quality Water Purifier Can Effectively Balance the Ph Value
A quality product like the Livpure Smart Touch RO Water Purifier passes water through 7 different stages of purification. By the end of it, the water is almost pure water with neutral pH. But there’s also a mineralizer, which reintroduces certain essential minerals back into the water. At the end of it all, the water that you drink is purified and healthy with the right pH value.
Know more about our Best-Selling Water Purifiers & Air Purifiers:
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