Water Quality in Seoul, Korea
The information on the quality of water here in Seoul is conflicting. First you hear from the locals that no Korean would ever drink the tap water then you see articles in the newspaper saying the water is very safe. When we lived in Germany no one ever thought to question if our water was safe to drink. It was Germany, the land of solar power and windmills! I'm a born skeptic so I decided to test it myself. There was a sense of security in knowing that I had held the results for my personal water source in my hands. Turned out that the water in Germany has a high pH, extremely hard, and had a higher level of Nitrate then I would have liked to see. ( Test Results Here) All these things were minimal and we drank the water but just had to use more detergent than I was used to. I wanted the same security here in Seoul as I pour a glass of water for Sam, so I went and bought another home water testing kit.
I ran the tests and sat in anticipation as each test result came back. Here is what I discovered. The biggest concern I had was lead. I wasn't sure when the house we live in was built and had even less idea what shape our pipes were in.
The lead test came back very clearly negative. Whew, no lead poisoning for our family!
The Nitrate/ Nitrite tests came back clear. No need to worry about developmental problems.
The next tests checked the water's pH level, hardness, and chlorine. I was excited for this test considering it would alter how I wash our cloth diapers. I have been using more detergent just to air on the side of caution before we tested the water. Thankfully I can stop, here are the test results!
The pH and hardness were in the middle, near low and the chlorine test came back a 0! Wow, dare I even say it, at this point the water in Seoul, Korea was better then the water in Germany! Then came the dreaded pesticides test. I knew from researching organic food in Korea (blog here) that the country didn't have a very good track record of pesticides in food production so I grimaced as I took this test.
Very positive! :( Other than my pregnancy test I don't think there is a test result I examined and reexamined more than this one. I sat at our kitchen sink hoping what I saw wasn't true. Perhaps if I just looked at it from an angle the line wasn't so strong? No luck. This was a strong positive.
The package suggested that I call the 1-888 number but unfortunately we are not in the US.
The Office of Waterworks
Korean Bridge Tap Water Article
Comparison of Water Filtration Pitchers