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Metro Vancouver Adjusts Your Tap Water pH

Over the past year (2010), we have observed a distinct increase in tap water pH here at watermatters’ store* and in the surrounding Vancouver area. Once typically acidic, Metro Vancouver’s water is being adjusted up into the alkaline range

Metro Vancouver’s source water, which originates from enviably pristine mountain reservoirs, is naturally low in mineral content, characteristically ‘soft’ and consequently acidic.

Acidic water (below pH 7) is corrosive. It causes pipes to leak and simultaneously leaches heavy metals from pipes and plumbing fixtures into tap water. Consequently, Metro Vancouver is introducing sodium carbonate (soda ash) into our tap water to make it more alkaline.

The pH scale ranges from 0 through 14.
pH 7 is neutral.
Below pH 7 is increasingly acid.
Above pH 7 is increasingly alkaline.

The current target is to adjust our tap water pH levels up to pH 7 – 7.5. Ultimately, Metro Vancouver Water District intends to raise the pH of our water to pH 8 or higher once the Seymour-Capilano Filtration Project is complete (2013?).

Metro Vancouver’s water is supplied from 3 mountain reservoirs – Capilano, Seymour and Coquitlam.

Average pH in 2009:
Capilano     6.7
Seymour    6.8
Coquitlam  6.9

Average pH in 2010:
Capilano     6.5**
Seymour    7.2
Coquitlam  7.3

*Observed increase from approximately pH 6.5 to pH 7.2
**Capliano is currently (winter 2010/2011) out of service due to excessive turbidity. Water is being supplied by one or both of the other reservoirs until Capilano is back in service.

4 Responses to “Metro Vancouver Adjusts Your Tap Water pH”

  1. Julia Says:

    Thanks for your very helpful and interesting articles – I really like getting and reading them.
    One question – alklalizing the water – is this a good thing or a bad thing for us?

  2. richard Says:

    I know our plants in Vancouver thrive in acidic rain water and I drink Metro’s tap water, but being on council at my condo I have learned that soft water attacks the copper plumbing and that raising PH has little to no affect at resolving this problem.
    I appreciate all that Metro Vancouver is doing , but what is the reason behind raising
    PH ?
    thank you

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