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India’s Water Pipes Are Aging. Can Cloudtap Keep Your Commercial Establishment Safe?

June 21, 2022

Aging pipes in India

In India, potable water available through pipelines is not accessible to everyone. Because piped water is not available in many areas. Wherever tap water is available, for example in cities and towns, water reaching your tap runs through miles of pipes(some decades old) and there is every chance of contamination along the way. Aside from the installation of a seamless supply network and reliable and real-time water quality monitoring, the health risks associated with aged piped water necessitate a great deal of "trust" for it to be consumed directly from taps. While homes use methods such as boiling, filtering, or the use of water filters, commercial establishments must rely on a commercial water purification system.

The Current State of the Water Infrastructure in India

The Indian government has launched a new 'Jal Jeevan Mission,' which aims to provide piped water in India by 2024. Given the political commitment, India can make it happen by strengthening its 93 percent protected drinking water coverage (JMP, 2017) and demonstrating a universal global model of sustainable piped water for all. Despite a total sector investment of over US$ 40 billion and an annual average investment of around US$ 7 billion over the last two decades, piped water coverage has remained stable at 44 percent. The country is caught between the need to repair and maintain a massive aging infrastructure on the one hand, and the need to expand coverage to new and challenging areas on the other.

Age-old water pipes are a big worry

Taps in metro cities and many other parts of India get their drinking water through pipelines that are more than 40 years old. If you’re among the millions of Indians whose water comes through these old pipelines, your drinking water might be at risk. Cracks in old pipelines supplying drinking water lead to its contamination with sewage pipelines running alongside. Another important risk is exposing people to lead, a hazardous heavy metal found in many old pipes and in some low-cost PVC pipes. According to experts, the risk of lead leaching into drinking water from these pipes is real, but efforts to regulate its use have yet to bear fruit, partly due to government inaction and partly due to industry resistance. Also during the monsoon season, record-breaking rains have resulted in record-breaking floods signaling devastation for local officials, residents, and pipeline operators. Heavy rain can cause the ground to swell and shift, which tends to result in devastating landslides, pipeline damage, and leaks.

What’s causing India’s pipes to corrode?

Most of the old pipelines are metal pipes used for water distribution (e.g., steel, galvanized steel, copper, ductile iron, aluminum, etc.). This is due to the fact that metals are durable and can last a long time. Metal pipes, on the other hand, are susceptible to a variety of factors that can cause them to corrode. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), pipes can erode based on their properties, the environmental conditions, the surrounding soil, and stray electric current. Other factors influencing corrosion of pipes include the water’s chemistry and characteristics (pH, alkalinity, and biology), salts and chemicals dissolved in the water, and the physical properties of the water (temperature, gases, and solid particles).

Does pipe corrosion affect water quality? And if so, how?

When pipes corrode, the integrity of their walls is compromised. Sewage waste, and hazardous contaminants, such as heavy metals and other minerals, can dislodge from the walls of pipes depending on the material. These small particles are then carried into your commercial spaces by the water passing through the pipes, and possibly into your drinking glass. This is a bigger problem in older buildings built before 1981, especially if the plumbing system hasn't been updated. Pipes installed prior to that date may have been made with materials that have been shown to be harmful when consumed.

Visual, taste, and odor are the most common ways to detect pipe corrosion and leaching. Corroded iron pipes can cause a nasty red or reddish-brown rust color in your water. It may also have a metallic flavor and small particles floating in it. Corroded copper pipes can also turn your water red, brown, or orange in color. Sulfide corrosion of copper and iron lines, on the other hand, can turn your water black. Microbial activity byproducts can leave a bad taste and odor.

So, what can you do?

Installing a quality RO+ UV water purification system in your commercial establishment is the best way to protect your employees and customers against an aging water system and the possibility of unexpected contaminants invading your water supply. Traditional RO purifiers are not advisable because of uncertainty about the purity of water, high costs of investment, ongoing maintenance costs, and fluctuating TDS levels. At Cloudtap, we believe that every commercial space deserves the safest and cleanest drinking water possible, no matter where they are located. We all know that India's pipes are aging and that problems can arise, but having a barrier that keeps contaminants out of your drinking water is a practical way to protect your patrons from contaminants that could enter through these pipes. Water purification systems aren't new, but many government agencies are now recommending that people use them.

Cloudtap’s Solution for Aging Water Pipes

Cloudtap, a RO+UV commercial water purification solution powered by the internet and Artificial Intelligence gives commercial spaces an uninterrupted supply of absolutely pure water 24x7 and reports the purity and performance of Cloudtap installations in every commercial establishment in real-time.

Cloudtap is the only solution in the market today which provides sensors to ensure not only the physical and chemical contaminant removal from the water but also microbiological contamination, using its proprietary PRISM technology. PRISM™ ensures that the purity of water meets USFDA and EPA guidelines for disinfection. It is now possible to remotely monitor the water quality and purity of all Cloudtap installations using Cloudtap’s centralized dashboard from the palm of one’s hand. Users have 24x7 access to Cloudtap's online dashboard where they can check the water purity and plant performance of all their Cloudtap installations. The system eliminates 99.9% of copper, lead, cadmium, volatile organic compounds, pesticides, sulfur, radionuclide, and scores of other water contaminants. With the UV (ultraviolet light) technology, Cloudtap targets and kills viruses, bacteria, parasites, and other dangerous microorganisms.

Final thoughts

India’s water infrastructure is in a depressed state. The deteriorating old pipes are posing a significant threat to public health and will only worsen if the authorities don’t act quickly. Hence, you must implement measures in place to protect your water supply from contaminants due to these failing pipes. A great place to start is to install Cloudtap’s high-quality and affordable commercial water purification systems. Contact us now to learn more about our unique commercial water systems and other offerings.

Call +91-22-66612300 for further details

- Written By Anushri Jain

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