Of all the coastal cities that fill California, San Diego is one of the most iconic. Filled with beautiful scenery and plenty of things to do, it’s no surprise that people flock to the area to live, work, and play. If you’re frequently in San Diego, water quality may be something you think about. Is San Diego tap water safe to drink? What contaminants are in San Diego drinking water? Most importantly, if there are pollutants in the water, what can you do to remove them? If these are the questions on your mind, you’re in the right place. Keep reading to learn more about San Diego water quality.

Where Does San Diego Tap Water Come From?

San Diego is along the California coast and many of those cities have limited water resources. With this in mind, San Diego tap water is purchased from outside of the area and imported from secondary locations. In fact, 90% of San Diego tap water comes from outside of the area. The main portion of San Diego drinking water comes from the Colorado River Aqueduct, which was formed as a way to supply Los Angeles with water. These days, the Aqueduct joins with the State Water Project to supply water to many cities in California. The remaining portion of water that makes up San Diego tap water comes from raw water sources in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta.


Can you Drink San Diego Tap Water?

San Diego drinking water is considered to be relatively safe. Over one million people are using, and drinking San Diego tap water every day. Not only does San Diego use this water, it’s also the water used in Imperial Beach, Del Mar, and Coronado! However, when you ask is San Diego tap water safe to drink, some might disagree. In the past, San Diego tap water was listed as one of the 10 worst in terms of drinking water based on chemicals found in the water. Many of the same contaminants that made the list are still found in San Diego drinking water. If you’re worried about San Diego water quality and are unsure if you should drink the water, a solution may be to get a water filter.

A water filter will remove toxins and other chemicals from your water and make it much safer to drink and use. Using a water filter can also improve the taste of your water. Water doesn’t always taste good due to chemicals used to treat the water, metals, or even algae getting into the water. A water filter will not only improve the taste of your water, it will ensure that it has the same taste every time you drink it.


What’s in the Water: Is San Diego Tap Water Safe to Drink?

It’s be revealed that San Diego drinking water has around 23 contaminants floating around in it. While 13 of them are detectable, but in small quantity, the other ten are considered to be higher than the guidelines for health. Even though the San Diego water quality is some of the best around, it still has some contaminants that could be removed with a water filter. Luckily, there is nothing in San Diego tap water that can’t be taken out with home water filtration.

Starting with the ten of 23 contaminants that are above the suggested safety health guidelines, the majority of them increase a person’s risk of cancer. These include:

  • Bromodichloromethane
  • Bromoform
  • Chloroform
  • Chromium (hexavalent)
  • Dibromochloromethane
  • Dichloroacetic acid
  • Radiological contaminants
  • Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)
  • Trichloroacetic acid

The remaining contaminant is Chlorite, which has the ability to change your blood chemistry by decreasing your hemoglobin levels.

Remaining Contaminants in San Diego Drinking Water

There are also 13 other contaminants in San Diego drinking water that are detectable, but not as present as the other contaminants that we’ve listed.

  • Barium – This mineral can cause the risk of hypertension or cardiovascular disease.
  • Bromide – A natural element that is found in groundwater. If Bromide mixes with treatment disinfectants that treat your San Diego drinking water, it can create a byproduct of toxic tap water.
  • Bromochloromethane – A byproduct of disinfection that increases the risk of cancer.
  • Chlorate – A consequence of disinfection that can impair thyroid functioning
  • Chlorodifluoromethane – Also known as Freon 22, a solvent that can cause damage to the heart, liver, and/or nervous system.
  • Chromium (total) – This is found in San Diego drinking water due to industrial usage.
  • Dibromoacetic acid – Along with Monobromoacetic acid, these are two of the five haloacetic acids. On their own, they can add to the likelihood of cancer and can cause problems during pregnancy.
  • Fluoride –Fluoride is added to the water in many cities and it also occurs naturally
  • Haloacetic acids (HAA5) – Previously mentioned, this group contains five acids that arise as a byproduct of disinfection. Each can increase problems during pregnancy and could cause cancer.
  • Molybdenum – A metal that occurs in nature that can cause symptoms like gout
  • Strontium – This metal forms in your bones. It can increase the chance of bone cancer.
  • Vanadium – This metal, though commonly found in water, can be toxic to pregnant women and children


Water Filter Recommendations

If you’re still pondering, is San Diego tap water safe to drink, you don’t need to worry. The only thing standing between you and some almost contaminant-free water is a water filter. Efficient and affordable, a water filter will remove the vast majority of contaminants in your water. It will also ensure that your San Diego tap water tastes great all year long. While water taste and smells can frequently change throughout the year, a water filter will ensure that your water smells and tastes the same each day.

Don’t know where to get started? When you begin looking for a water filter to improve your San Diego water quality, you need to consider your living situation. If you’re in a family setting and own a home, a whole house water filter might be a good fit for you. If you don’t have a lot of money, you live in an apartment, or you don’t want to cover your whole house, you could install a faucet water filter, instead. Other options that are cheap and easy to start using include countertop water filters and water filter pitchers. Some water filters we like include:

So, is San Diego tap water safe to drink? While the water is free of many common contaminants, others are still present. As a result, you should protect yourself by adding a water filter to your home. If you have any questions about San Diego tap water, feel free to let us know in the comments.

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