Processing water source into potable water requires various steps and the using of water treatment chemicals, which are exceptionally important to remove all contaminants and improve the quality of drinking water. These chemicals are varied and they have different functions, and they are especially important if the water is processed from surface water (which has bigger possibilities to get exposed) or hard water (which contains mineral ions that make the water hard to use for household activities).
Types of Water Treatment Chemicals
There are several specific types of water treatment chemicals used in public water system, waste water management and household water treatment, such as:
- These chemicals are must in all types of water treatment system. Chemicals such as chlorine dioxide, chloride and hypochlorite are all used to kill contaminants like germs and bacteria, but with slightly different ways. Chlorine dioxide tends to be less risky than chlorine, but chlorine is the more common disinfectant.
- These are water treatment chemicals used in waste water management to kill algae, but they do not kill the toxin released by the algae. Examples of these chemicals are iron salts, copper sulphate, rosin amine salts, and benzalkonium chloride. Besides used as water treatment chemicals, algaecides are usually not allowed to use in prevention of rapid algae growth.
- Neutralizing chemical agents. These are used to neutralize the acidity in water such as calcium carbonate, sodium hydroxide, and lime. Hydrochloric acid and sulfuric acid (diluted) are meanwhile used if the waste water system needs to increase the pH level.
- These are used to eliminate organic components as well as oxidize inorganic components in waste water. The chemicals used are, such as, oxygen, ozone and hydrogen peroxide, the latter being the most common chemical used in public water system to process drinking water because it is versatile and relatively safer. Meanwhile, ozone is able to kill as many as 25 types of contaminants, including pesticide, and also reduce bad odor (this is why ozone is also used in many home water treatment systems).
- Corrosion inhibitor chemicals. These water treatment chemicals are usually used in waste water management to reduce corrosive action in water pipes. The chemicals are, such as, chromate, zinc and calcium.
- Anti foaming chemicals. These are chemicals used to reduce foaming action in the water that can affect the final product.
- Coagulator and flocculation chemicals. These are water treatment chemicals to help coagulating sediments in early stage of water treatment, so they can be separated from water easily. The chemicals are, such as, iron and aluminum.
These water treatment chemicals are important in all types of water treatment, from public water treatment, waste water management to home water treatment. The types of chemicals used depend on the company policy and manufacturer (for home water treatment), but public water treatment facilities usually choose the most common or safest chemicals for treatment stages. Water treatment chemicals are important in turning waste water into usable water, and surface water or other natural water sources into potable drinking water.