Much of the water consumed by Idahoans comes from beneath the surface. This type of water supply is called groundwater, as the water is stored in natural facilities known as aquifers.
While aquifers provide optimal storage conditions for water to collect and await being pulled to the surface by wells, they also provide the opportunity to absorb minerals and earth metals as it rests.
Minerals and naturally occurring metals are not inherently harmful but can cause problems like hard water and poor taste. The most notable impact of mineral absorption is the aforementioned condition of hard water. Again, consuming hard water is safe but the condition can cause problems around the house.
Groundwater comprises a lot of the water used and consumed in Idaho but it is not the sole source. Surface water from lakes, rivers, and streams is used to supplement groundwater or is the primary source for areas lacking access to one of these aquifers.
Common Water Problems by City
Many towns and cities in Idaho experience similar water problems, specifically hard water. However, each water supply has its own issues that can cause other problems and subsequent symptoms.
Dry, Itchy Skin
Dry, Itchy Skin
Dry, Itchy Skin
Wells do most of the hard work when it comes to supplying Boise residents with drinkable water. Pulling from aquifers beneath the surface, the water is drawn up and lightly treated before being sent to homes across the city.
One of the benefits of having a primarily underground supply of water is its general cleanliness. The process of filtration water goes through as it travels through the surface eliminates many contaminants.
Not all impurities are removed naturally, leading water experts to treat Boise water with a chlorine disinfection treatment. The final product is safe to drink and use but can smell or taste a bit like chemicals.
Hard water is an ever-present issue for Boise residents. Like treated water, it is certainly safe to consume but can cause some issues around the house. Soap scum and limescale build up are not uncommon in homes using hard water. Those who bathe in hard water often complain of dry skin.
For those who have lived in Meridian, you know that the city is working very hard to deal with the notoriously discolored water problem. The good news is twofold. The city has put several measures in place to remove the discoloration. Secondly, while the water may be unappealing to look at, it is safe to use and consume.
Hard water is also common in the Meridian water supply. The condition is formed when minerals are absorbed by the water as it rests in underground aquifers. The water is safe for consumption.
Hard water can cause issues around the home. Limescale, a byproduct of the mineral content, can combine with soap products to form the frustrating white film known as soap scum. Limescale can also build up in plumbing and appliances that use water causing inefficiency.
Fortunately for residents of Idaho Falls, their water is pulled from an aquifer below the surface. The lack of pollutants and contaminants makes the water safe to drink with minimal treatment and disinfection.
While the water is protected from man-made pollution, hard water is often present. Hard water can lead to excessively dry skin after bathing. Some people complain of mild itching.
Hard water can also cause problems with appliances. If limescale is able to build up in plumbing or supply lines, inefficiency and even breakdowns can occur.