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to wonder how much we'd all save if not all tap water was drinkable ...

(47 Posts)
TalkinPeace2 Sun 26-Jun-11 22:06:06

It struck me on holiday in Mallorca.
The tap water was perfectly safe and clean, but not filtered to taste nice.
All the supermarkets sold 5 litre bottles of drinking water for around 1 Euro.
So
Why in the UK do we flush our toilets with drinking water?

Would it not be saner to move to the Mallorcan system - maybe with a free allocation of 5 litres per person per day for drinking and tooth brushing and non boiled cooking?

ScaredyDog Sun 26-Jun-11 22:09:41

Not sure I understand confused

So you're saying we should go back to untreated/filtered water from taps, making it undrinkable, and store litres upon litres of drinking water in our homes in bottles for teeth brushing/drinking etc?

No ta.

VivaLeBeaver Sun 26-Jun-11 22:09:53

I wouldn't have a thought a lot. I re kon the biggest cost for water companies is mAintaining the supply network rather than treating the water.

GreenEyesandHam Sun 26-Jun-11 22:11:04

I'm in Yorkshire and our tap water is blooming lovely, don't you dare go meddling with it grin

allegrageller Sun 26-Jun-11 22:11:30

we should all be using 'grey water' e.g. from baths and washing up to flush toilets etc. But of course drinkable water should come from the main taps.

Omigawd Sun 26-Jun-11 22:12:22

Buying bottled water is the most un-green thinkg the ordinary consumer can do.

peeriebear Sun 26-Jun-11 22:12:23

So treated water for taps, but untreated water for flushing? that in itself seems sensible but what about baths/showers/washing up? None of them require drinking water but all require tap water or near as.

tribpot Sun 26-Jun-11 22:13:56

So I think the argument is, rather than bring all water up to the standard suitable for drinking (when in reality most of it is used for bathing/loo?) leave it clean but not drinkable and keep drinking water separate.

On the other hand, my SIL used to live in Poland and used to even water the plants with bottled water. Turned out she was proved right when the river caught fire one night ...

ScaredyDog Sun 26-Jun-11 22:14:11

Think of the cost of installing two separate lots of pipework to supply each house with drinking and non-drinking water!

pushmepullyou Sun 26-Jun-11 22:14:35

Hear hear for yummy Yorkshire tap water. I didn't understand why anyone would buy bottled water until I moved away!

TalkinPeace2 Sun 26-Jun-11 22:15:13

The other reason for my question is that where I live we are about to get Fluoride added to our water even though everybody except the Strategic Health Authority Board (Fat cats) is against it.
THere is a chance that we will be allocated drinking water supplies so the flouridated stuff will not go near our teeth !!!!

nocake Sun 26-Jun-11 22:15:41

The problem would be the cost of maintaining two water systems and the risk of someone drinking water from the "non-drinking" system. What would be better is if all new developments were required to have a grey water storage system.

RobF Sun 26-Jun-11 22:16:15

The water in Mallorca is perfectly safe to clean your teeth with. I don't even know how you'd go about cleaning your teeth with bottled water.

Our water is horrid here in Dawlish so we have to filter any drinking water. Can you do that abroad by any chance?

bittersweetvictory Sun 26-Jun-11 22:17:15

YABU worst idea ever,

FunnysInTheGarden Sun 26-Jun-11 22:17:33

We are on a borehole and the water isn't safe to drink. We buy bottled water and have to. I would much rather we on metered mains. Tis a PITA to have to buy enough water, nevermind the amount of bottles I have to recycle........

TheShowgirl Sun 26-Jun-11 22:18:05

The water here is problem enough I think. By coincidence DD has just been telling me of her friend's mum, who appears to me to be (only hearsay, admittedly) both allergic and intolerant to the calcium in tap water. It upsets her stomach immediately and brings her out in a rash too so the poor woman has no option but to trek to and from the shop to buy bottled water for drinking.

TalkinPeace2 Sun 26-Jun-11 22:18:08

There is no need for two water systems.
In Mallorca the water treatment plant bottles the water (I gather) and the tap water is as it is - fine for everything except drinking
hence the low price

allegrageller Sun 26-Jun-11 22:18:20

for baths/showers washing up we could use 'not drinking' standard water- however I am not sure how this would be environmentally beneficial if it required all homes to be replumbed for 2 different types of supply, etc. Grey water is recyclable easily within the home.

nokissymum Sun 26-Jun-11 22:20:13

Oh God, op no, no, no!

bittersweetvictory Sun 26-Jun-11 22:20:56

Out water here in NE Scotland is brilliant, its soft water so gives you shiny hair and clear skin, tastes great too, in fact i prefer it to bottled.

LRDTheFeministNutcase Sun 26-Jun-11 22:30:27

Is all tap water drinkable? I have no idea if this is an old wives' tale but surely someone here will: my dad used to tell us you shouldn't drink water without letting the tap run a little as what you get first has been lying in the pipe and is warm and yukky. It makes no sense to me (hasn't all the water been in the pipe?). But then, when I was a student and lived in a very old building with a creaky water system, the water from the cold tap wouldn't run cold for about 15 minutes so we'd either put a bottle in the fridge or drink juice as it tasted foul - was it actually unhygenic?

TalkinPeace2 Sun 26-Jun-11 22:36:27

LRD
in the days of lead pipes it was suggested not to drink water from other than the kitchen cold tap as all other taps had been sat in the roof tank for however long it takes your household to get through 80 gallons.

My plumbing is all mains pressure - no roof tanks
but soon to be medicated against my wishes

Taghain Sun 26-Jun-11 22:41:04

Silly idea. Fluoride is a great public health benefit. Just compare the average 55-year old Brit's teeth with those of a 35 year old or younger. That's down to fluoride, that is.

LRD: your dad used to be right. When water was piped in lead, some of it dissolved overnight in soft water areas, so you could end up drinking a small amount of poisonous lead salts unless you ran the taps for a while. It wasn't a problem in hard water areas, and as modern housing has copper pipes they are perfectly safe.

Omigawd Sun 26-Jun-11 22:41:39

Fwiw most OECD countries have fluoride in their water, works wonders for tooth decay and they aren't exactly dying like flies. I really don't understand what the UK's hangup is.

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