Culligan Blog

Happy May is Drinking Water Month from Culligan!

 Permanent link

It’s no secret that we love water here at Culligan. In fact, we love water so much that we are dedicating the whole month of May to celebrating drinking water! This month-long initiative, appropriately called May is Drinking Water Month, focuses on the importance of drinking water and coincides with other government and organization initiatives such as American Water Works Association’s Drinking Water Week (May 6-11). Last week we learned interesting and fun facts about drinking water and this month, we will celebrate them.

During May is Drinking Water Month we will be talking about all things drinking water here on the blog. We’ll be sharing tips on how to stay hydrated with water during the warmer months of summer, how water impacts your body in other ways besides quenching your thirst, and how you can get custom water filtration for your specific drinking water. You will also learn what happens to your water once it leaves its original source – whether it’s from a private well or a municipality. We’ll even talk about who has the best water in rural America – and maybe we will share their secrets from a local water expert.

Check back often for updates to the blog and head over to Facebook or Twitter to tell us why you love drinking water! So grab an ice cold tall one (water that is) and soak in the goodness that is Culligan drinking water. We hope by the end of the month, you will love water just as much as we do.

How to Treat Sulfur Water and Reduce the Rotten Egg Odor

 Permanent link

The term “sulfur water” typically refers to water that has a rotten-egg odor that is caused by hydrogen sulfide. When treating water to remove the odor, the first item on the “to do” list is to determine the potential source(s) of the hydrogen sulfide:

  1. Odor on hot side only. If the sulfur odor occurs only in the hot water, the most likely source is a reaction between an anode rod in the water heater and natural sulfate ions in the water. An anode rod is made from magnesium or aluminum, and its purpose is to protect the steel water heater tank from corrosion. Magnesium rods are more likely to cause the odor, so the first step would be to replace the magnesium rod with an aluminum rod, if available. If the aluminum rod still produces the odor, the next step would be either to operate the water heater without an anode rod or to remove the sulfate ions.

    Removing the anode rod would remove its corrosion protection, potentially shortening the life of the water heater tank. There are FDA-listed corrosion inhibitors we can add to the water to extend the life of the tank.

    Removing the sulfate can be accomplished by using a dealkalizer, a system similar in operation and cost to a water softener.

  2. Odor in the cold water that goes away after water flows. In this scenario, the most likely source of the hydrogen sulfide is Sulfate-Reducing Bacteria (SRB’s). The bacteria are not considered pathogenic, but the “breathe in” sulfate ions and “breathe out” hydrogen sulfide, just like we breathe in oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide. Just like an un-ventilated room full of people can get stuffy after awhile, a section of plumbing where there is no flow can get stinky after a while when SRB’s are present. Therefore, a characteristic of a rotten-egg odor due to SRB’s would be a strong odor in the cold water at first draw (for example, filling the pot for morning coffee), with the odor decreasing as the cold water flows.

    Although rare, it is possible for SRB’s to colonize in the water heater tank but nowhere else. The tank holds too much water for the odor to flush out quickly. A relatively-easy test to determine if the water heater tank contains SRB’s is to raise the temperature to 140oF or higher for 48 hours, which will kill the bacteria. If the odor (hot side only) goes away, the odor was due to SRB’s; if not, it is due to the anode rod reaction.

    Some laboratories can test for SRB’s, and field test kits also are available. Treatment would consist of shock-chlorination of the well and plumbing, with continuous chlorination if the odor returns too quickly.

  3. Odor in the hot and cold water that does not decrease as the water flows. This is true hydrogen sulfide from the source aquifer. There are a number of treatment methods available, including a Culligan Softener-Cleer Plus system, a Culligan Sulfur-Cleer or Culligan Iron-Cleer filter, or chlorine or hydrogen peroxide chemical feed and carbon filtration. The choice will depend on the level of hydrogen sulfide and other contaminants (like iron) in the water as well as the peak flow rate (gallons per minute) and the peak daily water usage (gallons per day).

As with many water problems, the cause(s) may be complex and require in-depth exploration. For hydrogen sulfide, that exploration starts with finding the source.

If you are concerned you have hydrogen sulfide in your water, contact your local Culligan Man. He will be able to perform a water test to determine what is in your water and suggest the perfect water treatment solution for you.

Bottled Water from your Culligan Man: Convenient, Great Tasting Water Delivered to Your Door

 Permanent link

By Lucas Chesnut, Owner and General Manager of the Western Kentucky Culligan Dealership

Serving Cadiz, Hopkinsville, Paducah, and the surrounding Kentucky area

Remember the tradition of a milk man that would deliver milk and dairy products directly to the front door? Right on schedule, he would show up with fresh milk and once you used and emptied the milk bottles, you would set them up outside your door and he would pick the bottles up and replace them with new, fresh milk. Sounds like an easy - and convenient - way of getting your refreshments, doesn’t it? While this milk man tradition may no longer be around, your Culligan Man still offers this timeless tradition with an even better beverage – great tasting bottled water. For over 75 years, your local Culligan Man has provided many households with better drinking water through bottled water delivery and other water treatment solutions, and that tradition is still going strong today.

Culligan’s bottled water delivery service offers many great benefits for your home or office drinking water solution. Your local Culligan man will deliver your choice of bottled water directly to your door. No more driving to the store, loading water into the shopping cart, and lugging heavy containers of water to your home or office. The Culligan man eliminates those hassles by doing the heavy lifting for you right to your front door.

Great tasting Culligan Water is served best through one of our Culligan bottled water coolers. These dispensers allow for you to enjoy an ice cold glass of great tasting drinking water on tap all the time. Bottled water coolers can have an instant hot dispensing option as well, giving you a perfect cup of great tasting hot water to make tea, hot chocolate, or even instant oat meal at the touch of a button.

How Home Bottled Water Delivery Works

The process of bottled water delivery is simple. Your Culligan Man helps create a schedule based around your drinking water needs. Then he will then deliver your water bottles to your home on your designated delivery day. Once you have used the water bottles, you set them out on the next delivery date and your Culligan Man will deliver the new water bottles and pick up the empties. He will also sanitize your cooler regularly, to ensure that your water is the best that it can be. If you will need more water, or run out early, just let your Culligan Man know, and he can make arrangements to deliver a larger quantity. Bottled Water Delivery for the Office

Office bottled water delivery is a convenient way to provide quality drinking water to your employees. As an inexpensive office perk, water bottle coolers provide a healthy alternative to sugary drinks such as juices and sodas. It works just like the home bottle water delivery. Your Culligan Man will help determine a water bottle delivery schedule for you, and help you monitor your water usage to see if your delivery schedule is meeting with what you need.

Culligan’s Water Bottles Are Recycled and Reused

Culligan water bottles are reusable – in fact, the average Culligan water bottle is reused 60 times. When your Culligan Man picks up your empty water bottles, he brings them back to the water bottling plant to be disinfected and reused. If you are looking for a convenient way to get already filtered, quality water right to your door or office, call your local Culligan Man. You will be able to enjoy in the tradition of delivered, refreshing beverages right at your doorstep (or office break room)!

Drinking Water Fun Facts

 Permanent link

Here at Culligan, we’re really into water. We take the subject very seriously. But we’re not beyond having a little fun with our dedication to life’s essential liquid. With Culligan’s May Is Drinking Water Month celebration coming up in the next couple of weeks, we present a variety of fun, odd, and amusing facts about water. Enjoy—with a cool 8-ounce glass of our favorite beverage.

Fact 1 Water makes up approximately 70% of a human’s body weight – but DON’T stop drinking water to lose weight!

Fact 2 Approximately 80% of your brain tissue is made of water (about the same percentage of water found in a living tree – maybe is this why people hit their heads and say “knock on wood”?).

Fact 3 The average amount of water you need per day is about 3 liters (13 cups) for men and 2.2 liters (9 cups) for women.

Fact 4 By the time you feel thirsty, your body has lost more than 1 percent of its total water – so let’s not feel thirst. Take a break right now and have a glass of water. We will wait on you to get back for Fact 5.

Fact 5 Refreshed? Let’s continue. Drinking water can help you lose weight by increasing your metabolism, which helps burn calories faster.

Fact 6 The average person could live without food for nearly a month, but we could only survive about one week without water—that’s how essential water is to human life. Some of us can’t go a day without coffee, but that’s a different story.

Fact 7 Good hydration can prevent arthritis. With plenty of water in your body, there is less friction in your joints, thus less chance of developing arthritis.

Fact 8 Drinking enough water everyday can help reduce heart disease and cancer. Water helps flush toxins out of your body, and the fewer toxins that come into contact with your colon, bladder, and other organs, the less chance that critical ailments can develop. Some mornings there is a greater need for toxin flushing than others.

Fact 9 Smile. Good hydration can help reduce cavities and tooth decay. Water helps produce saliva, which keeps your mouth and teeth clean.

Fact 10 There is the same amount of water on Earth as there was when the planet was formed. Believe it or not, the water you drink could share the same molecules that dinosaurs drank. Don’t think too much about this, though.

Stop on by our Facebook page and let us know which fact is your favorite. Or add your own by tweeting us @CulliganMan.

So as we say here at Culligan, it may be just a simple glass of water, but boy is it a powerful drink!

Sources:

  1. http://shine.yahoo.com/healthy-living/5-amazing-facts-water-145800702.html;_ylt=A2KLOzJcnzdRkHQAc.YhmolQ
  2. http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/sciencefacts/water.html
  3. http://www.allaboutwater.org/water-facts.html
  4. http://water.epa.gov/learn/kids/drinkingwater/water_trivia_facts.cfm
  5. http://www.nsf.org/consumer/drinking_water/ww_funfacts.asp
  6. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/water/NU00283

NSF Certification of the Culligan Aqua-Cleer®

 Permanent link

by Rick Andrew, Global Business Development, NSF International

There are many products out there with fantastic claims being made by the manufacturer. We see these products on television infomercials, on the internet, and in stores. We all wonder whether some of them really do what the manufacturer claims. Wouldn’t it be great if there were someone out there conducting rigorous testing of these claims, so we could find out whether they are really true?

Well, in the case of the Culligan Aqua-Cleer, that is exactly what has been done! NSF International, the leading accredited third party testing and certification with a mission to protect and improve public health in the areas of food and water, has tested and certified the Culligan Aqua-Cleer to the NSF/ANSI American National Standards for point-of-use drinking water treatment products. You can take a look for yourself on NSF’s website listings.

For each of the claims – chloramine reduction, cyst reduction, lead reduction, etc. – NSF has conducted detailed, intensive laboratory testing in NSF’s state-of-the-art laboratory to verify that the Aqua-Cleer will deliver safe, clean drinking water for our families despite the potential presence of these contaminants in drinking water.

NSF has also conducted unannounced audits of Culligan’s manufacturing facility to verify that the manufacturing is occurring with strict quality controls, and that ongoing manufacturing is not deviating from the manufacturing at the time of testing. In addition to testing the contaminant reduction claims made by Culligan on the Aqua-Cleer, NSF has also tested the product at high pressure to assure structural integrity. And finally, NSF has conducted a complete toxicological review and performed extraction testing of the Aqua-Cleer, analyzing for any potential contaminants that could leach from the materials of construction.

In summary, NSF has very effectively assured that the Aqua-Cleer performs as advertised, will remain water tight when installed in your home, and is manufactured from clean, safe materials. All of this adds up to assurance and confidence that when you purchase the Aqua-Cleer to treat and improve your drinking water, you are making a safe choice for the health of your family.

Now, don’t you wish you could be that confident in all of those products you see in infomercials, on the internet, or in the store?

Rick Andrew is the Global Business Development Director for NSF International’s Water Programs. He has previously served as General Manager, Operations Manager and Technical Manager for NSF’s Drinking Water Treatment Units (POU/POE) Program. Andrew has a Bachelor’s Degree in chemistry and an MBA from the University of Michigan. He can be reached at (800) NSF-MARK or Andrew@nsf.org.

Drinking Water: Types of Water Treatment From Your Local Culligan Man

 Permanent link

Drinking water is an important part of our daily lives. The Mayo Clinic recommends drinking at least 8 glasses of fluid, including water, per day, and while that sounds easy enough, it may not be if you do not like the taste or look of your drinking water. Because we at Culligan want you to have the best tasting drinking water possible, we offer various methods of water treatment including water filters and water softeners. But with so many water treatment options to choose from, how do you know what is right for you? We have put together a quick reference guide of the types of water treatment that your Culligan Man will suggest to help you take the first step toward better tasting water.

Water Filtration: Water filters can reduce impurities and contaminants from problem water in your home using physical filters and/or absorbent medium. (1)A complete water filtration system will offer both a physical filter as well as an absorbent medium, most commonly a carbon filter. These complete water filtration systems will not only reduce sediments such as sand and dirt, but will also go through the carbon filter for a second stage of filtration. Complete filtration methods are often the best choice and can extend the life of your carbon filter as it is not performing double duty.

There are also advanced carbon-based filters, like in the Culligan Total Defense filter cartridge, that are certified to address a wide range of contaminants.

Reverse Osmosis: This advanced form of water filtration consists of pressurized water that passes through a membrane to separate dissolved substances from the water. Reverse osmosis is most effective on micro-contaminants and some organic substances. RO systems usually consist of a combination of sediment and carbon filters, plus an RO membrane. The entire system is usually installed in the cabinent beneath your kitchen sink or in the basement of your home. Reverse osmosis is the same process that much of the bottled water consumed goes undergoes, but in this case you have the system under your sink.

Bottled Water and Bottle-Free® Coolers: Culligan bottled water delivery service offers you the benefits of Culligan reverse osmosis water without having to install a system. Water bottle coolers are a convenient way to have purified and filtered water delivered directly to your home or office. Culligan will also replace your empty water bottles and ensure your cooler is sanitized regularly.

Culligan’s Bottle Free Coolers provide endless Culligan filtered or reverse osmosis water in a cooler, without the need for bottled water delivery.

In addition, there is a wide range of whole-home water filtration and water treatment systems available that will filter the water throughout your entire home. These whole-home water filtration systems can be combined with water softeners, so your water can be filtered from sediments, chlorine and other impurities as well as provide your home with soft water.

Of course, the best way to determine the type of water treatment that is best for you and your home is to call your local water expert, the Culligan Man. Water varies from place to place and water treatment solutions can vary from neighbor to neighbor. Your Culligan Man will be able to tell you exactly what is in your water by testing for contaminants and impurities and will recommend the best water treatment or delivery solution for you.

Sources:

  1. http://nsf.org/consumer/drinking_water/dw_treatment.asp?program=WaterTre
  2. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/water/NU00283

Drinking Water Recipes That Will Give Your Water Extra Flavor

 Permanent link

At Culligan, we think our water tastes great without any additives. Sometimes, especially in the warmer summer months, we like to spice our water up a bit. Anything from adding sliced fruit or cucumber to your chilled water offers a refreshing taste for the summer heat and gives you all the health benefits of H2O. To give your water an extra twist, try this drinking water recipe from Jamie Oliver.

You can also try freezing fruit and using it as ice cubes in your water. Or simply squeeze slices of citrus such as lemons, limes or oranges into your water for some added summer flavor.

If you want all of the refreshing benefits of water, you will want to make sure you have great-tasting water in your home. If you don’t like the smell or taste of the water coming from your faucet, call your local Culligan Man to find out what is in it. He can perform a water test and create a solution based around your drinking water needs!

We want to hear how you drink your water in the summer months! Leave us a note in the comments on your favorite water additive or recipe, or head over to Facebook or tweet to us @CulliganMan to sound off on how you stay refreshed in the summer months.

Customize Your Filtered Water With the Culligan Aqua-Cleer® Advanced Drinking Water System

 Permanent link

by Zach Schroeck, Director, Residential Products

Not all drinking water systems are created equally. Most systems on the market today offer a “one size fits all” solution, assuming that all water is the same. Your local Culligan Man® knows that water varies greatly from town to town, even from house to house. Because water quality can vary, Culligan offers a completely customizable drinking water solution: the Culligan Aqua-Cleer Advanced Drinking Water System. With up to 14 interchangeable filters, the most options on the market today, there is a combination that will precisely treat your water.

You might be looking to simply reduce sediments and chlorine to make your municipal water supply look and taste better. The Aqua-Cleer Drinking Water System can address this. Or your water may have contaminants such as VOCs and arsenic. Your Culligan Man will help you select the filters that will specifically treat those contaminants. Your local Culligan Man can test your water to find out what is in it, interpret the results for you and develop the best water treatment solution. With the Aqua-Cleer’s customized water filters, you know you are getting the best water treatment possible for your water.

Most importantly, with a Culligan drinking water system, you get your own Culligan Man. With over 75 years of water treatment experience, and a local expertise, you can trust that your Culligan Man will help you find the right system to bring you clean, clear, refreshing Culligan drinking water.

Check out the video to learn more about the Aqua-Cleer Drinking Water System.

If you are unable to view the video on the blog, you can view the Aqua-Cleer Advanced Drinking Water System video in a new window.

MTBE in Your Water Supply? Culligan Has Information on the Gasoline Additive and How to Reduce it in Your Drinking Water

 Permanent link

If you live in New Hampshire, the words methyl tertiary-butyl ether may have made it into your general vocabulary lately. News escalated recently around a lawsuit claiming multiple oil companies allegedly contaminated the water supply with the gasoline additive methyl tertiary-butyl ether, or MTBE (1). In a state like New Hampshire where 60 percent of the population relies on private well water, we think it’s important to always be aware of local events that could impact your water supply (2). We’d like to take the chance to help you understand what MTBE is, how it gets into your water, how it affects your drinking water, how to know if you have MTBE in your water and how you can reduce its presence.

What is MTBE?

MTBE is a chemical compound that has been used almost exclusively as a fuel additive since 1979 (3). Because of its ability to raise the oxygen content of gasoline, MTBE is used to help gasoline burn more completely, reducing harmful emissions from motor vehicles (3). Since 1992, higher concentrations of MTBE have been used in some gasoline to fulfill oxygenate requirements set by Congress in the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments (3). So, MTBE has advantages for the environment, but when the chemical shows up in water supplies through leaks or spills, it can cause these water supplies to be undrinkable.

How MTBE Gets Into Your Water

According to the EPA, MTBE can end up in ground and surface water through underground gasoline storage tanks and pipes leakages or spills. It can also come from emissions into lakes and reservoirs through boats and other personal water crafts (4).

How Does MTBE Affect Drinking Water

Small traces of MTBE in your water supply can cause it to be undrinkable because of its unpleasant taste and color (5). According to the EPA, MTBE in drinking water is not likely to cause adverse health effects at concentrations between 20 and 40 ppb or below (5). While the EPA has not set a national standard for MTBE in water, some states have set their own limits (5). If you are curious about your neck of the woods, check to see if your state has set a limit for MTBE in water.

How to Know if You Have MTBE in Your Water

Traces of MTBE in your water can have an offensive odor or taste (5), but the only way to know for sure is to have your water tested. If your water supply comes from a municipal source, you can contact them directly for a water quality report. These water quality reports are also usually available on your water supplier’s website. If you have a private well water supply, and have reason to be concerned about possible MTBE contamination, you can get this tested. Contact your local Culligan Man to get a water test set up today.

How to Reduce MTBE in Your Water Supply

Now that you know a little bit more about MTBE, we can get to the important discussion of how to reduce it if water that has been confirmed to have MTBE contamination. Culligan offers the Culligan Aqua Cleer Drinking Water System with Total Defense Cartridge that is certified for MTBE reduction. This powerful drinking water filtration system will reduce the presence of MTBE in your water and leave you with better tasting drinking water. To find out if this is the right system for you, contact your local Culligan Man and he can assess your water supply and make a recommendation based on your specific needs!

*MTBE and other impurities are not necessarily in your water.

Sources

  1. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-03-06/exxon-mobil-made-no-specific-mtbe-warnings-witness-tells.html
  2. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/30/us/2-oil-giants-face-trial-in-new-hampshire-water-pollution-suit.html?_r=0
  3. http://www.epa.gov/mtbe/gas.htm
  4. http://water.epa.gov/drink/contaminants/unregulated/mtbe.cfm
  5. http://www.epa.gov/mtbe/water.htm

Monitor Your Water Softener From Anywhere in Your Home With the Culligan Inteli-View Kit

 Permanent link
by Zach Schroeck, Director, Residential Products

How do you know when it’s time to add salt to your water softener? Your water softener may have an indicator light or other signal to tell you that your salt level is low, but unless your water softener is in plain view throughout the day, you may not notice. If your water softener is located in your basement, outside or anywhere else that is not on your routine path in your home, you may be missing a signal that can result in spotty dishes and unpleasant showers. You shouldn’t have to take more trips downstairs to your basement or outside your house to monitor your water softener.

Culligan has an elegant solution to this problem: The Inteli-View system. The kit includes a sensor that predicts when more salt needs to be added to the brine tank, and also detects problems such as salt bridging and brine tank overfilling. This information is transmitted to a remote display that can be conveniently mounted anywhere in your home, up to 200 feet away from your softener! This way, you can place the remote system in a frequently visited place in your home, such as the kitchen, where you will notice its signals without the inconvenient trips to your water softener system. This will save you trips down multiple flights of stairs to the basement, outside in the freezing cold or extreme heat, or any other location you may have your water softener installed. Another smart feature to the Inteli-View kit is that it will automatically send an email to your local Culligan Man if your water softener needs services. Now, your water softener can say “Hey Culligan Man” for you! To see how convenient this system is, learn how it works and to see more benefits of the Inteli-View system, check out this short video:

If you are unable to view the video on the blog, you can watch the Inteli-View kit video in a new window.

Let the Culligan Man Help You Choose Water Over Sugary Drinks With Great-Tasting Culligan Water

 Permanent link

Recently a judge in New York City put a stop to a ban that would invoke portion control on sugary drinks in the Big Apple, furthering the debate amongst beverage consumers all across the country (1). The ban proposed a 16-ounce limit on sugary drinks, both bottled and fountain, in some establishments such as movie theaters and restaurants (1).

While you may not be concerned about the ban on sugary sodas, it might surprise you to know how sugar can sneak into many beverages - you may not even realize that a lot of beverages you are drinking are high in sugar. Did you know that sugar has many names and any number of them can show up on a drink label? Here are just a few (2):

  • Corn syrup
  • Fructose
  • Fruit juice concentrates
  • Glucose
  • High-fructose corn syrup
  • Lactose
  • Maltose

Why not choose a beverage that doesn't contain sugar that you can get in any size? Of course - we are talking about water! Drinking water provides many health benefits, including cutting down on those empty calories you get from sugary beverages.

If you choose sugary beverages because you don't like the way your water tastes, let Culligan help with that! An easy way to improve the quality and taste of your water is to have great-tasting Culligan water with you at all times. Your local Culligan Man can provide just that. He can install a Drinking Water Filtration System in your home that can get rid of the funny taste from chlorine or the bitter taste from tannins in your water. Your Culligan Man can also install a Bottle Free® Cooler for unlimited Culligan water or deliver Bottled Water directly to your office. Whatever your drinking water needs, your Culligan Man can help. Schedule an appointment today to start choosing great-tasting Culligan water! And if you have a favorite way to spice up your drinking water, like adding cucumbers or fruit for flavor, head on over to our Facebook poll and tell us what your favorite water additive is!

  1. http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2013/03/11/last-day-for-new-yorkers-to-buy-super-sized-sugary-drinks-in-nyc/
  2. http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/added-sugar-on-food-labels/#1
corner