heavy metals

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Updated on: 06/12/2019

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Aluminium

Aluminium is the most common metal in the earth's crust. Due to its high reactivity, however, it only occurs in nature in a bound form. As a result of weathering processes, aluminium partly reaches the groundwater. However, aluminium compounds are also used in numerous agents that come into contact with water, e.g. fertilisers.

Aluminium ions are highly toxic and also pose a danger to the human organism. High aluminium concentrations in water are mainly associated with Alzheimer's disease, but can also trigger other diseases.
Therefore, aluminium in tap water should never exceed the limit value of 0.2 mg per litre set by the Drinking Water Ordinance. Otherwise it must no longer be used as drinking water. But in natural waters the concentration is only 0.01 to 0.1 mg/l. For drinking water in Germany this is therefore not a problem. It is therefore not necessary to provide additional protection for consumers.

Copper

Copper is a metal that is an indispensable material in industry and construction due to its high conductivity for heat and electricity. However, there are virtually no natural copper deposits in German soils and waters. But copper is used in agriculture as a fertilizer and feed additive. Thus the metal gets into the soil and also into the groundwater with the liquid manure. Copper is also washed off roofing materials by precipitation.

Water pipes are often made of copper. However, in regions of Germany where the pH value of the water is below 7.4, copper pipes may not be used for drinking water installations, as the acidic water would flush out too much copper and thus exceed the limit values of the Drinking Water Ordinance of 2.0 mg per litre.

Copper is a trace element that the human body needs to live. In very high concentrations, however, it can cause stomach and intestinal complaints, colic or liver damage. An excessive intake of copper can lead to serious health problems, especially in infants.

With activated carbon block filters from Alb Filter, however, the copper content of your drinking water can be reliably reduced.

Lead

Lead is a heavy metal and a natural component of the earth's crust. Until the 1970s, lead pipes were used for drinking water installations, but this has been prohibited since 1973, because lead pipes pollute drinking water, which can have health consequences even with very small amounts of lead. Especially in old buildings, unrefurbished lead water pipes can still be a problem today. Depending on how long the water has been in the pipeline, high lead concentrations can be detected in drinking water. Lead damages the nervous and blood building system. In children, intelligence, attention and responsiveness can be impaired. The Drinking Water Ordinance sets a limit of 0.01 mg/l for lead in drinking water.
If you live in old buildings from before 1973 and are not sure whether lead pipes are still used in the domestic installation, you should protect yourself prophylactically by using an Alb filter with activated carbon block filter. This reliably reduces exposure to lead and other heavy metals such as copper, nickel and cadmium.