The pH in water represents the concentration of hydrogen ions in a liquid. For a simpler explanation, you should know that the pH indicates whether a solution is basic or acidic. In nature, water will have a pH of 7, which is situated in the middle of the spectrum as it ranges between 0 and 14.
That means water is neither basic nor acidic, but it depends on its exact level. Normally, the pH levels can fluctuate, and you might find a range between 6.5 and 8.5 on the pH scale. Environmental factors contribute to these changes and depend on the climate and region of the world.
Tap drinking water has most common pH value that lies between 6.5 and 9.5. The best pH level for drinking water is 7. Spring water will usually have a pH value between 6.5 and 8. In this article, we’ll also cover the following topics:
- The best pH meters
- Bottled water
Humans have a safe range and a dangerous limit to drinking water. If you are interested in this topic, continue reading as we show you what pH water should be. We will discuss the best level for drinking tap and look at nature and the natural water pH levels.
Table of Contents
- Why is the pH important?
- What is the best pH for drinking tap water?
- How to pH balance
- Benefits of alkaline water
- Common household items & substances
- Pros & cons of acidic water
Why is the pH important?
It is important to know the pH levels of this liquid, especially for personal use. In a household, water will be used for various purposes. The pH levels should be in a safe range to avoid certain dangers. If the water is too alkaline, it can damage the pipe and all of the appliances in your home.
But if the liquid is too acidic, you will find it unsafe to drink as it can cause several health problems. That is why the pH level should always be measured. The normal range for safe consumption is between 6.5 and 8.5 pH. Any liquid outside this range is considered to be outside the ideal parameters.
Restaurants and bars also have to keep an eye on this level. They are required to serve their clients water that is safe to drink and will not cause any health issues. The pH range is the same for personal and commercial use and is widely accepted worldwide.
What is the best pH for drinking tap water?
In the United States, a special agency constantly monitors the quality of public drinking water nationwide. The US Environmental Protection Agency ensures that we get the best water which is also safe to drink and use in our homes.
That is why very few reported cases of people getting sick after drinking water are available to the public. Because this is considered the elixir of life and vital for our well-being, it is strictly inspected and regulated before reaching the population.
But this agency considers the pH to be an aesthetic factor of water and not something that can strongly affect our bodies. While the EPA does not regulate pH levels, they recommend a universal safe level between 6.5 and 8.5 on the pH scale as the best pH for drinking tap water. As a result, all drinking water suppliers must keep within this range, which applies to personal and commercial uses.
Spring water comes directly from our Earth and naturally emerges through the surface. It forms a spring of continuously-flowing stream, which is then collected for our use. The lack of stable mineral contents makes it different from mineral ones, which we drink often.
Strict parameters are enforced, and the experts perform several tests on these springs before they approve the liquid for public use and consumption. Out of all the springs evaluated in the country, 72% of them have pH levels between 6.5 and 8.5 which is a safe level.
Poland Spring is a well-known brand that sells bottled spring water on the US market. Experts from the US Environmental Protection Agency analyzed their products. The pH levels range from 6.1 to 7.2, slightly outside the safe range.
Most likely, you also heard about Deer Park. It’s another famous bottling company. Their spring water products have a pH ranging between 6.6 and 8.2 on the scale and are well within the safe drinking levels.
Not many countries allow their population to drink water directly from the tap. It either has an unsafe pH level or is full of chlorine and other chemicals which are not safe for human consumption. That is why they don’t encourage drinking it, and you will find this same practice in most hotels.
In the US, 97 out of 100 people have access to safely managed drinking water. This liquid is from an improved source that is located in your area. But this liquid has been evaluated by the EPA, and the pH levels are way outside their standard safe level between 6.5 and 8.5.
In the US, tap water can be found within the 4.3 and 5.3 range on the pH scale, but it depends on the state and where you live. The level is below the recommended range but is not marked as unsafe to drink. After all, the US and Canada benefit from one of the world’s safest and most reliable drinking water systems.
Distilled water is considered to be at a perfect pH level of 7. Anything below this level is an acid, and the solutions with a pH greater than 7 are supposed to be bases. Distilled water is obtained after all the mineral and organic impurities are removed.
That is why distilled water is the purest one you will find anywhere. As nothing is perfect in this world, neither is this type of liquid because it can be slightly acidic. As soon as it comes in contact with the air, distilled allows the carbon dioxide gas to dissolve, creating carbonic acid.
Only laboratories and special facilities can access pure distilled water at a fixed pH7 level. Usually, you will find the pH value of distilled water to range between 5.4 and 5.7 after it has been exposed to air. This level is still ideal for sterilizing medical equipment or stabilizing automotive cooling systems, which is why it is used in many industries.
Many people wonder whether the pH levels of their drinking water matter or not. While some sources tell us this level is something we should always consider, others inform us that the pH level is just an aesthetic factor. In reality, the pH level matters only when it is at a dangerous level where it will cause health problems.
When your blood pH level is stable at 7.4, drinking water with similar properties should be normal. If the liquid that you drink is outside the safe consumption range, you could get sick over time. But the EPA is very strict with the safety of bottled ones since that is what the entire population of our country drinks every day.
The agency thoroughly inspects the bottled brands before they ship their products to the population. Almost all of them keep a pH level between the safe range of 6.5 and 8.5, but some brands will offer slightly more alkaline water.
Either way, the pH levels should be specified on the label, and you will know what you are buying by simply looking at the bottle before putting it in your shopping cart.
How to pH balance
If you want to balance the pH levels at home, there are certain procedures that you can follow. Ideal results can be achieved after installing special filters at the source as it enters your home. These filters have complex systems that contain a neutralizing substance that helps tremendously regulate the water.
For alkaline water that is greater than 7 on the pH scale, Calcium Carbonate will be used to bring it to the neutral level. If the pH is lower than 6, Synthetic Magnesium Oxide effectively increases the pH levels to the desired range.
Wildlife enthusiasts and people with aquariums in their homes will find the levels extremely important since their fish have strict requirements. You can adjust the pH levels by using specific products found at a pet shop, where you will also find tools for measuring the levels in your aquarium.
Benefits of alkaline water
While this type of liquid is heavily marketed, most people will not be able to notice a difference. Alkaline water has a higher pH level than tap or spring ones. Experts in medicine say it can prevent diseases by neutralizing the acid in your bloodstream, but this has not been tested yet. More research is necessary before coming to conclusions, but alkaline water has some real benefits. Some of them include the following:
Better bone health – The alkaline water has a direct effect on our bones. Their resorption process is positively impacted after consuming this liquid.
Reduced acid reflux – Drinking alkaline water with a fixed pH of 8.8 can help reduce acid reflux. The high pH neutralizes an enzyme that is responsible for breaking down food proteins and causing the discomfort we feel.
Reduced blood pressure – People suffering from hypertension will find alkaline water beneficial for their health. Cardiovascular strain is also reduced.
Increased longevity – Although the test was done on mice and is not confirmed for humans, the rodents that drank alkaline water for 3 years showed signs of an increased lifespan.
While bottled water comes with the pH levels marked on the label, sometimes it is hard to figure this level in tap or spring water. The only way to measure this level is to use a special tool that will give you live readings with precise accuracy. There are many models available on the market. After we tested some of them, we chose the best one we could find.
Hydroponics Digital Tester Pen 0.01 High Accuracy Pocket Size
This high-quality tool gathered many positive reviews from satisfied customers. We made sure to leave one after testing this product ourselves. It is easy to use, and you must turn the switch and put the tool into the liquid. In some cases, you might have to stir it well for the glass ball to come in contact with the liquid.
A display will show you the exact level. When the pH meter is activated in contact with the hair, the values will jump irregularly. You should always consider the readings only when the tool is placed in liquid. This device has no temperature limit, as it can measure cold and hot liquids.
The manufacturer intended this product to improve the quality of life. You can measure your tap, swimming pool, and spring water. Because it is so small and lightweight, you can carry this tool in your pocket.
Common household items & substances
|Sodium Hydroxide (NaOH)
|Lime (Calcium Hydroxide)
|Milk of Magnesia
|Baking Soda (Sodium Bicarbonate)
|Wine and beer
|Battery Acid (H2SO4 sulfuric acid)
|Hydrochloric Acid (HCI)
Pros & cons of acidic water
Acidic conditions will have a range of effects, not just on humans if they consume the water. Here’s a list of the pros and cons it offers.
- Disinfecting properties
- Potent antimicrobial effects
- Diarrhea & organ damage.
- Declines in fish population
- Acid rain and its impact on forests
- Damage to buildings over time