Lead in drinking water has become a very visible issue over the last few months. While municipalities across America have been scrutinizing the quality of their drinking water, it should at least be some consolation that manufacturers of measurement instrumentation have taken serious steps to assure that they are not contributing to the problems that have been encountered.
What are some of the steps that have been put into action to counteract lead consumption?
In January of 2014, the Reduction of Lead in Drinking Water Act went into effect. This act is designed to further protect citizens from the harmful effects of lead by reducing the allowable lead content in water systems. Essentially, it revised the definition of “lead free” in section 1417 of the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) from “not more than 8% content to not more than 0.25% lead by weight.(1)” This basically tightens this specification up by a factor of 32!!
How do you ensure your clean water process is lead free?
One way to protect against harmful lead leaching into drinking water is to ensure that all wetted products are certified as “lead free.” Confirming certifications on piping, fittings and valves may be obvious, but have you considered other wetted products like the process measurement instruments used to control your clean water processes?
Which standards certify lead-free water?
When specifying or installing instruments like flow meters or pressure transmitters, you will want to ensure that they adhere to the lead free definition defined by SDWA.
What standards should you consider?
There are two standards you will encounter that address the SDWA lead free definition:
By specifying products that are certified to meet these standards, you are ensuring that your process measurement instruments adhere to the lead free definition in the SDWA.
How can you be certain your instruments meet these standards?
Simple – only use process measurement instruments that are certified. There are several third-party certification bodies that work directly with American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to determine and maintain current standards. The EPA’s website has a list of ANSI accredited third-party certification bodies as well as websites where you can get more information. These accredited certification bodies will typically provide lists of certified products on their websites.
Another way to determine if your instrument is lead-free is to look for the certification mark. There are multiple certification bodies in the United States and each of these certification bodies has its own registered trademark. A matrix of trademarks can be found here: epa.gov. UL, for example, is accredited by ANSI to certify products to NSF standards. Next to the familiar UL certification mark, you will find “identifier text,” which will indicate lead free certification.
Last, ask your process instrumentation experts and sales representatives. At Siemens, we take our commitment to drinking water purity very seriously. In that regard, Siemens Process Instrumentation is pleased to announce that the SITRANS P pressure transmitters have received NSF/ANSI 61 and NSF/ANSI 372 certification. The SITRANS DSIII and P300 join Siemens SITRANS F M MAG 3100, MAG5100W and MAG 8000 magnetic flow meters, which also carries NSF/ANSI 61 certification.
Interested to learn more? Come visit us at the 2016 WEFTEC Expo in New Orleans, LA, September 24-28, 2016. We”ll be in booth #7039 and would be happy to discuss the SDWA and viable solutions with you!
What safe guards are you taking to ensure that your community’s drinking water is safe?
(1), (2) Source: http://nepis.epa.gov/Exe/ZyPDF.cgi?Dockey=P100LVYK.txt