According to the Rhode Island Department of Health, you cannot get rid of PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) by boiling the water. Doing so will only cause the chemicals to become concentrated, making it even more dangerous when ingested. This happens because heat cannot break down PFAS. You can, however, adopt effective methods to minimize your risk of exposure. Such methods include:
- Opting for bottled water: To reduce your risk of exposure, it is advisable to use FDA-approved bottled water and other certified filtration systems. The manufacturers test the water for PFAS and other contaminants and use approved treatment methods to remove the chemicals from the water.
- Consider other safe sources of water: For brushing your teeth, cooking, and other activities that may result in ingestion, use another, safer water source.
- Using a formula that does not require water: For formula-fed infants, avoid using any water that might be contaminated in their food. This also applies to instant foods that need water.
Because boiling water does not get rid of PFAS, we listed a few techniques that have proven useful in lowering dangerous PFAS levels.
Treatment Technologies That Remove PFAS from Drinking Water
There are few technologies that are used in water treatment facilities, buildings, point-of-use areas such as the kitchen or bathroom, and other water system facilities to remove PFAS from drinking water, according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). They include:
This is one of the best and most common in-house filtration systems. This technology works by using high pressure to force the water through a membrane, which acts as a filter for the water. The membrane only allows some atoms and molecules to pass through, thus effectively screening and removing all other contaminants. Reverse osmosis and other high-pressure membranes are about 90% effective at lowering PFAS levels in the water, according to the EPA.
Activated Carbon Treatment
This treatment method is the most researched technology for removing PFAS from drinking water. It is also favored for its wide availability in reusable water bottles and water pitchers on the market. It is effective at removing sediment, odor, chlorine, and volatile organic compounds from water. Activated carbon treatment works by using a bed of activated carbon to remove harmful chemicals and other contaminants from drinking water through a process called adsorption, according to the EPA.
Ion Exchange Treatment
In an ion exchange treatment, the ion material acts as a magnet to draw contaminants out of the water because the negatively charged PFAS are attracted to the positively charged anion resin, according to the EPA. Ion exchange treatment reusable water bottles are also readily available to purchase.
Frequently Asked Questions About PFAS in Water
Now that we have addressed if boiling water can get rid of PFAS, here are a few other questions and concerns about PFAS in water.
How to Test Tap Water for PFAS
The EPA released government-approved testing for PFAS in water to government and private laboratories in December 2019. The laboratories on the EPA’s list can analyze samples of water to tell whether dangerous levels of PFAS occur.
Doing Laundry and Dishes With Tap Water
You are not at risk of exposure if you wash your dishes or do laundry using tap water.
How PFAS Get Into Water
PFAs are present at low levels in the environment and can be found in the soil and water. When products containing PFAS come in contact with the ground or surface water bodies, the chemicals move into groundwater and contaminate the water sources that come into our homes. PFAS do not break down easily, and therefore they can stay in the water and our bodies.
Taking Legal Action
If you sustained injuries due to exposure to PFAS, and you believe the entire ordeal could have been avoided if a responsible party was not negligent, you may have a valid reason to pursue legal action.
Pintas & Mullins Law Firm can assess your case in our free consultation and help you weigh your options. If you hire us, we will also cover the cost of your litigation and charge you nothing until we recover an award for you. Call us now at (800) 794-0444 to discuss your case with a member of our team.