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By: Michael Colvin on July 6th, 2022

What is High Turbidity?

What is high turbidity? 

Turbidity is the measure of how clear a liquid is. It is a visual characteristic of water that acts as a measurement of the amount of light that is scattered by material in water when a light is shined through a water sample. When the scattered light is more intense, the higher the turbidity in the water is. There are a lot of things that cause water to become turbid, but the most common are: algae, silt, clay, sulfur, and microscopic organisms.


What are the risks associated with high turbidity? 

When turbidity is high in tap water the water is unappealing in an aesthetic sense, appearing cloudy due to the suspended particles in the water. High turbidity in tap water can also pose some health concerns. Highly turbid water is a platform of food and shelter for pathogens. If the high turbidity isn’t handled promptly, this can promote the growth or regrowth of bacteria within water which can ultimately lead to health conditions such as nausea, headaches, cramps and can even cause intestinal illnesses. 


What do you do when your tap water is highly turbid? 

The most important thing to do when your water is highly turbid is to boil it before consumption and cooking. Bring water used for cooking, drinking, and in some cases bathing, to a rolling boil for 3 minutes to rid the water of all bacteria and micro-organisms. See our blog post about boil water advisories.  We encourage purchasing bottled water for consumption, oral hygiene,  and cooking until the water turbidity returns to normal. Thankfully, you can order water through us! Sign up here to get fresh clean water delivered right to your door.