When it comes to enjoying your backyard water activities, the garden hose is an indispensable tool. Besides watering your plants, you can also use it to wash your car, your driveway or even fill up the pool for your kids. However, imagine you are in your backyard on a warm sunny afternoon, and you are too lazy to go back inside to get a drink. You may wonder - Is it okay to take a sip from the hose instead?
Don't worry, you are not alone here! Many drink water directly from the garden hose without a care in the world. After all, it's the same treated water that goes through your home’s water connection. It's the same water that flows through the taps of your house. So, you might think it is perfectly fine to drink from it. Right?
Wrong! The water might be the same, and even the source of origin might be the same.
However, it is the hose through which the water passes through that causes the real problem.
1. For starters, there is a higher chance of mold and algae growth inside the hose. Have you ever noticed that green gunk coming out of the tube when you leave it lying on the ground for a few days?
2. Let along with the growth of algae; there could be critters creeping in the hose if you happen to leave them on your lawn after use. It makes the water from it an even worse choice to drink.
3. The common materials used for making a garden hose are PVC or rubber. When it comes to choosing the quality of plastic for your food storage or serving, you are bound to pick something that is BPA-free. On the contrary, your garden hose is not BPA-free. BPA is a component that leads to hypertension and other health problems. Hence, it is not safe.
4. The flexibility of a garden hose comes from the phthalates present in it. If you insist on buying phthalate-free shampoos and skincare products, then do you think drinking from a garden hose with phthalate concentration is okay?
These are some dangers linked to drinking water from the garden hose. So, what can you do to protect yourself and your family against this?
1. Buy a suitable quality hose, preferably something in rubber. It makes the water safer for plants as well.
2. Always drain the excess water from the tube and hang it on a wall or, better yet, on your hose reel.
3. As soon as you turn on the tap, allow some amount of water to flow before you use it. Even if you are not drinking from the hose, letting out a little water will only make the insides of the tube cleaner and more hygienic for pool-usage and for watering the plants as well.
4. Do not store the hose directly under the sun. Exposure to sunlight can lead to the growth of moss and algae. Sunlight also catalyzes chemical reactions that leach from the tube to the water.
These measures can make the water safer but not essentially potable. Therefore, stop drinking from your garden hose. Instead, carry sufficient drinking water with you while in the garden. You can use stainless steel, glass bottles or large capacity dispensers. This will help you to stay hydrated without having second thoughts.