May 20, 2013

Nitrates From Fertilizer Reported in Iowa Water

According to WQA, nitrates point to need for final barrier protection

WQA Nitrate Removal Iowa Final Barrier Protection

With reports of nitrates from fertilizer finding their way into water supplies, residents can ensure protection with final barrier systems in the home, according to the Water Quality Assn. (WQA).

“With tested and certified equipment in the home, residents can assure themselves that they are protecting their families,” said Dave Haataja, executive director of WQA.

The Des Moines and Raccoon rivers reached record nitrate levels, forcing Des Moines Water Works to switch on its $4 million nitrate removal equipment for the first time since 2007, according to the Des Moines Register.

Current technology suggests that several techniques may be used for removing nitrate from drinking water, including whole-house ion exchange similar to water softeners, except with anion exchange in place of water softening cation exchange, reverse osmosis (RO), electrodialysis and distillation.

At the present time, however, it appears that two methods - ion exchange water treatment and RO - are considered the most practical and economically feasible for nitrate removal.

WQA offers certification for trained professionals to help give consumers confidence about the knowledge and ethical standards of local dealers through “Find A Water Professional” at The seal on a product means it has been tested and certified for effectiveness. WQA uses independent standards established by NSF Intl./the American National Standards Institute. Products that have passed testing can be found at

An independent consumer survey released earlier this spring showed Americans feel more concern about their water.