Is drinking water mixed with water from the Storage Heater Safe to Drink in Singapore?
Quick Answer: Unsafe
You are drinking the water from the storage heater tank if your heater installation doesn’t have the back flow (Back-Siphonage) control.
Who should avoid drinking such contaminated water?
In most of the unlicensed installations like Ariston or Joven, it is very common that the handyman (not a Licensed Plumber) skips the implementation of back flow control.
When this control device is not installed, your tap water is not safe to prepare infant formula. Babies, small children, and uncompromising persons who could fall sick or get allergy reaction. The effect will depend on the severity of the contamination.
A popular short cut Unlicensed Installation for Ariston
A popular unlicensed installation of a best selling Malaysian Brand Joven
What is (Back-Siphonage) control?
Back-siphonage—The flowing back of used, contaminated, or polluted water from a plumbing fitting or vessel into a potable water supply because of negative pressure in the pipe.
Requirements for installation of hot water apparatus 20.— (1) An approved person must not install, or cause or permit to be or to remain installed, any hot water apparatus unless the hot water apparatus is fitted with an adequate device or constructed —
(a) so as to prevent any backflow of piped water suitable for drinking to
(b) so as not to cause any contamination, or any other adverse effect on the quality, of any piped water suitable for drinking supplied by the approved person.
How does the contamination happen?
There are two factors that affect water quality change – staleness and high temperature.
If water is left stagnant for more than four hours, the water becomes stale. Stale water may contain impurities from pipes and from all materials with which it has come into contact. Usually, the water from the storage heater tank stays in there for much longer hours.
Water temperature exacerbates the situation. Water is solvent. Heating increases the migration of metals into the water – for example, the solubility of lead in water is twice as high at 50 deg C as at 25 deg C., and it is just lead that is still present in some metal pipelines.
There are some other toxic metals that could be found in water pipes, fittings, fixtures, and other products – such as copper, galvanized iron, stainless steel, and also plastic. Different elements can pass into the water. Overnight, for example, the values of the copper, lead, or nickel from the fittings can be exceeded. Above all, with plastic pipes, germ developing may increase.
To ensure that the storage heater is installed in accordance with Singapore Standards: SS 636:2018. An efficient device shall be provided which will prevent the siphonage of water back through the inlet.
Who can carry out a Licensed Storage Heater Installation?