The use of lead solder to join plumbing pipes used to be common worldwide. In the United States, although use of lead solder in plumbing was banned in 1986, older plumbing may still contain lead-soldered joints. In addition, plumbing parts made of brass contain approximately 8 percent lead. Through the corrosion of lead-containing plumbing, water can contain elevated levels of lead.
Therefore, wherever you are in the world, if you are concerned that there may be lead in your drinking water, then the simplest thing to do is to follow the advice issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the American Water Works Association:
? Never use hot water from the tap for drinking or cooking. If you need hot water, then draw cold water from the tap and heat it on the stove or in the microwave.
? Only drink or cook with cold water, and let the cold water run until you notice that the water has become colder. Flushing a cold-water tap or fountain before use is especially important if it has not been operated for several hours, such as overnight.
? Remove the strainer from your tap periodically, and flush it and the tap for several minutes to remove any sediment that may have built up.