Growing Awareness of Water Treatment Methods, says National Public Opinion Study

Aug. 8, 2017

Pitcher or end-of-tap filters have highest recognition

Awareness of water treatment methods increased over the past two years among U.S. consumers, according to a national public opinion study, with 92 percent of respondents aware of in-pitcher or end-of-tap filters, up from 84 percent in 2015. The number of households that were aware of filters in refrigerators rose slightly, from 83 percent in 2015 to 84 percent this year. Percentages did not add to 100 percent because of multiple responses.

“Awareness is essential to making good decisions about water quality,” said WQA Executive Director Pauli Undesser. “A growing knowledge of effective water treatment options means consumers can make better decisions about the water they drink.”

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Conducted in January and February of 2017, the study by Applied Research-West, Inc. on behalf of WQA, also found that a growing number of respondents (23 percent) said reverse osmosis was the most effective form of water treatment, up from 19 percent in 2015. Ultra filtration was next at 22 percent, up from 14 percent two years ago.

Of those who purchased a water filtration system, 36 percent said they were concerned about whether tap water is safe to drink, up from 27 percent in 2015. A similar number, 35 percent, said they were concerned about the health risks associated with tap water, up from 31 percent two years earlier.

WQA released the latest results of its survey in connection with Water Quality Month, a time to call attention to water quality issues and ways consumers can help safeguard our water supplies. WQA recommends homeowners with concerns about their water have their water tested by a water treatment professional or certified lab.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requires municipalities and public water systems to make available to their residents a copy of their annual drinking water quality report, also known as the Consumer Confidence Report (CCR) by July 1st of each year. The WQA national survey found that 62 percent of households said they did not receive or did know if they received their CCR, up from 56 percent two years ago.

Water treatment professionals can be found using WQA’s Find Water Treatment Providers tool. WQA recommends treatment products that have been certified. Consumers can visit WQA’s product certification listings to search WQA’s database of certified products and professionals.

How the survey was conducted: The report presents the findings of a national online survey conducted by Applied Research-West, Inc. between February 1-February 15, 2017. A total of 1,711 adults over the age of 18 and living in private households were interviewed. ARW used a random sampling procedure and the survey results.

More about the survey can be found at WQA also has made available a free booklet Water Treatment for Dummies (a Wiley Brand): WQA Special Edition to help consumers save money while enhancing the quality of the drinking water in their home or business.

WQA is a not-for-profit trade association representing the residential, commercial, and industrial water treatment industry. Since 1959, the WQA Gold Seal certification program has been certifying products that contribute to the safe consumption of water. The WQA Gold Seal program is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Standards Council of Canada (SCC)