This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases.
Wells are used to providing clean drinking water for homes and businesses. However, there are several contaminants found in wells that may cause problems if not removed properly.
One of those contaminants is manganese. Manganese is a naturally occurring element that occurs in small amounts in soil and rocks. It’s also present in groundwater.
In this article, I’ll explain the types, sources, side effects, and safety of Manganese from well water. I’ll also explain the 6 cheapest ways to remove manganese from well water.
What is Manganese?
Manganese is a naturally occurring element that occurs in rocks and soil. It is present in many foods, such as nuts, grains, and vegetables. However, manganese levels in drinking water vary depending on the source of the water.
Some sources of drinking water contain high amounts of manganese, while others may have low concentrations. High levels of manganese can cause health problems, especially in children.
The EPA recommends that adults drink only 100 milligrams per liter of water. Children should consume no more than 50 milligrams per liter. To reduce exposure to manganese in drinking water, the agency suggests boiling tap water for 10 minutes before consumption.
Types of Manganese
There are two types of manganese found in drinking water: dissolved or Manganese(II) and particulate or manganese(IV). Dissolved manganese is the form of manganese that is most easily absorbed by humans. It is present in both fresh and saltwater.
Particulate manganese or Manganese(IV) is less soluble and tends to remain in solution longer. Particulate manganese is only present in freshwater.
Manganese(II) is only slightly toxic to humans at low concentrations. At higher concentrations, however, it can cause problems. Some symptoms include headaches, nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, dizziness, confusion, irritability, weakness, fatigue, muscle twitching, tremors, seizures, and coma.
Manganese in Well Water
Manganese in well water is very simple. It is a naturally occurring element. While public water systems typically filter out manganese, private wells don’t receive any treatment prior to consumption.
As a result, well owners must test for manganese contamination themselves. Manganese is a naturally occurring element found in soil, rocks, and groundwater.
However, high concentrations of manganese can cause health problems in humans.
What is the Source of Manganese in Well Water?
There are two main sources of manganese in groundwater: natural sources and human activity.
Natural sources include rocks containing manganese, such as granite and limestone. Human activity includes industrial processes that cause manganese to enter the environment.
One common man-made source of manganese pollution is steel manufacturing. Steel mills produce large amounts of waste products called slag, which contains high concentrations of manganese. Slag is dumped directly into nearby waterways, where it eventually makes its way into drinking water sources.
Another common man-made source of magnesium pollution is mining. Mining operations release metals into local streams and rivers, including iron, copper, lead, zinc, gold, silver, and mercury. These metals can leach into groundwater and contaminate wells.
Is Manganese Harmful to Health in Drinking Water?
Manganese doesn’t usually cause any problems for most people. But if you drink lots of water containing high amounts of manganese, it may be bad for your health.
According to the Minnesota Department of Public Health, long-term exposures to high manganese concentrations in drinking water can lead to neurological damage.
You should avoid drinking water with high manganese levels unless you’ve tested it yourself. You can test your tap water at home using a simple kit available online.
Even though manganese isn’t dangerous for most people, it’s still important to keep it out of your drinking water.
Side Effects of Manganese on Drinking Water
Manganese is necessary for normal growth, proper bone development, and reproduction. It is also known to cause neurological problems like tremors, seizures, and memory loss.
In extreme cases, manganese poisoning can lead to death. People who consume large amounts of manganese over a period of time may experience symptoms such as headaches, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and constipation.
What is a Safe Level of Manganese in Drinking Water?
The World Health Organization recommends that adults should consume no more than 2 mg of manganese per kilogram of body weight per day.
However, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency sets a limit of 4 mg per kg of body weight per day for children under 12 months old, 5 mg per kg of body weight for children 1-year-old to 3 years old, 6 mg per kg of body mass for children 4 years old to 8 years old, 7 mg per kg of body mass for children 9 years old to 13 years old, and 10 mg per kg of body size for adolescents 14 years old to 18 years old.
These limits are set by the EPA because the agency believes that these amounts are safe for humans. While the EPA doesn’t recommend any upper limits for manganese intake, it does suggest that pregnant women avoid consuming foods high in manganese.
There isn’t much evidence that shows that manganese causes cancer, although there is some concern that it may cause neurological problems. So, if you’re concerned about manganese, check with your doctor to see if you should take action.
The 6 Cheapest Ways to Remove Manganese from Well Water
Wells are a great source of clean drinking water, but sometimes they contain high levels of manganese. High levels of manganese can cause health problems such as headaches, nausea, and memory loss.
Fortunately, there are ways to reduce the amount of manganese in your well water. Here are some tips to keep in mind when removing manganese from your well water.
Air injection oxidization is a method used to remove manganese from your drinking water. It involves injecting air into the water through a pipe at high pressure. Oxygen molecules attach themselves to the manganese atoms in the water, breaking them down and allowing them to pass through the filter.
This process works great for removing manganese from drinking water. However, there are several drawbacks to using air injection oxidation. First, it requires a lot of energy. Second, it takes a long time to completely oxidize the manganese. Third, it creates a large volume of sludge that must be disposed of properly.
There are two main types of air injection oxidizers: mechanical and chemical. Mechanical oxidizers require electricity to operate, whereas chemical oxidizers use chemicals to break down the mannose. Both methods work equally well, although the cost of operating a mechanical oxidizer is usually lower than the cost of operating a chemical oxidizer.
Reverse Osmosis (RO)
Reverse osmosis is a process that removes contaminants from water. It uses pressure to push water through a semi-porous membrane that only lets water molecules pass through. This leaves impurities behind, allowing you to filter them out of the water.
Manganese is one of those impurities that RO can remove. You can find reverse osmosis systems at most hardware stores. These systems come in two types: single-stage and multi-stage. Single-stage systems work fine for small amounts of water, but if you plan to purify large volumes of water, you’ll probably want to invest in a multi-stage system.
Multi-stage systems use multiple membranes to separate the water into its various components. Each membrane filters out a certain percentage of the water, leaving the remaining water to continue flowing through the next membrane. This means that you can use less expensive materials to build a multi-stage system since you won’t need as many membranes. However, you may not be able to filter out every contaminant.
The biological treatment removes manganese from well waters by converting it into harmless compounds such as carbon dioxide and oxygen. A typical biological treatment system consists of two tanks: one tank containing bacteria that convert manganese into carbon dioxide and another tank containing algae that convert manganese to oxygen.
These processes occur naturally, but they can be accelerated by adding nutrients to the water. Most municipalities require wells to be tested for manganese levels prior to installation. However, many homeowners install wells without testing and then discover that their water contains high levels of manganese later.
To prevent this problem, homeowners should test their well water regularly to ensure that it doesn’t contain too much manganese. Once the level of manganese in the well water is determined to be acceptable, homeowners can add nutrients to the water to accelerate the process of converting manganese into carbon and oxygen.
Chemical methods for removing manganeses from well water include lime softening, precipitation, coagulation, filtration, ion exchange, reverse osmosis, and electrochemical processes. These methods are generally inexpensive and easy to set up, but they may require frequent maintenance and monitoring.
Some of these methods are more efficient than others, depending on the type of manganese present in the water. Lime softening works best for hard water containing high concentrations of calcium and magnesium ions. Precipitation is the cheapest option, but it only removes small amounts of manganese.
Coagulation requires large quantities of chemicals, and it takes a lot of energy to heat the solution to the point where the precipitate forms. Filtration removes particles larger than 0.2 microns, which includes bacteria and viruses. Ion exchange removes dissolved metals by exchanging them for sodium ions.
Reverse osmosis removes minerals by forcing water through membranes. Electrochemical processes involve passing electricity through electrodes to produce hydrogen gas, which reacts with oxygen to form water. All of these methods are effective, but they vary in cost, efficiency, and ease of implementation.
Physical separation is a process by which manganese is removed from contaminated water sources such as wells. There are two different methods of physical separation: filtration and precipitation.
Filtration involves passing water through a filter medium, which removes particles larger than 0.2 microns. Precipitation involves adding chemicals to the water that cause manganese to precipitate out of the solution.
Both methods are effective but require specialized equipment and training to operate properly. A professional service provider should be able to recommend the best method for your situation.
Ion-exchange technology uses positively charged ions to bind negatively charged contaminants like manganese. These ions are placed inside a resin bed, which is then inserted into the well water supply line. Once the ions bind to the manganese, they can be removed by flushing the system with clean water.
This process is called reverse osmosis. Although it sounds complicated, it’s really quite easy to set up. Most systems require only a few hours of maintenance per year. Some systems are designed to last for decades. And since they’re made of durable materials, they can withstand extreme temperatures without breaking down.
Incidental precipitation is rainwater that falls onto land and doesn’t soak into the soil. It’s a natural process that occurs during heavy rainfall events. Rainwater that runs off pavement, rooftops, and driveways tends to pick up pollutants like lead and manganese.
These contaminants tend to settle out of the water and accumulate in the soil. Soil acts as a filter, trapping these metals and preventing them from entering our bodies. However, if we drink contaminated groundwater, we could end up ingesting high levels of manganese.
This can cause health problems ranging from headaches to neurological damage. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce the amount of manganese in your drinking water. One method involves installing a rain barrel system. A rain barrel collects rainwater runoff from your roof and stores it in a container until it’s ready to be filtered.
The collected water is safe to drink, and it reduces the amount of manganese in your home’s tap water by half. Another option is to install a drip irrigation system. Drip systems collect rainwater and distribute it slowly throughout your yard. They don’t require any storage containers, so they’re easy to maintain. In addition, they prevent excess runoff from washing away valuable nutrients from the soil.
What is Manganese Toxicity?
Manganese toxicity occurs when too much manganese builds up in the body.
What are Some Common Problems Associated with Manganese Removal?
Manganese removal is a process that isn’t always effective, and it may cause problems like increased algae growth, odor, taste, and color changes.
In conclusion, although manganese is not toxic to humans, it can be harmful to certain species of wildlife. Luckily, there are several of the cheapest ways to remove manganese from your water without having to spend thousands of dollars on expensive filters.
For example, you can use activated carbon filters, which are relatively cheap and easy to install. Another option is reverse osmosis systems, which are very efficient and require minimal maintenance.
However, these options aren’t suitable for everyone; if you live in an area where the water quality is already high, you probably won’t need to worry about removing manganese from your water.
But if you live in an urban environment where the water contains too much chlorine, fluoride, or other chemicals, you may want to invest in a filter system.