Lithium is mobilized by weathering into soils, ground water and standing water, thus finding its way into water supplies. Safe Home offers a couple kits that provide drinking water testing for lithium in city and well water supplies.

Parameter Type: Drinking Water Testing for Volatiles

Parameter Name: Lithium

What it is and Where it Comes From:

Lithium is a chemical element with the symbol Li and atomic number 3. It is a soft, silvery-white alkali metal. Under standard conditions, it is the lightest metal and the lightest solid element. Like all alkali metals, lithium is highly reactive and flammable, and must be stored in mineral oil. When cut, it exhibits a metallic luster, but moist air corrodes it quickly to a dull silvery gray, then black tarnish. Lithium is a naturally occurring element and is found in variable amounts in vegetables, grains, spices and drinking water. It is present in trace amounts in virtually all rocks, and is mobilized by weathering into soils, ground and standing water, and thus into the public water supply. Most times it appears in (ionic) compounds, such as pegmatitic minerals, which were once the main source of lithium. Due to its solubility as an ion, it is present in ocean water and is commonly obtained from brines. Lithium metal is isolated electrolytically from a mixture of lithium chloride and potassium chloride. Lithium is used in batteries, ceramics, air-conditioning, grease, electric cars, and in pharmaceutical products. Drinking water testing gives you several benefits like peace of mind, identifying contaminants in your water, and insight into health concerns. Safe Home offers Laboratory drinking water testing kits for lithium, allowing you to collect your water sample and ship it directly to our EPA-Certified Laboratory. This platform of drinking water testing for lithium will give you an accurate level based on the lowest level of a parameter our instruments can detect (Method Detection Level). Safe Home drinking water testing for metals can be used for city and well water supplies. Drinking water testing should be done any time you notice a significant change in your water quality.

Health Effects:

Too much lithium at one time can cause diarrhea, nausea, stomach pain, dizziness, vomiting, and muscle weakness. If large amounts are continually consumed lithium toxicity can cause hand tremors, lack of coordination, seizures, slurred speech, coma, or death.

Solutions to Contaminant Levels:

After drinking water testing, how can I resolve the issue? The main method for the desalination of lithium is reverse osmosis, which uses a semipermeable membrane to remove ions, molecules, and other particles from the water. Reverse osmosis is a process that removes foreign contaminants, solid substances, large molecules, and minerals from water by using pressure to push it through specialized membranes. Here’s how reverse osmosis works. Unlike osmosis, which is a passive process, reverse osmosis requires external force (pressure) to work. Pressure is applied to a highly concentrated solute solution, such as salt water, to pass through a membrane to a lower concentrate solution. The membrane allows water to flow through but blocks out larger molecules, like contaminants. The reverse osmosis process leaves higher concentrations of solute on one side and only the solvent, or freshwater, on the other. Metal-organic framework (MOF) can also be used to remove lithium ions from drinking water. Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) are organic-inorganic hybrid crystalline porous materials that consist of a regular array of positively charged metal ions surrounded by organic ‘linker’ molecules. The metal ions form nodes that bind the arms of the linkers together to form a repeating, cage-like structure. Due to this hollow structure, MOFs have an extraordinarily large internal surface area. Currently, lithium is extracted from rocks and brines using inefficient and costly chemical treatments. The new technique for extracting lithium uses a metal-organic framework which can control ion transport through a synthetic membrane, like how biological ion channels can regulate ion transport through cell membranes. Who do I need to contact to find out more information about water quality in my area? Every community water supplier must provide an annual report to its customers, known as a Consumer Confidence Report (CCR). The report provides information on your local drinking water quality, including the water’s source, contaminants found in the water, and how consumers can get involved in protecting drinking water. How often does the local public water system preform drinking water testing? Frequency of drinking water testing depends on the number of people served, the type of water source, and types of contaminants. Certain contaminants are tested more frequently than others, as established by the Safe Drinking Water Act. You can find out about levels of regulated contaminants in your treated water for the previous calendar year in your annual Consumer Confidence Report (CCR).

File Under: METALS

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