Colorado is a beautiful state with amazing natural resources. So, we were wondering…
Is Colorado Water Safe to Drink?
Here at WaterBadge, we study water quality in cities around the United States. During that process we’ve collected water data on Colorado’s 19 most populated cities.
During that analysis, we found a wide range in the number of water contaminants. Some cities have a lot (30+ contaminants in Centennial, CO) and some don’t have very many (Boulder has 10 total with just 3 that exceed guidelines).
So, to answer the question about the safety of Colorado’s drinking water, we went to the data. Here is a selection of 7 cities and their contaminant totals.
We’ll start with the highest contamination levels first.
Is Denver Water Safe to Drink?
Denver is on the high end for water contaminants at 31. Most of these come from industrial pollution, mining, and farming run-off.
Denver water has Arsenic, Barium, Chloroform, Radium, Selenium, Thallium, and Uranium in its water supply along with common contaminants associated with chlorination.
The good news is that 93.5% of these 31 contaminants can be filtered out with a reverse osmosis filtration system.
See more information on Denver’s Water Quality here.
Colorado Springs has 20 contaminants
The heavy hitters are Haloacetic acids, Radium, Trihalomethanes, and Uranium.
All four of these have the potential to cause cancer.
Aurora has 17 contaminants
Arsenic, Chlorite, Hexavalent Chromium, Radium, and Uranium all show up in Aurora’s water.
All can be filtered through reverse osmosis.
Fort Collins has 14 contaminants
Chlorite, Dichloroacetic acid, Haloacetic acids, Hexavalent Chromium, and Trihalomethanes are the top 5 contaminants.
78.6% of the total contaminants can be filtered out with reverse osmosis. A Brita water pitcher only catches 35.7%.
Pueblo has 14 contaminants
Thirteen of the 14 contaminants can be filtered out using a whole house filtration system. This takes care of chemicals like: Barium, Chromium, Fluoride, Radium, Selenium, and Uranium.
Boulder has 10 contaminants
Three of these exceed safe guidelines according to the Environmental Working Group (ewg.org).
The bad batch are:
- Haloacetic acids – potential effect: Cancer
- Hexavalent chromium – potential effect: Cancer
- Total trihalomethanes – potential effect: Cancer
Longmont has 8 contaminants
Longmont, Colorado’s population might be lower than the other cities on this list, but they have the fewest contaminants so far.
Most of them can be filtered out with reverse osmosis.
Conclusion: Colorado Water Is Drinkable, but Be Careful
As a general rule, we don’t like to drink water that hasn’t had some sort of in-house filtration.
In some communities, water filtering at the municipal supply level is sufficient. In others, we recommend going a step or two further.
- Pitchers with activated carbon filters can take care of some things. Particularly chemicals that are part of the chlorination process.
- However, to really reduce heavy metals, pesticides, and industrial pollution, you should consider a whole house reverse osmosis system. They typically have a cleaning percentage above 80% in most communities.
For the safest drinking water: Go with a reverse osmosis whole house system. Here are our recommendations:
Want to See Water Data for Your City?
Use the search bar below to look up your city’s water quality: