The lead content of faucets is 3% to 7%, which is 28 times higher than European and American standards.
Following the lead in soldering materials for copper throat in Hong Kong in July, which triggered the lead in tap water, the issue of lead pipes in tap water in Taiwan has recently attracted public attention. Wu Yuda, chairman of the Changhua County Water and Hardware Industry Development Association, pointed out on October 23 that the lead content in faucets is more worthy of attention. The lead content in faucets on the island is more than 3% to 7%, which is at least 28 times higher than European and American standards.
Wu Yida said that more than 90% of Taiwan’s faucets are made of “copper-lead alloy”, and the lead content is several times higher than that of Europe and America. The reason for the fact that there is no standard on the lead content of faucets on the island so far, and the industry considers the cost to almost use lead.
“Faucets that meet European and American standards are almost all exported, and they are not easy to buy on the island.” Wu Yuda said. Most households on the island use “copper-lead alloy” or “copper-zinc” faucets, the main components are copper, lead, and other ingredients For trace iron, aluminum, etc.
When lead element comes into contact with air, it will oxidize to form a protective film, but after long-term washing with tap water, the protective film will fall off and immerse into the water, causing lead to be released. As for why “lead” is added, it is mainly for the convenience of casting and processing. Wu Yida said that in order to purify the water quality, the water company will use chlorine as a disinfectant, and the residual chlorine in the water will accelerate the aging of the faucet. If the faucet has been used for more than 6 years, if the internal material of the faucet is cut and turned into copper green or black, the amount of “lead” released will increase significantly.
“Don’t drink the tap water overnight!” Wu Yida pointed out that people use less taps at night, and the water in the pipes stays for a long time, and the released lead concentration will rise significantly. It is recommended that people turn on the tap for at least one minute every morning to allow the end of the water to flow. Use after dropping.
“The decree should be passed as soon as possible,” said Wu Yida. Most European and American countries and regions use raw drinking water. As early as 20 years ago, laws were enacted to require that the lead content of faucets must be less than 0.25% before they can be sold. control. Taiwan’s “Executive Yuan” spokesperson Sun Liqun said on the 24th that the “Technical Committee of the Bureau of Standards, Inspection and Quarantine” has already discussed it, and the upper limit is set at 0.25%. The announcement will be completed next month.
The Bureau of Standards, Inspection and Quarantine of the Ministry of Economic Affairs of Taiwan stated that the lead and its compounds in faucets were previously specified to be less than seven ppb (0.07mg/kg), and the lead content of the faucet itself was not specified. Last year, the new standard was revised. In the future, the lead content of faucets should be less than five ppb, and the lead content of faucet materials is also limited to less than 0.25%.
It is understood that lead pipes are replaced by alloy pipes, not stainless steel pipes. The main reason is that alloy pipes are more plastic and cheaper than stainless steel pipes, but they still contain lead, which is only tolerated by safety standards.
It is understood that Taiwan’s “Executive Yuan” is actively addressing the issue of lead pipe replacement and instructs the “Ministry of Economy” and Taiwan Water Supply Company to accelerate the priority replacement of lead pipes when replacing water pipes. If funding is insufficient, the “central government” will use the The second reserve fund support, “no counties or cities will be excluded.” Wu Tianda, chairman of the Changhua County Water and Hardware Industry Development Association, affirmed that the Taiwan authorities have responded positively, but the Taiwan authorities should simultaneously establish inspection units to check quality, otherwise the “regulations” will be undefeated.