Water quality in Southeastern Poland is a matter of concern for many of its residents. Issues characteristic of this region not only impede daily access to clean drinking water but can also contribute to a host of health and economic problems related to the damage of domestic and industrial devices. These problems are often the result of natural geological processes that lead to the presence of various minerals in the water, but can also be linked to anthropogenic environmental pollution.

The following article aims to detail the five most common water quality issues in this part of Poland. It will discuss both the causes of these issues and the most effective methods for dealing with them. These methods can help residents not only improve the taste of the water but also protect their health and ensure the smooth functioning of household appliances. As a result, it will be possible to ensure safe and pleasant access to life-sustaining clean water.

1. Hard Water

Problem: Hard water in Southeastern Poland is a common phenomenon associated with high concentrations of calcium and magnesium ions in dissolved minerals. This issue is particularly intense in areas rich in limestone formations, where water percolating through rocks naturally acquires minerals. Although hard water is not harmful to health, it does lead to numerous inconveniences and complications in both household and industrial settings. Boiler scale, which forms, can effectively damage heating elements of boilers and washing machines, as well as clog pipes, significantly reducing their efficiency and lifespan. Additionally, hard water increases the consumption of cleaning agents, as the calcium and magnesium salts react with detergents, reducing their effectiveness.

Solution: The most effective method to deal with water hardness is the installation of water softeners, which operate on the principle of ion exchange. This process involves replacing the calcium and magnesium ions, which are responsible for water hardness, with sodium ions. Water softeners are usually powered by table salt, which is used to regenerate the ion exchange resin, allowing for continuous device efficiency.

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There are various types of water softeners, including automatic systems that independently regulate the regeneration process based on the water hardness level and the amount of water used. This allows the user to enjoy soft water without the need to constantly monitor the system.

Additional Recommendations:

Proper Sizing of the Softening System: Choosing the right size and type of softener, dependent on water flow and its initial hardness, is crucial for maximizing device efficiency.

Installing a Water Softener: Investing in a water softener can bring long-term savings by increasing the efficiency of household appliances, reducing the use of detergents, and minimizing the risk of plumbing failures caused by limescale deposits.


Problem: Excess iron in water is one of the more common issues in Southeastern Poland, especially in areas with rich content of this metal in the soil and bedrock. Iron in water, while not toxic in itself, causes a range of inconveniences. Water with high iron content can lead to clogging of pipes, corrosion of systems, and the deposition of brown or red stains on sanitary fittings, ceramics, and fabrics. Moreover, excess iron can cause a specific, metallic taste in the water, making it less pleasant to drink.

Solution: To effectively deal with the problem of high iron content in water, various filtration and purification methods are used:

  1. Mechanical Filtration: The simplest iron filters remove already oxidized iron particles in their insoluble form, which can be mechanically removed. This is effective for sedimentary iron but does not cope with dissolved iron.
  2. Chemical Filtration Systems: For dissolved iron, filtration through sand and gravel beds combined with a chemical oxidation process of iron is used. These methods may include the addition of chlorine or another oxidizer, which transforms the dissolved iron into an insoluble form, easy to remove by the filter.
  3. Complex Media Filters: Filtration beds that contain media capable of adsorbing iron (e.g., beds made from green-blue manganese) are also used. These filters are efficient and can handle larger amounts of iron without frequent regeneration.
  4. Iron and Manganese Removal Systems with Automatic Regeneration: These systems automatically reverse water flow to clean the filter and restore its adsorptive properties, which is crucial in areas with very high iron content in the water.


Additional Recommendations:

Integration of Systems: In some cases, it is recommended to combine different filtration methods to optimize the iron removal process, especially when the water also contains other contaminants, such as manganese or hydrogen sulfide.

Solving the Problem of Excess Iron in Water brings significant benefits, not only aesthetic and taste-related but also economic, by extending the lifespan of plumbing installations and household appliances.


Problem: Manganese, like iron, is a metal that naturally occurs in many groundwater sources with a rich mineral substrate. In excess, manganese not only causes unsightly issues such as dark water discoloration and brown or black stains on sanitary fixtures, dishes, and fabrics but can also affect the quality of drinking water by giving it a metallic taste.

Solution: Effective removal of manganese from water requires the use of specialized filtration methods that can be tailored to the specifics of local water conditions. Below are several effective technologies:

  1. Filtration using a Filter Medium: Media such as Birm are very effective in adsorbing manganese from water, which is then trapped and removed.
  2. Chemical Oxidation and Filtration: Adding oxidizers such as chlorine or ozone to water can transform dissolved manganese into insoluble particles, which are easily removed by standard mechanical filtration methods. This is particularly effective in systems where manganese occurs alongside iron.
  3. Use of Catalysts: In some cases, catalysts can be used to accelerate the oxidation of manganese without the need for adding external chemicals. These catalysts can be part of the filtration media.
  4. Biological Purification: Biological methods of removing manganese, which involve the use of bacteria capable of biodegrading manganese, are becoming increasingly popular due to their eco-friendliness and reduction potential. These bacteria oxidize manganese, enabling its removal in the filtration process.

Additional Recommendations:

System Integration: In cases where manganese and iron occur together, it is recommended to use systems that can effectively remove both metals simultaneously.

Effective removal of manganese from water not only enhances its aesthetic quality and taste but also contributes to the health protection of users and the long-term efficiency of water supply systems.

4.Color and Turbidity

Problem: The color and turbidity of water can be caused by a variety of organic and inorganic particles present in the water. The color of water often results from the presence of humic compounds – organic plant-derived materials that dissolve in water creating a yellowish tint. Turbidity, on the other hand, is usually caused by suspended particles such as clay, silt, small aquatic organisms, and other sediments, which can also contribute to the transmission of pathogens and chemical pollutants.

Solution: Various methods of filtration and coagulation are used to purify water from color and turbidity, and are individually selected based on the nature of the problem:

  1. Mechanical Filtration: Simple filters with filtration materials such as sand or gravel can effectively remove larger suspended particles, reducing turbidity. These filters are easy to maintain and are often used in household systems.
  2. Coagulation and Flocculation: In the coagulation process, chemicals such as aluminum sulfate or iron chloride are added to water, causing small particles to clump into larger structures, which can then be more easily removed in the flocculation and sedimentation process. This method is particularly effective in removing color and fine organic particles.
  3. Ultrafiltration: This method uses membranes with very small pores that do not allow larger particles and most pathogens to pass through. Ultrafiltration is effective in eliminating both color and turbidity, as well as improving the overall quality of water.
  4. Adsorption: Using activated carbon can be helpful in reducing water color, especially that caused by organic humic compounds. Activated carbon has the ability to adsorb a wide range of organic pollutants, making it valuable in drinking water purification processes.

Additional Recommendations:

Use of Multi-stage Purification Systems: Often, combining several methods, such as coagulation with ultrafiltration, can yield the best results in improving water quality.

With the application of appropriate purification technologies, it is possible to significantly improve water quality, which not only enhances the comfort of its use but also contributes to public health protection.

5.Unpleasant Smell

Problem: An unpleasant smell in water is often the result of the presence of sulfur compounds, such as hydrogen sulfide, and organic pollutants of biological origin. This smell can be particularly intense in stagnant waters and in water supply systems with little water flow. Issues with smell are not only an aesthetic matter but can also indicate potential microbiological hazards and water chemistry that does not meet health standards.

Solution: Control and elimination of unpleasant odors from water require the use of specialized techniques and filters:

  1. Activated Carbon Filtration: This is one of the most commonly used methods for removing organic pollutants responsible for unpleasant odors. Activated carbon, with its porous structure, adsorbs organic compounds and hydrogen sulfide, significantly improving the taste and smell of water.
  2. Ozonation: Ozonation is an oxidation process that not only eliminates unpleasant odors but also disinfects the water, destroying bacteria and viruses. Ozone is particularly effective in neutralizing hydrogen sulfide and other challenging organic pollutants.
  3. Aeration: This process involves introducing air into the water, which helps in the volatilization of gases such as hydrogen sulfide. Aeration can be used alone or as a preliminary stage before carbon filtration or ozonation.
  4. Chemical Methods for Odor Removal: The use of chemicals such as potassium permanganate can be effective in oxidizing hydrogen sulfide and other organic odor pollutants. This is an auxiliary method, often used in combination with other purification techniques.

Additional Recommendations:

Integration of Purification Systems: In cases where the odor problem is complex, the best results are achieved by using a combination of various methods, such as aeration, ozonation, and carbon filtration.

The application of the above techniques not only removes unpleasant odors but also improves the overall quality of the water, making it safer and more pleasant to use. Concern for the elimination of odors in water is important not only for everyday living comfort but also for public health protection, especially in areas where water is a primary source for drinking and cooking.

Additional Recommendations for All Types of Filtration

Regular Cleaning and Maintenance: Water treatment systems and filters should be regularly cleaned and maintained to prevent the accumulation of contaminants that can contribute to improper functioning of the water treatment system.

Regular Water Quality Testing: Monitoring water quality is crucial for the effective selection of purification methods. These tests also help in assessing the effectiveness of the solutions applied.

High Water Quality is Key for Health and Daily Comfort: Solutions such as water softeners, iron filters, manganese filters, methods of mechanical and chemical filtration, and the use of activated carbon can significantly improve the condition of water in Southeastern Poland. Regular water testing and the adjustment of appropriate filtration methods are recommended to ensure the best water quality.