What Is Actually In Our Tap Water?

By Grover Koelpin 100 comments

Forget the internet, forget the Large Hadron
Collider. Hell, even forget the reusable Dragon spacecraft
from Elon Musk’s SpaceX – the tap is truly the greatest invention of civilization, isn’t
it? Alright, that’s perhaps a very weighty hyperbole
– but what a time to be alive! On command water! We kind of take it for granted though, don’t
we? For those of us that are fortunate enough
to live in a house with free-flowing tap water – the magical properties of being able to
saunter over to the kitchen, flip a handle and instantly have a glass of ice-cold water
is something that we should all be appreciative of – but, have you ever asked yourself the
question – what am I *actually* drinking? Hm. Well, let’s find out. Hello internet – and once again welcome back
to the most inquisitive channel on YouTube – Life’s Biggest Questions. As per usual, I’ll be your disembodied floating
voice Jack Finch – as today, we curiously ask the question – What Is Actually In Our
Tap Water? Roll the clip. For
the curious amongst you, that clip was from 2013’s The World’s End written and directed
by Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright – because, well – if I’m being frank with you all,
it’s pretty difficult to find any kind of tap-water based cinematic content. I mean, it was either that – or this. Yeah. You can see what I’m dealing with, right? Anyway, that’s beside the point. Tap water. What’s in it? Well, what better way to find out than with
an incredibly brief history of everyone’s favourite subject. Sanitation! And who do we have to thank for that? Well, you might think – the Romans of course
– because what have the Romans ever done for us? Everything! But no, although partly correct – you’d
be slightly mistaken – because the history of sanitation can be traced all the way back
to the Indus Valley Civilization, an ancient society that successfully cultivated vast
areas of South Asia between 3300 BCE and 1300 BCE. After that, everyone pretty much got the message
that it was important to have clean – excrement free running water – and evidence of sanitation
based means have been found in Ancient China, Ancient Greece, Mesopotamia – Persia – yeah,
you get the picture. Pretty much everywhere. Humanity quickly discovered – for the most
part – that if there’s any kind of creepy nastiness floating around in your wooden drinking
bowl, you’re going to get really, really sick. And that isn’t good. Stay safe everybody. It wasn’t until 1775 that the whole tap
water phenomena kicked off though, with none other – than the flushing toilet – and a Scottish
watchmaker – a man named Alexander Cummings – had the incredible idea of creating the
S-Pipe, a curved facet of a pipe that could retain water permanently, preventing sewer
gases from entering the home – which would eventually lead to Thomas Crapper’s U-shaped
trap and his revolutionary toilet of 1880. It was based upon a previous notion though,
an idea that forms the second basis of why we can have poo-free water – and it was proliferated
by none other than Sir Francis Bacon way back in 1671 – who noticed that if he dug a hole
close to the seashore, the water would be purified by layers and layers of sand. Eventually – this gave rise to the first ever
municipal water purifying plant in the world – built in the small town of Paisley, Scotland
way back in 1804 – that used layers of gravel filters and concentric sand to treat readily
available water. After that, in 1827 – a man named Robert Thom
invented slow sand filters after condensing the method into a more readily available form
– and two years later, in 1829 – James Simpson took that idea and developed a system that
was pretty much used around the world. It struck a chord with us humans though, and
civilization quickly realised that as our towns became vast cities – interconnected
with infrastructure and municipal means – it was very important to the success of society
to make sure everybody had safe and clean water to drink. In the 19th century, after officials of the
City of London noticed that cholera deaths had decreased after the same water treatment
systems had been installed – they passed the Metropolitan Water Act of 1852 – ensuring
that all water supplied to the city would be filtered. And here we are now, pretty much anyway – as
the vast majority of modern society has gone to great lengths in filtering out the nastiness
of chewy water. But what were they exactly so scared of? Well, you may be expecting this particular
LBQ to scare you away with some sweeping statement that there’s strange juju in the water that’s
making us all want to buy more Apple products or turn into zombies at the flick of a governmental
switch – but no. It’s simple really. The main objective of Clean Tap Water is to
make sure that there’s no poo in it – but beside that, it’s a pretty simple set of
ingredients. Liquified chlorine. Fluorosilicic acid. Aluminium sulphate. Calcium hydroxide. And Sodium silicofluoride. A relatively safe set of chemicals that make
sure there’s nothing nasty swimming around in your tap water at the point of treatment. But after it leaves that treatment point – that’s
where things get a little complicated. Because the real answer to this question is
– it kind of depends where you live. Take London for example, where the vast majority
of the cities plumbing are still remnants of the Victorian era. It goes without saying, but rushing water
through the same kind of pipe has a habit of eventually leaving behind trace salts. These may include small amounts of arsenic,
radium, aluminium, copper, lead, mercury, cadmium, barium – as well as trace amounts
of hormones, nitrates and pesticides from soil. For the most part, such a small amount of
trace elements have no adverse effect, and the city of London – as well as the rest of
the UK – are going to great lengths in revamping their dated plumbing system. The burden of trust lies within the municipal
responsibility of society, and in some cases – that trust can be overwhelmingly neglected. Take the city of Flint, Michigan for example
– an extraordinary case of official oversight that began in April 2014 – and is still going
on to this day. The crisis began after the city decided to
change their water source from Lake Huron and the Detroit River – to the cheaper option,
the Flint River – and due to insufficient water treatment, contaminants leached into
the pipes – exposing over 100 thousand residents to high levels of lead, all for the sake of
saving a few dollars. Since 2014, the residents of Flint have had
to rely on bottled water to get by in their day to day lives – and the crisis has tragically
led to the deaths of 12 people from an outbreak of Legionnaires disease. In 2017, some city officials claimed that
the water quality of Flint had returned to acceptable levels. Not true – and a gross oversight, as the residents
of Flint are still going to great lengths in exposing the dangerous water supply of
the city. The truth of the matter is, we take our tap
water for granted – and the historical efforts of some of civilization’s greatest inventors
have strived to give every member of society access to safe, clean running water. Technology in water treatment can only take
us so far though, and our responsibility as members of society is to ensure that the crisis
of Flint, Michigan doesn’t become a common occurrence. The solution is there – it has been for thousands
of years. Civilization has advanced by providing safe
access to water through innovative means – but the main point of concern, is to make sure
that same technology is working for everyone – and not just those in power. It’s our responsibility to make sure that
things are a little bit less – somebody’s poisoned the water hole – and a little bit
more – too infinity, and beyond. Hey, look at that. A Toy Story reference. Well, there we have it folks – our roundabout
answer to What’s Actually In Our Tap Water. Quite a few things! But most of them are good. What are your thoughts on the matter? Speak your mind freely in the comment section
down below. Before we depart though, let’s take a quick
look at some of your more resounding remarks from over the past few days. — Yo Human Frisk says — Jack Finch: Somebody
or some society has more something than you can shake a stick at. — Nooo! Human Frisk – you’ve found my golden ratio,
how did you figure out my formula for the perfect LBQ video? I’m going to have to change the whole shaking
stick shtick up, aren’t I? Ah, another one bites the dust. Well – on that slightly depressing note, that’s
all we’ve got time for in today’s video – cheers for sticking around all the way until
the end. If you were a fan of this particular video,
or just LBQ in general – then please, be a dear and hit that thumbs up button – as well
as that subscribe bell, and we’ll be seeing you in the next one. As per usual, I’ve been your disembodied
floating voice Jack Finch – you’ve been watching Life’s Biggest Questions, and until
next time, you take it easy.



Apr 4, 2019, 10:14 pm Reply

I know what is in our tap water. Our tap water has dihydrogen monoxide in it. Go google that, it's funny what that is. lol


Apr 4, 2019, 10:18 pm Reply



Apr 4, 2019, 10:19 pm Reply

Detroit doesn't have clean water because America is a third world country apparently

James Sanzio

Apr 4, 2019, 10:24 pm Reply

What if the army was required to join

Imgonnafuckyou withacactus

Apr 4, 2019, 10:25 pm Reply

My perspective: If it isn't native to our biochemistry, we should not ingest it by any means.

Heath Basner

Apr 4, 2019, 10:39 pm Reply

Live in Flint Michigan and then tell me how much of a blessing it is to have tap water


Apr 4, 2019, 10:56 pm Reply

What IF?

Not a question, just posting another YouTuber’s channel name since people are starting their questions with, “What if…?”.

Michael. S

Apr 4, 2019, 11:03 pm Reply

Yep, this is definitely one of life's biggest questions


Apr 4, 2019, 11:12 pm Reply

Well Im broke so I cant afford packs of water bottles 🚿


Apr 4, 2019, 11:21 pm Reply

What if we didn't have tap water

Eddy DeVille Lowks

Apr 4, 2019, 11:28 pm Reply

. BS . What better way to ………………. and no one will ever know whats really going on .


Apr 4, 2019, 11:43 pm Reply

my water has too much chlorine and upsets my stomach.

Donald Stuckley

Apr 4, 2019, 11:48 pm Reply

I hate the taste of Tap Water

Jamie Melia

Apr 4, 2019, 11:49 pm Reply

You expect me to watch this? I haven’t died yet and I must have drunk the water from hundreds of taps. Ignorance is bliss 👌


Apr 4, 2019, 11:53 pm Reply

What if Zygarde was real?

Enrique Goytia

Apr 4, 2019, 11:58 pm Reply

Wow just a little likes on this video wow people we can do better than that!!

Maurio Coles

Apr 4, 2019, 11:59 pm Reply

I'm drinking deer park right now.


Apr 4, 2019, 12:03 am Reply

What if tseries never existed

Robert Bennett

Apr 4, 2019, 12:07 am Reply

Dont forget they put toxic fluoride in our water

BBalls Stårz

Apr 4, 2019, 12:14 am Reply

You sound like danny burke

Athena St

Apr 4, 2019, 12:17 am Reply

What if we mixed human DNA with wolf DNA (wolf-human hybrids)?

I like apples

Apr 4, 2019, 12:44 am Reply

Um In my county We Don't drink Tap water. We kind Of have to buy it but You also have to pay water bills to right?


Apr 4, 2019, 12:47 am Reply

Water is free for you??


Apr 4, 2019, 12:51 am Reply

If a spacecraft is called something as cool as a dragon it should look like a dragon

Jordyn Lopez

Apr 4, 2019, 1:13 am Reply

1:20 I LOVE THAT MOVIE!!! (Signs)

Trash at Fortnite

Apr 4, 2019, 1:14 am Reply

Why are we born a certain color

TheAwesomeSosa 123

Apr 4, 2019, 1:32 am Reply

Life’s biggest questions


Apr 4, 2019, 1:35 am Reply

What if SCP 4999 was Real

Christian Jimenez

Apr 4, 2019, 1:40 am Reply

That much chemicals? And I thought it was just H2O

Christian Jimenez

Apr 4, 2019, 1:40 am Reply

That much chemicals? And I thought it was just H2O

Tomas d

Apr 4, 2019, 2:11 am Reply

What if military’s didn’t exist

Master Daniel M. GODLIKE

Apr 4, 2019, 2:17 am Reply

i have a better theory

Colwin Marks

Apr 4, 2019, 2:29 am Reply

Is that girl speaker gonna come back ?

NGC 7635

Apr 4, 2019, 2:29 am Reply

Ugh, this water is too watery.

King Charles

Apr 4, 2019, 2:30 am Reply

What if Saiyans were real?

Joshua HD

Apr 4, 2019, 2:46 am Reply

What if NASA has US military budget?

Dank Bank

Apr 4, 2019, 2:49 am Reply

What if rick and morty is real


Apr 4, 2019, 2:56 am Reply

Wait… You guys have a tap?

Delta Envision ツ

Apr 4, 2019, 2:56 am Reply

Can we all agree that Aquafina is the most disgusting bottled water

Will Franke

Apr 4, 2019, 3:18 am Reply

What about us people with our private wells

biju Michael

Apr 4, 2019, 3:21 am Reply

What if beyblade burst was real


Apr 4, 2019, 3:31 am Reply

What happens if you play ouija in space

miracle draw

Apr 4, 2019, 3:54 am Reply

What if Humans came from eggs?

tyree Jackson

Apr 4, 2019, 4:24 am Reply

if fluoride so safe why Hitler used on jew high concentration of it all wait there many other way to clean water beside poison

Sour Tea

Apr 4, 2019, 5:02 am Reply

People drink/get water from the sink/tap? I just go over to my fridge and get my ice cold water 😩👌🏻💧

adde quist

Apr 4, 2019, 5:57 am Reply

What if religion got banned ?

Thzxv Beach

Apr 4, 2019, 6:45 am Reply



Apr 4, 2019, 7:53 am Reply

actual content starts @1m33s


Apr 4, 2019, 9:23 am Reply

Makes me want to drink water


Apr 4, 2019, 9:57 am Reply

Water…. Duh

Lysergic Acid Diethylamide

Apr 4, 2019, 10:26 am Reply


special krab

Apr 4, 2019, 11:06 am Reply

You just cant trust water these days earlier I heard it has H2O. honestly I'm shocked

Stephen Ramsay

Apr 4, 2019, 11:35 am Reply

I am archly drinking water


Apr 4, 2019, 11:44 am Reply

Fun fact 100% of people that drink water die


Apr 4, 2019, 12:19 pm Reply

what about clips from the movie tuxedo they had water that made people really thirsty

Space Pirates

Apr 4, 2019, 12:51 pm Reply

Very intriguing! 💯


Apr 4, 2019, 1:55 pm Reply


Crank The Pranks

Apr 4, 2019, 1:59 pm Reply

Africans: “so you’re telling me you have so much clean water you poo and wee in it”


Apr 4, 2019, 2:18 pm Reply

What if Conner McDavid was traded?

Mr. Meeseeks

Apr 4, 2019, 2:27 pm Reply

None of you seem concerned about flouride calcifying your pineal gland

Wanda Richardson

Apr 4, 2019, 2:50 pm Reply

There's a monster outside my room, can I have a glass of water?

Josh Van Keulen

Apr 4, 2019, 3:05 pm Reply

What if cancer was never real??

Carter Nelson

Apr 4, 2019, 3:12 pm Reply

Well I guess I’m lucky because I have a filter on my refrigerator and my sink


Apr 4, 2019, 4:03 pm Reply

dihydrogen monoxide

at least…mostly

Mikah Bailey

Apr 4, 2019, 4:15 pm Reply

what if golb from adventure time excised

Gary Quinn

Apr 4, 2019, 4:17 pm Reply

4:30 you're welcome


Apr 4, 2019, 4:42 pm Reply

Mate I live in Paisley, Scotland thats mad lmao


Apr 4, 2019, 4:58 pm Reply

this video was sponsored by Britta 😉

Brucifer Mephistopheles

Apr 4, 2019, 5:00 pm Reply

Tell that to Flint Michigan!


Apr 4, 2019, 5:55 pm Reply

What if Nazis never existed?

Pandas Panda Pan Das

Apr 4, 2019, 6:22 pm Reply

They allow that there so that certain organs in our body can still function as they do. It's like saying, "you eat food?! what?!" well then what's the point of certain organs and their properties that are part of our body then?

Mayamoo Music

Apr 4, 2019, 6:22 pm Reply

Now, the next question is:

Is water actually wet, or is it dry and just make thinks damp? 🤔

Toby Breakbones

Apr 4, 2019, 8:31 pm Reply

and then there is tap water in Belgium which is better for you than bottled water cause we have strict rules


Apr 4, 2019, 8:46 pm Reply

i think water is the best discovery of ALL time!!!!!

David Carmona

Apr 4, 2019, 9:03 pm Reply

Half of all life across the universe disintegrates when Thanos uses the Infinity Stones,[N 1] including Clint Barton's family. Three weeks later, Carol Danvers rescues Nebula and Tony Stark, who are stranded in space following their fight with Thanos. They join Natasha Romanoff, Bruce Banner, Steve Rogers, Rocket, Thor, Pepper Potts, and James Rhodes on Earth. The group finds Thanos so they can take the Infinity Stones and reverse his actions, but he has already destroyed them to prevent further use. Thor decapitates Thanos.

Five years later, Scott Lang escapes from the quantum realm[N 2] and finds Romanoff and Rogers at the Avengers' compound. Only hours have passed for Lang instead of years, and he theorizes that the quantum realm can allow them to time travel. The three propose to Stark—now raising a daughter, Morgan, with Pepper—that they retrieve the Infinity Stones from the past and use them to revert Thanos' actions in the present. Stark rejects the idea out of fear of losing Morgan, but relents after reflecting upon the disintegrated Peter Parker. Stark designs a device to stabilize time travel. Romanoff finds Barton, who has become a ruthless vigilante in his grief, and he returns to the compound with her.

The reunited Avengers split into groups for their mission. Banner, Rogers, Lang, and Stark travel to New York City in 2012.[N 3] Banner visits the Sanctum Sanctorum and convinces the Ancient One to give him the Time Stone. She warns him of the consequences of removing the Infinity Stones from the past, and Banner promises to return them. Rogers overcomes undercover Hydra agents and his 2012 self to retrieve the Mind Stone, but Lang and Stark's attempt to steal the Space Stone fails and Loki manages to escape with it. Rogers and Stark use the last of their size-altering Pym Particles to travel to the U.S. Army's Camp Lehigh in 1970.[N 4] They steal an earlier version of the Space Stone there, as well as vials of Pym Particles from Hank Pymso they can return to the present.

Rocket and Thor travel to Asgard in 2013 to retrieve the Reality Stone from Jane Foster,[N 5] and Thor obtains a past version of his hammer, Mjolnir.[N 6] Barton and Romanoff travel to Vormir in 2014 and learn from the Soul Stone's keeper, the Red Skull, that it can only be retrieved by sacrificing someone they love. Ultimately, Romanoff sacrifices herself. On Morag, also in 2014, Nebula and Rhodes steal the Power Stone before Peter Quill can.[N 7] Rhodes returns to the present with the Power Stone, but Nebula is unable to after her cybernetic implants interface with those of her 2014 self. Through this connection, the Thanos of that time learns of present-day events and sends 2014 Nebula to the present.

With all the Infinity Stones collected, Banner uses them to restore everyone that Thanos disintegrated. 2014 Nebula uses the time machine to transport Thanos and his ship to the present day, and he attacks the Avengers' compound. Rogers, Thor, and Stark confront Thanos, and Rogers proves worthy to wield Mjolnir. However, Thanos is able to overpower them before summoning the Black Order and his armed forces to lay siege to Earth. Present-day Nebula convinces the 2014 version of her sister Gamora to turn on Thanos, and kills the 2014 version of herself. After being restored, Doctor Strangetransports all of the other Avengers allies who have been restored, along with his fellow sorcerers and the armies of Asgard and Wakanda, to the compound to fight Thanos' army. During the battle, Stark is able to retrieve and activate the Infinity Stones, disintegrating Thanos and his army. Stark is mortally wounded by his use of the Infinity Stones, and soon dies.

Following a funeral for Stark, Thor appoints Valkyrie as the queen of Asgard and joins the Guardians of the Galaxy. After returning the Infinity Stones and Mjolnir to their original places in time, Rogers chooses to travel back and live his life in the past with Peggy Carter. In the present, an elderly Rogers passes his shield onto Sam Wilson.

Sir Lukas

Apr 4, 2019, 12:59 am Reply


51 clips

Apr 4, 2019, 2:34 am Reply

since i live in a small town the tap water is pretty clean

Duolingo Owl

Apr 4, 2019, 3:39 am Reply

Sewer water


Apr 4, 2019, 9:56 am Reply

Who else thought Flouride.

Kim Carlo Arrevado

Apr 4, 2019, 5:49 pm Reply

What is Actually in Our Tap Water?


Yeeboy Yehey

Apr 4, 2019, 9:06 pm Reply

As a Saudi Arabian I am superior such as we buy gallons of water and put then in our water dispensers so they’re 100% clean lol

Dragon Wolf Knight

Apr 4, 2019, 10:01 pm Reply

What if the Earth's mass suddenly multiplied by 2?


Apr 4, 2019, 3:14 am Reply

i didnt know joe weller was narrator

qin cai

Apr 4, 2019, 9:29 am Reply

What if T-Series and Pewdiepie combined their channels?

Borach McTeague

Apr 4, 2019, 11:56 am Reply

I wouldn't say calling the tap as THE tech development "hyperbolic". Stop and think about how crippled society today would be without it. Just saying …


Apr 4, 2019, 3:12 pm Reply

Simple ,chemicals that turn the frogs gay


Apr 4, 2019, 2:49 am Reply

What if the Harran virus was real?


Apr 4, 2019, 9:03 pm Reply

I have soft water

I have to go outside to get water

Lilia Diaz

May 5, 2019, 9:20 am Reply

The water at my home is usually yellow.

Text Box

May 5, 2019, 6:22 pm Reply

what if peoples food are washed in that from farmers

ras 47

May 5, 2019, 12:19 am Reply

I know flint needs help still

ras 47

May 5, 2019, 12:25 am Reply

On top of that it's been body's in that flint water plus Detroit water isn't the best

1k subs with no video

May 5, 2019, 10:53 pm Reply

Please do these

-what if North America United?
-what if Asia United?
-what Europe United?
-what if South America United?
-what if the middle East United?
-what if Oceania United?

Ezzeldin mohd

May 5, 2019, 6:38 pm Reply

thomas crapper hmmm was that a coincidence

Rionach Reid

May 5, 2019, 2:09 pm Reply

Why hello, sir bacon…
??? Lol these names… 😂

Darth Vegeta

May 5, 2019, 9:40 pm Reply

WHAT IF Canada & Mexico BOTH joined the United States then Austria-Hungary & the Russian Empire reunited?

Conor O’keefe

May 5, 2019, 8:38 pm Reply

What if the whole earth was made of water?


Jun 6, 2019, 3:47 am Reply

Depends where you live.

Lil Lulu

Jun 6, 2019, 4:51 pm Reply

I drank my water (from the tap) befor i clicked this

Excited Doggo

Jul 7, 2019, 6:26 pm Reply


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