The admissible limit of lead in drinking water has recently been reduced considerably. A little-known directive, published in 1998, gave member states 15 years to set a limit of 10 μg of lead per litre of water. This level came into force on December 25th, 2013 and it means that many buildings will now have to update their potable water systems. COMAP tells you more about the new standard and technical solutions.
Drinking water: no more than 10 μg of lead per litre of water.
In 1994, the World Health Organisation (WHO) issued a recommendation about a maximum threshold for lead concentration in drinking water. Concentrations below 10 μg/l would not be deemed harmful.
In 1998, European countries decided to give themselves 15 years meet this target. The European Council defined the permissible limit of lead in drinking water in directive 98/93/EC. This directive authorised an upper limit of 25 μg/L for 15 years and then enforced a reduction to 10 μg/l on December 25th, 2013. The national regulations of the member states have to implement this directive.
How to comply with the standard
The threshold of 10 μg of lead per litre of water is very low and is expected to trigger modernisation of old dwellings fitted with lead pipes. In France alone there are more than 10 million homes that were built before 1949.
In Belgium, where the national standard was previously 25 μg of lead per litre of water, a complete overhaul of the lead public network is under way. Public authorities are also encouraging owners to remove lead from private buildings and have developed financial incentives to sustain renovation under certain conditions.
Multilayer pipes are the ideal solution when replacing lead pipes. They have no impact on water and their physical characteristics make it possible to install these as easily as lead, which is a huge benefit. The pipe geometry can be adjusted by hand and, as a consequence, one can use it on all projects where lead piping was fitted previously.
For small pipes often found in houses, the white colour is an advantage. Multilayer pipes are also useful for replacing vertical risers, which are often made of galvanised steel. They are excellent value for money.
COMAP has developed a complete multilayer system to suit any set-up. Take a look at our MultiSkin range: design quality and superior manufacturing, system warranty, and a wide choice of pipe and fittings sizes. You are bound to find what you need!