Taste
The ECUA’s drinking water has been selected as the “2013 Best Tasting Water” in a taste-test competition held in March 2013, in Destin, Florida.  The annual event was sponsored by Region IX of the Florida Section / American Water Works Association (FS/AWWA).  Region IX is comprised of all water utilities in the four westernmost counties of the Panhandle: Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa and Walton.

Participation in the Best Tasting Drinking Water Contest is open only to water providers within the geographical region who have not experienced any violations in the federal or state safe drinking water regulatory requirements.  Each water sample was evaluated for taste, odor, color, and clarity by a panel of impartial judges.

“ECUA water has been recognized as the best-tasting water in the Florida Panhandle for the fourth time in seven years. Our Water Department staff has done us all proud,” said ECUA Board Chairman, Larry N. Walker.

Adding chlorine during the water treatment process helps protect the water supply and is a requirement of the Safe Drinking Water Act.   However, the taste of added chlorine, no matter how minimal, may not appeal to you. 
Use these tips to help improve the flavor of your tap water:


Put a pitcher of tap water in the refrigerator.
This allows the chlorine to dissipate. After just a few hours, you'll notice an improvement in flavor.
 
 
  
 
Add a slice of lemon or orange.
Add a slice of lemon to your water.  You'll add zest and change the taste.
 
Filter your water.
There are hundreds of filter options at varying costs, but an inexpensive activated carbon filter, like those found in carafe systems, can improve taste and odor perceptions associated with chlorine. These filters do not remove hardness (not a factor in our community), minerals, sodium or fluoride.
 
Water Filters and Softeners
ECUA tap water is well within the standards set by the Safe Drinking Water Act, so it's not necessary to buy a home water treatment system to ensure the safety of your drinking water.
If you want to improve aesthetic qualities of your water such as taste and hardness, you may want to consider the purchase a home treatment system.
We are fortunate to enjoy a high-quality and delicious supply of drinking water, which is treated through a process that includes chlorination. The chlorine helps protect the water from potential bacterial contamination until it reaches your tap. There are a variety of inexpensive filter systems to remove chlorine from your drinking water. 
 
Types of Home Water Treatment Systems

 

 
Description

 
Pros

 
Cons

 
Activated Carbon Filters

 
 

 
Activated carbon filters attract and hold certain
  chemicals as water passes through them. They are available in carafe units,
  faucet-mounted filters and models mounted beneath the sink.

 

 
Reduces chlorine odor and taste; can be inexpensive

 

 
Doesn't remove minerals associated with hardness; can
  require frequent filter changes; does not remove microbes

 

 
Reverse-Osmosis Filters

 
 


 
These systems use both a traditional (usually carbon)
  filter and a cellophane-like membrane to remove most organic and inorganic
  compounds. This is the only type of filter that will remove calcium and
  magnesium, the minerals that cause hard water.

 
Removes minerals that cause hardness; highly effective


 
More expensive; may require a plumber; requires more
  storage space; many units waste water

 
Water Softeners



 
Devices used to exchange calcium and magnesium for
  "softer" minerals—usually sodium or potassium.

 

 
Eliminates chalky residue; may enhance dishwasher and
  washing machine performance; reduces water spots

 

 
Very expensive; higher maintenance; adds salt to drinking
  water; can be harmful to health and the environment
 
Many water filters feature a certification by NSF International, a not-for-profit organization that tests water treatment devices.  While not a guarantee, the NSF label is a good indicator that the product lives up to its claims.  You may want to be cautious if the product is not NSF-certified.