Upgrading Our Drinking Water Filter


“It started raining on December 8, 2010.  For fifteen days the narrow Isthmus of Panama received 265 millimeters of rainfall.  This impressive amount of precipitation shattered the statistics of the last ninety years.  Entire towns and villages were submerged with ferocious bodies of water causing enormous damage to property and lives.  The small tourist town of Portobelo is still mourning its nine persons who were killed during a large mudslide.

Rivers swelled like gigantic Anacondas devouring everything in its path.  The capacity of Madden Dam was exceeded and the opening of the gates caused a current so strong, that the Panama Canal was temporarily interrupted for several hours.  The same situation occurred at the Bayano Dam.  In an effort to prevent damages to the turbines, the gates had to be partly opened which worsened the floods downstream.  In the Province of Darien and Kuna Yala hundreds of people were homeless and transferred to schools urgently adapted to accommodate the victims of this natural disaster. It was a monumental deluge I had never seen in this country before.”

This is what I wrote on January 19, 2011, after the unfortunate deluge in Panama at the end of the year.  Shortly after, we purchased a water treatment system to prevent health hazards.  The unusual heavy rainfalls during December, clogged the water purifying filters of the Chilibre water filtering plant.  The drinking water was not safe to drink and the water treatment plant was not working at full capacity.

With this water filtering system we averted the severe water crisis in Panama City.  Currently, the tap water that we receive from the Chilibre plant is used to flush the toilets and the filtered water is for drinking purposes.  We feel much relieved after making this decision.

After a little over two years now, we decided to upgrade our filter, just to make sure we are using the latest technology available in Panama regarding drinking water filters.  There are many horror stories out there about people having health problems due to contaminated water.  Arnulfo Casas, our water filter supplier, recommended that we protect ourselves with a more efficient filter.  We took his word and upgraded our system two days ago.  Indeed, the quality of the water is better than the previous filter.  There is something in the taste of the water that makes it special.  I know that water is supposed to be tasteless, but our water does have a nice taste which induces you to drink more, which is obviously excellent for your health.  After all, our body is 75 percent water.

Snapshot of the faucet of our recently upgraded water filter. The brand is H2O Plus. It was installed in our house two days ago to provide safe drinking water. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

Panama had the reputation of having the best tap water in the region about twenty years ago.  I’m afraid we lost our mojo and we now need to protect ourselves with water treatment filters.   I’m looking forward that we could return to the high quality of water we once had—la chicha del Chagres.   Arrivederci.

A close-up view of the new water faucet installed by Arnulfo Casas in our kitchen. I love the design of the faucet. Photo by ©Omar Upegui R.

2 thoughts on “Upgrading Our Drinking Water Filter”

  1. I know I did to find a solution for my drinking water. I do keep a supply of bottled water for emergencies, but a change in the treatment of our water has me a little concerned. Now, it is treated with chloramines instead of (or in addition to) chlorine. It used to be that if you left the water in a container for a day, the chlorine would evaporate. Chloramines don’t. The first sign something was wrong was my African violets turning yellow. As soon as I started watering them with rain water, they turned green.😉

    Since I’m in an apartment, a whole house filter’s an impossibility. I may look at one of those that attaches to the tap, just for drinking water.

  2. Hello Linda:

    Due to budget constraints, we only installed a water treatment system in our kitchen just for drinking water. This a health insurance, considering the deteriorating quality of our tap water.

    Warm regards,

    Omar.-

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