Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of man-made chemicals applied to many consumer goods to make them waterproof, stain resistant, or nonstick. PFAS are also used in products like cosmetics, fast food packaging, and a type of firefighting foam called aqueous film forming foam (AFFF) which are used mainly on large spills of flammable liquids, such as jet fuel. Because PFAS are very long-lasting and are not easily broken down by sunlight or other natural processes, they may remain in water for many years.


There are many chemicals in the PFAS family, and they may cause different health effects if you are exposed to them. Some, but not all, studies in humans with PFAS exposure have shown that certain PFAS may: • Affect growth, learning, and behavior of infants and children; • Lower a woman’s chance of getting pregnant; • Interfere with the body’s natural hormones; • Increase cholesterol levels; • Affect the immune system; or • Increase the risk of certain cancers.  

Young children, infants, and unborn babies may be at more risk of health effects.

Scientists are still learning about the health effects of exposures to mixtures of PFAS. Laboratory animals exposed to high doses of one or more PFAS chemicals have shown changes in liver, thyroid, and pancreas function, as well as some changes in hormone levels. Because animals and humans process these chemicals differently, more research will help scientists fully understand how PFAS affect human health.


A person will not be able to see, smell, or taste PFAS in his or her drinking water.

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The combined PFOA and PFOS concnetrations detected in your water sample do not exceed the state action level (SAL) in drinking water of 70 ppt (ng/L). 

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From sites where PFAS are made, used, disposed of, or spilled. PFAS are mobile and transported through rainwater run-off and enter surface water or migrate into groundwater.
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Methods for removal of PFAS chemicals from drinking water include granular activated carbon and reverse osmosis. If available, select a product certified to an ANSI/NSF standard for removal of the PFAS family of chemicals. These methods can be used in different types of systems:

  • Point-of-use (POU) systems treat water from a single tap. They are often installed in the kitchen and treat only the water used for drinking and cooking (usually a few gallons per day). Granular activated carbon and reverse osmosis are effective technology used to treat water utilizing a POU system. PFAS POU Water Treatment PDF

  • Point-of-entry (POE) systems treat all the water that enters a home (usually 250 or more gallons per day). Though there are not currently any products certified to treat all water that enters a home for removing any of the PFAS family of chemicals, research has shown that a point of entry granular activated carbon treatment can be effective if properly designed. PFAS POE Water Treatment PDF


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