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January 4, 2011 President Obama signed legislation revising the definition of “lead free” within the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). The tolerated lead content level was drastically reduced to a mere 0.25% per weighted average. This steep decline in acceptable levels of this hazardous contaminant impacted all manufacturers and distributors of joining and sealing components. A grace period of 36 months was granted to allow all entities working within the potable water industry to change their inventory over to a material that meets the new stricter Safe Drinking Water Act standards. January 4, 2014- President Obama’s legislation went into full effect, ending the grace period. As of that date, it has been illegal to introduce products into commerce for drinking water applications UNLESS they are tested and meet the new version of the lead-free standard. Standard rubber compounds used in gaskets and seals in potable water applications must be proven to prevent leaching of harmful contaminants prior to installation. NSF’s expertise in all areas of public drinking water provides the peace of mind that we deemed essential to share with our customers. Gaining product acceptance is simplified when a product bears the familiar NSF seal. The NSF logo is the most widely recognized and respected mark in the drinking water industry. There are over 155,000 public water systems in the United States. More than 286 million Americans drink water from a community system daily. Water safety concerns are at an all time high. Applications impacted are public drinking water distribution including water storage tanks and reservoirs, water meters and all individual components. Joining and sealing materials (gaskets, adhesives, and lubricants). Mechanical devices (water meters, valves, and filters). Pipes and related products (hose and fittings). Plumbing devices (faucets and drinking fountains). Non-metallic potable water materials and fire hydrants.

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