Antimony

Sarah Jones
Research Chemist
Thursday, 6th June 2019
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Antimony is shown as a silvery gray rock that appears to be a metal.

Antimony

Water Library — Antimony in Drinking Water | H2Olabcheck
Odour None
Appearance Gray/silver, metal-like; colorless when dissolved in water
Taste Not noticeable
Limit 5 µg/L
Concerns Health impact of antimony in drinking water is unclear; inhalation of dust can be harmful and cause respiratory and skin conditions
Other Info Present in nature; not usually in dangerous amounts

Table of Contents

Antimony (Sb) in Drinking Water Information:

Properties

Antimony is gray and silver in color and is classified as a metalloid. The element is used to produce a wide range of industrial materials such as flame retardants, lead alloys, batteries, solder, and metal plumbing or fittings. 

Sources

Antimony exists in nature and may enter drinking water supplies when rocks are weathered and broken down; however, it is unlikely that enough antimony would come from a natural source to cause concern. More common sources of antimony include effluent from mining or smelting operations.1 The World Health Organization says that the most common way antimony enters drinking water is from metal plumbing and fittings dissolving. 

Regulations

There is a limit of antimony set a 5 micrograms per litre (5 µg/L) in drinking water samples. 

Health/Environmental Concerns:

The exact health impacts of ingesting antimony through drinking water are unclear. However, inhalation of antimony dust can be harmful and contribute to medical problems like respiratory issues or skin conditions. 

Action

If levels are above the allowable limit, consult your Water Services Authority to determine what further steps should be taken (1).

 

 

(1) National Federation of Group Water Schemes: Guide to the Parameters in the European Communities (Drinking Water) (No.2) Regulations 2007 (S. I. No. 278 of 2007)

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Antimony

Water Library — Antimony in Drinking Water | H2Olabcheck
Odour None
Appearance Gray/silver, metal-like; colorless when dissolved in water
Taste Not noticeable
Limit 5 µg/L
Concerns Health impact of antimony in drinking water is unclear; inhalation of dust can be harmful and cause respiratory and skin conditions
Other Info Present in nature; not usually in dangerous amounts