The water is used as a sealing fluid in the liquid ring pump, and actually allows the vacuum to be created. The water can get contaminated with solids such as dirt, barite, sand, etc., that can carry over via the airstream through the pump and into the water supply tank. We recommend changing the water at least weekly, but more frequently if conditions warrant. There is a screen at the pump intake line toward the bottom of the water supply tank that should be kept clear. Although the pump is very forgiving, it is not a good idea to have a buildup of abrasives in the service water. Also, settling out of the solids can clog the primer line, causing the pump not to be primed properly and vacuum to be weak, along with possible pump damage.