Interpreting Drinking Water Quality Analysis: What do the numbers mean?

written by Thodore B.Shelton Ph.D.
Extension Specialist in Water Resources Management
Cook College-Rutgers University
New Brunswick NJ 08903


Published by Rutgers Cooperative Extension and reprinted with the consent of the author. This posting is still in progress, and as such may include errors which were committed by me in the scanning of this document into the computer. If you notice such an error, please bring it to my attention.


Introduction
What is pure water?
Introduction to the safe drinking water act
A-280 amendments to the NJ safe drinking water act
Health effects of drinking water contaminants
Setting Standards- Maximum contaminant levels (MCLs)
What do the maximum contaminant numbers mean?
What do the secondary maximum contaminant levels (SMCLs) mean?"
What tests do I need?

Water Testing- Where should I get my water analyzed?
What do I do if my water exceeds an MCL or SMCL?
Home drinking water treatment technologies and devices
INTRODUCTION

1 This publication summarizes the information necessary for interpreting drinking water quality analyses performed by water testing laboratories. It focuses on testing results obtained from drinking water supplies from public water systems

and non-public water systems (home wells). It is intended primarily for homeowners, but environmental organizations, health departments, and commercial water testing laboratories and others should find this material of interest and value.

For readers who are not familiar with the terms and chemical expressions used in the text, a brief list of definitions follows the main text.


WHAT IS PURE WATER?

We know that all life is dependent on water and that water exists in nature in many forms- clouds, rain, snow, ice, and fog; however, strictly speaking, chemically pure water does not exist for any appreciable length of time in nature. Even while falling as rain, water picks up small amounts of gases, ions, dust, and particulate matter from the atmosphere. Then, as it flows over or through the surface layers of the earth, it dissolves and carries with it some of almost everything it touches, including that which is dumped into it by man.

These added substances may be arbitrarily classified as biological, chemical (both inorganic and organic), physical, and radiological impurities. They include industrial and commercial solvents, metal and acid salts, sediments, pesticides, herbicides, plant nutrients, radioactive materials, road salts, decaying animal and vegetable matter, and living microorganisms, such as algae, bacteria, and viruses. These impurities may give water a bad taste, color, odor, or cloudy appearance (turbidity), and cause hardness, corrosiveness, staining, or frothing. They may damage growing plants and transmit disease. Many of these impurities are removed or rendered harmless, however, in municipal drinking water treatment plants.

Pure water means different things to different people. Homeowners are primarily concerned with domestic water problems related to color, odor, taste, and safety to family health, as well as the cost of soap, detergents, "softening," or other treatments required for improving the water quality. Chemists and engineers working for industry are concerned with the purity of water as it relates to scale deposition and pipe corrosion. Regulatory agencies are concerned with setting standards to protect public health. Farmers are interested in the effects of irrigation waters on the chemical, physical, and osmotic properties of soils, particularly as they influence crop production; hence, they are concerned with the water's total mineral content, proportion of sodium, or content of ions "toxic" to plant growth.

One means of establishing and assuring the purity and safety of water is to set a standard for various contaminants. A standard is a definite rule, principle, or measurement which is established by governmental authority. The fact that it has been established by authority makes a standard rigid, official, and legal; but this fact does not necessarily mean that the standard is fair or based on sound scientific knowledge. Where human health data or other scientific data are sparse, standards have sometimes been established on an interim basis until better information becomes available.

The Safe Drinking Water Act sets minimum standards to be met by all public water systems. New Jersey and most other states have established their own drinking water regulations using federal regulations as a basis. State regulations may be more stringent than the federal regulations.


INTRODUCTION TO THE SAFE DRINKING WATER ACT

The Federal Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) (P.L. 93-523) was signed into law in 1974 and amended several times thereafter. The act authorized the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) to establish a cooperative program among local, state, and federal agencies for drinking water. Under the SDWA, the primary role of the federal government was to develop national drinking water regulations that protect public health and welfare. The states could request the responsibility of implementing the regulations and monitoring the performance of public water systems. The public water systems themselves were responsible for treating and testing their own drinking water to ensure that the quality consistently met the standards set by the regulations.

As directed by the SDWA, the USEPA developed primary and secondary drinking water regulations designed to protect public health and welfare. These regulations establish several important definitions. They include the following: Public Water System means a system for the provision to the public of piped water for human consumption if the system has at least 15 service connections or regularly serves at least 25 individuals daily at least 60 days out of the year. A public water system Is either a community water system or a noncommunity water system. Basically, a community system serves water to a residential population, whereas a noncommunity system serves water to a nonresidential population. A Community Water System means a public water system which serves at least 15 service connections used by permanent residents or regularly serves 25 permanent residents. A Noncommunity Water System means a public water system that is not a community water system. Examples include separate water systems which serve motels, restaurants, campgrounds, churches, lodges, rest stops along interstate highways, and roadside service stations. A Nontransient Noncommunity Water System regularly serves the same population at least six months of a year. Examples include separate water systems which serve schools, workplaces, and hospitals. A Public Transient Noncommunity Water System is a public water system that is not a public community water system and serves a transient population at least 60 days out of the year.

Please note that if the establishments mentioned above are served by a community water system they are considered to be a part of that system and therefore are not subject to separate regulation. For example, a campground may serve hundreds of people daily, but they are probably different people each day so no individual drinks very much of the campground's water. Since certain contaminants have adverse health effects only when consumed regularly over a long period, the distinctions between public community, noncommunity and nontransient noncommunity systems are important in determining which contaminants must be monitored to protect public health.


A-280 AMENDMENTS TO THE NJ SAFE DRINKING WATER ACT

The New Jersey Safe Drinking Water Act became law in September 1977. New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is the primary agency for implementing the SDWA in New Jersey. All regulations promulgated by USEPA are automatically adopted as New Jersey regulations. In January, 1984, the governor of New Jersey signed into law amendments to the New Jersey Safe Drinking Water Act. These amendments (P.L. 1983, c.443), commonly called A-280, required all public community water supplies to be periodically tested for a specified list of organic chemicals. The amendments also required the development of standards for these contaminants. These additional standards were needed because these chemicals were being detected in ground and/or surface waters, and were known to be potentially harmful to human health. Many of these chemicals are present in water supplies throughout the nation because of their widespread industrial and domestic use. New Jersey was one of the first states to require monitoring for these chemicals, and now is a leading state in the development of additional drinking water standards. Regulations establishing New Jersey Maximum Contaminant Levels (MCLs) for 16 organic contaminants were published on January 3, 1989, N.J.A.C. 7:10-16.

The A-280 amendments state that the MCLs for carcinogens shall permit cancer in no more than one in a million persons ingesting that chemical for a lifetime. The MCLs for non-carcinogens shall eliminate, within the limits of practicality and feasibility, all adverse physiological effects which may result from ingestion. The N.J. Drinking Water Quality Institute was established to review scientific studies of the effects of chemicals detected in drinking water and recommend limits (MCLs) for each chemical. The Institute is comprised of representatives from the water suppliers, the general public, the academic science community, the DEP, and the New Jersey Department of Health. This new regulation should lead to a reduction of risk and improvement of drinking water statewide.


HEALTH EFFECTS OF DRINKING WATER CONTAMINANTS
Chemicals in drinking water which are toxic may cause either acute or chronic health effects. An acute effect usually follows a large dose of a chemical and occurs almost immediately. Examples of acute health effects are nausea, lung irritation, skin rash, vomiting, dizziness, and, in the extreme, death.

The levels of chemicals in drinking water, however, are seldom high enough to cause acute health effects. They are more likely to cause chronic health effects, effects that occur after exposure to small amounts of a chemical over a long period. Examples of chronic health effects include cancer, birth defects, organ damage, disorders of the nervous system, and damage to the immune system.

Evidence relating chronic human health effects to specific drinking water contaminants is very limited. In the absence of exact scientific information, scientists predict the likely adverse effects of chemicals in drinking water using laboratory animal studies and, when available, human data from clinical reports and epidemiological studies.

USEPA classifies compounds for carcinogenicity potential according to the "weight of evidence" approach as stated in the Agency's Guidelines for Carcinogen Risk Assessment. These Guidelines specify five carcinogenicity classifications:

Group A - Human carcinogen (sufficient evidence from epidemiological studies).
Group B - Probable human carcinogen.
Group B1 - At least limited evidence of carcinogenicity in humans.
Group B2 - Usually a combination of sufficient evidence in animals and
inadequate data in humans.
Group C - Possible human carcinogen (limited evidence of carcinogenicity in the
absence of human data).
Group D - Not classifiable (inadequate human and animal evidence of
carcinogenicity).
Group E - Evidence of noncarcinogenicity for humans (no evidence of carcinogenicity in at least two adequate animal tests in different species or in both epidemiological and animal studies).

The possible health effects of a contaminant in drinking water differ widely, depending on whether a person consumes the water over a long period, briefly, or intermittently. Thus, MCLs and monitoring requirements for systems serving permanent populations (Public Community Water Systems and Nontransient Noncommunity Water Systems) may be more stringent than those regulations for systems serving transient or intermittent users (Public Noncommunity Water Systems).

Maximum contaminant levels are based, directly or indirectly, on an assumed drinking water rate of two liters per person per day. MCLs for organic and inorganic contaminants (except nitrate) are based on the potential health effects of long-term exposure, and they provide substantial protection to virtually all consumers. The uncertainty in this process is due in part to the variations in the knowledge of and the nature of the health risks of the various contaminants.


SETTING STANDARDS - MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVELS (MCLs)

Standards set under authority of the SDWA are called Maximum Contaminant Levels (MCLs). An MCL is the highest amount of a specific contaminant allowed in the water delivered to any customer of a public water system. An MCL may be expressed in milligrams per liter (mg/l), which is the same for the purposes of water quality analysis as parts per million (ppm). The MCLs can also be expressed as micrograms/liter
tug/i) which is equivalent to parts per billion (ppb). One thousand micrograms per liter (1000 ug/l)
is equivalent to one milligram per liter (1 mg/l). MCLs have been set by the USEPA and the DEP
to provide a margin of safety to protect the public health.

Impurities in drinking water that are regulated and have an adverse health impact are
grouped into five categories: inorganic chemical contaminants, organic chemical contaminants,
microbiological contaminants, radiological contaminants, and turbidity.

The process of settling primary standards (MCLs) for drinking water contaminants is based on
three criteria: (1) the contaminant causes adverse health effects; (2) instruments are available to
detect it in drinking water; and (3) it is known to occur in drinking water.

The regulatory agency first looks at all the toxicological data on a contaminant, usually
obtained from chronic and subchronic animal studies. Occasionally human clinical or
epidemiological data are also available. Experts use this information to estimate the
concentration of a drinking water contaminant that may be toxic and the concentrations, if any,
that may cause no adverse effects.

For chemicals which do not cause cancer, officials set standards using a figure calculated
from animal studies called the Reference Dose (Rfd), formerly called the Acceptable Daily Intake
or ADI. The Rfd is the estimate of the daily dose of a substance that a person can ingest over a
lifetime without suffering any adverse health effects and it includes a conservative safety margin.

Regulators use the Rfd to establish a Maximum Contaminant Level Goal (MCLG) for a
contaminant. The MCLG is the concentration of a contaminant that experts believe a person can
drink safely over a Lifetime, It is based entirely on health considerations and, as a health goal, is
set at a level where no adverse health effects should occur. The MCLG, which is not enforced by
the USEPA, is used to set enforceable drinking water standards.

The MCL, the primary standard enforced by the USEPA, is set as close as possible to the
MCLG. In setting an MCL, USEPA professionals consider, In addition to health effects, the
feasibility and the combined cost of analyzing water for a contaminant and for treating water to
remove the contaminant. Therefore, the MCL is often less stringent than the MCLG; however, by
statute, the MCL must be set as close as is feasible to the MCLG.

In setting MCLs for chemicals believed to cause cancer, a different risk assessment is used,
and USEPA regulators assume that no concentration is safe. Consequently, the MCLG is set at
zero. But, a zero level is not always possible to achieve, nor is it possible to measure because of
the sensitivity of the analytical equipment. USEPA incorporates cost and treatability
considerations into the MCLs for carcinogens as with the noncarcinogenic MCLs; these MCLs
must be set as close as is feasible to the MCLG.

The state was required to set drinking water standards for 22 contaminants listed in the A-280
amendments. There were no USEPA MCLs for these chemicals when New Jersey began this
standard-setting process in 1984. The standard-setting process was specified in the A-280
amendments to the N.J. Safe Drinking Water Act and is in some ways different from the federal
process for these chemicals. The carcinogenic MCLs had to be calculated such that no more
than one in one million persons ingesting that chemical in drinking water over a lifetime would
develop cancer (one in one million risk). The noncarcinogenic MCLs were calculated in the same
manner as for the federal MCLs. In 1987, USEPA published MCLs for eight volatile organic
chemicals that are also on the A-280 list. In nearly all cases, the MCLs developed by New Jersey
for the same compounds were more stringent than the federal government's.

Setting drinking water standards is an imperfect process, rarely based on conclusive human
evidence. Data relating human health effects to chemicals in drinking water are limited, and
scientists have to rely on mathematical modeling for predicting the effects of drinking small
amounts of chemicals for many years. In addition, regulatory decisions frequently incorporate
economic, political, and social considerations. Therefore, it is important to understand that
primary standards or MCLs for drinking water contaminants do not guarantee that water with a
contaminant level below the standard is risk-free; nor do they mean that water with a higher level
is unsafe.

Specific limits have not yet been set for every toxic, carcinogenic, or undesirable contaminant
that might enter a public water supply. While the need for continued attention to chemical
contaminants in water is recognized, the regulations are limited by available scientific and
engineering data on which those judgments of safety can be made.

Table 1 lists the MCLs for public drinking water supplies in New Jersey (as of 1/17/94). The
table combines both the federal and N.J. Safe Drinking Water Act regulations. These regulations
will be subject to continuous change. You should contact the NJDEP - Bureau of Safe Drinking
Water, CN 426, Trenton, NJ 08625, if you need more current information.

Table 2 lists proposed MCLs for radionuclides. These contaminants are the last group that
needs final MCLs (except for Arsenic, whose final MCL is still under review) out of the 83
contaminants referenced in the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act. Table 3 lists the chemicals for
which new MCLs were set effective 1/17/94. Table 4 lists unregulated contaminants for which
USEPA has set monitoring requirements.

For a detailed explanation of the Safe Drinking Water Program, refer to the Federal Safe
Drinking Water Act regulations [40 CFR Parts 141, 142, 143] and the New Jersey Safe Drinking
Water Regulations. [N.J.A.C. 7:10-1 et seq.].



TABLE 1. MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVELS (MCLs) FOR PUBLIC
DRINKING WATER SUPPLIES IN NEW JERSEY (as of 1/17/94)
ORGANIC CHEMICALS
A-280 chemicals MCL (in ppb or ug/l)
Benzene 1
Carbon tetrachloride 2
Chlordane 0.5
Chlorobenzene 4
meta-Dichlorobenzene 600
ortho-Dichlorobenzene 600
para-Dichlorobenzene 75
1,2-Dichloroethane 2
1,1-Dichloroethylene 2
1,2-Dichloroethylene (cis) 10
1,2-Dichloroethylene (trans) 10
Dichloromethane (Methylene chloride) 2
Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) 0.5
Tetrachloroethylene 1
Trichlorobenzenes (1 ,2,4-Trichlorobenzene) 8
1,1,1-Trichloroethane 26
Trichloroethylene 1
Vinyl chloride 2
Xylene(s) 44


Pesticides MCL (in ppb or ug/l)
Alachlor 2
Atrazine 3
Carbofuran 40 Dalapon 200
1,2-Dibromo-3-chloropropane(DBCP) 0.2
Dinoseb 7
Diquat 20
Endothall 100
Endrin 2
Ethylene dibromide (EDB) 0.05
Glyphosate 700
Heptachlor 0.4
Heptachlor epoxide 0.2
Lindane 0.2
Methoxychlor 40
Oxamyl (Vydate) 200
Picloram 500
Simazine 4
Toxaphene 3
2,4-D (2,4-Dichlorophenosyacetic acid) 70
2,4,5-TP (Silver) 50
Trihalomethane, (Total TTHMs) 100
Chloroform, Bromodichloromethane Bromoform, Dibromochloromethane



Other Organics MCL (in ppb or ug/l) (Parts per billion)
Acrylamide Treatment Technique
Benzo(a)pyrene 0.2
1,2-Dichloropropane 5
Di(2-ethylhexyl)adipate 400
Di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate 6
Epichlorohydrin Treatment Technique
Ethylbenzene 700
Hexachlorobenzene 1
Hexachlorocyclopentadiene 50
Pentachlorophenol 1
Styrene 100
Toluene 1000 1,1,2-Trichloroethane 5
2,3,7,8-TCDD (Dioxin) 0.00003

INORGANIC CHEMICALS MCL (in ppm or mg/l)(parts per million)
Antimony 0.006
Arsenic 0.05
Asbestos 7 million fibers/liter (longer than 10 um)
Barium 2
Beryllium 0.004
Cadmium 0.005
Chromium 0.1
Copper 1.3 (Action Level)
Cyanide 0.2
Fluoride (naturally occuring) 4
Lead 0.015 (Action Level)
Mercury 0.002
Nickel 0.1
Nitrate 10 (asN)
Nitrite 1 (asN)
Total nitrate and nitrite 10 (asN) Selenium 0.05
Thallium 0.002


MICROBIOLOGICAL CONTAMINANTS (see page 32)
Coliform bacteria
For private home wells Absence of Coliform bacteria/100 ml
For public water systems' Absence of Coliform bacteria based on
system size/100 mi and number of samples

TURBIDITY
Turbidity No more than 5% of the samples may exceed 0.5 Turbidity Unit

RADIOLOGICAL CONTAMINANTS
Gross alpha activity (including Raduim 226, but excluding radon and uranium) 15
picoCuries/l
Radium 226/228 5 picoCuries/l Beta particle and
photon radioactivity 4 millirem/year

I An (AL) action level is not an MCL. It Is a trigger point at which remedial action is to take place.
2 See 40 CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) Parts 141 and 142 for details.


TABLE 2. PROPOSED MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVELS (MCLs) FOR
PUBLIC DRINKING \NATER SUPPLIES IN NEW JERSEY
(PENDING USEPA FINAL REGULATIONS)1

RADIONUCLIDES MCLs
R/ICLs Radium-2262 20 pCi/l
Radium-2282 20 pCi/l
Radon-222 300 pCi/l
Uranium 30 pCi/l
Beta and photon emitters 4 mrem ede/yr3
Adjusted gross alpha emitters 15 pCi/l

1.These MCLs are pending final adoption by the USEPA. When they are adopted they
automatically become NJ regulations.
2 . An MCL currently exists for this contaminant.
3. ede/yr - effective dose equivalent per year.


TABLE 3. LIST OF CHEMICALS FOR WHICH NEW MCLS WERE SET BY
USEPA EFFECTIVE 1/17/94

Organic Chemicals

Dichloromethane Di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate
1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene Hexachlorobenzene
1,1,2-Trichloroethane Hexachlorocyclopentadiene
Benzo(a)pyrene 2,3,7,8-TCDD (Dioxin)
Di(2-ethylhexyl)adipate

Pesticides

Dalapon Glyphosate
Dinoseb Oxamyl
Diquat Picloram
Endothall Simazine
Endrin

Inorganic Chemicals

Antimony
Nickel
Beryllium
Thallium
Cyanide


TABLE 4. LIST OF UNREGULATED CONTAMINANTS FOR WHICH USEPA HAS SET
MONITORING REQUIREMENTS

ORGANIC CHEMICALS
Volatile Organic Chemicals
Bromobenzene p-Chlorotoluene Bromodichioromethane
Dichlorobenzene Bromoform m-Dichlorobenzene
Bromomethane I,l-Dichloroethane Chlorobenzene
1,3-Dichloropropane Chlorodibromethane 2,2-
Dichloropropane Cloroform 1,3-Dichloropropene
Chloroethane l,l-Dichloropropene Cloromethane
1,1,1,2-Tetrachlorothane o-Chlorotoluene 1,1,2,2,-
Tetrachlorothane 1,2,3-Trichloropropane

Synthetic Organic Chemicals
Aldicarb Dieldrin
Aldicarb sulfoxide Methomyl
Aldicarb sulfone Metolachlor
Aldrin Metribuzin Butachlor Propachlor Carbaryl
3-Hydroxycarbofuran Dicambra


INORGANIC CHEMICALS Sulfate Sodium


WHAT DO THE MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVEL NUMBERS MEAN?


INORGANIC CHEMICAL MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVELS


ANTIMONY MCL 0.006 mg/l

Antimony occurs naturally in soils, groundwater and surface waters and is often used in the
flame retardant industry. It is also used in ceramics, glass, batteries, fireworks and explosives. It
may get into drinking water through natural weathering of rock, industrial production, municipal
waste disposal or manufacturing processes. This element has been shown to decrease
longevity, and altered blood levels of cholesterol and glucose in laboratory animals such as rats
exposed to high levels during their lifetimes. EPA has set the drinking water standard for
antimony at 0.006 ppm to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water
which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be
considered safe with respect to antimony.

ARSENIC MCL 0.05 mg/l

Areas with elevated levels of arsenic in geologic materials are found throughout the United
States. Most of the arsenic produced is a by-product of the smelting of copper, lead, and zinc
ores. Arsenic has been found in both groundwater and surface waters from both natural
processes and industrial activities, including smelting operations, use of arsenical pesticides,
and industrial waste disposal. Arsenic compounds have been shown to produce acute and
chronic toxic effects which include systemic irreversible damage. The trivalent (+3) compounds
are the most toxic and tend to accumulate in the body. Chronic animal studies have shown body
weight changes, decreased blood hemoglobin, liver damage, and kidney damage. Arsenic has
been classified in EPA's Group A (human carcinogen), based upon evidence of human
carcinogenicity through inhalation and ingestion exposure. Arsenic is regulated because of its
potential adverse health effects and its widespread occurrence.

ASBESTOS 7 million fibers/l (longer than 10 um)

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral. Most asbestos fibers in drinking water are less
than 10 micrometers (um) (1um = 10-7 meters) in length and occur in drinking water from natural
sources and from corroded asbestos-cement pipes in the distribution system. The major uses of
asbestos were in the production of textiles, plastics, cements, floor tiles, paper products, paint,
and caulking; and in transportation-related applications. Asbestos was once a popular insulating
and fire-retarding material. Inhalation studies have shown that various forms of asbestos have
produced lung tumors in laboratory animals. The available information on the risk of developing
gastrointestinal tract cancer associated with the ingestion of asbestos from drinking water is
limited. Ingestion of intermediate-range chrysotile asbestos fibers greater than 10 micrometers in
length is associated with causing benign tumors in male rats. Chemicals that cause cancer in
laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed over long
periods. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for asbestos at 7 million long fibers to
reduce the potential risk of cancer or other adverse health effects which have been observed in
laboratory animals. Drinking water which meets the USEPA standard is associated with little to
none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to asbestos.

< a name="barium">BARIUM MCL 2.0 mg/l

Barium is a naturally occurring metal found in many types of rock, such as limestones and
sandstones, and soils in the eastern United States. Certain geologic formations in California,
Arkansas, Missouri, and Illinois are known to contain barium levels about 1,000 times higher
than those found in other portions of the United States. Areas associated with deposits of coal,
petroleum, natural gasl oil shale, black shale, and peat may also contain high levels of barium.
Principal areas where high levels of barium have been found in drinking water include parts of
Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, and Georgia. Acute exposure to barium in animals and humans results in a variety of cardiac, gastrointestinal, and neuromuscular effects. Barium has been
classified in EPA's Group I) (not classifiable), based upon inadequate data from animal studies. Barium exposure has been associated with hypertension and cardiotoxicity
in animals. For this reason and because of the widespread occurrence of barium in drinking
water, it is regulated.

< a name="beryllium">BERYLLIUM MCL 0.004 mg/l

Beryllium occurs naturally in soils, ground water and surface waters and is often used in
electrical equipment and electrical components. It generally gets into water from runoff from
mining operations, discharge from processing plants and improper waste disposal. Beryllium
compounds have been associated with damage to the bones and lungs and induction of cancer
in laboratory animals such as rats and mice when the animals are exposed at high levels over
their lifetimes. There is limited evidence to suggest that beryllium may pose a cancer risk via
drinking water exposure. Therefore, EPA based the health assessment on noncancer effects with
an extra uncertainty factor to account for possible carcinogenicity. Chemicals that cause cancer
in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed over long
periods of time. EPA has set the drinking water standard for beryllium at 0.004 ppm to protect
against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is
associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to beryllium.

< a name="cadmium">CADMIUM MCL 0.005 mg/l

Cadmium is found in very low concentrations in most rocks, as well as in coal and petroleum
and often in combination with zinc. Geologic deposits of cadmium can serve as sources to
groundwater and surface water, especially when in contact with soft, acidic waters. Cadmium
uses include electroplating, nickel-cadmium batteries, paint and pigments, and plastic stabilizers.
It is introduced into the environment from mining and smelting operations and industrial
operations, including electroplating, reprocessing cadmium scrap, and incineration of
cadmiumcontaining plastics. The remaining cadmium emissions are from fossil fuel use, fertilizer
application, and sewage sludge disposal. Cadmium may enter drinking water as a result of
corrosion of galvanized pipe. Landfill leachates are also an important source of cadmium in the
environment. Acute and chronic exposure to cadmium in animals and humans results in kidney
dysfunction, hypertension, anemia, and liver damage. The kidney is considered to be the critical
target organ in humans chronically exposed to cadmium by ingestion. Cadmium has been
classified in EPA's Group B1 (probable human carcinogen), bas'ed upon evidence of
carcinogenicity In humans through inhalation exposure. However, since cadmium has not been
shown to be carcinogenic through ingestion exposure, the compound is regulated based upon
chronic toxicity data. Because of cadmium's potential adverse health effects and widespread
occurrence in raw waters, it is regulated.

< a name="chromium">CHROMIUM MCL 0.1 mg/l

Chromium is a naturally occurring metal that in drinking water forms compounds with
valences of +3 and +6, with the trivalent state being the more common. Although chromium is not
currently mined in the United States, wastes from old mining operations may enter surface and
groundwater through runoff and leaching. Chromate wastes from plating operations may also be
a source of water contamination. Fossil fuel combustion, waste incineration, cement plant
emissions, chrome plating, and other metallurgical and chemical operations may result in
releases of chromium to the atmosphere. Chromium III and chromium VI have greatly differing
toxicity characteristics. Chromium III is a nutritionally essential element. Chromium VI is much
more toxic than Chromium III and has been shown to produce liver and kidney damage, internal
hemorrhage, and respiratory disorders. Also, subchronic and chronic exposure to Chromium VI
in the form of chromic acid can cause dermatitis and ulceration of the skin. Chromium has been
classified in EPA's Group A (human carcinogen), based upon positive inhalation data for
Chromium VI in humans and animals. However, since chromium has not been shown to be
carcinogenic through ingestion exposure, the compound is regulated based upon chronic toxicity
data. Chromium exposure at high levels has been shown to result in chronic toxic effects in
animals and humans by ingestion; thus it is regulated.

< a name="copper">COPPER 1.3 mg/l (Action Level)

Copper, a reddish-brown metal, is often used to plumb residential and commercial structures
that are connected to water distribution systems. Copper contaminating drinking water as a
corrosion by-product occurs as the result of the corrosion of copper pipes that remain in contact
with water for a prolonged period. Copper is an essential nutrient, but at high doses it has been
shown to cause stomach and intestinal distress, liver and kidney damage, and anemia. Persons
with Wilson's disease may be at higher risk of health effects due to copper contamination
resulting from the corrosion of plumbing materials. Public water systems serving over 50,000
people or fewer that have copper concentrations below 1.3 parts per million in more than 90
percent of tapwater samples (the USEPA action level) are not required to install or improve their
treatment. Any water system that exceeds the action level must. also monitor its source water to
determine whether treatment to remove copper in source water is needed.

< a name="cyanide">CYANIDE MCL 0.2 mg/l

Cyanide is used in electroplating, steel processing, plastics, synthetic fabrics and fertilizer
products. It usually gets into water asa result of improper waste disposal. Cyanide compounds
have been shown to damage the spleen, brain and liver of humans fatally poisoned with cyanide.
EPA has set the drinking water standard for cyanide at 0.2 ppm to protect against the risk of
these adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with
little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to cyanide.

< a name="flouride">FLUORIDE MCL 4.0 mg/l

Federal regulations require that fluoride, which occurs naturally in your water supply, not
exceed a concentration of 4.0 mg/l in drinking water. This MCL has been established to protect
public health. Exposure to drinking water levels above 4.0 mg/l for many years may result in
some cases of crippling skeletal fluorosis, which is a serious bone disorder. Fluoride in children's drinking water at levels of approximately 1 mg/l reduces the number of
dental cavities 60-65 percent below rates in communities with little or no fluoride. However, some
children exposed to levels of fluoride greater than about 2.0 mg/l may develop dental fluorosis.
Dental fluorosis, in its moderate and severe forms, is a brown staining and/or pitting of the
permanent teeth. Because dental fiuorosis occurs only when developing teeth (before they erupt
from the gums) are exposed to elevated fluoride levels, households without children are not
expected to be affected by this level of fluoride. Federal law also requires that notification take
place when monitoring indicates that the fluoride exceeds 2.0 mg/l. This is intended to alert
families about dental problems that might affect children under nine years of age. Families with
children under the age of nine with fluoride exceeding 2.0 mg/l are encouraged to seek other
sources of drinking water for their children to avoid the possibility of staining and pitting.

LEAD 0.015 mg/l (Action Level)

Materials that contain lead have frequently been used in the construction of water supply
distribution systems and plumbing systems in private homes and other buildings. The most
commonly found materials include service lines, pipes, brass and bronze fixtures, and solders
and fluxes. Lead in these materials can contaminate drinking water as a result of the corrosion
that takes place when water comes into contact with those materials. Lead can cause a variety of
adverse health effects in humans. At relatively low levels of exposure, these effects may include
interference in red blood cell chemistry, delays in normal physical and mental development in
babies and young children, slight deficits in the attention span, hearing, and learning abilities of
children, and slight increases in blood pressure of some adults. EPA's national primary drinking
water regulation requires all public water systems to optimize corrosion control to minimize lead
contamination resulting from the corrosion of plumbing materials. Public water systems serving
50,000 people or fewer that have lead concentrations below 15 parts per billion (ppb) in more
than 90 percent of tap water samples (the USEPA action level) have optimized their corrosion
control treatment. Any water system that exceeds the action level must also monitor its source
water to determine whether treatment to remove lead in source water is needed. Any water
system that continues to exceed the action level after installation of corrosion control and/or
source water treatment must eventually replace all lead service lines contributing in excess of 15
ppb of lead to drinking water. Any water system that exceeds the action level must also
undertake a public education program to inform consumers of ways they can reduce their
exposure to potentially high levels of lead in drinking water.

The following steps can be taken to minimize your exposure to lead:

1. Flush your plumbing to counteract the effects of "contact time." Flushing involves allowing
the cold faucet to run until a change in temperature occurs(minimum of one minute). Water
drawn during flushing doesn't have to be wasted. It can be saved for other uses such as
washing dishes or clothes and watering plants.
2. Do not consume hot tap water. Hot water tends to aggravate lead leaching when brought in
contact with lead plumbing materials.
3. For private wells steps can be taken to make water noncorrosive. Water treatment devices for
individual households include calcite filters and other
devices to lessen acidity.
4. Insist on lead-free materials for use in repairs and newly installed
plumbing.
5. Lead can be removed from your tap water by installing point-of-use treatment devices now
commercially available, which include: ion-exchange filters, reverse osmosis devices, and
distillation units. (For more informa tion r,a11(609) 984-5862.)
6. Bottled water can be purchased for drinking and cooking purposes. (For more information
ca11(609) 588-3123.)

Lead has been classified in EPA's Group B2 (probable human carcinogen), based upon
evidence of kidney tumors in rats by the oral route.

MERCURY MCL 0.002 mg/l




Mercury exists in two basic forms; the inorganic salt and organic mercury compounds (methyl
mercury). Mercury levels in coal range from 10-46,000 ppb. The major use of mercury is in
electrical equipment (batteries, lamps, switches, and rectifiers). Mercury may also enter the
environment from mining, smelting, and fossil fuel combustion. Inorganic mercury is poorly
absorbed through the gastrointestinal tract. The principal target organ of inorganic mercury is the
kidney. Exposure to inorganic mercury compounds at high levels results in renal effects.
Because inorganic mercury is the form of mercury detected in drinking water, has widespread
occurrence, and may have adverse health effects, it is regulated.

NICKEL MCL 0.1 mg/l

Nickel occurs naturally in soils, ground water and surface waters and is often used in
electroplating, stainless steel and alloy products. It generally gets into water from mining and
refining operations. Nickel compounds have been shown to damage the heart and liver in
laboratory animals when the animals are exposed to high levels over their lifetimes. EPA has set
the drinking water standard at O. 1 ppm for nickel to protect against the risk of these adverse
effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk
and should be considered safe with respect to nickel.

NITRATE (NO,-) MCL 10 mg/l

Nitrate is the more stable oxidized form of combined nitrogen in most environmental media.
Most nitrogenous materials in natural waters tend to be converted to nitrate, and, therefore, all
sources of combined nitrogen (particularly organic nitrogen and ammonia) should be considered
as potential nitrate sources. Nitrates occur naturally in mineral deposits (generally sodium or
potassium nitrate), in soils, seawater, freshwater systems, the atmosphere, and in biota. Lakes
and other static water bodies usually have less than 1.0 ug/l of nitrate/nitrogen. Groundwater
levels of nitrate/nitrogen may range up to 20 ug/l or more, with higher levels characteristically
occurring in shallow aquifers beneath areas of extensive development. Major sources of nitrates
or nitrite in drinking water include fertilizer, sewage, and feedlots. The toxicity of nitrate in humans is due to the body's reduction of nitrate to nitrite. This reaction takes place in saliva of humans at all ages and in the gastrointestinal tract of infants during the first three months of life. The toxicity of nitrite is demonstrated by vasodilatory/cardiovascular
effects at high dose levels and methemoglobinemia at lower dose levels. Methemoglobinemia,
"Blue-Baby Disease," is an effect in which hemoglobin is oxidized to methemoglobin, resulting in asphyxia. Infants up to three months of age are the most susceptible subpopulation with regard
to nitrate. This is due to the fact that in the adult and child, about 10 percent of ingested nitrate is
transformed to nitrite, while 100 percent of ingested nitrate can be transformed to nitrite in the
infant. The effects of methemoglobinemfa are rapidly reversible, and there are, therefore, no
accumulative effects. Nitrate/ nitrite have been classified in EPA's Group D (not classifiable),
based upon inadequate data in animals and humans. Nitrate compounds have demonstrated
adverse toxic effects in infants. Due to potential toxicity and widespread occurrence in water, it is regulated.

NITRITE (NO,-) MCL 1 mg/l

Nitrite is used in fertilizers and is found in sewage and wastes from humans and/or farm
animals and may get into drinking water by runoff into surface water or by leaching into
groundwater. While excessive amounts of nitrite in drinking water have not been observed, other
sources of nitrite have caused serious illness and sometimes death in infants under six months
of age. The serious illness in infants is caused because nitrite interferes with the oxygen-carrying
capacity of the child's blood. This is an acute disease in that symptoms can develop rapidly.
However, in most cases, health deteriorates over a period of days. Symptoms include shortness
of breath and blueness of the skin. Clearly, expert medical advice should be sought immediately
if these symptoms occur. The purpose of this notice is to encourage parents and other
responsible parties to Provide an alternate source of drinking water. Local and state health
authorities are the best source of information concerning alternate sources of drinking water for
infants. USEPA has set the drinking water standard at 1 mg/l for nitrite to protect against the risk
of adverse effects. USEPA has also set a drinking water standard for nitrate (converted to nitrite
in humans) at 10 mg/l and for the sum of nitrate and nitrite at 10 mg/l. Drinking water that meets
the USEPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and is considered safe with
respect to nitrite.

SELENIUM MCL 0.05 mg/l

Selenium occurs in U.S. soils in the western states. The more alkaline soil tends to make
selenium more water-soluble, and increased plant uptake and accumulation occur. Most of the
commercial selenium has toxic effects at high dose levels and Is nutritionally essential at low
levels. Acute and chronic toxic effects have been observed in animals. In humans, few data exist
on acute toxicity. In animals, selenium deficiency results in congenital white muscle disease and
other diseases. Selenium has been classified in EPA's Group D (not classifiable), based upon
inadequate data in animals and humans. Selenium exposure at high levels results in chronic
adverse health effects, and thus it is regulated.

THALLIUM 0.002 mg/l

Thallium is found naturally in soils and is used in electronics, pharmaceuticals, and the
manufacture of glass and alloys. Thallium compounds have been shown to damage the kidney,
liver, brain and intestines of laboratory animals when the animals are exposed at high levels over
their lifetimes. EPA has set the drinking water standard for thallium at 0.002 ppm to protect
against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is
associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to thallium.


ORGANIC CHEMICAL MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVELS


A-280 CHEMICALS (set by NJ Regulations)

BENZENE MCL 1 ug/l

Benzene is a natural component of crude oil and natural gas. Industry uses benzene in the
production of rubber, styrene, and pesticides. Benzene's volatility and water solubility provide
the potential for environmental migration. Benzene production by the petrochemical and
petroleum refining industries ranks 16th on the list of the top 50 chemicals produced in the
United States. At present there is no known intentional use of benzene in consumer products for
home use. Gasoline in the United States contains an average of 0.8 percent benzene. Exposure
to benzene has been associated with aplastic anemia and acute myelogenous leukemia;
benzene is listed as a human carcinogen (USEPA Group A).

CARBON TETRACHLORIDE MCL 2 ug/l

Carbon tetrachloride is manufactured by the chlorination of methane, propane. ethane,
propylene, or carbon disulfide and as a by-product of vinyl chloride and perchloroethylene
production. The major use of carbon tetrachloride is in the manufacture of chlorofluorocarbons,
which are used as refrigerants, foam-blowing agents, and solvents. Carbon tetrachloride is
classified as a probable human carcinogen (USEPA Group B2) and has been shown to induce
liver neoplasms in hamsters, mice, and rats.

CHLORDANE MCL 0.5 ug/l

Chlordane is a wide-spectrum insecticide. Production has been reduced within the last 10
years due to USEPA cancellation proceedings and a settlement that determined a schedule to
phase out legal chlordane use. Until April 1976, chlordane was used on agricultural crops, such
as corn, potatoes, and tomatoes, as well as home garden crops, to control soil insects and ants.
In 1980, 10 million pounds of chlordane were used to treat soil for termites by subsurface
injection. The only approved use of chlordane since July 1, 1983, is for underground termite
control. Human exposure to chlordane has occurred by occupational and accidental means.
Toxic effects following acute exposure to this chemical include central nervous system
sensitization and gastrointestinal disorders. Toxic effects of chronic exposure include skin irritation, blurred vision, exhaustion, liver damage, anorexia and weight loss, severe
gastroenteritis, and death. Chlordane has been classified as a probable human carcinogen
(USEPA Group B2) based on positive results in mice and female rats.

CHLOROBENZENE MCL 4 ug/l

Chlorobenzene is an intermediate in chemical and pesticide production and a process solvent
for various organic compounds. It is also a process solvent for methylene diisocyanate, various
adhesives, polishes, waxes, pharmaceuticals, and natural rubber. Human exposure has been
occupationally related or accidental. Acute exposure to this chemical results in central nervous
system depression and hepatic and renal disorders. Effects of chronic exposure involve
depression of both the central nervous system and peripheral nervous system, and respiratory
tract irritation. In animals, chronic exposure causes hepatic and kidney changes and increased
liver weights. The classification ofpara-dichlorobenzene as a probable human carcinogen
(USEPA Group B2) or possible human carcinogen (USEPA Group C) is a controversial one.
USEPA will reassess its Group C classification as new information becomes available.

meta-DICHLOROBENZENE MCL 600 ug/l ortho-DICHLOROBENZENE
MCL 600 ug/l para-DICHLOROBENZENE MCL 75 ug/l

Chlorinated benzenes are used as intermediates in the production of organic chemicals,
including other chlorinated benzenes, and in herbicides, pesticides, fungicides, dyes, rubber,
process solvents, and deodorizing agents. In humans the DCBs produce acute effects on the
respiratory, hematologic, urinary, and central nervous systems. Chronic exposures can result in
liver injury and other toxic effects. DCBs are not highly acutely toxic to animals. Chronically
exposed animals may develop central nervous system, liver, and kidney damage.

1,2-DICHLOROETHANE MCL 2 ug/l

1,2-Dichloroethane (ethylene dichloride) is produced in greater amounts than any other
hydrocarbon. Its major use is in the production of vinyl chloride; additionally, it is used as a
solvent, in consumer products, as a lead scavenger in gasoline, and as a grain fumigant.
Humans are exposed via the air and water, primarily near industrial sites. The odor threshold in
water is 20 mg/l. 1,2-Dichloroethane is a mutagen and has been shown to cause cancer in rats
and mice.

1,1 -DICHLOROETHYLENE MCL 2 ug/l 1,1-DICHLOROETHYLENE (cis)
MCL 10 ug/l 1,1-DICHLOROETHYLENE (trans) MCL 10 ug/l

I, I-Dichloroethylene (I,I-DCE) is a chemical intermediate of polyvinylidcne chloride
copolymers, used in barrier coatings by the packaging industry. 1,2Dichloroethylenes have a
limited use as solvents and preservatives. No estimates of current production levels are
available; however use is not widespread. The instability of dichloroethylenes and their limited
solubility in water diminish the potential for human exposure in drinking water. Dichloroethylenes
at high exposure concentrations can depress the central nervous system and produce narcosis
that may result in death. Although toxic effects from chronic exposure to 1.2-dichloroethylenes
are not known, I,l-dichloroethylene has been shown to cause liver and kidney injury in animal
studies. Limited evidence from animal studies indicates that I,I-DCE may be carcinogenic, but
epidemiological studies of exposed human populations do not provide direct evidence of
carcinogenicity.

DICHLOROMETHANE (Methylene Chloride) MCL 2 ug/l

This organic chemical is a widely used solvent. It is used in the manufacture of paint remover,
as a metal degreaser and as an aerosol propellant. It generally gets into drinking water after
improper discharge of waste disposal. This chemical has been shown to cause cancer in
laboratory animals such as rats and mice when the animals are exposed at high levels over their
lifetimes. Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer
in humans who are exposed over long periods of time. NJDEP has set the drinking water
standard for dichloromethane at 2 ppb to reduce the risk of cancer or other adverse health
effects which have been observed in laboratory animals. Drinking water which meets the NJDEP
standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect
to dichloromethane.

POLYCHLORINATED BIPHENYLS (PCBs) MCL 0.5 ug/l

Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) have been used commercially for over 50 years primarily
as dielectrics. Their chemical inertness has led to their wide dissemination and persistence in
the environment. As many as 209 different compounds of PCBs are possible; they exist in
varying proportions in commercial mixtures called aroclor. Commercial PCB mixtures are
distinguished by a number, e.g., aroclor 1254, which is based on the average percentage of
chlorine in the mixture. Human exposure to PCRs has resulted largely from consumption of
contaminated food and from the work environment. Production is banned; however there are a
few exceptions for closed electrical systems. PCBs accumulate in the fatty tissues and skin of
man and other animals. The major sites of pathology caused by PCBs are the skin and liver.
Several studies in rodents suggest strongly that PCBs are carcinogenic and may also enhance
the carcinogenicity of other compounds.

TETRACHLOROETHYLENE MCL 1 ug/l

Tetrachloroethylene is a colorless liquid used primarily as a solvent in the dry cleaning of
fabrics. To a lesser extent it is used as a degreasing solvent in metal industries and as a
chemical intermediate in the synthesis of other compounds. It is not frequently detected in
surface waters because of its volatility, but is found most often in groundwaters. The odor
threshold for tetrachloroethylene in water is 300 ug/ 1. Tetrachloroethylene is classified as a
probable human carcinogen (USEPA Group B2) by NJDEP.
1,2,4-TRICHLOROBENZENE MCL 8 ug/l

This organic chemical is used as a dye carrier and as a precursor in herbicide manufacture. It
generally gets into drinking water by discharges from industrial activities. This chemical has
been shown to cause damage to several organs. including the adrenal glands. NJDEP has set
the drinking water standard for 1,2,4trichlorobenzene at 8 ppb to protect against the risk of these
adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the NJDEP standard is associated with little
to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to 1,2,4-trichlorobenzene.

1,1,1 -TRICHLOROETHANE MCL 26 ug/l

1,1,1 -Trichloroethane is a commonly used industrial solvent which has gained widespread use
largely because of its low toxicity compared with other chlorinated hydrocarbons. Cold cleaning
and vapor degreasing are its major commercial applications. Additionally, it is used as a spot
remover and as a component of adhesives, coatings, and aerosols. Long-term exposure of
experimental animals to 1,1,1trichloroethane has been associated with liver damage. The odor
threshold for 1,1,1trichloroethane in water is 50 mg/l.

TRICHLOROETHYLENE MCL 1 ug/l

Trichloroethylene is a colorless liquid used extensively as a solvent in the vapor degreasing of
fabricated metal parts. It may be found in printing inks, varnishes, paints, lacquers, adhesives,
spot removers, rug cleaners, and disinfectants. It is no longer used in food, drugs, or cosmetics.
The major source of it in the environment is volatilization during production and use. The odor
threshold of trichloroethylene in water is 0.5 mg/l. The USEPA classifies trichloroethylene as a
probable human carcinogen (Group B2).

VINYL CHLORIDE MCL 2 ug/l

Vinyl chloride is a synthetic chemical with no natural sources. In the United States, vinyl
chloride has been synthesized commercially for over 50 years, reaching a production level of 7.5
billion pounds in 1984. Vinyl chloride is used in the production of polymer (polyvinyl chloride),
the most widely used plastic in the world, in the manufacture of piping, and conduit, electrical
wire insulation and cables, food packaging materials, floor coverings, and a variety of other
industrial products. It is classified as a human carcinogen (USEPA Group A) and has been
shown to induce liver cancer in rats, mice, hamsters, and humans.

XYLENE(S) MCL 44 ug/l

The xylenes are widely used as solvents for inks, rubber, gums, resins, adhesives, and
lacquers; as thinners and paint removers; in the paper coating industry: as a component of paint,
varnishes, dyes, cements, cleaning fluids, and aviation fuels; as solvents and emulsifiers for
agricultural products, in perfumes, insect repellents, pharmaceuticals, and in the leather industry.
Its use is increasing as a "safe" replacement for benzene, and in gasoline as part of the
benzene-toluene-xylene (BTX) component. Releases of xylene into the environment are
estimated to be nearly 410 million kilograms annually. Levels in New Jersey drinking water have
been found to range from 0.2 to 3.0 ugil. In general, xylenes are acutely toxic to animals and
humans only at higher concentrations, the liver and central nervous system being most notably
affected by chronic exposure. Embryotoxic and developmental effects have been demonstrated
in animals exposed to xylene at low doses either orally or by inhalation. Pregnant women and
their fetuses should therefore be considered highrisk subpopulations.

PESTICIDES

The chlorinated hydrocarbons are one of the most important groups of synthetic organic
pesticides because of their wide use, great stability in the environment, and toxicity to mammals
and insects. The symptoms of poisoning, regardless of the compound involved or the route of
entry, are similar but may vary in severity. Mild cases of poisoning are characterized by
headache, dizziness, gastrointestinal disturbances, numbness and weakness of the extremities,
apprehension, and hyperirritability. When absorbed into the body, some of the chlorinated
hydrocarbons are not metabolized rapidly and are stored in the fat. Based on these and other
facts, limits in drinking water have been calculated primarily on the basis of the extrapolated
intake that would cause minimal toxic effects in mammals (rats and dogs).

ALACHLOR MCL 2 ug/l

This organic chemical is widely used as a pesticide. When soil and climatic conditions are
favorable, alachlor may get into drinking water by runoff into surface water or by leaching into
groundwater. This chemical has been shown to cause cancer in such laboratory animals as rats
and mice when the animals are exposed at high levels over their lifetimes. Chemicals that cause
cancer in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed
over long periods. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for alachlor at 2 ugil to reduce the
risk of cancer or other adverse health effects which Rave been observed in animals. Drinking
water that meets this standard is associated with little to none of this risk and is considered safe
with respect to alachlor.

ATRAZINE MCL 3 ug/l

This organic chemical is an herbicide. When soil and climatic conditions are favorable,
atrazine may get into drinking water by runoff into surface water or by leaching into groundwater.
This chemical has been shown to affect offspring of rats and the heart of dogs. USEPA has set
the drinking water standard for atrazine at 3 ug/l to protect against the risk of these adverse
health effects. Drinking water that meets the USEPA standard is associated with little to none of
this risk and is considered safe with respect to atrazine.
CARBOFURAN MCL 40 ug/l

This organic chemical is a pesticide. When soil and climatic conditions are favorable,
carbofuran may get into drinking water by runoff into surface water or by leaching into
groundwater. This chemical has been shown to damage the nervous and reproductive systems
of such laboratory animals as rats and mice exposed at high levels over their lifetimes. Some
humans who were exposed to relatively large amounts of this chemical during their working
careers also suffered damage to the nervous system. Effects on the nervous system are
generally rapidly reversible. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for carbofuran at 40 ug/l
to protect against the risk ofthese adverse health effects. Drinking water that meets the USEPA
standard is associated with little to none of this risk and is considered safe with respect to
carbofuran.

DALAPON MCL 200 ug/l

This organic chemical is a widely used herbicide. It may get into drinking water after
application to control grasses in crops, drainage ditches and along railroads. This chemical has
been shown to cause damage to the kidney and liver in laboratory animals when the animals are
exposed to high levels over their lifetimes. EPA has set the drinking water standard for dalapon
at 200 ppb to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets
the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with
respect to dalapon.

DIBROMOCHLOROPROPANE (DBCP) MCL 0.2 ug/l

This organic chemical was once a popular pesticide. When soil and climatic conditions are
favorable, DBCP may get into drinking water by runoff into surface water or by leaching into
groundwater. This chemical has been shown to damage the nervous and reproductive systems
of such laboratory animals as rats and mice exposed at high levels over their lifetimes.
Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in
humans who are exposed over long periods. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for
DBCP at 0.2 ug/l to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water that
meets the USEPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and is considered safe
with respect to DBCP.

DINOSEB MCL 7 ug/l

Dinoseb is a widely used pesticide and generally gets into drinking water after application on
orchards, vineyards and other crops. This chemical has been shown to damage the thyroid and
reproductive organs in laboratory animals such as rats exposed to high levels. EPA has set the
drinking water standard for dinoseb at 7 ppb to protect against the risk of adverse health effects.
Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and
should be considered safe with respect to dinoseb.

DIQUAT MCL 20 ug/l

This organic chemical is a herbicide used to control terrestrial and aquatic weeds. It may get
into drinking water by runoff into surface water. This chemical has been shown to damage the
liver, kidney, and gastrointestinal tract and causes cataract formation in laboratory animals such
as dogs and rats exposed at high levels over their lifetimes. EPA has set the drinking water
standard for diquat at 20 ppb to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking
water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be
considered safe with respect to diquat.

ENDOTHALL MCL 100 ug/l

This organic chemical is a herbicide used to control terrestrial and aquatic weeds. It may get
into water by runoff into surface water. This chemical has been shown to damage the liver,
kidney, gastrointestinal tract and reproductive system of laboratory animals such as rats and
mice exposed at high levels over their lifetimes. EPA has set the drinking water standard for
endothall at 100 ppb to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water
which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be
considered safe with respect to endothall.

ENDRIN MCL 2 ug/l

This organic chemical is a pesticide no longer registered for use in the United States.
However, this chemical is persistent in treated soils and accumulates in sediments and aquatic
and terrestrial biota. This chemical has been shown to cause damage to the liver, kidney and
heart in laboratory animals such as rats and mice when the animals are exposed at high levels
over their lifetimes. EPA has set the drinking water standard for endrin at 2 ppb to protect against
the risk of these adverse health effects which have been observed in laboratory animals.
Drinking water that meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and
should be considered safe with respect to endrin.

ETHYLENE DIBROMIDE (EDB) MCL 0.05 ug/l

This organic chemical was once a popular pesticide. When soil and climactic conditions are
favorable, EDB may get into drinking water by runoff into surface water or by leaching into
groundwater. This chemical has been shown to damage the nervous and reproductive systems
of such laboratory animals as rats and mice exposed at high levels over their lifetimes.
Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in
humans who are exposed over long periods. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for EDB
at 0.05 ug/l to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water that meets
the USEPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and is considered safe with
respect to EDB.


GLYPHOSATE MCL 700 ug/l

This organic chemical is a herbicide used to control grasses and weeds. It may get into
drinking water by runoff into surface water. This chemical has been shown to damage liver and
kidneys in laboratory animals such as rats and mice exposed to high levels over their lifetimes.
EPA has set the drinking water standard for glyphosate at 700 ppb to protect against the risk of
adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to
none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to glyphosate.

HEPTACHLOR MCL 0.4 ug/l

This organic chemical was once a popular pesticide. When soil and climatic conditions are
favorable, heptachlor may get into drinking water by runoff into surface water or by leaching into
groundwater. This chemical has been shown to damage the nervous and reproductive systems
of such laboratory animals as rats and mice exposed at high levels over their lifetimes.
Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in
humans who are exposed over long periods. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for
heptachlor at 0.4 ug/l to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water
that meets the USEPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and is considered
safe with respect to heptachlor.

HEPTACHLOR EPOXIDE MCL 0.2 ug/l

This organic chemical was once a popular pesticide. When soil and climatic conditions are
favorable, heptachlor epoxide may get into drinking water by runoff into surface water or by
leaching into groundwater. This chemical has been shown to damage the nervous and reproductive systems of such laboratory animals as rats and mice exposed at high levels over their lifetimes. Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed over lon periods. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for heptachlor epoxide at 04 ug/l to protec against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water that meets the USEPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and is considered safe with respect to heptachlor epoxide.

LINDANE MCL 0.2 ug/l

Lindane (gamma isomer of 1,2,3,4,5,6-hexachlorocyclohexane) is an insecticide registered for
commercial and home use. Lindane is the active ingredient in several prescribed shampoos used for the elimination of head lice. Lindane is slightly soluble in water and will volatilize to the atmosphere from soil or water. It is persistent in soils (half-life greater than 100 days), though it does undergo rapid biotransformation under anaerobic conditions. Acute exposure of animals to lindane results in neurological and behavioral effects. The liver and the kidney appear to be the primary target organs for lindane toxicity. Lindane is classified as "B2-C" (i.e., in between the lower half of the "B" category of'probable' and the "C" category of ;possible' carcinogen classifications) based upon evidence that lindane gives rise to malignant liver tumors in two strains of mice, plus supportive evidence of precancerous liver lesions in shorter term studies. Lindane, because of the potential adverse effects and occurrence in drinking water, is regulated.

METHOXYCHLOR MCL 40 ug/l

Methoxychior, a chemical closely related to DDT, has been used as an insecticide for approximately 40 years. Methoxychlor has been widely used in home and garden applications, as well as on domestic animals, trees, and in waters. The halflife for methoxychlor in water is estimated to be 46 days, and thus it is not considered to be persistent. Methoxychlor exhibits a

OXAMYL (Vydate) MCL 200 ug/l

This organic chemical is used as a pesticide for the control of insects and other pests. It may get into drinking water by runoff into surface water or leaching into ground water. This chemical has been shown to damage the kidneys of laboratory animals such as rats when exposed at high levels over their lifetimes. EPA has set the drinking standard for oxamyl at 200 ppb to protect against these adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to oxamyl.

PICLORAM MCL 500 ug/l

This organic chemical is used as a pesticide for broadleaf weed control. It may get into drinking water by runoff into surface water or leaching into groundwater as a result of pesticide application and improper waste disposal. This chemical has been shown to cause damage to the kidneys and liver in laboratory animals such as rats when the animals are exposed at high levels over their lifetimes. EPA has set the drinking water standard for picloram at 500 ppb to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none this risk and should be considered safe with respect to picloram.

SIMAZINE MCL 4 ug/l


This organic chemical is a herbicide used to control annual grasses and broadleaf weeds. It may leach into groundwater or runs off into surface water application. This chemical may cause cancer in laboratory animals and mice exposed at high levels during their lifetimes. Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed over long of time. EPA has set the drinking water standard for simazine at 4 ppb to reduce the risk of cancer or other adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to simazine.

TOXAPHENE MCL 3 ug/l

Toxaphene (a mixture of C10 chlorinated camphenes with an approximate overall empirica formula of C10H10Cl5) is a persistent, broad-spectrum insecticide. This product was used
extensively on food and fiber crops for many years, but current registered uses are limited. The USEPA Toxaphene Work Group reported that toxaphene is highly persistent and accumulates in the environment. Acute exposure to toxaphene results in a variety of central nervous system effects, including salivation, hyperexcitability, behavioral changes, and convulsions. The kidney, liver, and testes are also affected by acute exposure to toxaphene. Toxaphene has been classified in EPA's Group B2 (probable human carcinogen), based upon the positive results in studies in rats and mice. The available data indicate that toxaphene is a potent carcinogen in animals. For this reason and because there is some occurrence in drinking water, it is regulated.

2,4-D (2,4-DICHLOROPHENOXYACETIC ACID) MCL 70 ug/l

2,4-D (2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid) is a systemic herbicide used to control broadleaf weeds. 2,4-D is sold as a variety of salts, esters, and other derivatives which are very soluble in water. 2,4-D and its derivatives undergo both chemical and biological degradation when released to the environment. Soil residues break down in approximately six weeks and repeated application usually does not lead to accumulation. Nearly 60 percent of the domestically available 2,4-D is used on agricultural crop sites. The remainder is used on range and pasture land, industrial and commercial sites, lawns and turf, forests, and in water. 2,4-D is currently registered for aquatic weed control in ponds, lakes, reservoirs, marshes, bayous, drainage ditches, canals, rivers, and streams. 2,4-D has been detected in many surface and groundwaters. The compound has been detected in waste waters and hazardous wastes; it is mobile and widely used on many crops. Short-term exposure to 2,4-D at high doses by the oral route or by other routes results in progressive symptoms of muscular incoordination, hindquarter paralysis, stupor, coma, and death in animals. 2,4-D has been classified in EPA's Group D (not classifiable), based upon inadequate data from animal studies. Exposure to 2,4-D at high dose levels results in kidney damage and skeletal muscle changes; thus it is regulated.

2,4,5-TP (SILVEX) MCL 50 ug/l

2,4,5-TP [2-(2,4,5-trichlorophenoxy) propionic acid], or silver, is an herbicide that has been used for weed and brush control on rangeland and rights of way, pastures, commercial or ornamental turf, home weed control, and weed control in and along canals and other waterways. 2,4,5-TP is soluble in water, and its environmental persistence is expected to be relatively short. 2,4,5-TP is contaminated to varying extents with 2,3,7,8-TCDD, a highly toxic polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxin. Substantial differences in the toxicity of 2,4,5-TP have been reported, probably based upon the degree of contamination of the compound. Single, oral exposure to 2,4,5TP at high doses causes a variety of physiological and biochemical effects including depression, posterior quarter muscle weakness, irritation of the stomach, and minor liver and kidney damage in mammals. It has been classified in EPA's Group D (not classifiable), based upon inadequate data from animal studies. Exposure to 2,4,5-TP at high dose levels results in a variety of chronic adverse health effects. Because this contaminant also has been detected in several drinking water systems, it is regulated.

TRIHALOMETHANES (TOTAL) (TTHMs) MCL 100 ug/l

Trihalomethanes are members of a group of organic chemicals that contain one carbon atom, one hydrogen atom, and three halogen atoms. The halogen atoms important in the formation of trihalomethanes in water are chlorine, bromine, and iodine. At most locations, only 4 of the 10 possible trihalomethanes can occur in significant concentrations in chlorinated drinking water. They are trichloromethane (chloroform), bromodichloromethane, dibromochloromethane, and tribromomethane (Bromoform).
Chloroform, usually the trihalomethane found in the highest concentrations, is formed by the reaction of free chlorine with certain natural organic compounds in the water. Formation occurs during chlorination and can continue to occur as long as free chlorine is available. Other trihalomethanes are formed by the reaction of bromine or iodine with the same group of organic compounds. The effects of chloroform on the human body are still under study, but one test has found that< high doses of chloroform can be carcinogenic to rats and mice. Therefore, the USEPA considers chloroform a potential human carcinogen. The USEPA also believes that the other trihalomethanes are implicated, by association, as potential carcinogens.
The primary drinking water regulations provide an MCL of 0. 10 mg/l for total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) along with associated monitoring and reporting requirements. This MCL applies to community water systems which serve more than 10,000 people and add a disinfectant (oxidant) to the water in any part of the drinking water treatment process. This MCL may be extended in time to community water systems serving fewer than 10,000 people as well as to noncommunity systems.


OTHER ORGANICS

ACRYLAMIDE Treatment Technique

Polymers made from acrylamide are sometimes used to treat water supplies to remove particulates. Acrylamide has been shown to cause cancer in rats and mice when the animals are exposed at high levels over their lifetimes. Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed over long periods. Sufficiently large doses of acrylamide are known to cause neurological injury. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for acrylamide using a treatment technique to reduce the risk of cancer or other adverse health effects which have been observed in laboratory animals. This treatment technique limits the amount of acrylamide in the polymer and the amount of polymer which may be added to drinking water to remove particulates. Drinking water systems which comply with this treatment technique have little to no risk and are considered safe with respect to acrylamide.

BENZO[A]PYRENE MCL 0.2 ug/l

The major source of benzo[a]pyrene in drinking water is the leaching from coal tar lining and sealants in water storage tanks. Cigarette smoke and charbroiled meats are a common source of general exposure. This organic chemical has been shown to cause cancer in animals such as rats and mice when the animals are exposed at high levels. EPA has set the drinking water standard for benzo[a]pyrene at 0.2 ppb to protect against the risk of cancer. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to benzo[a]pyrene.

1,2-DICHLOROPROPANE MCL 5 ug/l

This organic chemical is used as a solvent and a pesticide. When soil and climactic
conditions are favorable, 1,2-dichloropropane may get into drinking water by runoff into surface water or by leaching into groundwater. It may also get into drinking water through Improper waste disposal. This chemical has been shown to damage the nervous and reproductive system of laboratory animals such as rats and mice exposed at high levels over their lifetimes. Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed over long periods. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for 1,2dichloropropane at 5 ug/l to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water that meets the USEPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and is considered safe with respect to dichloropropane.

DI(Z-ETHYLH EXYL)ADI FATE MCL 400 ug/l

Di(2-ethylhexyl)adipate is a widely used plasticizer in a variety of products, including synthetic rubber, food packaging materials and cosmetics. It may get into drinking water after improper waste disposal. EPA has set the drinking water standard for di(2-ethylhexyl)adipate at 400 ppb to protect against the risk of adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to di(2ethylhexyl)adipate.

DI(2-ETHVLHEXYL)PHTHALATE MCL 6 ug/l

Di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate is widely used in the production of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) resins. It may get into drinking water after improper waste disposal. This chemical has been shown to cause cancer in laboratory animals such as rats and mice exposed to high levels over their lifetimes. EPA has set the drinking water standard for di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate at 6 ppb to protect against the risk of cancer or other adverse health effects which have been observed in laboratory animals. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate. EPICHLOROHYDRIN Treatment Technique

Polymers made from epichlorohydrin are sometimes used in the treatment ol water supplies as a flocculent to remove particulates. Epichlorohydrin generally get! into drinking water by the improper use of these polymers. This chemical has been shown to cause cancer in rats and mice when the animals are exposed at high levels over their lifetimes. Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed over long periods. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for epichlorohydrin using a treatment technique to reduce the risk of cancer or other adverse health effects which have been observed in laboratory animals. This treatment technique limits the amount of epichlorohydrin ir the polymer and the amount of polymer which may be added to drinking water as a flocculent to remove particulates. Drinking water systems which comply with this treatment technique have little to no risk and are considered safe with respect to epichlorohydrin.

ETHYLBENZENE MCL 700 ug/l

This organic chemical is a major component of gasoline. It generally gets into water by improper waste disposal or leaking gas tanks. This chemical has been shown to damage kidneys, livers, and nervous systems of such laboratory animals as rats exposed to high levels during their lifetimes. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for ethylbenzene at 700 ugil to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water that meets the USEPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and is considered safe with respect to ethylbenzene.

HEXACHLOROBENZENE MCL 1 ug/l

This organic chemical is produced as an impurity in the manufacture of certain solvents and pesticides. This chemical has been shown to cause cancer in laboratory animals such as rats and mice when the animals are exposed to high levels during their lifetimes. Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed over long periods of time. EPA has se the drinking water standard for hexachlorobenzene at 1 ppb to protect against the rislr of cancer and other adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respectto hexachlorobenzene.

HEXACHLOROCYCLOPENTADIENE MCL 50 ug/l

This organic chemical is used as an intermediate in the manufacture of pesticides and flame retardants. It may get into water by discharge from production facilities. This chemical has been shown to damage the kidney and the stomach of laboratory animals when exposed to high levels over their lifetimes. EPA has set the drinking water standard for hexachlorocyclopentadiene at 50 ppb to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to hexachlorocyclopentadiene.

PENTACHLOROPHENOL
MCL 1 ug/l

Pentachlorophenol is an organic chemical used as a wood preservative, herbicide, disinfectant, and defoliant. It generally gets into drinking water by runoff into surface water or leaching into groundwater. This chemical has been shown to produce adverse effects and to damage the liver and kidneys of laboratory animals such as rats exposed to high levels during their lifetimes. Some humans who were exposed to relatively large amounts of this chemical also suffered damage to the liver and kidneys. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for pentachlorophenol at 1 part per billion ug/l) to protect against the risk of cancer or other health< effects.

STYRENE
MCL 100 ug/l

This organic chemical is commonly used to make plastics and is sometimes a component of resins used for drinking water treatment. Styrene may get into drinking water from improper waste disposal. This chemical has been shown to damage the livers and nervous systems of laboratory animals when exposed to high levels during their lifetimes. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for styrene at 100 ug/l to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water that meets the USEPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and is considered safe with respect to styrene.

TOLUENE
MCL 1000 ug/l

This organic chemical is used as a solvent and in the manufacture of gasoline for airplanes. It generally gets into water by improper waste disposal or leaking underground storage tanks. This chemical has been shown to damage kidneys, livers, and nervous systems of such laboratory animals as rats and mice exposed to high levels during their lifetimes. Some industrial workers who were exposed to relatively large amounts of this chemical during working careers also suffered damage to the liver, kidney, and nervous system. USEPA has set the drinking water standard for toluene at 1000 ugil to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water that meets the USEPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and is considered safe with respect to toluene.

1,1,2-TRICHLOROETHANE MCL 5 ug/l


This organic chemical is an intermediate in the production of 1,1,2-trichloroethylene. It generally gets into water by industrial discharge of wastes. This chemical has been shown to damage the kidney and liver of laboratory animals such as rats exposed to high levels during their lifetimes. EPA has set the drinking water standard for 1,1,2-trichloroethane at 0.005 ppm to protect against the risk of these adverse health effects. Drinking water which meets the EPA standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to 1,1,2trichloroethylene.

2,3,7,8-TCDD (Dioxin) MCL 0.00003 ug/l

This organic chemical is an impurity in the production of some pesticides. It may get into drinking water by industrial discharge of wastes. This chemical has been shown to cause cancer in laboratory animals such as rats and mice when the animals are exposed at high levels over their lifetimes. Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals also may increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed over long periods of time. EPA has set the drinking water standard for dioxin at 0.00003 ppb to reduce the risk of cancer or other adverse health effects which have been observed in laboratory animals. Drinking water which meets this standard is associated with little to none of this risk and should be considered safe with respect to dioxin.

MICROBIOLOGICAL MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVELS - THE COLIFORM TEST

The fact that a water supply has been used for a long time without any adverse effects is no guarantee of its safety. Residents of a community may develop a tolerance for certain bacteria to
which they are regularly exposed, but strangers often become ill from drinking the same water.
For this reason it is important that drinking water be tested regularly for bacteriological quality.

The standard bacteriological method for judging the suitability of water for domestic use is the
coliform test. This method of analysis detects the presence of coliform bacteria, which are found
in the natural environment (soils and plants) and in the intestines of humans and other
warmblooded animals. They are discharged in the bowel movement; hence, any food or water
sample in which this group of bacteria is found is to be suspected of having come into contact
with domestic sewage, animal manure, or with soil or plant materials. It follows that such a water
supply may contain pathogenic bacteria and viruses which cause such serious human illnesses
as typhoid fever, dysentery, hepatitis, etc.

The present regulations require water systems to take a minimum number of microbiological
samples each month based upon the number of persons being served. The larger the population
served, the more microbiological samples required per month.
The two standard methods for determining the numbers of coliform bacteria in a water sample
are the multiple tube fermentation technique and the membrane filter technique. In the multiple
tube fermentation techniaue, a series of fermentation tubes containing special nutrients is
inoculated with appropriate quantities of water to be tested and incubated. After 24 hours, the
presence or absence of gas formation in the tubes is noted. This is considered a presumptive
test for the presence of coliform organisms. A confirming test performed for drinking water
samples involves a similar technique using the culture from the positive presumptive test in a
different nutrient medium.

In the membrane filter technique, which is less time consuming, an appropriate quantity of
water to be tested is filtered through a specially designed membrane filter which traps bacteria.
The filter is removed and placed in a special dish with nutrients and incubated for 24 hours. The
typical coliform colony has a metallic surface sheen. The results are usually expressed as
number of coliform colonies per 100 mi of water sample.

TOTAL COLIFORM RULE (effective January 1, 1991)

The new rule does not change the monitoring frequency for any system unless the population
served by the system is over 10,000. The number of routine samples is based on population
size. The way the laboratories process the samples will remain similar, as explained below.

The major changes in the new rule will occur in the evaluation stage. All the results of the
analytical testing will be reported as either the PRESENCE or ABSENCE of coliforms. If all
samples show absence, then your system is in compliance. If the sample shows the presence of
coliforms, three things happen:

1. The Lab will automatically test the sample for fecal coliform.

2. You must collect either 4 REPEAT samples (for systems equal to or less than 1,000
population) or 3 REPEAT samples (for systems greater than 1,000 population) within the next
24 hours. The repeat samples must be taken at the original sample point, one immediately
upstream of the original site, and one immediately downstream of the original site. The fourth
sample can be taken from any sample point. If any of the repeat samples come back indicating a
presence of coliform, you will need to take another set of repeat samples.

3. The following month you will need to take a total of at least 5 ROUTINE samples. If your
system normally takes less than five routine samples per month, you will need to take whatever
number of penalty samples to bring the total up to 5 routine for that month.

For systems collecting less than 40 samples per month, you may have no more than 1 Total
Coliform positive sample per month. For systems collecting over 40 routine samples per month,
you may have no more than 5 percent of your samples total coliform positive per month. In either
case, if any sample (routine or repeat) is fecal coliform positive, then your system is
automatically in violation of the MCL for total coliforms.
There are three different violations:


1. Monitoring Violation: if you did not take the required number of routine
samples per month.
2. Nonacute Quality Violation: when the total coliform has been detected in
excess of the MCL, but no pathogens (fecal coliforms) have been detected. 3. Acute Quality
Violation: both total coliform and pathogens have been detected.
Public notice is dependent on the type of violation that has occurred. The violation must be
reported to the state by the end of the working day.

MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVELS FOR TURBIDITY

Turbidity in water is caused by the presence of suspended matter, such as clay, silt, fine
particles of organic and inorganic matter, and plankton and other microscopic organisms. The
standard measure of turbidity, the turbidity unit (TU), is an expression of the optical property of a
water sample which causes light to be seattered and absorbed rather than transmitted in straight
lines through the sample. As the number of particles increases, more light is scattered, and
higher turbidity readings are obtained. The measuring instrument is called a nephelometer, and
the readings are expressed as nephelometric turbidity units (NTU) or turbidity units.

Turbidities in excess of 5 TUs are easily detectable in a glass of water and are usually
objectionable for aesthetic reasons. Clay or other inert suspended particles in drinking water
may not adversely affect health, but water containing such particles may require treatment to
make it suitable for its intended use. Following a rainfall, variations in groundwater turbidity may
be an indication of surface pollution.

TURBIDITY MCL No more than 5% of samples may exceed 0.5
Nephelometric Turbidity Unit (NTU)

For water systems using conventional filtration or direct filtration, the turbidity level of
representative samples of a system's filtered water must be less than or equal to 0.5 NTU in at
least 95 percent of the measurements taken each month, measured as specified in Code of
Federal Regulations [CFR 141.74 (a)(4) and (c)(l)l, except that if the State determines that the
system is capable of achieving at least 99.9 percent removal and/or inactivation of Giardia
lamblia cysts at some turbidity level higher than 0.5 NTU in at least 95 percent of the
measurements taken each month, the State may substitute this higher turbidity limit for that
system. However, in no case may the State approve a turbidity limit that allows more that 1 NTU
in more than 5 percent of the samples taken each month. The turbidity level of representative
samples of a systems' filtered water must at no time exceed 5 NTU.

RADIOLOGICAL CONTAMINANTS

The use of atomic energy as a power source for industrial needs, and for medical diagnosis
and treatment, the mining of radioactive materials, and naturally occurring radioactive geological
formations have made it necessary to establish limiting concentrations for the intake into the
body of radioactive substances. These limits apply to food as well as drinking water.

There are adverse health effects from radiation, and unnecessary exposure should be avoided.
The MCLs for radioactivity (radionuclides) in the current regulations are intended to limit the
human intake of these substances so that the total radiation exposure of any individual will not
exceed those defined in the Radiation Protection Guides recommended by the Federal Radiation
Council. Man has always been exposed to natural radiation from water, food, and air, and the
quantity of

radiation a person is exposed to varies with the background radioactivity. Water of high
radioactivity is unusual; nevertheless, it is known to exist in certain areas, from either natural or
man-made sources.

Radiological data are available for certain areas in publications of the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency, U.S. Public Health Service, U.S. Geological Survey, and from federal, state,
or local agencies. For information or recommendations on specific problems, the appropriate
agency should be contacted.


RADIOACTIVITY (RADIONUCLIDES) MCLs (see below)" Gross Alpha Particle Activity,
Radium - 226 and Radium - 228
Combined Radium - 226 and Radium - 228 SpCi/l

Gross alpha particle activity (including Radium - 226 but excluding radon and uranium) 1SpCill

Man-made Radioactivity

The average annual concentration of beta particle and photon radioactivity from man-made
radionuclides in drinking water shall not produce an annual dose equivalent to the total body or
any internal organ greater than 4 milliremi year. Tritium must be less than 20,000 pCi/l, and
strontium must be less than 8 pCi/l, provided that if both of the latter are present the sum of their
annual dose equivalent to bone marrow shall not exceed 4 millirem/year.

If gross beta particle activity exceeds S0pCi/l, major radioactive constituents must be identified,
and appropriate organ and total body doses must be calculated.

'These MCLs are summarized Consult the Code of Federal Regulations 14115 for complete
requirements


TREATMENT TECHNIQUE REQUIREMENTS FOR LEAD AND COPPER ACTION LEVELS

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has established action levels for lead and copper.
The action level for lead is exceeded if the concentration of lead in more than )O percent of tap
water samples collected during any monitoring period is greater than 0.015 mg/l. The action level
for copper is exceeded if the concentration of copper in more than 10 percent of the of tap water
samples collected during any monitoring period is greater than 1.3 mg/l.

CORROSION CONTROL TREATMENT

Systems must collect tap water samples for lead and copper from high-risk homes.
Corrosion Control Studies

1. Systems triggered into the corrosion control treatment requirements may first have to
conduct studies to compare the effectiveness of:

-pH and alkalinity adjustment (reduces the acidity of the water); -calcium adjustment (promotes
the formation of protective
coating inside pipes and plumbing); and
-addition of phosphate or silica-based corrosion inhibitor (forms protective coating inside pipes
and plumbing).

2. All large water systems (serving >50,000 people) are required to conduct such studies.

3. Small and medium-size water systems (serving 150,000 people) that exceed the lead or
copper action level are required to first submit a recommendation for optimal corrosion control
treatment'ro the state.

4. The state will either approve the recommended treatment or require the installation of an
alternative treatment. The state may, as an alternative, require small and medium-size water
systems to conduct the corrosion control treatment studies described above.

5. Any system that conducts corrosion control studies must recommend an optimal corrosion
control treatment to the state on the basis of study results and monitoring data.

6. States will either approve a system's recommendation or designate an alternative treatment
as optimal.

Corrosion Control Treatment

I. Once treatment is specified by the state, systems will have 24 months to install optimal
corrosion control treatment and 12 months to collect follow-up samples.

2. States will assign values for a set of water quality parameters that constitute
optimal corrosion control treatment:
-pH;
-alkalinity;
-calcium, when carbonate stabilization is used;
-orthophosphate, when an inhibitor with a phosphate compound
is used; and
-silica, when an inhibitor with a silicate compound is used.

3. A system must continue to operate within the water quality parameters established by the
state.


SOURCE WATER TREATMENT

1. All public water systems that exceed the tap water lead or copper action level must collect
source water samples and submit the data with a treatment recommendation to the state.

2. States may specify one of the following treatments, or an alternative treatment at least as
effective, for the system to install: a) ion exchange, b) reverse osmosis, c) lime softening, or d)
coagulation/filtration.

3. Once treatment is specified by the state, systems will have 24 months to install source water
treatment and 12 months to collect follow-up source water samples.

4. States will review follow-up source water monitoring results and assign maximum
permissible lead and copper concentrations in source water entering the distribution system.

5. Systems must continue to deliver water to all entry points in the distribution system that does
not exceed the maximum permissible lead and copper concentrations established by the state.

6. Source water monitoring will be standardized to 3/6/9 year cycles after treatment or the state
determines no treatment is necessary.


PUBLIC EDUCATION

1. Informs the public about the adverse health effects of lead and explains the steps people
can take in their homes to reduce their exposure to lead in drinking water (i.e., flushing the tap;
cooking with cold water rather than hot; checking for lead solder in new plumbing; and testing
their water for lead).

2. All public water systems exceeding the lead action level must deliver the USEPA-developed
public education program to their customers within 60 days.

3. Every 12 months, systems must deliver:

-bill stuffers to their customers and brochures to all institutions in the community frequented by
women and children (i.e., health departments, hospitals, clinics, etc.), and
-the public education material to the editorial departments of major newspapers serving the
community.

4. Every 6 months, systems must submit a public service announcement on lead in drinking
water to major television and radio stations serving the community.

5. Every 12 months, nontransient noncommunity water systems must post information notices
in each building served by the system and deliver brochures to all of the system's customers.
6. The public education program must be delivered by a water system for as long as the
system exceeds the lead action level.


LEAD SERVICE LINE REPLACEMENT

1. All public water systems that continue to exceed the lead action level after installing optimal
corrosion control treatment and source water treatment must replace lead service lines that
contribute in excess of 15 parts per billion (ppb) to total tap water lead levels.

2. A system must replace 7 percent of its lead lines each year or demonstrate that the lines not
replaced contribute less than 15 ppb of lead to drinking water at the tap.

3. A system must replace the entire lead service line unless it can demonstrate that it does not
control the entire line. Water systems must offer to replace the owner's portion of the service
line.

4. A system that exceeds the lead action level after installing optimal corrosion control
treatment and source water treatment has 15 years to replace all lead service lines.


WHAT DO THE SECONDARY MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVELS (SMCLs) MEAN?

The contaminants covered by these regulations are those which may adversely affect the
aesthetic quality of drinking water, such as taste, odor, color, and appearance, and which
thereby may deter public acceptance of drinking water provided by public water systems.

Secondary levels represent reasonable goals for drinking water quality but are not
enforceable. Rather, they are intended as guidelines. Odor, color, taste, and other aesthetic
qualities are important factors in the public's acceptance and confidence in the public water
system; thus, states have encouraged the implementation of these SMCLs so that the public will
not be driven to obtain drinking water from potentially lower quality, higher risk sources.

Table 5, New Jersey Secondary Drinking Water Regulations -- Secondary Maximum
Contaminant Levels (SMCLs) (effective July 30, 1992), lists the regulations currently in effect.
New Jersey requires periodic monitoring for secondary contaminants in public community water
systems. The regulations define upper and lower limits for these substances in drinking water to
protect the public welfare. Failure of test results to fall within these limits may constitute grounds
for unacceptability of the water supply.



TABLE 5. NEW JERSEY SECONDARY DRINKING WATER REGULATIONS --
SECONDARY MAXIMUM CONTAMINANT LEVEL (SMCLs) (effective July 30, 1992)

Contaminant SMCL

ABS/LAS (Foaming Agents)' 0.5 mgil(upper limit) ALUMINUM'
0.05 - 0.2 mgil
CHLORIDE 250 mg/l (upper limit)
COLOR 10 color units
(Standard Cobalt Scale) COPPER
1.0 mg/l
CORROSIVITY Within + or -1.0 of the optimum
pH as determined by the Langelier Index; or by another
method acceptable to the NJDEP FLUORIDE1.0 mg/l
(artificially adjusted)'
2.0 mg/l(naturally occurring)' HARDNESS (as CaCo,)
250 mgil upper limit
50 mg/l lower limit
IRON4 0.3 mgil
MANGANESE" 0.05 mg/l
ODOR 3 Threshold odor number (TON) pH2
6.5 - 8.5 (optimum range) SILVER' 0.1 mg/l SODIUMS
50 mg/l
SULFATE 250 mg/l (upper limit) TASTE
No objectionable taste TOTAL DISSOLVED SOLIDS (TDS) 500 mg/l
(upper limit) ZINC 5 mg/l(upper limit)

Alkyl-Benzene-Sulfonate and Llnear-Alkyl-Sulfonate or similar Methylene Blue Reactive
Substances contained In synthetic detergents

З A USEPA SMCL which NJDEP intends to adopt when it promulgates new regualtions

Note that an MCL for fluoride is included in the state Primary Drinlting Water Regulations This
recommended lower limit applies only to those water supplies in which the fluoride
concentration is artificially adjusted

З The limits for iron and manganese may be raised to 06 mgil and 01 mgil, respectively, if a
sequestering treatment is provided However, when either of these higher limits is exceeded in
the raw water of a public community water system, the water shall be treated so as to reduce
the iron concentration to below 0 3 mgil andior the manganese concentration to below 005 mgil

З Significant only for consumers requiring a low-sodium diet


Microbiological and Biological Characteristics

1. Drinking water shall be free from visible organisms such as algae, algal diatoms, arachnids,
and larvae. ABSILAS FOAMING AGENTS SMCL 0.5 mgll

The 0.5 mgll limit for foaming agents is based upon the fact that, at higher concentration levels,
the water may exhibit undesirable taste and foaming properties. Also, concentrations above the
limit may be indicative of undesirable contaminants or pollutants from questionable sources,
such as infiltration by sewage. Because no standardized "foamability test" exists, this property is
determined indirectly by measuring the anionic surfactant concentration in the water utilizing the
Methylene Blue Test. Many substances other than detergents, however, will cause foaming, and
their presence will be detected by the Methylene Blue Test.

ALUMINUM SMCL 0.05 - 0.2 mgll

USEPA believes that in some waters post-precipitation of aluminum may take place after
treatment. This could cause increased turbidity and aluminum water quality slugs under certain
treatment and distribution changes. USEPA also agrees with the World Health Organization
(WHO, 1984) that "discoloration of drinking water in distribution systems may occur when the
aluminum level exceeds O. 1 mg/l in the finished water." WHO further adopts a guidance level of
0.2 mg/l in recognition of difficulty in meeting the lower level in some situations. While USEPA
encourages utilities to meet a level of 0.05 mg/l where possible, it still believes that varying water
quality and treatment situations necessitate a flexible approach to establish the SMCL. What
may be appropriate in one case may not be appropriate in another. Hence, a range for the
standard is appropriate. The definition of "secondary drinking water regulation" in the SDWA
provides that variations may be allowed according to "other circumstances." The state primacy
agency may make a decision on the appropriate level for each utility on a case-by-case basis.
Consequently, for the reasons given above, the final SMCL for aluminum will be a range of 0.05
mgil to 0.2 mg/l, with the precise level then being determined by the state for each system.

CHLORIDE SMCL 250 mgll

The SMCL of 250 mg/l for chloride is the level above which the taste of the water may become
objectionable to the consumer. In addition to the adverse taste effects, high chloride
concentration levels in the water contribute to the deterioration of domestic plumbing, water
heaters, and municipal waterworks equipment. High chloride concentrations in the water may
also be associated with the presence of sodium in drinking water. Elevated concentration levels
of sodium may have an adverse health effect on normal, healthy persons. In addition, a small
segment of the population may be on severely restricted diets requiring limitation of their sodium
intake. For the preceding reasons, the SMCL for chloride represents a desirable and reasonable
level for protection of the public welfare

COLOR SMCL 10 CU

In some instances, color may be objectionable to some people at as low as 5 CU. Color may
be indicative of large quantities of organic chemicals, inadequate treatment, high disinfectant
demand, and the potential for production of excess amounts of disinfectants' by-products such as
trihalomethanes. Natural color may be caused by decaying leaves, plants, and soil organic
matter. It may also result from


the presence of such metals as copper, iron, and manganese (which also have SMCLs), as well
as color from industrial sources. While color itself is not usually objectionable from the
standpoint of health, its presence is aesthetically objectionable and suggests that the water may
need additional treatment. Experience has shown that rapid changes in color levels lead to
greater consumer complaints, as opposed to a relatively constant color level.

COPPER SMCL1.0 mg/l

Experience indicates that copper at concentration levels exceeding 2.0 mg/l causes significant
staining and adverse tastes. To many people, copper imparts a detectable taste at a
concentration level of 1 mg/l. The SMCL of 1 mgil was exceeded in only 1.6% of the 295 tap
water samples taken in the Community Water Supply Study by EPA in 1970. In instances where
high copper concentration levels in the drinking water are observed, it is likely that other heavy
metals area also present. Consequently, the presence of excessive copper in the water system
may indicate possible corrosion of the distribution system, or suggest that the drinking water
supply may be contaminated with products from mining operations. Therefore, it is reasonable to
establish 1.0 mg/l as the SMCL for copper to protect the public welfare.

CORROSIVITY SMCL Within + or -1 of the optimum pH as determined
by the Langelier Index

Corrosion is a complex phenomenon and the occurrence of corrosion-related contamination is
not uniform in all water supply systems. Problems of corrosive waters are unique to the
circumstances in each public water system because the quality of the raw water varies, treatment
systems can impact the corrosive nature of the water, and distribution systems vary in types of
pipe used.

In 1936, Professor Langelier's work dealing with the conditions at which a given water is in
equilibrium with calcium carbonate was published. The use of the equation developed by
Langelier made it possible to predict the tendency of natural or conditioned water either to
deposit calcium carbonate or to dissolve calcium carbonate. This is useful in predicting the
scaling or corrosive tendencies of a water. If the water dissolves calcium carbonate, the water is
corrosive and has a negative value; if the water deposits calcium carbonate, it has a scaling
tendency and a positive value.

In recognition of the importance of the role of various parameters affecting the corrosivity of the
water, USEPA regulations include specific requirements for monitoring and reporting the pH,
alkalinity, hardness, and TDS of the water.

The Aggressive Index (AI) established as a criterion for determining the quality of the water
that can be transported through asbestos cement pipe without adverse effects, is calculated from
the pH, calcium hardness in mg/l as CaCO,- (H), and the total alkalinity in mg/l as CaCO,- (A) of
the water by the formula AI = pH i log(AH). Aggressive index values less than 10.0 indicate
highly aggressive water, values between 10.0 and 12.0 indicate moderately aggressive water,
and values greater than 12.0 indicate nonaggressive waters.
FLUORIDE SMCL 1.0 mg/l (lower limit) (artificially adjusted water
supplies)

The examination of the teeth of many thousands of children, and the fluoride analysis of
hundreds of water supplies showed a remarkable relationship between the concentration of
waterborne fluoride and the incidence of dental caries. The relationship, or actually three distinct
relationships, are as follows:
1. When the fluoride level exceeds about 1.5 ppm, any further increase does not significantly
decrease the incidence of decayed, missing, or filled teeth. but does increase the occurrence
and severity of mottling.
2. At a fluoride level of approximately 1.0 ppm, the optimum occurs - maximum reduction in
caries with no aesthetically significant mottling.
3. At fluoride levels below 1.0 ppm some benefits occur, but caries reduction is not so great
and gradually decreases as the fluoride levels decrease until, as zero fluoride is approached, no
observable improvement occurs.

For these reasons, NJDEP regulations set a lower limit ofl.O mgil for drinking water supplies
which artificially adjust the level of fluoride. The levels are adjusted by the addition of a variety of
fluoride containing compounds, such as fluosilicic acid, sodium silicofluoride, etc. The optimum
fluoride level for a given community depends on climatic conditions because the amount of water
(and consequently the amount of fluoride) ingested by children is primarily influenced by air
temperature. This relationship was first studied and reported by Galagan and Associates in the
1950s, but has been further investigated and supported by Richards, ct al in 1967. It should be
noted that when fluoride is artificially adjusted, it is particularly advantageous to maintain fluoride
concentration at or near the optimum. The reduction in dental caries experienced at optimum
fluoride concentrations will diminish by as much as 50% when fluoride concentration is 0.2 mg/l
below the optimum. For these reasons, NJDEP intends to recommend a range of 0.8 - 1.2 mg/l
for artificially adjusted water supplies when it promulgates new regulations.

FLUORIDE SMCL 2.0 mg/l (upper limit) (naturally occurring
fluoride)

USEPA has also set a SMCL of 2.0 mg/l (upper limit) for fluoride in drinking water supplies
which have naturally occurring fluoride to protect against objectionable dental fluorosis tie., a
staining andior pitting of the teeth). While community water systems are not required to reduce
the level of fluoride if it exceeds 2.0 mg/l, they are required to distribute a public notice which
advises that children are likely to develop objectionable dental fluorosis. USEPA concludes that
dental fluorosis is a cosmetic effect and not an adverse health effect. In 1986, USEPA
promulgated an MCL of 4.0 mgil for fluoride. This level protects humans from crippling skeletal
fluorosis, an adverse health effect.

HARDNESS (WATER HARDNESS) SMCL 250 mg/l

Water hardness is caused by the polyvalent metallic ions dissolved in water. Hardness
commonly is reported as an equivalent concentration of calcium carbonate (CACO3).

The concept of hardness comes from water supply practice. It is measured by soap
requirements for adequate lather formation and as an indicator of the rate of scale formation in
hot water heaters and low-pressure boilers. A commonly used classification is given below:

Classification of Water by Hardness Content

Concentration Concentration Hardness Descriotion CACO3, (mg/l) (gpg)
0-75 0-5 soft
75-150 5-9 moderately hard 150-300 9-18 hard
300 and up 18 and up very hard


Hardness is sometimes expressed as grains per gallon (gpg). To convert milligrams per liter
(mg/l) or parts per million (ppm) to grains per gallon (gpg), use the formula below:

(mg/l) or (ppm) = gpg 17.1

Natural sources of hardness principally are limestones which are dissolved by percolating
rainwater made acidic by dissolved carbon dioxide. Industrial sources include discharges from
operating and abandoned mines.

Hardness in fresh water frequently is distinguished as carbonate and noncarbonate fractions.
The carbonate fraction is chemically equivalent to the bicarbonates present in water. Since
bicarbonates generally are measured as alkalinity, the carbonate hardness usually is considered
equal to the alkalinity. When water containing bicarbonate or "temporary" hardness is heated,
carbon dioxide is driven off, converting the bicarbonate into carbonates which precipitate to form
the hard scale found in cooking utensils, pipes, hot water tanks, and boilers. This scale reduces
the capacity of pipes to carry water and does not transmit heat well. Detergents minimize the
adverse effects of hard water in washing and other processes, and proper water softening
entirely eliminates the hard water problem.

When hardness exceeds 180mg/l, it generally causes problems, and a water softener should
be considered. Water softened to zero hardness is corrosive. It is therefore desirable to blend a
proportion of nonsoftened water with extremely soft water.

IRON SMCL 0.3 mg/l

At 1.0 mg/l a substantial number of people will note the bitter astringent taste of iron. Also at
this concentration, it imparts a brownish color to laundered clothing and stains plumbing fixtures
with a characteristic rust color. Staining can result at levels of 0.05 mgil, lower than those that
are detectable to taste buds (O. 1-1.0 mgil). Therefore, the SMCL of 0.3 mg/l represents a
reasonable compromise, as adverse aesthetic effects are minimized at this level.

MANGANESE SMCL 0.05 mg/l

The SMCL was set to prevent aesthetic and economic damage. Excess manganese produces
a brownish color in laundered goods and impairs the taste of tea, coffee, and other beverages.
Concentrations may cause a dark brown or black stain on porcelain plumbing fixtures. As with
iron, manganese may form a coating on distribution pipes. These may slough off, causing brown
blotches on laundered clothing or black particles in the water.

ODOR SMCL 3 Threshold Odor Number (T.O.N.)

Odor is an important quality factor affecting the drinkability of water. Odors for certain
substances in water may be detected at extremely low concentrations. This may be indicative of
the presence of organic and inorganic pollutants that may originate from municipal and industrial
waste discharges or from natural sources. The Threshold Odor Number (T.O.N.) of water is the
dilution factor required before the odor is minimally perceptible. A (T.O.N.) of 1 indicates that the
water has characteristics comparable to odor-free water, while a (T.O.N.) of 4 indicates that a
volume of the test water would have to be diluted to four times its volume before the odor
became minimally perceptible. For precise work, a panel of five or more testers is required, and
the (T.O.N.) is based on the greatest amount of dilution which elicits a positive odor response
from one of the testers. The (T.O.N.) level of 3 was determined to be appropriate because most
consumers find the water at this limit acceptable. Determination of odor below this level is
difficult because of possible interferences from other sources and variability of the sensing
capabilities of the personnel performing the test. Therefore, the SMCL of 3 (T.O.N.) has been
set.

PH SMCL 6.5-8.5

This is a numerical expression that indicates the degree to which a water is acidic or alkaline.
These various degrees are represented on a scale ofO to 14, with O being most highly acidic, 14
most alkaline, and 7 neutral.

High pH levels are undesirable since they may impart a bitter taste to the water. Furthermore,
the high degree of mineralization associated with alkaline waters will result in the encrustation of
water pipes and water-using appliances. The combination of high alkalinity and calcium with low
pH levels may be less corrosive than water with a combination of high pH, low alkalinity, and
calcium content. High pH levels also depress the effectiveness of disinfection by chlorination,
thereby requiring the use of additional chlorine or longer contact times. A range of 6.5 - 8.5 was
determined as that which would achieve the maximum environmental and aesthetic benefits.
SILVER SMCL 0.01 mg/l

Silver is a relatively rare metal. Its major commercial uses are in photography,
electric/electronic components, sterling and electroplate, and alloys and solder. Environmental
releases can occur during ore mining and processing, product fabrication, and disposal.
However, because of the great economic value of silver, recovery practices are typically used to
minimize losses. The only adverse effect resulting from chronic exposure to low levels of silver in
animals and humans is argyria, a blue-gray discoloration of the skin and internal organs. Argyria
is markedly disfiguring and is a permanent, nonreversible effect. Argyria is the result of silver
deposition in the dermis and at basement membranes of the skin and other internal organs.
There is no evidence that exposure to silver results in mutagenic or carcinogenic effects. Silver
has been classified in EPA's Group D (not classifiable), based upon inadequate data in animals
and humans. The current SMCL for silver is based upon 1 gram of silver resulting in argyria.

SODIUM SMCL 50 mg/l

Sodium is the principal cation in the hydrosphere. It is derived geologically from the leaching of
surface and underground deposits of salts (e.g., sodium chloride) and from the decomposition of
sodium aluminum silicates and similar minerals. The sodium ion is a major constituent of natural
waters. Human activities also contribute sodium to water supplies, primarily though the use of
sodium chloride as a deicing agent, and the use of washing products. Based on the available
studies, it appears that insufficient evidence is available to conclude whether or not sodium in
drinking water causes an elevation of blood pressure in the general population. It has been
estimated that food accounts for approximately 90 percent of the daily intake of sodium, whereas
drinking water contributes up to the remaining 10 percent. In order to afford protection to a
segment of the U.S. population on a sodium-restricted diet, in 1968, the American Heart
Association (AHA) recommended a level of 5 mg of sodium per 8 ounces of water or 20 mg/l.
USEPA is suggesting a guidance level for sodium of 20 mg/l in drinking water for the high-risk
population as recommended by the AHA. When it is necessary to know the precise amount of
sodium present in a water supply, a laboratory analysis should be made. When home water
softeners utilizing the ion-exchange method are used, the amount of sodium will be increased.
For this reason, water that has been softened should be analyzed for sodium when a precise
record of individual sodium intake is needed. For healthy persons, the sodium content of water is
unimportant because the intake from salt is so much greater, but for persons placed on a low-
sodium diet because of heart, kidney, circulatory ailments, or complications in pregnancy,
sodium in water must be considered.

SULFATE SMCL 250 mg/l

High concentrations of sulfate in drinking waters have three effects: (1) water containing
appreciable amounts of sulfate (SO,) tends to form hard scales in boilers and heat exchangers;
(2) sulfates cause taste effects; and (3) sulfates can cause laxative effects with excessive intake.
The laxative effect of sulfates is usually noted in transient users of a water supply because
people who are accustomed to high sulfate levels in drinking water have no adverse response.
Diarrhea can be induced at sulfate levels greater than 500 mg/l but typically near 750 mg/l.

While sulfate imparts a slightly milder taste to drinking water than chloride, no significant taste
effects are detected below 300 mg/l.

Sulfate cannot readily be removed from drinking water, except by distillation, reverse osmosis,
or electrodialysis, but these are expensive. As with water having high levels of chloride, it is
recommended that either an alternative source be used or that the high sulfate water be diluted
with a lower sulfate containing water.

quirements for adequate lather foCL No Objectionable Taste

Taste, like odor, depends on contact of a stimulating substance with the appropriate human
receptor cell in the body. The stimuli are chemical in nature and the term "chemical senses"
often is applied to odor and taste. Water is a neutral medium, always present on or at the
membranes that perceive sensory response. In its pure form, water cannot produce odor or taste
sensations. No satisfactory theory of olfaction ever has been devised, although many have been
formulated. Humans and animals can avoid many potentially toxic foods and waters because of
adverse sensory response. Without this form of primitive sensory protection many species would
not have survived. Today, these same senses often continue to provide the first warning of
potential hazards in the environment.

Some substances, such as certain inorganic salts, produce taste without odor and can be
evaluated by the taste test. Many other sensations ascribed to the sense of taste actually are
odors, even though the sensation is not noticed until the material is taken into the mouth.

Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater, 15th edition, describes a
Taste Rating Test. The purpose of the test is to estimate the taste acceptability of the drinking
water. Briefly, up to 10 samples are given to selected panel members who have been selected at
trial orientation sessions. Rating involves a series of steps where the panel members take water
into their mouths and form an initial judgment on a rating scale. The rating scale ranges from 1 to
9 with 1 being "I would be very happy to accept this water as my everyday drinking water" to 9 "I
can't stand this water in my mouth and I could never drink it." Averages are determined of all
ratings given each sample with a mean and standard deviation reported. This number can then
be used to determine whether or not the water has any objectionable taste to the majority of
consumers.

TOTAL DISSOLVED SOLIDS (TDS) SMCL 500 mg/l

Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) may have an influence on the acceptability of the water in
general and, in addition, high TDS value may be an indication of the presence of excessive
concentration of some specific substance, not included in the Safe Drinking Water Act, which
would make the water aesthetically objectionable to the consumer. The life of home hot water
heaters decreases by approximately one
year for each additional 200 mg/l of TDS in water above the typical household level of 220 mg/l.
The SMCL of 500 mg/l for TDS is reasonable because it represents an optimum value
commensurate with the aesthetic level to be set as a desired waterquality goal.

ZINC SMCL 5 mg/l

Zinc is found in some natural waters, most frequently in areas where it is mined. It is not
considered detrimental to health unless it occurs in very high concentrations. It imparts an
undesirable taste to drinking water. For this reason, the SMCL of 5.0 mg/l was set.

BIOLOGICAL CHARACTERISTICS

Certain forms of aquatic vegetation and microscopic animal life in natural waters may be either
stimulated or retarded in their growth by water-quality factors. The growth of algae and other
microscopic plants found floating on the surface of the water is stimulated by light, temperature,
nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus, and pH conditions. Their growth may in turn be
retarded by changes in pH, temperature, the presence of inorganic impurities, excessive
cloudiness or darkness, or the presence of certain species of bacteria.

Cycles of growth and decay of the cellular material of these microorganisms may result in the
production of by-products which may adversely affect the quality of the water supply. The same
general statements may be made regarding the growth cycles of other nonpathogenic bacteria
and harmless microorganisms.

Thus, to prevent problems, a water source should be as free from biological activity as
possible. In order to achieve this: (a) water sources should be selected that support a minimum
of plant and animal life; (b) the supply should be protected from contamination by biological
agents; (c) the introduction of nutrients, organic chemicals, and fertilizing materials should be
avoided; and (d) treatment for the destruction of biologic life or its by-products should be
instituted as needed.


WHAT TESTS DO I NEED?
PUBLIC WATER SYSTEMS

Under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA), all public water systems are required to sample
and test their water supplies according to a fixed schedule for all contaminants for which MCLs
have been set. For example, transient noncommunity water systems serving ground water
sample for microbiological contaminants guarterly. A community water system, on the other
hand, must monitor at a minimum monthly for bacteria based on population served. As an
example, a water system servicing up to 4,900 people must take five microbiological samples
from-the water distribution system per month, whereas a system serving 500,000 people must
take 210 samples a month. Larger systems are required to take even more samples.
* Two types of waivers are available: waivers by rule and vulnerability waivers. Waivers by rule
are based on prior monitoring results. They reduce but do not eliminate monitoring. Vulnerability
waivers eliminate monitoring but must be renewed, usually every three years.


The sampling location is the point-of-entry for nearly every contaminant. Most community water
systems have multiple points of entry. Tests for inorganic contaminants, for example, must be
taken at each point-of-entry to the water distribution system and repeated each year for
community systems utilizing surface sources and every З3 years for those utilizing groundwater
sources.

Table 6 (Community and Nontransient Noncommunity Compliance Monitoring Requirements)
provides a summary of the base monitoring requirements for the major contaminant groups
regulated by the Safe Drinking Water Act. Federal regulations provide a mechanism for both
increasing monitoring and decreasing monitoring for the contaminant groups listed on Table 6. If
a test exceeds a "trigger" value, increased monitoring is required until the test results from that
point-of-entry are determined to be "reliably and consistently" less than the MCL. (For most
organics the trigger value is greater that the Method Detection Level and less than the MCL.




For inorganics, the trigger value is the MCL. Refer to Table 6 for more detail.) Waivers to reduce
or eliminate sampling for asbestos, inorganics, synthetic organics and volatile organic chemicals
are issued to water systems for individual points-ofentry based on contaminant use in the vicinity
of the well head and susceptibility of the water sources to contamination. Prior sampling results
can be used to decrease monitoring, through waiver-by-rule provisions, for some contaminant
groups.

If your public water system fails to comply with certain aspects of the Safe Drinking Water Act,
public notification is required. The exact type and frequency of notification depend on the
seriousness of any potential adverse health effects which may be involved. Tier 1 notification for
community water systems, which includes failure to comply with an established maximum
contaminant level or treatment technique or a compliance schedule for a variance or exemption,
requires newspaper notification, mail notification, and notification of electronic media. Tier 2
notification for community water systems, including failure to monitor or utilize the proper testing
methodology or when a variance or exemption is granted, requires newspaper notification only.
This emphasis on public notification and involvement is designed to bring about voluntary
compliance as quickly as possible without costly, timeconsuming legal battles.

Those served by a public water system and concerned about the water quality should be able
to obtain the complete water test results required under the SDWA directly from the local water
utility. In addition, the
NJ Department of Environmental Protection
Bureau of Safe Drinking Water
CN 426
Trenton, NJ 08625
(609)292-5550
has copies of limited water analyses performed by the state.

Additional information on drinking water may be obtained by writing: U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency
Office of Drinking Water
401M Street, S.W.
Washington, DC 20240
(800) 426-4791 (Drinking Water Hotline)


The USEPA regional office for New Jersey is located at: U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency Office of Drinking Water
26 Federal Plaza
New York, NY 10006 (212)264-1800


Local watershed associations or environmental groups may also have collected drinking water
quality information. WHAT TESTS DO I NEED? NEW PUBLIC NONCOMMUNITY WATER
SYSTEMS

Under New Jersey regulations and under local authorib, a sample of raw water from every
proposed public noncommunity water system must be tested for:


TABLE 7. NEW PUBLIC NONCOMMUNITY WATER SYSTEMS - INITIAL TESTING
REQUIRED FOR CERTIFICATION
(N.J.A.C. 7:10-12.31)

BACTERIA (TOTAL COLIFORM) pH
INORGANICS RADIONUCLIDES
VOLATILE ORGANIC SECONDARY CONTAMINANTS CHEMICALS(VOCs)

Additional testing may be required by the local board of health having jurisdiction. New Jersey
regulations mention that local authorities may want to require testing of surface water for
pesticides. The local board of health may also require additional treatment of the water.


WHAT TESTS DO I NEED? NEW WELLS (NONPUBLIC WATER SYSTEMS)

Under New Jersey regulations and under local authority, a sample of raw water from every
proposed nonpublic water system must be tested for:


TABLE 8. TESTS REQUIRED FOR NEW WELLS (N.J.A.C. 7:10-12.31)

BACTERIA (TOTAL COLIFORM) NITRATES
IRON
MANGANESE
pH

It may also be advisable to include all the tests listed in Table 9; next section.

Additional testing may be required by the local board of health having jurisdiction. New Jersey
regulations mention that local authorities may want to require testing for VOCs and/or radon. The
local board of health may also require additional treatment of the water.


WHAT TESTS DO I NEED? EXISTING HOME WELLS

When buying an existing home with a well, it is advisable to insist that the seller provide for
water testing before closing on the house. Many buyers have discovered water-quality problems
too late and are burdened with the expense of having to treat their well water or drilling a
completely new well. The Farmers Home

Administration, Veterans Administration, and Federal Housing Administration all require water
testing on home wells before mortgages are issued. Some realtors are also requiring the seller to
provide a certificate of water potability for their listings.


Residents of Ocean County should be aware of a County Board of Health regulation which
requires additional testing before final certification of new wells and upon sale or transfer of
ownership of real property upon which a well is located. Testing is required for the following 26
parameters: Turbidity, Bacteria (Total Coliform), Nitrates, Iron, Manganese, pH, Arsenic,
Cadmium, Chromium, Lead, Mercury, Benzene, Carbon Tetrachloride, Chlorobenzene,
Dichlorobenzene(s), 1,2Dichloroethane, 1,1 -Dichloroethylene, tvans-l ,2-Dichloroethylene,
Methylene Chloride, Tetrachloroethylene, 1,1,1 -Trichloroethane, Trichloroethylene, Vinyl
Chloride, Xylene(s), Sodium, Chlordane (resales only). Other counties may have similar
regulations. Testing must be done in a laboratory certified by DEP.

Table 9 is a list of water tests which have been compiled through discussions with state
officials and water-quality experts. The list of tests is designed to ensure maximum safety of the
water supply while keeping testing costs to a minimum.


TABLE 9. RECOMMENDED WATER TESTS FOR EXISTING HOME WELLS (NONPUBLIC
WATER SYSTEMS)

Test Name MCL or SMCL or Action Level


Recommended:
BACTERIA (Total Coliform)' none detected NITRATE' 10 mg/l NO,
LEAD' 0.015 mg/l/ Action Level

Consider:
VOLATILE ORGANIC' If positive retest for
CHEMICAL SCAN specific chemicals HARDNESS (Total) 50-250
mg/l (lower-upper limit) IRON 0.3 mg/l
MANGANESE 0.05 mg/l
SODIUM 50 mg/l pH 6.5-8.5
CORROSIVITY Langelier Index +/-1.0 RADIOACTIVITY (Gross Alpha)'
15 pCi/l
MERCURY' .002 mgil RADON-2223 300 pCi/l

'Denotes an MCL based on health effects If these levels are exceeded consult with the local
health department for interpretation and guidance

'In wells between 50-ISO feet deep in South Jersey, the DEP also recommends that the
homeowner consider these tests Consult with your local health officer for the applicability of
these tests to your municipality

'Denotes a proposed MCL based on health effects If these levels are exceeded consult with the
local health department for Interpretation and guidance
TABLE 10. ADDITIONAL WATER TESTING RECOMMENDATIONS FOR COMMON
PROBLEMS OR SPECIAL SITUATIONS


PLEASE NOTE: THIS TABLE UNDER CONSTRUCTION. PROBLEM COMMON SIGNS/SITUATIONS CAUSES TEST RECOMMENDED

"Hard" water Large amount of soap required to form suds. Insoluble soap curd on dishes and
fabrics. Hard scaly deposit in pipes and water heaters. Calcium, magnesium, manganese, and
iron (may be in the form of bicarbonates, carbonates, sulfates or chlorides). Hardness Test

Rusty colored water Rust stains on clothing and porcelain plumbing fixtures. Metallic taste to
water. Rust coating in toilet tank. Faucet water turns rust colored after exposure to air. Iron or
manganese, or iron bacteria. Iron Test Manganese Test


"Rotten egg" odor Iron,steel,orcopper parts of pumps, pipes and fixtures corroded. Fine black
particles in water (commonly called black water). Silverware turns black. Hydrogen sulfide gas,
sulfate-reducing bacteria,orsulfur bacteria. Hydrogen Sulfide Test

"Acid" water Metal parts on pump, piping, tank, and fixtures corroded. Red stains from corrosion
of galvanized pipe; blue-green stains from corrosion of copper or brass. Carbon dioxide. In rare
instances, mineral acid sulfuric, nitric, or hydrochloric. pH

Langelier Index


Cloudy turbid water Dirty or muddy appearance. Silt, sediment, microorganisms. Check well
construction with local


Chemical odor of gasoline, fuel oil Well near abondoned fuel oil tank; gas station. Leaking
underground storage tank. Volatile Organic Chemical Scan or specific fuel component


Unusual chemical odor Well near dump, junkyard, landfill, industry or drycleaner. Groundwater
contamination, underground injection, or leaching waste site. Check with Health Dept., Organic
chemicalscan,heavy metals.


No obvious problem
Well located in area of intensive agricultural use.
Long term use of pesticides and fertilizers.
Test for pesticides used in area, nitrate test.


Recurrent Gastro-intestinal illness
Recurrent gastro-intestinal illness in guests drinking the water.
Cracked well casing, cross connection with septic system.
Bacteria (Coliform Test), nitrate test.


Sodium resticted diet, salty brackish, or bitter taste
Well near seawater, road salt storage site or heavily salted roadway.
Saltwater intrusion, groundwater contamination.
Chloride,Sodium. Total Dissloved Soilds (TDS).


The absolute minimum testing should include the coliform test for bacteriological safety. This
test should be done at least annually during different seasons each year. If there is a history of
previous positive samples, more frequent testing is recommended. Other reasons for testing
more frequently include an open or dug well (not permitted by current New Jersey regulations)
and unusual episodes of diarrhea, especially among visitors to the home.

If taste, odor, color, or turbidity is a problem or if any of the drinking water quality problems
listed in Table 10 exist, additional testing is probably necessary.

Additional chemical testing is also warranted ifthe home is located in a heavily industrialized
area; near service stations, machine shops, dry cleaners; near a hazardous waste source or a
landfill; if nearby houses have reported problems; or if you feel your water has some unusual
chemical taste, odor, or color. Consult with local health officials who can advise you on what
specific tests to have performed. They may have a record of water-quality problems in each area
and can offer information and advice.

Testing for specific trace organic chemicals is expensive and requires sophisticated equipment
costing tens of thousands of dollars. For accurate and reliable results, tests should be done in a
state-certified laboratory.


WATER TESTING - WHERE SHOULD I GET MY WATER ANALYZED? GENERAL
INFORMATION ON WATER TESTING
Amateurs should take water samples only under the direction of a certified state water quality
laboratory.

There are two types of sampling locations depending on the contaminant of interest. For
private homeowners and small water systems, these locations may be the same. The sampling
locations are point-of-entry (POE) after treatment or in the
water distribution system (consumers tap). The purpose of these two types of sampling locations
is to differentiate between contamination derived from the source water or contamination derived
from the distribution pipes.

The goal of drinking water sampling should be to collect a sample under the worst conditions;
therefore, checking water a day after a heavy rainfall is a good idea. If corrosive water is
suspected, a sample for lead or copper should be taken first thing in the morning, without letting
the water run. For other tests wait until mid-morning after a good quantity of water has been
used. Samples for bacteria (Total Coliforms) must be collected using sterile containers and
under sterile conditions. In addition, keep a record of all your water test results; by observing any
changes over time you may be able to discover any problems.


SERVICES FREE OF CHARGE

Tests for total hardness, tastes, odors, and certain chemical impurities may be obtained from
companies selling or renting water conditioning equipment. They will also make
recommendations for equipment to correct the problems. However, as a precaution, any
recommendations should be rechecked with an independent laboratory to ensure impartial
analysis.

Eook in the Yellow Pages ofyour telephone directory under "Water Softening" or "Water
Conditioning" for the names of local dealers.


STATE-CERTIFIED PRIVATE LABORATORIES AND CONSULTING FIRMS

Water testing should be done only at state-certified private laboratories or consulting firms.
Important: Laboratories gain or lose state certification on an almost daily basis. To ensure that a
laboratory is currently certified for testing in a particularly category (i.e., microbiological, limited
chemical, atomic absorption, gas chromatography, or organic chemicals on A-280 List) call
NJDEP-Office of Quality Assurance. Names, addresses, and telephone numbers of current state-
certified laboratories can be obtained from the county offices of Rutgers Cooperative Extension
(ask for Fact Sheet 343, "Where to Get Your Drinking Water Tested in New Jersey") or your
local health department, or:
NJDEP - Division of Environmental Safety, Health and Analytical Programs
Office of Quality Assurance
CN 424
Trenton, NJ 08625
(609) 292-3950

Private laboratories will collect samples and make tests for fees ranging from $12 and up,
depending on the type of test. Most local, county, and state health departments in New Jersey
will not test water from private home wells unless there is public health concern.

A laboratory near one's home is most likely to be familiar with problems in that area and can
best advise as to which pollutants to test for.

Certain sanitary and environmental engineering consulting firms are available for hire for
unusual or difficult water quality problems. Consult the telephone Yellow Pages under
"Engineers - Sanitary."


WHAT TO DO IF YOUR DRINKING WATER EXCEEDS AN MCL OR SMCL FACTS TO CONSIDER BEFORE TREATING YOUR WATER
Many water supply problems can be controlled or eliminated by using a variety of drinking
water treatment devices. Before proceeding with the selection process there are several facts
you need to consider.

Ifan MCL Is Exceeded, Consult Your Health Department.
MCLs are health-based standards and you may be assuming additional risk if you continue to
drink the water. Young children and infants are particularly susceptible. SMCLs are aesthetic
standards.

Always Retest To Ensure You Have A Problem.
It is always good practice to have your water retested to ensure accuracy in sampling and in the
laboratory. The second test should be done by a different laboratory to confirm results.

Consult With A Water-Quality Expert And/Or Your Local Health Depart ment.
When you are certain you have a particular contamination problem, consult with a water-quality
expert. These individuals may be familiar with the preferred treatment methods in your area.
Recent and historical water data should be reviewed by an expert to determine which processes
are appropriate. The local health official or DEP may also be consulted if uncertainties arise.

Consider Alternatives
Availability and cost of public water supplies or other alternatives including deeper private wells
should be considered. If the home unit is preferred, then consider the use of either a whole-
house, faucet, or line-bypass unit. Bottled water may also be an alternative.

When you have more than one water-quality problem, choosing a treatment device is more
complex. Many times you cannot treat one problem without treating another first. Many times,
two problems can be eliminated with one treatment or the treatment method itself causes a
problem. Select Unit

After choosing a treatment process, select a unit to install. Criteria for unit selection may include
field experience, independent evaluations by the National Sanitation Foundation and the Water
Quality Association, equipment safeguards, maintenance requirements, initial and ongoing costs,
and warranties or performance guarantees by the dealer.

Field Test
Equipment reliability and performance can best be determined by field testing. Field data can
help determine a monitoring program.

Purchase and Install
Using reputable dealers, licensed plumbers, and certified installers should ensure that the device
will perform according to specifications and warranties.

Monitor and Maintain
Safe operation of a home treatment unit requires monitoring and maintenance by an independent
third party. While the above approach costs money not typically included in the purchase and
installation price, the consumer should receive a safer product if this approach is followed.

For More Information
If you need more information about home water treatment technologies and devices, consult the
references in the Bibliography at the end of this publication, write your county office of Rutgers
Cooperative Extension, or contact the NJDEP Bureau of Safe Drinking Water in Trenton.


HOME DRINKING WATER TREATMENT TECHNOLOGIES AND DEVICES


ACTIVATED CARBON FILTRATION


Effective for:
Some Organic Chemicals Some Pesticides Taste Odor Trihalomethanes

This technology uses any of several carbonaceous materials such as bituminous coal, coconut
shells, lignite, peat, or wood. Activation is the process whereby the carbonaceous material is
fragmented under high heat by steam in the absence of oxygen. Granules and exposed pores
are created. Certain contaminants in water such as organic chemicals will adhere to the exposed
surfaces of the many pores, through a variety of sorption processes. Studies have shown that
activated carbon is most effective in removing large (high molecular weight) impurities and those
with comparatively low solubility in water. It is, therefore, most effective in removing pesticides,
benzene, and halogenated organics such as trichloroethylene (TCE).

Activated carbon filters will significantly improve taste and odor of drinking water and will
effectively remove chlorine and specific adsorbable organics such as trihalomethanes (THMs),
including chloroform.

Activated carbon filters work best when first put in service. With use, the adsorption capacity of
the carbon becomes used up and the filter no longer removes as much of the contaminants and
will do a poorer job on the most difficult ones. In fact, contaminants can leach off the filter at
higher concentrations than the influent concentration when the filter becomes overloaded. Most
manufacturers state or suggest a life for the filter media in gallons treated, but this generally
presumes some unstated concentration, mix of contaminants, or contact time. Manufacturers
frequently state guidelines for determining when the filter needs replacement: return of poor
taste or odor, color change of the filter media, reduced flow through the filter, etc. This may be
satisfactory if the contaminant is only an annoyance but not if it is a health hazard. Unfortunately,
many hazardous contaminants do not cause offtastes, odors, or color at the concentrations
found in water supplies. The only way to determine if the filter has removed them to acceptable
levels is by repeated testing of the treated water. When using the units to remove health-related
contaminants it is preferable to install two units in series (one after the other) with a sample tap
in between so that testing can be done to determine when one unit is used up and needs to be
replaced without being exposed to the contaminant.

Some water treatment units contain silver, which manufacturers claim prevents the growth of
bacteria and acts as a bacteriostatic agent. These units are registered with the Environmental
Protection Agency (USEPA) as bacteriostatic units. The main requirement of the registration is
that the units do not release excessive amounts of silver. Registration does not imply that
USEPA has examined the effectiveness of the units. A few units are designed to be
microbiological purifiers containing a chemical disinfectant; such units would be subject to
registration by USEPA and would be required to prove the microbiological and other claims
made. Manufacturers of water treatment units are required to obtain an establishment (Est.)
registration number to identify their plant. Some manufacturers seem to have used their
establishment (Est.) number to make it appear that USEPA has endorsed or approved their
product. This is not the case.

AIR STRIPPING


Effective for:
Some Volatile Organic Chemicals Hydrogen Sulfide Iron (with filtration) Radon Gas

Until recently this technology has been limited to large operations at water treatment plants,
but a few manufacturers now have developed point-of-use (POU) aeration devices for home
water treatment. In air stripping columns water flows downward by gravity while air is pumped
upward from the bottom of the column by a mechanical blower. As the water flows down through
the column it passes over a packing material which increases the area of the air-liquid
interphase. Volatile organic compounds are transferred from the water to the air which is vented
outside. The volatile organic chemicals (VOCs) which are most commonly detected in
groundwater can be removed by air stripping. In POU applications, up to 90 percent removal of
(VOCs) can be expected. Aeration is also effective in removing certain inorganic contaminants
including hydrogen sulfide and iron. However, use of air stripping towers to remove iron requires
post-treatment filtration. The rate at which VOCs are removed from water by aeration (or the
mass transfer characteristics of the compound) depends on several factors: hydraulic loading
rate (or water flow rate); air:water (A:W) ratio; type of packing material; height of packing
material; temperature of the water and air; type of VOCs; and concentration of VOC. Air stripping
does have several limitations. The removal efficiency of air stripping columns is largely
dependent on the type of VOCs present in the water and the ease with which they are stripped
from the water. Once the water passes through the column it is necessary to have storage and
repumping facilities to distribute it through the house. The energy costs of pumping the water to
and away from the tower, as well as running the blower, must also be considered. It is also a
good idea to require a performance guarantee, or a period of pilot testing with frequent
monitoring, to ensure adequate removal of contaminants.

BOTTLED WATER


Effective for:
A temporary solution to Aesthetic problems many water-quality problems Emergency
situations

Bottled water may be an alternative when a home well is contaminated. In a household with an
infant, bottled water could be substituted for a water source that has high nitrate levels. In some
instances, families are forced to buy water by the caseload for years. Where the contamination
cannot be traced or an alternative found, bottled water becomes a long-term solution. The
question is often asked, "Are bottled waters safer or healthier than public water supplies?" The
bottled water industry adheres to a plant inspection program established by the American
Sanitation Institute(ASI). According to the International Bottled Water Association, "Industry
products come from protected sources, are bottled in facilities regulated as food plants, and
processed using good manufacturing practices approved by the federal government." The United
States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates bottled waters on a national level, but New
Jersey has promulgated its own standards which require that bottled waters meet all the MCLs
under the N.J. Safe Drinking Water Act. The FDA has established standards of quality for bottled
drinking water; however, it exempts mineral waters because, by their very nature, they exceed
physical and chemical limits prescribed in the Bottled Drinking Water Standard. The FDA has
established "Good Manufacturing Practice Regulations" for processing and bottling of all bottled
waters. These outline in detail the sanitary conditions under which the water is to be obtained,
processed, bottled, and tested. They require that waters be obtained from sources free from
pollution and be "of good sanitary quality" when judged by the results of bacteriological and
chemical analyses. Water bottlers must list the addition of salt and carbon dioxide on their
labels, and they are prohibited from making "objectionable therapeutic claims." To answer the
question, "Are bottled waters safer or healthier than public water supplies?" you must investigate
your water supply to be sure it is as pure and risk-free as you want it to be. If you are on a public
water system, find out where your water comes from, what contaminants it is tested for, and
whether any are present in


quantities which pose a health question or risk to you. If you decide that bottled water is for you,
investigate the bottled water you select. After all, there is no need to spend a lot of money on
bottled water if it is no better than your own tap water.

CHLORINATORS


Effective for:
Bacteria (Coliforms) Microbiological Contamination

Chlorinators can be used for noncommunity water supplies; however, this technology is not
recommended by DEP for private homeowners since the chemicals used in this type of treatment
can be dangerous.. Ultraviolet radiation or ceramic filters would be more appropriate for the
homeowner with a microbiological problem.

Chlorination of an individual water system should be considered only as a last resort. Well
disinfection or shock chlorination, as it is sometimes called, should always be attempted first
before purchasing chlorination equipment. Shock chlorination can be accomplished by mixing a
strong chlorine solution with the water in the well and letting it stand for a few hours. This will kill
the coliform and most diseasecausing organisms. As a general practice, a new well should be
shock chlorinated before being put in use, and again whenever it is opened to pull the pump or
to remove sand and sediment from the bottom of the hole. The procedure is explained in
"Potable Water -- Directions for Disinfecting a Well -- Circular 598." A copy can be obtained from
your county office of Rutgers Cooperative Extension.

The positive-displacement chlorinator, the most reliable type of device for this purpose,
consists of a small electrical chemical-feed pump. The amount of chlorine fed can be increased
or decreased with a simple adjustment of a control knob. Operation of an electric hypochlorinator
can be synchronized with that of the well pump, so that both start and stop at the same time.
Flow-actuated positive-displacement hypochlorinators (water-meter type) dispense the chlorine
solution in propertion to the actual flow rate of the water. This type of equipment operates only if
water is flowing in the pipe. The dosage of chlorine is more accurately attuned to the rate of flow
than it is to the on-off cycle of the well pump. Aspirators or suctiontype chlorinators are not
positive displacement and generally are not reliable, because the chlorine dosage varies with the
pressure and flow rate in the pipeline to which it is attached. Minerals precipitating from the
water and the chlorine solution will clog the small jets in the aspirator, and this will prevent the
chlorine from being drawn into the system. It is important to inspect the chlorine solution storage
tank and chlorinators frequently to be sure that a supply of chlorine solution is always available
and that the equipment is working properly. Calcium hypochlorite, in powder or tablets, can be
used as a concentrated source of chlorine to mix a stock solution. Mix according to directions on
the label so as to obtain the proper concentration of chlorine in the mixture. After mixing, use
only the clear solution; discard the bottom sediment because it may clog the hypochlorinator.
DISTILLATION

Effective for:
All Inorganic Chemicals, i.e., Nitrates, Sodium Chloride Some Organic Chemicals

In this technology, water is heated until it turns to steam. The steam is circulated in coils and
then encounters a cooling process, either circulation of cool water or a fan. The subsequent
reduction in temperature causes the steam to condense as distilled and purified water, purged of
most dissolved or suspended contaminants. Distillation is the only water purification process
which removes with absolute certainty microorganisms such as bacteria and viruses which may
cause diseases and may be contained in the feedwater. Distillation also removes trace amounts
of heavy metals, all organic chemicals which are not carried over in the steam, nitrates, and
other inorganic anions.

Distilled water, because it is essentially mineral-free, is very aggressive, in that it tends to
dissolve substances with which it is in contact. Notably, carbon dioxide from the air is rapidly
absorbed, making the water acidic and even more aggressive. Many metals are dissolved by
distilled water. Because of the absence of minerals, distilled water may not be the ideal drinking
water. It has been described as tasteless and flat. It is recommended that you try some before
purchasing a unit.
The distillation process is an effective means of removing most contaminants, but it has
several drawbacks. It is very slow, although somewhat more rapid than reverse osmosis, and
energy cost (electricity) is high. A problem with some distillation units is that they allow certain
organic contaminants with a Power boiling point than water (some pesticides, for example) to
vaporize with the water, recondense, and end up with the processed water. A type of unit called
a "fractional distiller" avoids this problem, but not all distillers are of this type. Maintenance can
be a problem, depending on the design of the units. The minerals and other contaminants left
behind in the boiling chamber can build up, interfering with the operation of the unit. Hard water
can quickly clog a distiller. Some units are easy to clean by hand; others are difficult or require a
strong acid. Many models have reset switches and timers which make automatic operation
possible. These features may be desirable when distilled water is continuously used. If water is
the coolant medium, waste of water may be even higher than reverse osmosis. All distillers
should be Underwriters Laboratories (UL) listed. The warranty may be limited or full. Frequency
of cleaning the distiller varies with the quantity of impurities in the water.. Some manufacturers
recommend cleaning the machine after every third distillation. White vinegar may be used by
leaving it in the boiling tank overnight, or a special cleaner made by the appliance manufacturer
may be used.

ION EXCHANGE


Effective for:
Hard Water (Water Softening) Calcium Manganese Iron Some Heavy
Metals

Ion exchange is a combined physical and chemical process in which ions that are dissolved in
water are transferred to, and held by a solid material or exchange resin. The system used for
water softening contains a cation exchange resin. Positively charged sodium ions are used to
coat most common cation exchange resins. When water containing dissolved cations contacts
the resin, the cations are "exchanged" for, or trade places with, the loosely held sodium ions on
the resin. In this way the calcium and magnesium ions responsible for hardness are removed
from the water and placed on the exchange resin, a process that makes the water "soft."

In this process, however, sodium ions are added to the water. Eventually a point is reached
when very few sodium ions remain on the resin, thus no more calcium or magnesium ions can be
removed from the incoming water. The resin at this point is said to be "exhausted," or "spent,"
and cannot accomplish further water treatment until it is "recharged" or "regenerated." Most
whole-house systems have a bypass to allow for large volume use on the yard, or to fill up pools,
etc. While softeners are used primarily to reduce the damage of scale and other deposits, and to
enhance water for cleaning purposes, cation exchangers have an added benefit of reducing toxic
metals such as lead and barium, as well as radium, a radioactive material. (Anion exchange units
operate on the same principle, but they are used primarily to treat well water supplies containing
relatively high levels of nitrates.)

Once an analysis of water is available, selection of a water softening unit depends on the
hardness of the raw water and the amount of water to be softened. You may also choose
between manual, automatic, semiautomatic, and fully automatic units, which differ in the degree
to which the consumer must participate in the regeneration of' exhausted resins. As mentioned
previously, if a manual unit is selected, you should also consider the frequency of regeneration.
The newest equipment is available with digital controls and many programmable options.

MECHANICAL FILTRATION


Effective for:
Turbidity Sediment
Dirt Particulates (Loose Scale)

Mechanical filtration, often referred to as particulate or turbidity filtration, removes dirt,
sediment, and loose scale from the incoming water. This technology employs sand, filter paper,
or compressed glass wool or other straining material and operates as a fine sieve would,
clearing the water of dirt, sediment, and coarse and fine particulates including rust particles. The
result is physically cleaner, clearer, and aesthetically more pleasing water, but with little removal
of harmful dissolved organic or inorganic chemical contaminants. These filters will not remove
nitrates, heavy metals, pesticides, or trihalomethanes.

REVERSE OSMOSIS


Effective for:
Certain Inorganic Chemicals Dissolved Solids Nitrates
Reverse osmosis (RO) treatment decreases the dissolved impurities in water. It successfully
treats water with high salt content, cloudiness, and dissolved minerals, such as sulfate, calcium,
magnesium, sodium, potassium, manganese, chloride, nitrate, fluoride, boron, and
orthophosphate. RO also is effective with some detergents, some taste-, color-, and odor-
producing chemicals, certain organic contaminants, and specific pesticides.

RO units work by passing water under normal pressure at the tap through cellulosic or
noncellulosic (polyamide) membranes. A cellulose acetate membrane will not be degraded by
chlorine present in municipal water systems. A polyamide membrane will be degraded and,
therefore, must be preceded by an activated carbon filter for chlorine removal when chlorinated
water is to be treated. Normal pressure at the tap will force filtered water through the membrane
and leave behind dissolved solids. Reverse osmosis will remove 90-95 percent of most dissolved
contaminants. Membrane density in the sub-micron range will also reject many types of bacteria.
Reverse osmosis under-sink installations are costly and require space not ordinarily available in
small homes. The usual installation requires three separate cartridges: one for particulates, one
for activated carbon, and the reverse osmosis membrane. This results in a costly cartridge
џџџџђџџФџџЦџџ§џџТџџФџџёџџЌџџЎџџљ
ridges vary.

Whatever the installation, countertop or under the sink, reverse osmosis is slow and wasteful
of water. For every gallon of potable water obtained, between 4 and 6 gallons of water will go
down the drain. It may be necessary to process 30 gallons of water in order to obtain 5 gallons of
drinking water. The system may be in operation up to 33 hours intermittently to produce 5
gallons of filtered water, but as the tank is being filled drinking water is available on demand.
Although reverse osmosis has been used by industry for many years, its introduction to the home
market is fairly recent. Manufacturers are attempting to increase membrane life and water
recovery rates. You should be sure that the water-quality problem you are treating warrants a
treatment method that is relatively expensive and uses large quantities of water.

ULTRAVIOLET RADIATION


Effective for:
Bacteria (coliforms) Microbiological contamination

This technology uses a special light bulb which produces ultraviolet light. The ultraviolet (or
U.V.) radiation must pass through every particle of water with a minimum dose to be effective in
water purification. In clear water this is not difficult to achieve. However, turbid water may permit
disease-causing organisms to "hide behind" particles, shielding them from contact with the killing
radiation. There are several effective U.V. water purifiers on the market. They are used in whole-
house treatment applications, and are effective at destroying all disease-causing organisms if
the radiation is at the proper wavelength and of sufficient intensity. When operating properly,
U.V. systems can produce bacteria-free and virus-free water (most claim a 99.9 percent killing
rate). The process leaves no residue, taste, or odor. This factor can be a drawback, however, as
there is no way to measure if the system is doing its job except by performing a bacteria test on
the water. Some systems incorporate a meter which measures the U.V. radiation being
transmitted through the

water. A quartz window through the side of the irradiating chamber allows the ultraviolet rays to activate a photoelectric cell which measures the intensity of the U.V. If insufficient radiation is present, it is set to turn off teh water pump and/or actuate an alarm. The major problem with most U.V. systems is the collection of sediment and growth of algae inside the irradiation chamber. New designs are available which may he,p to eliminate this problem. In one new U.V. system, water flows through Teflon tubes surrounded by irradiating U.V. lights. This eliminates the fouling on the quartz tubes and appears to be an effective and relatively maintenance-free method.

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