Damage Assessment of Household Water Quality

by Dennis P. Tihansky,

Serial Information: Journal of the Environmental Engineering Division, 1974, Vol. 100, Issue 4, Pg. 905-918

Document Type: Journal Paper


In the past, there was little rigorous evidence on the economic justification of minerals removed from domestic water supply. As a result, water quality standards on total dissolved solids and hardness were recommended without adequate rationale. This study assesses the pecuniary damages resulting from the presence of mineral constituents in water supply. For a typical family residence, damages are expressed as the sum of yearly capital expenditures and operation, maintenance, and repair costs for items affected by water use. The results are illustrated both graphically and mathematically as a set of functions defined over various water quality levels. Damage estimates per household are calculated for each state, the relative magnitudes implying that minerals control is likely to achieve its greatest benefits in the midwest and the southwest. The contributing role of man's activities to mineral loads in natural water bodies is an important factor in setting water quality standards.

Subject Headings: Water quality | Minerals | Quality control | Standards and codes | Dissolved solids | Load factors | Economic factors | Municipal water

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