Interpreting Your Water Test Report

  • Parrott, Kathleen;
  • Ross, Blake

Contaminant Acceptable Limit Sources/Uses Potential Health Effects at High Concentration
Atrazine 3 ppb Used as a herbicide;
surface or groundwater
Heart and Liver damage contamination from agricultural runoff or leaching
Benzene 5 ppb Gasoline additive; usually from accidental oil spills, industrial uses, or landfills Blood disorders, like aplasticaremia, immune system depression, acute exposure affects central nervous system causing dizziness, headaches, long-term exposure increases cancer risks
Fluorides 4.0 mg/L Additive in treatment process; also used in manufacturing processes and insecticides Mottling of teeth and bones
Lead 15 ppb Used in batteries; lead gasolines and pipe solder; may be leached from brass faucets, lead caulking, lead pipes and lead soldered joints Nervous disorders and mental impairment especially in fetuses, infants, and young children; kidney damage; blood disorders and hypertension; low birth weights
Nitrates 10 mg/L
Soil by-product of agricultural fertilization; human and animal waste leaching to groundwater Methemoglobinemia (blue baby disease) in infants (birth-6 months); low health threat to children and adults
Radon 300 pCi/L Naturally-occurring gas formed from uranium decay can seep into well water from surrounding rocks and be released in the air as it leaves the faucet Breathing gas increases chances of lung cancer; may increase risk of stomach, colon, and bladder cancers
Trihalomethanes 0.100 mg/L Results from residual chlorine in treated water that combines with organic matter in water Cancer; heart, lung, kidney, and liver damage

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Publication #: 356-489

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