We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is Water Quality?

By Shannon Kietzman
Updated May 16, 2024
Our promise to you
HomeQuestionsAnswered is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At HomeQuestionsAnswered, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Water quality within the United States is highly regulated, involving strict guidelines and water quality testing. As a result, drinking water in the United States is among the safest to drink in the world. Although the quality in the United States is high, there are still some underlying problems. Therefore, both local and federal governments work constantly to ensure everyone in the community has safe drinking water.

Drinking water comes from two major sources. Surface water such as lakes, rivers, and reservoirs provides much of the water used as drinking water. Groundwater, which is pumped from wells, is also a source of drinking water commonly used in rural areas.

Surface water typically requires both filtration and disinfection in order to reach drinking water quality standards. Groundwater is considered to be the purest source of water. This is because it is naturally filtered when it passes through the layers of rock and sediment in an aquifer. Today, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and quality standards ensure groundwater undergoes technological treatment as well. Most water systems add chlorine or other disinfectants to purify the water within the water distribution system and to ensure the highest quality.

Local community water suppliers, such as cities, are also required to provide an annual water quality report to their customers. They do this so the consumer can be a "watch dog" when it comes to the safety levels of their drinking water. The reports provide information on local drinking water, including the water's source and the contaminants found in the water.

According to the EPA, water quality standards are the foundation of the quality-based control program mandated by the Clean Water Act. A water quality standard consists of four basic elements. First, it designates uses of the water body. Next, it creates quality criteria to protect designated uses. Third, it sets forth an anti-degradation policy to maintain and protect existing uses and high quality waters. Finally, it sets general policies addressing implementation issues.

HomeQuestionsAnswered is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

By catapult43 — On Apr 01, 2008

Water quality has improved and continues improving. In United States water born diseases are all but gone. Some of the waterways, such as Potomac River and the Chicago River have seen a dramatic improvement in the last two or three decades.

HomeQuestionsAnswered, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

HomeQuestionsAnswered, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.