Exposure to Chlorination By‐Products from Hot Water Uses

Clifford P. Weisel, Wei Jie Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Exposures to chlorination by‐products (CBP) within public water supplies are multiroute in water. Cold water is primarily used for ingestion while a mixture of cold water and hot water is used for showering, bathing others, dish washing, etc. These latter two activities result in inhalation and dermal exposure. Heating water was observed to change the concentration of various CBP. An increase in the trihalomethanes (THM) concentrations and a decrease in the haloacetonitriles and halopropanones concentration, though an initial rise in the concentration of dichloropropanone, were observed. The extent of the increase in the THM is dependent on the chlorine residual present. Therefore, estimates of total exposure to CBP from public water supplies need to consider any changes in their concentration with different water uses. The overall THM exposures calculated using the THM concentration in heated water were 50% higher than those calculated using the THM concentration present in cold water. The estimated lifetime cancer risk associated with exposure to THM in water during the shower is therefore underestimated by 50% if the concentration of THM in cold water is used in the risk assessment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)101-106
Number of pages6
JournalRisk Analysis
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1994

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Physiology (medical)


  • CBP
  • THM
  • chlorination
  • chloroform
  • exposure
  • heating


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