The CD ‘chart of the century’ makes the rounds at the Federal Reserve


The water portion of my municipal bill is about $21/month. At that rate I will use up $9,000 in about 35 years. I was not lucky when I had a well and I had to replace the pump after 20 years. As you pointed out, when the electricity goes out, the water stops too. This was very inconvenient when winter ice storms bring down the power for days at a time. Then there is the motor controller. I had to replace a capacitor and when we got a new pump, I had to get a new controller too. I did save some money by installing the pitless adapter and dropping the first pump myself, but overall I am much happier paying $21 a month and not having to worry about it.


Around here a lot of people who live out in the country will attach an old-fashioned hand pump to their well in addition to the electric pump in the event the power goes out. But it’s more common to have a propane-fueled generator that runs off the propane in the tank. Lots of challenges to living in the country.

I will say, though, that water from your own well is colder in the summertime and tastes better.


And how much did it cost to dig pipes and build the water plant that would otherwise supply water? You can’t just take the monthly cost of water and compare it to the cost of building a well.

No chlorine or fluoride is a huge plus. Then again if you have a well that has a lot of sulfur that isn’t great. Where I live the cold water is nothing of the sort in the summer. I can’t truly take a cold shower in the summer when I need it most.


:Supposedly the temperature of ground water is the average annual air temperature. Around here, that’s 56 degrees. Spring or well water is plenty cold.


Or a huge minus, if you happen to have contaminated ground water. But seriously, when supplying water to a city of a million people, the economy of scale is huge. It is even more so with municipal electricity, municipal fire protection, municipal roads. There are tons of things that government makes cheaper than if everyone provided for themselves, which is contrary to your assertion that government never makes things cheaper.


Not quite. Yes, you can have economies of scale with large institutions. But the government, or any monopoly, doesn’t have market pressure to force it to be efficient. So the government would never make something cheaper compared to a free market. Compared to an individual effort then it can be cheaper. But no one, I hope, questions the division of labor.

Plenty of government water is contaminated for instance Flint, MI or Jacksonville, NC.


I have both, and installed neither. My well is cheaper than “city” water, though the costs of city water to the consumer was negligible in terms of a bill ($10/month in the mid-atlantic).

If you are going to factor the costs of drilling a well per unit, you’d have to factor the total cost of installing a city’s water system broken down on a per unit basis. And no one does that.


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