What is Well Water Testing and Why Homeowners Should Do This?

The water in your well can be tested for a variety of things. The most common types of testing are for bacteria, nitrates, and nitrites. Testing your well water is important because it can provide you with peace of mind as to the safety of your drinking water. 

Working with a master plumbing team is also important to ensure your water system at home functions properly and prevents contamination due to leaks and cracks. 

Nothing beats drinking refreshing and of course safe, water from a water well. However, having a water well comes with a huge responsibility. Unlike city or municipal water supply, well water is not tested or regulated. That is why it falls under your responsibility to ensure it’s safe for your household to drink. 

Here are things you should know about why testing well water is important and how to test well water. 

Why You Should Test Well Water? 

A US Geological Survey study reveals that almost one-fourth of private wells contain some kind of contaminants. While contaminants in groundwater are way too common, many households still take water safety for granted. 

Remember, many households use well water for drinking so it is a must to ensure it is potable and safe for drinking. 

Some of the most common contaminants present in groundwater include: 

  • Natural contaminants (ex. Heavy metals, radioactive substances, etc.) 
  • Man-made contaminants (ex. Mines, agriculture, etc.) 
  • Lead or copper pipes, and other contaminants from old plumbing 
  • Microorganisms due to the well’s old age or damaged casing 

Many homeowners test their well water using DIY kits. While these are generally effective, it is still better to have your well water tested by a certified water testing lab. Experts stress the importance of using certified labs in testing well water as it provides comprehensive test results. 

Contaminants to Watch Out For In Well Water 

Thousands of microbes and chemicals can be present in well water. Some of the contaminants to watch out for when testing well water are the following: 

  • Basic chemistry such as pH, alkalinity, hard water, turbidity, etc. 
  • Fluoride (high levels of it are unhealthy and a potential health hazard) 
  • Arsenic, copper, lead, chromium, and other heavy metals 
  • Bacteria including E.coli and coliform 
  • Nitrite and nitrate 

Tests for radioactive particles, pesticides, and forever chemicals can be more expensive but highly recommended. Ideally, well water testing should be done once a year, usually during spring. Other instances where you should have your well water tested include: 

  • After flooding, wildfire, or earthquake 
  • Color, odor, or taste changes 
  • Using it for the first time or after a repair 
  • Wide-spread contamination in your area 
  • Your water pipes contain lead
  • Your well is more than 50 years old 

If the results turn out unpleasantly, it is best to install a water filter to make your water safe to drink. You can contact a professional plumbing service in Spring Hill TN for your water supply repair and installation needs. 


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