Being a responsible water well owner is actually quite simple. Wells require very little maintenance or extra thought to stay in solid shape year after year. The key is consistency. A consistent maintenance schedule. And, just as importantly, consistent testing.
Speaking of testing, a responsible water well owner should be able to understand those test results. In today’s post, we’ll break down the process of a standard water well test.
What Should I Test For?
We get asked this question all the time. No two water wells are exactly the same, and it’s not uncommon for tests of two wells right across the street from each other to come back with completely different results. Therefore, one of the smartest steps a well owner can take is to schedule regular testing, at the same time(s) each year.
Bacteria is the most common water quality problem found in private wells. At the very minimum, have your well tested at least once annually for bacterial levels. Depending on where you live, multiple tests a year can be beneficial. For example, if your well is located in an agricultural area, it makes sense to have your water tested for pesticides, nitrates, and other impurities in addition to bacterial testing.
Likewise, relevant circumstances may warrant additional water well tests throughout the year. These can include a woman in the household who is pregnant or nursing; an unexplained illness in one or more family members; sudden changes in the taste, odor, or clarity of your water; dangerous contaminants found in a neighbor’s water; and more.
Contact C&J Well Company for additional information, or schedule an in-home consultation for a personalized analysis of and recommendations for your well.
How Do I Take a Sample?
Another great question. Whether you choose C&J Well or another qualified laboratory team to assist you with water well testing, expect to receive specific, detailed test instructions, along with sterile bottles and other collection supplies. Depending on the test, you may only need to collect one water sample, or you may be asked to collect several samples from different sources around the home. Be sure to carefully read all instructions prior to any testing, and please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions at all about any part of the test.
It is important to note, that in the event of a positive test for fecal coliform bacteria such as E.coli, or microorganisms including Giardia, you should stop using your water and immediately disinfect your well until a satisfactory sample is pulled. .
Am I Understanding Everything Correctly?
Trust us, it is completely understandable if the test itself and/or the results that follow are hard to decipher. There are many different variations of each, with various instructions in the former, and symbols and abbreviations commonly used in the latter.
What’s most important to you, is the level of a specific contaminant in your water. This information is provided in all test results, highlighted as the concentration of a specific weight of the contaminant in a specific amount of water. You want to compare that concentration with federally established standards, to determine if its presence is found in safe or dangerous levels. If in doubt, or if you have any questions at all with your well water test results, contact us, your local health department, or environmental agency.
Also, no matter what the results of your test show, it is beneficial to have a second test of your well performed to ensure that results are consistent, especially before you decide on any type of water quality treatment.
Let Us Help With Your Water Well Tests
Between the collections, the results, the measurements, and the standards, water well testing is a fairly complex process. It is also one of the most essential parts of owning a well. After all, you drink, cook, and clean with this water!
Always choose an experienced, qualified, and licensed water well professional to assist you with testing. Here at C&J Well Company, we’re excited to help you through every step of the process. To get started, we invite you to download and review this free well owner’s manual. When you’re ready to test, ask us about our testing protocols and partnerships with local labs. And, if you’re interested in expert water treatment services, we can answer your questions about that, too.