Water Testing

Water Quality Testing

If you have a property or are purchasing a property that has a private well supplying water to the house, we suggest that you have testing done to determine the quality of the water. We will draw the water samples and deliver them to a qualified, approved laboratory for testing.

POTABILITY – The most common test is a simple potability scan, which will test for Coliform bacteria, minerals and other physical parameters to determine if the water is considered safe and acceptable to drink (see test parameters below).

PHYSICAL PARAMETERS

ODOR: MCL = none

Recommended <2    Scale: 0(none), 1(very faint), 2(faint), 3(distinct), 4(decided), 5(strong). Good

Well water should be free of odor.

TURBIDITY: MCL = none

Recommended <5 (measure of particles in the water, usually indicates iron)

pH Level: MCL = none

Recommended 6.4-10 pH ranges from 0-14. A level of 7 is neutral, <7 is acidic, >7 is basic. A pH less than 6.4 is considered acidic and may be corrosive to piping.

COLOR: MCL = none

Recommended <15 High color usually indicates the presence of iron.
INORGANIC PARAMETERS

NITRITE NITROGEN: MCL= 1.0 mg/L

An intermediate breakdown product of organic matter.  See Nitrate comment

NITRATE NITROGEN: MCL = 10.0 mg/L

The final completely oxidized stage of nitrogen. Levels above 10 are known to be harmful to infants.

Pregnant/nursing mothers and parents of infants should consult with a physician.

CHLORIDE: MCL = 250 mg/L

The non-metallic portion of common salt. Levels above 50mg/L may indicate undesirably high sodium levels and it also may appreciably increase corrosion rates. Levels above 250 mg/L impart a salty taste noticeable to most people.

HARDNESS: MCL = none

A measure of the total calcium and magnesium in water. Water over 100mg/L is described as hard and levels over 250 mg/L are considered very hard. The effect of hardness is to increase the amount of soap                necessary to form suds with water. High levels may also increase scaling on the inside of water pipes.

IRON: MCL = none

Above 0.3 mg/L iron may cause staining to laundry and fixtures. Iron is naturally occurring water mineral due to the geology of the area.

MANGANESE: MCL = none

Above 0.05 mg/L manganese may cause staining to laundry and fixtures. See iron comment.

SULFATE: MCL = none

A naturally occurring substance in water. Levels above 250 mg/L may impart a bitter taste and render a laxative effect.

SODIUM: MCL = none

A notification level of 28 mg/L has been established for people on low salt diets. High levels may increase the corrosive effect.

V.O.C – Volatile Organic Chemicals – VOC scan is a gas chromatographic scan of 58 compounds. This list was determined by the Connecticut State Department of Health. These compounds include some of the more commonly found ground water contaminates.

LEAD – Lead, a metal found in natural deposits, is commonly used in household plumbing materials and water service lines. The greatest exposure to lead is swallowing or breathing in lead paint chips and dust.

But lead in drinking water can also cause a variety of adverse health effects. In babies and children, exposure to lead in drinking water above the action level can result in delays in physical and mental development, along with slight deficits in attention span and learning abilities. In adults, it can cause increases in blood pressure. Adults who drink this water over many years could develop kidney problems or high blood pressure.

Lead is rarely found in source water, but enters tap water through corrosion of plumbing materials. Homes built before 1986 are more likely to have lead pipes, fixtures and solder. However, new homes are also at risk: even legally “lead-free” plumbing may contain up to 8 percent lead. The most common problem is with brass or chrome-plated brass faucets and fixtures which can leach significant amounts of lead into the water, especially hot water.

RADON – Radon gas can enter homes through the water supply.  Radon dissolves and builds up in water from underground sources, such as wells. The radon in your water can enter the air in your home when you use water for household activities such as showering, washing clothes and cooking.

For every 10,000 picocuries per liter (pCi/L) of radon in your water, 1 pCi/L is added to your radon in the air. If your water comes from a lake, river, or reservoir (surface water), radon is not a concern. The radon is released into the air before it reaches your home.

Some radon stays in the water. Radon in the water you drink can also contribute to a very small increase in your risk of stomach cancer. However this risk is almost insignificant compared to your risk of lung cancer from radon. If the level of radon in your drinking water is 5,000 pCi/L then mitigation is recommended.

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