Testing Your Well Water
Whether the water supply for your home is sourced from a surface well or an artesian, cased well, the water should be of good quality and meet the standards and regulations for your municipality. The owners of individual wells, which serve less than twenty one people, have the responsibility to ensure that the drinking water provided is of good quality and safe for human consumption. While the well water may appear clean and clear, with no specific taste or odor, this does not necessarily mean that it is safe to drink. This means that it is important that your well water is properly tested.
Groundwater is typically of higher quality than the water found in lakes, streams and rivers. This is because surface water sources do not have the benefit of the natural filtering of the soil. However, groundwater can be vulnerable to contamination from microbiological pathogens. It is recommended that well water be tested a minimum of twice per year. Generally, it is best to test your well in spring and in the fall. However, you may need to perform additional tests if you notice any sudden changes in the appearance, taste or odor of the water. The potential health risks of these pathogens should not be underestimated. It is possible that your well water may be vulnerable to e-coli or enterococcus bacteria. These bacteria strains will commonly cause gastroenteritis or stomach issues, but in rare cases it could result in meningitis or hepatitis.
Chemical Contaminants of Well Water:
Bacteria is not the only potential danger of contaminated well water. Your well water should also be safe from hazardous chemicals. While there are fifteen minerals (calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, sodium, chloride, iron, zinc, selenium, chromium, manganese, iodine and copper, silicon and boron), which are considered essential for human health, excess amount of these minerals can cause problems. Additionally, high mineral content in your water supply can result in rusty stains, unpleasant odors, grittiness or scale. This can not only make the water unpalatable, but can compromise the aesthetic appearance and performance of your fixtures, fittings and plumbing.
The Long Term Impact of Contaminated Well Water.
While you may notice quickly if your water is making you feel ill, you may not notice the long-term impact of contaminated well water. Initially, you may find that your laundry has rusty colored or dark stains on it. This can be caused by excess minerals built up in your water, like iron. This can prove frustrating or annoying, but over time, these minerals can accumulate in your plumbing fixtures and pipes. This can affect the water acidity and hardness, which can compromise your pipes and may result in leaks, blockages or reduced water flow. The mineral deposits can also accumulate inside appliances such as washers, dishwashers or ice makers. This can reduce water flow and place additional strain on the appliance. This will not only reduce the effectiveness of your appliance, but can also reduce the lifespan of the machine. To remove the risk of needing significant investment to correct these issues, it is important to ensure that your well water supply is not only potable, but free from excess minerals and chemicals.
If you would like to know more about removing contaminants from your well water supply, contact us. We specialize in water filtration solutions and would be happy to answer any questions you may have.
About The Author:
Greg Scott is President of Valparaiso based Miracle/EcoWater Systems, the premier water conditioning company in Northwest Indiana serving the Lake, Porter and LaPorte County areas. A 3rd generation water treatment professional, Greg grew up in the family owned business started by his grandfather in the late fifties. He has made water treatment his life and under his direction and high-standards, the company’s water treatment experience, knowledge, and products are unrivaled in region.