Changes in aquifer levels and the quality of the water they provide occur quite frequently. While not all the changes in those two things prove harmful to humans or damaging to plumbing, equipment and fixtures, experts do suggest having your water professionally tested on an annual basis.

The National Ground Water Association (NGWA) suggests the following:

“NGWA recommends routine annual maintenance checks to ensure the proper operation of the well and prolong its years of service as well as to monitor water quality. NGWA also recommends that you test your water whenever there is a change in taste, odor, or appearance, or when the system is serviced.”

The National Ground Water Association (NGWA) goes on to specify that well owners should try to use only the services of licensed/certified well water contractors.

Regarding the parameters the National Ground Water Association (NGWA) believes a well owner ought to test on a yearly basis, they give the following advice:

“A test of water for coliform bacteria and nitrates, and anything else of local concern. Other typical additional tests are those for iron, manganese, water hardness, sulfides, and other water constituents that cause problems with plumbing, staining, water appearance, and odor. Changes in these constituents also may indicate changes in your well or local ground water. Additional tests may be recommended if water appears cloudy or oily, if bacterial growth is visible on fixtures, or water treatment devices are not working as they should. Check with your water well contractor, state department of natural resources, or local health department for information on local water quality issues.”

How Can I Find a Certified Well Water Contractor in My Area?

Try using the NGWA Certified Well Water Contractor Lookup tool or you can also find a listing of certified water testing labs in your area on the Environmental Protection Agency Safe Water web site.

Water Hardness Test Strips
Water Hardness Test

So Certified Well Water Testing Once a Year is Enough?

Well water testing ought to take place at least once a year and well owners should use professionally certified personnel for that purpose. That does NOT mean, however, that well owners ought to let their guard down the rest of the year.

Owning a well implies responsibility for the quality of the water coming out of the well so well owners may want to consider using simple, do-it-yourself home well water test kits from time-to-time as a secondary means of checking the quality of their well water.

While home well water test kits cannot and should NEVER take the place of the annual testing done by professionally certified well contractors, they do offer well owners additional peace of mind when used in conjunction with professional well water testing.

You can use the following links to find home well water test kits for the following parameters:

home water well test kit for coliform bacteria
Home Water Test Kit for Coliform Bacteria

Well owners may also want to consider using multi-paramater home and well and water test kits such as:

home water test kit for city/municipal water
Home and Well Water Test Kit

To Recap:  The responsibility of making sure the water from your well poses no danger to you or anyone else rests solely in your hands. . . and you DO wash your hands to make sure they’re clean before you eat, right? So… shouldn’t you also make sure your well is clean before you drink from it?