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Contaminated Water Well? Proactive Information For Homeowners

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Pure, fresh water is a requirement for the health and life of all living creatures, including humans. So when a residential water well test indicates that some form of contamination is present, homeowners are right to be concerned and motivated to take corrective action to restore their water well to safe usage. Homeowners who have just been given bad news about the purity of their family's water source can use this information to help them address the situation more confidently.

First, decide whether the sample could have been contaminated

Water well testing is done by procuring a sample of the water from the well using a sanitary testing receptacle from properly sanitized faucets while ensuring that the water is freshly drawn from the well. If any part of this process fails, the test results could indicate the presence of contamination in the water, even if that is not accurate. 

Homeowners who use home testing kits may not be performing the sanitation steps required to ensure that contaminants are not getting into the sample after the water is drawn. Other possible contamination points that homeowners may not be aware of include: 

  • samples taken after the water goes through a softener or filter system
  • samples taken from swing-type faucets or from a faucet that leaks 
  • samples taken with the aerator screen in still in place
  • samples taken too soon after the tap is turned on, before the line has been cleared of stagnant water
  • samples taken from outdoor hydrants or spigots

In addition, water samples should only be taken from faucets that have been thoroughly disinfected with bleach or flame and the sample should then be kept cool and submitted for testing within 48 hours. 

Second, consider doing a second test

Homeowners who feel that their initial water test could have been contaminated during the collection process should always consider having a second test performed, using more precise testing methods and sanitation. 

In addition, it is important to note that other factors can also cause a water well test to show contaminants, including flooding or excessive rainfall in the area immediately before the test is performed, as well as any excavation work or water well pump or component repairs that may have taken place. 

Due to the possibility for errors when using a home test kit, homeowners may feel more confident about the purity of their residential water wells by having a professional water test performed regularly on their well by a reputable water well testing company in their area. To learn more, contact a company like Bruce MacKay Pump & Well Drilling Service Inc.