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WATER PUMPS, TANKS, TESTS, WELLS, REPAIRS
WATER CONSERVATION MEASURES
WATER CONTAMINANT LEVELS
WATER FILTERS, HOME USE
WATER HAMMER NOISE DIAGNOSE & CURE
WATER ODORS, CAUSE CURE
WATER PUMP REPAIR GUIDE
WATER PRESSURE LOSS DIAGNOSIS & REPAIR
WATER PUMP SHORT CYCLING
WATER SOFTENERS & CONDITIONERS
WATER TANK REPAIR PROCEDURES
WATER TANK: USES, TROUBLESHOOTING
WATER TESTS, CONTAMINANTS, TREATMENT
WATER TREATMENT EQUIPMENT CHOICES
WELLS CISTERNS & SPRINGS
WELL CHLORINATION & DISINFECTION
WELL FLOW RATE
WELL WATER PRESSURE DIAGNOSIS
WELL YIELD IMPROVEMENT
WINTERIZE A BUILDING
Well water testing guidelines for home buyers and home owners.
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Using New York as an example, New York State home inspectors must be licensed by the state - a credential which provides an assurance of some mimimal or ground floor level of expertise and ethical conduct.
That license does not address water testing nor other environmental inspections or tests.
New York State licenses water testing laboratories; the lab processing of a water test sample must be processed by a state certified testing laboratory; the NYS DOH maintains an active lab list, and as well, your local water test labs will be glad to confirm that their certification is active, as if not they could not legally work in the state.
Some water testing laboratories also provide water sample collection services using their own employees, but all of the labs I've spoken with also are happy to accept third-party-collected samples.
Home owners, building occupants, and home inspectors as well as others are permitted to collect a water test sample, just as is any property homeowner.
The sample must be collected using containers and using a procedure specified by the water test lab who is going to process the sample; those requirements vary depending on the water test package selected; there may also be delivery time constraints, such as a maximum number of hours between sample collection and the time of delivery to the lab; those times also vary by test.
Water Test Procedure Example: Coliform Test = Bacteria Test = Potability Test for Drinking Water
A P/A test is a simple "present or absent" test for an unacceptable level of coliform bacteria in drinking water. This is one of the simplest tests performed, but it requires at least a sterile container of appropriate size, usually provided by the water test lab. Some water test collection bottles from some labs may also contain a chemical or preservative.
To conduct a basic coliform bacteria P/A test the tester who wants honest, representative results will follow instructions from the water test lab if they vary from the steps I give below, but should also address all of the concerns addressed by this procedure.
Watch out: I have ONLY described a general procedure for one specific test: a coliform P/A test (PA - Coliform Bacteria Test), and even for that test the laboratory may have different procedural details that the test consultant must follow. And test procedures for conducting other types of water tests are definitely different from what I described above. At WATER QUALITY TEST CHOICES & WATER TEST FEES we list the most common water quality or water contaminant tests performed on drinking water systems.
Also see Choices of Water Tests& Fees: A Summary of Types of Water Tests, Degrees of Comprehensive Water Testing, Details of Water Test Parameters. and also check out Cheating on water tests or select a topic from the More Reading links shown below.
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