Do you have a well or a spring on your property? Do you and your family rely on it for the water you cook with, drink, and use for bathing and clothes washing? How safe is the water that comes from that source?
If you don’t know the answer to that last question, it could be a serious problem because what you don’t know can definitely hurt you. That’s why our private water testing service in Manassas, VA is so important. Your family’s health is simply too important to take chances with and there’s tremendous peace of mind in knowing with absolute certainty what’s in the water you’re drinking.
If you’re on city water, you have at least a bit of protection because the city is mandated to provide safe drinking water for its citizens. Sometimes though, they fail to do so. Flint, Michigan being a recent case in point. Flint is not alone though. According to the EPA, there are more than 1000 towns and communities scattered all across the country that have water problems as bad as, or even worse than Flint’s!
Even so, generally speaking, people who rely on city water can usually count on it being safe to drink. If you get your water from a well or spring though, there’s no such mandate. In fact, there are no laws governing well water quality at all, so periodic private water testing in Manassas, VA is the only way to be sure.
In general, we recommend having your well water tested every twelve months. Your first test serves as the baseline and the tests that come later all serve as a check to be sure that nothing has changed in the intervening year. Twelve months is, after all, a very long time and all sorts of things could potentially filter into your water supply over the course of a year.
While health concerns are incredibly important and the main reason people have their water tested, quality matters too. If you’ve lived in several places over the course of your life, you know how widely the quality of the water can vary from one location to the next, so you know that water quality is definitely a thing.
The question then, is how does the water taste where you live right now? Is it bitter? Does it have a funny or foul odor? Does it stain your clothes when you wash them? Your sinks, tubs and toilets? Your teeth?
All of these things point to specific problems with your water and all of those problems are fixable, but you’ve got to know the root cause before you can take corrective action.
That’s where we com into the picture. As the top-rated independent lab in the area, our private water testing in Manassas, VA is comprehensive. We offer a variety of different tests that cover both the health issues and the water quality issues we’ve talked about in more general terms. Let’s take a closer look at the tests we offer:
Total Coliform Bacteria – Coliform bacteria is one of the most common causes of gastrointestinal illnesses. If you, or members of your family are experiencing chronic gastrointestinal issues, the water you’re drinking may be the culprit. This test will either confirm that or rule it out.
This should be considered the standard water safety test. Note that if the sample you send us fails this test, then we will automatically test further, for the presence of E-Coli bacteria.
Lead – This is the exact problem with Flint, Michigan’s water supply. In their case, the lead was introduced by automotive plants in the area, but many older homes in our area may have lead in their water leeching in from older pipes inside the home itself. This test will tell you exactly what the lead levels in your water are.
And Nitrates – If you live in an area where there’s lots of agricultural activity, you could easily have a high concentration of nitrates in the water you are drinking. The results of this test will tell you if the level of nitrates in your water is a problem.
Water Quality Related Tests
pH – Not only does a very high or very low pH level impact the taste of the water you’re drinking, high pH levels can corrode the pipes in your home, which can cause a variety of dangerous metals to leach into the water your family relies on. This is an incredibly important test!
Hardness – You’ve almost certainly heard at least some people talk about how ‘hard’ their water is. The reason it’s a problem is that it causes an unsightly scaly residue to build up in your shower, tub, and sinks and hard water prevents soaps from lathering up properly.
Iron – If your sinks, toilet and tub are stained with a reddish-brown discoloration, the likeliest culprit is a high concentration of iron in your water. This test will confirm that to be the root cause of the issue.
Manganese – Like iron, a high concentration of manganese in the water coming into your home will stain your sinks, toilets and tub, along with any clothing you wash.
Sulfates – Does your water smell like rotten eggs? Sulfates are the likely culprit. This test will confirm that, and tell you how big a problem you’ve got.
And Total Dissolved Solids – A small amount of minerals in your water can actually be a good thing, but there is such a thing as too much of a good thing, and minerals in high concentration can dramatically alter the taste of the water you’re drinking, and usually not in a good way. This test will tell you what minerals are present, and in what concentrations.
If reading about these tests has your mind turning on the subject and you’re suddenly very interested in knowing exactly what’s in the water you and your family are drinking, the process of taking advantage of our private water testing in Manassas, VA is simple. It starts by making a phone call to our office so you can speak to a knowledgeable technician about your water and the things you notice about its character and quality, and what you’re most concerned about.
After speaking with you, our technicians will be able to recommend one or more tests that seem to be the best fit for you. That done, we’ll send you the appropriate sample containers for your needs, along with instructions on how to collect your water samples and where to take them for testing. Once we get the results of the tests you order back, we’ll get them into your hands via the delivery method you choose.
Here’s a quick overview of the process you’ll follow when taking water samples, regardless of the specific type of test you’re ordering:
- Use only the sample collection containers provided by us
- Don’t use our sample container if the seal is broken or if the bottle is cracked. In those cases, we will send you a replacement.
- Remove the aerator screen from the faucet you’ll be collecting your sample from.
- Soak a cotton ball with isopropyl alcohol.
- Swab the inside and outer portion of the faucet to ensure it is free of external contaminants.
- Run cold water for five minutes
- Without touching the insides of the collection container, open it.
- Fill the collection container to the 125 mL line.
- Screw the cap back on securely
- Write your name on the container
- Keep your sample cold or refrigerated until it is delivered to the lab or drop-off location nearest you.
That’s all there is to it!
Private water testing in Manassas, VA is much more important than most people realize. If you even suspect that your water isn’t as good as it could be, or if you think it may be causing or contributing to a lingering illness you or any member of your household may be suffering, our testing service can either rule out your water as a possible cause or help you identify the source of the problem so you can set about fixing it. Give us a call today and let’s get started!