Water Quality Test Results

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  #1  
Old 03-07-18, 08:13 AM
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Water Quality Test Results

We had our well water tested with the following results:
Total Coliform 5 cfu/100 ml
E.coli 0 cfu/ 100 ml
When I read about results it seems as long as E.coli is zero and Total Coliform is under ten there is no problem as coliform (which isn’t E.coli) is naturally occurring. The letter accompanying the report recommends the problem be fixed, as the desirable total coliform is zero. Collectively my translation of what I am reading and the letter leave me puzzled.
We’re not running a lab or suffering from poor immune systems, so I wonder if it would be fixing a problem we are not having.
 
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Old 03-07-18, 08:37 AM
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If you are not having any issues why did you have the water tested?
 
  #3  
Old 03-07-18, 09:36 AM
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It was just a precaution. My wife was reading about water for one reason or another and noticed regular water testing is a good practice. So we sent it off. No greater reason.
 
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Old 03-07-18, 12:21 PM
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Then it's totally up to you to decide if it's worth addressing or not. I would start by shocking the well. Then you can decide if you want to have the well re-tested later.
 
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Old 03-07-18, 01:10 PM
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I'll procrastinate for awhile. If nothing falls off, I'll take that as a good sign.

Thanks Pilot Dane
 
  #6  
Old 03-07-18, 01:44 PM
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Those test results could have been due to something as simple as coliform growing in the faucet strainer of the sink that was used to draw the water sample for the bacteriological test. Was it santitized beforehand ?

Escherichia coli (e.coli) originates in the gastrointestinal tract of warm blooded creatures (mammals), so it wouldn't (shouldn't) be present in the location.
 
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Old 03-08-18, 12:15 AM
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I didn't take the faucet apart and treat it but it is a retractable type that could have picked up something while cleaning fruit, vegetables or the sink. Anything that may have gotten there by way of fruits, vegetables or the soil washed off we would probably have encountered anyway. We grow some of it in the soil above and a couple of hundred feet from the well (50 feet). Anything arriving by way of the gastrointestinal tract of warm blooded creatures would be quite another concern. Fortunately that is not the case.
I will clean the faucet and have a retest.
Thanks Vermont.
 
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Old 03-08-18, 03:13 AM
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The best spigot to draw water from for a test, is one which is strictly for the cold water (not mixed) and is stationary and has no retractable sprayer or moving parts like a swivel . . . . just a simple "plain jane"cold water spout with the screen and the rubber gasket removed. A little bleach or rubbing alcohol and a cotton ball is helpful in then cleaning the end where the strainer was located.

I presume that your objective is to test the water source . . . . not the water distribution system, which has plenty of locations in it where water can stagnate or harbor fairly harmless bacteria growth.

Sometimes, the best source for such a test is the outdoor garden hose spigot . . . . or a separate cold water faucet in a bathroom.
 
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Old 03-08-18, 04:08 AM
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The garden spigot is ideal...and it never occurred to me when I was just looking for the shortest distance and the least potentially additive path. It is closest to the pressure tank and strictly cold water.
I'm off to get another bottle from the testing site. Again, that was very helpful. Thank you.
 
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Old 03-08-18, 04:52 AM
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I had our water tested several years ago, for the same reason that you did, just because, and, as I expected, everything came back fine. But I followed the advice of one of our local well drillers, who happens to be a friend as well, and he told me that whenever possible he takes samples from the kitchen sink, with the aerator removed. He said that based on results he has gotten back over the years outdoor spigots are prone to elevated levels of algae and whatnot, and that bathroom faucets, typically being not as high from the sink, are more apt to have backsplash from the bottom of the sink. And aerators, well, all you have to do is remove and clean them periodically and you know how bad they can look sometimes. Now, it sounds like e.coli is one of your primary concerns, mine too, and you're not going to pick that up just because you take a sample from an outdoor tap, and nothing else that you pick up there is probably noteworthy because we've all drank out of hoses at one time or another. So he didn't tell me to not take a sample from an outdoor spigot, nor am I suggesting that, but I figure the cleaner the water used for the sample, unaltered of course, the more accurate the results, and fewer things on the report to be wonder about when you fill your water glass at the kitchen sink.
 
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Old 03-08-18, 04:54 AM
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It has been code, at least in North Carolina, for over a decade that all wells must have a spigot right at the well head specifically for taking water samples. Being in Canada I assume everything at your well head is buried rather deep so you might not have that option. In the future one thing you could do is to sanitize a spigot or faucet before taking the sample.
 
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