How can I test water quality at home?


Water is an important daily essential, so the focus on it to be safe, clean, and healthy is understandable. Some issues with water are easily noticeable with the naked eye, or by smell alone. Others, however, are not so easy to spot and could pose a danger without our knowledge. How then, should average people make sure their home water is safe to consume? 

Water testing 

The unease of the condition of the water source is something that can put settled with water testing. In pursuing a higher level of water purity, the desire to make sure water for consumption is clean has meant a rising interest in water filtration systems. Much information can be gleaned about these systems here: But before leaping to the store to pick up a filtration system, one must first uncover what needs to be taken out from the water source so that it can be purified. 

Testing the water is the best way to discover exactly what contaminants are found in drinking water. With the results in hand, it will be far easier to look for the perfect water filtration system that is specifically designed to treat those issues. 

What tests to use for water? 

Water testing kits are easy to find and come in a wide range of variety. Having the option to readily test one’s water at home is a modern commodity, one that is very useful when looking to install a filtration system. The type of test to choose depends on the water source in many cases. 

Water from the tap and from the well is quite different and some tests will not be entirely useful for both. Identifying the water source is thus essential to choose what kind of test to get. Chlorine tests are the most common but something more substantial tests would be needed for wells in order to detect other contaminants like pesticides. 

Water test strips

Easiest the most freely available type of test comes in the form of test strips. These tests can identify contaminants in the water that change the color of the strip. Comparing the color of the strip with the chart included will determine which chemicals contaminate the water. Ph and chlorine levels are usually what these tests are used for, so it’s not ideal for other harsher contaminants. 

Water disk kits

Another type of home water testing kit uses a water sample combined with a powder or liquid reagent. This changes the color of the water depending on what chemicals it comes into contact with that are found in the water. Using a color disk included with the test indicates which chemical is present in the water. This test is a little more elaborate and can encompass a larger list of potential contaminants, like microbial particles. 

Digital water testing

Pricier water tests come in the form of digital instruments, and they boast accurate testing results. Usually, these tests need to be used by someone who has undergone specific training as the device should be calibrated accordingly. Professionals are most often employed to handle such devices at a certain cost. Digital tools that use luminescence testing are quick and provide fast screening for bacteria in drinking water. On the other hand, electrochemical tests determine the water’s pH, electrical conductivity, and even dissolved solids. 

Lab testing by professionals

Finally, one of the most accurate and hassle-free results is obtained with the use of professional lab testers. This method, albeit, not a cheap one is maybe the most thorough testing drinking water can undergo. This is especially true when it comes to well water, as many contaminants can infiltrate and even be harder to detect if not done by professionals. 

What is more, these labs have certain standards they abide by and will strive to offer all possible results required. A water sample is usually taken and analyzed in lab conditions, using advanced techniques. After which the results are communicated to the owner, and this can be the starting point for investing in the proper water filter.

In conclusion

Testing the purity of one’s drinking water is invaluable, especially when considering the location. Tap water is already subjected to treatment so it can be quite safe to use, nevertheless, testing will either confirm or offer solutions. Well water requires the most testing and with more frequency as it’s a private source and goes unregulated. Fortunately, there is a wealth of testing options to ensure safe drinking water.