Why should I test my water?
Water is considered to be the Universal Solvent which means that water wants to dissolve anything that it comes into contact with; doesn't matter if it's rock formations underground containing minerals or it's the pipes in your home that the water flows through to get to your tap, water can easily contain contaminants that you can't see, smell or taste.
How do I get my water tested?
Place an order with us, we will send you out a test kit with all the bottles needed to perform the test you have selected. You simply fill the bottles according to the sampling instructions you received in your kit. Make sure to completely fill out the paperwork with your mailing address if it is not already preprinted, your sample ID location (the location where you pulled your sample from like the kitchen faucet) and most importantly the date and time you collected your sample and send it back to us.
What water test should I perform?
The type of analysis you choose should be based upon your specific concerns, your water source and what contaminates may potentially be in the water. If you are on a city water supply, you may want to test for the by-products of disinfection and heavy metals as they are likely to be in the water. If you are on a private well it is important to test for bacteria as that is a common contaminant, as well as naturally occurring contaminants such as arsenic, radon, barium, iron and manganese. For information regarding all of our home water testing packages including sample test reports, samping instructions and information sheets (contaminant lists), please visit our products page.
What is the cost of testing?
The costs of testing is based upon the package you choose. We offer single contaminant tests for as low as $40.00 and comprehensive packages covering over 100 contaminants for $206.00.
How often should I test my water?
If you are on a city water supply, municipalities are required to perform analysis based upon the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA); however, they are testing the water that leaves their facility and not the water that shows up at your kitchen tap. Water quality can vary greatly based upon natural fluctuations in the water source and the types of treatment techniques utilized by the water department.
If you are on a private well, there are no regulations which require regular testing of the water, so you are responsible for ensuring the water is safe to drink. The EPA recommends minimally testing your water at least once a year for bacteria and nitrates. If you have specific problems you may consider routinely monitoring your water supply.
How much water needs to be shipped?
This will depend on the type of analysis you choose to perform. We provide all of the sampling containers needed when you order a kit. Please make sure to fill all bottles in your kit according to the sampling instructions provided.
When will I receive my results?
This will also depend on the type of analysis you choose, as some tests can be performed more quickly than others. We have several packages in which results are available within 2-3 days of receipt at the laboratory. For our more comprehensive testing packages like the Watercheck and Watercheck with Pesticides it does take about 10-12 business days.
How will I receive my results?
Results are mailed to the address provided on the paperwork. We will also provide results via email, so if you wish to receive your results quicker, please provide your email address on the paperwork you submit.
How is payment made?
All testing kits are prepaid, so you can place an order using a credit card or mail a check with an order form to our corporate office at the following address:
National Testing Laboratories (DO NOT SHIP SAMPLES TO THIS ADDRESS)
Order Processing Dept
6571 Wilson Mills Road
Cleveland, OH 44143
Will I be able to understand the test results and what they mean?
The test results are provided in an easy to understand format outlining what was found in your sample and comparing it to established standards or guidelines. We have highly knowledgeable Technical Service Representatives available to assist you. Call us at 1-800-458-3330 and we'll be happy to explain the results and answer any questions you might have.
What bacteria do we test for?
Since it is impractical to test water for all the bacteria that can cause illness, we check for Total Coliform and E.Coli bacteria, which are indicator bacteria. Their presence indicates a possible presence of disease-causing organisms. These are the bacteria tests that are required on all public water supplies.
Why do samples need to be shipped overnight?
Certain analyses are required to be done within a specified time period. For example bacteria testing must be done within 24 hours of collection, so samples should be shipped overnight to ensure a valid and accurate results.
Is return overnight shipping included?
Return overnight shipping is not included in the price of the test kit; however, we can offer you discounted overnight return shipping if you would like to use our discounted shipping rates. Please call a Technical Service Representative (1-800-458-3330) to make these return shipping arrangements. This can be done anytime in the process - it's never too late to call us to arrange your return shipping.
Do you test for chlorine?
Chlorine has a very short holding time, minutes from the time it is collected, so this is a test best done on-site. We include some onsite testing supplies with some of our testing packages or you can order these separately.
What information do I need to provide?
When filling out your paperwork, make sure the address preprinted is the address to which you want your report sent. The sample ID location should indicate where you collected your sample for example: kitchen tap, bath tap, outside tap. The sample ID will be most useful when submitting multiple samples. Make sure to include the date and time collected, which will be helpful in determining whether your sample was within the proper holding time for the bacteria test to be valid.
If I find a problem with my water, how will I fix it?
There are many water treatment technologies to fix all kinds of water problems. We recommend you speak with a reputable water treatment professional. You can locate one in your area by visiting the Water Quality Association website at www.wqa.org and clicking on Find a Water Professional.
Where can I find more information on a specific contaminant?
You can visit our Technical Information page, which contains articles and information about various contaminants.
I am on city water do I need to be concerned with pesticides?
Public water supplies are required to test for pesticides every three years or longer if they have applied for a waiver. Cities that get their water from a surface such as a lake or reservoir are more prone to pesticide contamination due to run-off.