Well Water Testing
Just like a car's maintenance record, you should keep a log of all work done to a well. Creating a record of maintenance, repairs, testing, and changes to the well helps users from the headache of having to dig up records and information. If problems arise, diagnosis and treatment may be easier and swifter with access to the well history. Buyers will see more value in a well that has a record than one that does not.
Prior to having your water tested, you should assess potential contamination sources to the well. The Great Lakes Rural Community Assistance Program (RCAP) is partnering with our SWCD to provide FREE private well assessments. Learn more about well water assessment here: http://www.greatlakesrcap.org/.
Sign Up for an assessment here: sign-up form
An initial water quality screening for possible threats and determination of potential health risks creates peace of mind. Groundwater is typically the safest and cleanest source of water for drinking, but it can become contaminated. Screenings can identify risks that may be present and allow for targeted testing recommendations. Well assessments through this program now come with an initial screening.
Allow us to help you navigate past results and tests provided by sellers of water treatment products. As a neutral 3rd party, we can give you an unbiased opinion of risks and treatments to address concerns.
What is a Water Test?
A water test is a process by which contaminants (such as fuels, solvents, herbicides, and metals) are isolated and analyzed in a sample. A water test is typically performed on a private water supply, such as a well.
Yearly testing of private well water is recommended by most environmental and health organizations for a minimum of bacteria, nitrates, and arsenic in Hamilton County. Yearly tests help to ensure that nothing has changed from year to year and gives an indication of well health and stability. A broad baseline test is recommended once every 5-10 years or when taste, smell, or color changes are noticed in the well.
Why have your water tested?
You are responsible.
Many people in the United States receive their water from private ground water wells. EPA regulations that protect public drinking water systems do not apply to privately owned wells. As a result, owners of private wells are responsible for ensuring that their water is safe from contaminants.
Well water can become contaminated at any time without your knowledge.
Common causes include a break of the well or septic system, livestock waste, agricultural and lawn chemicals, and naturally occurring elements. Only through testing can you be assured of a continued supply of clean, safe water.
Other testing options
State Department of Health water test kit form
For a list of Indiana Certified Drinking Water Laboratories, click here.
The Private Well Class- Free Well Care Classes for private well owners- http://privatewellclass.org/
The National Groundwater Association- General information, videos, lessons, and resources for well owners- http://www.wellowner.org/
Indiana State Department of Health- Water Supply information- Information on certified labs, ISDH Laboratory and other great information- http://www.in.gov/isdh/20408.htm
Indiana Department of Natural Resources, Division of Water- Groundwater/Wells Frequently Asked Questions- Information on well construction, well drillers, and water rights - http://www.state.in.us/dnr/water/3482.htm
Indiana Geological Survey-Groundwater and geology of Indiana- https://igs.indiana.edu/groundwater/
Hamilton County Health Department Well Drinking Water Testing
All new or repaired wells in Hamilton County are required to be permitted. Once a well is drilled or repaired, it must be sampled to ensure a safe drinking water supply. The Hamilton County Health Department will sample the well using the Indiana State Health Department laboratory or applicants may use a state certified laboratory for water sample analysis. Visit the Hamilton County Well Water Supply Program website for more info or call (317) 776-8500.
How to get your water tested?
Samples must be collected according to a specific procedure and in special bottles. Call or stop by the SWCD office in Noblesville to see what options are available to you and how to proceed.
Samples need to be dropped off by 12 pm on Friday for delivery. Bacteria samples will not be accepted if they are not collected according to directions. This includes collections from the tap on Friday and immediately brought to office for delivery.
Tests and Fees
Nitrate/Inorganic Suite — Cost $35
Includes nitrate, nitrite, ammonia, sulfate, chloride, fluoride, soluble phosphorus, silica, TDS and conductivity
Pesticide Immunoassay Screens — Cost $70
Detects major herbicides Triazines & Lasso/Dual, can detect atrazine (Aatrex), simazine (Princep), alachlor (Lasso), metolachlor (Dual), & acetochlor (Harness)
Metals — Cost $85
Includes antimony, arsenic, barium, beryllium, cadmium, chromium, lead, selenium, aluminum, copper, iron, manganese, silver, zinc, nickel, sodium, calcium, strontium, cobalt, magnesium, potassium, and
Certified Laboratory Sampling
Bacteria — Cost $15
total coliform and Escherichia coli (E. coli)- positive or negative results
Nitrates — Cost $15
nitrate + nitrite as N
Simple Metals — Cost $25
arsenic, lead, and copper
Radionuclides — Cost $105
screen for gross alpha & beta particles, Uranium, and Radium-228
+ Handling Fee $10
We ship or deliver the test straight to the lab, so you don’t have to worry…just drop samples off by Friday at 12 pm for delivery
Service fee of $70 when we take the water sample from the source for you
Discount: A $5 discount will be applied to each additional test beyond the first one, when ordered at the same time.
Different water filters have different functions. Some can make your water taste better, while others can filter out harmful chemicals or germs. No single filter can keep every type of contaminant out of your drinking water, and not everyone needs a water filter.
Most water can be treated if it contains something of concern. We can assist you with finding the right type of treatment to address your water quality concerns.
CDC Treatment Technologies (pdf)