How to check home Water is safe, How to test home water quality
Even though water may not have any bad taste or smell, it could still be contaminated with dangerous chemicals and germs. Some harmful chemical contaminants like heavy metals and Nitrates can be the cause of long term health problems, especially for infants, children and elderly people. The only sure way to know whether our water in the house is safe is by getting the water tested as described below.
There are two options for testing water, you can have it tested in a certified drinking water laboratory with sophisticated equipment to detect very low levels of water contaminants or you could do an initial water test using cheap water testing kits available from leading online sellers like Amazon. It is recommended to get the home water source water quality tested at least when you move into a new house or if you have never done a test of the water quality in your house.
Standard drinking water testing parameters
The main water parameters that should be tested must be according to the standard drinking water testing parameters laid out by the Governments of each country like the EPA in USA and internationally by the UN agency WHO.
When you test water quality of the house one of the first priorities should be to check for presence of heavy metals and chemical contaminants that cause slow health problems, which only become evident after consuming the water for a long time. Several of our pages explain what those slow acting contaminants are like Arsenic and heavy metals.Bacterial contamination is very easy to overcome and is not as serious as problems with heavy metals for example. Any bacterial or virus contamination will be evident immediately, because you will have stomach problems or become sick and it can be treated easily with modern day antibiotics. Poisoning with Arsenic or heavy metals will have no health problems immediately, they will start showing signs of health problems only after many months or even years of consuming the poisoned water and it may be too late at that stage.
A Certified drinking water testing laboratory tests for all parameters concerning possible water contaminants in drinking water and the results of testing water quality will be given to you as a printed Water Analysis Certificate. These laboratories give you very accurate results. The water testing certification laboratories will test the water for the various water contaminants using methods as laid out by the National Standards of the country like ASTM in the USA and BIS in India.
The test results are written in a water analysis report in a standard format in which the maximum allowable limits of the water contaminant is given at the side of the actual result. This allows you to compare whether your water sample contaminant levels do not exceed the limits set by authorities like WHO, EPA of USA, Indian BIS 10500, etc. A sample of the results of testing water quality is given in our page on Water Standards
Testing for bacteria in water
A home testing kit is very convenient way of determining water quality quickly with approximate values that are close to what you will obtain if the water was sent to a water testing laboratory.
Testing for bacteria in water is easy, because there is what are called 'dipslide' or 'dip slide' or 'petridish water test kits' for testing for bacteria in water. The dipslide and petridish tests for bacteria will give fairly accurate results. These dipslides or petridishes for testing for bacteria in water will have to incubated or be kept for a few days in a warm spot to see the bacteria grow and from the color and size of the bacterial colonies in the petridish or on the dipslide we can know if there is bacterial contamination of the water.
How to Take a Water Sample
First you should decide on which water testing lab you will give the water for testing. Check with them if they provide the sterile containers required for collecting the water samples. Most testing laboratories supply their own sample containers.
When testing for bacterial contamination you must use sterile containers. Once you have the sterile containers, do not open the container till you have the tap open from which you want to take the sample and the tap water let out for 2 to 3 minutes. Then open the container and quickly let the water run into the container till it is full and overflowing, and immediately close the container tight and put the container in a new plastic zipper bag. If there is delay to take the sample to the water testing lab, then keep the sample in the fridge. The water sample should be given to the lab within 48 hours of collection.
How to buy Water Purifiers in India
The best way to buy Water Purifiers in India is to first look at all models of Water Purifiers available online at the leading online Retailers in India. For example on the online webpage of All Water Purifiers available in India on Amazon.in, you will find the full range of Indian Water Purifiers complete with their best discounted price and full specifications. This is great information, and you can decide on which model of water purifier to buy. With the model of water purifier you want to buy finalised, you can go to local shops to try and find the model of water purifier you have chosen and see if you can get at similar price of that at Amazon.in. In most cases the price from Amazon will be cheaper, because they buy in bulk from the manufacturers direct and they sell huge volumes because they are the world's largest and most trusted online retailer. If you buy from Amazon, they will arrange to have the water purifier installed in your house, usually free of charge.
Warranty and other facilities offered through Amazon are usually better than what you can get from local agents of water purifiers.
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