Water Testing For Homeowners

Certified Water Testing Laboratory

CNA is a leader in water testing for Home Mortgages and Certificate of Occupancy for new home construction. 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.

Your water is your most valuable asset! We can help you make sure that it is safe for you and your family! The Health Department recommends that you test your water annually, any time you notice a change in your water quality or any time the has been disturbed.

Let's Get Started

CNA Lab is a certified Mortgage and Home Sale Water Laboratory

High quality laboratory testing to provide you with fast, accurate results.
Let's Get Started

Water Testing for Home Mortgages and Certificate of Occupancy For New Home Construction

CNA Water offers full water microbiology testing & chemistry:

  • Conventional Mortgage & CO
  • Total Coliform
  • FHA-Short
  • Total Coliform, Nitrate, Nitrite, Lead, Iron, Maganese, Sodium, pH, Hardness, Turbidity and Alkalinity
  • FHA/HUD-Long

Common Home Water Testing Questions:

Many privately owned wells are micro-biologically and/or chemically contaminated and fail to meet Federal and State drinking water standards for potability.

Unlike public and bottled water suppliers, which in New York are regulated by the Health Department and are required to routinely test for a variety of pollutants, it is up to the individual homeowner to verify the safety of his or her own drinking water. Those of us on wells are often unaware of the contaminants that may be present and how they may affect our long and short-term health. The costs associated with the testing of public water supplies are collectively borne by the taxpayers and customers supporting their individual municipalities. Therefore, the cost to the individual is low. The opposite is true for those wishing to conduct a thorough analysis of their private well. One could easily spend hundreds of dollars duplicating the testing requirements mandated by the State on public waters. Therefore, most people don’t test their wells as extensively as they might if cost was not a factor. In fact most people give water testing very little thought and, in some cases, consume water that may adversely affect their health.

What Can the Homeowner Do?
When our lab detects problems with public water supplies, the municipalities are required by the Health Department to make the necessary changes to make the water safe for public consumption. While we do not advocate that “Big Brother” come into our homes and mandate routine testing for everyone, we do feel common sense can be used to determine an affordable course of action for the individual homeowner. When homeowners come to us for advice, we typically ask them some questions and make specific recommendations for their individual situation. Though we cannot “guarantee” that your water meets all federal and state standards (unless we test for all of the contaminants regulated in public water supplies), we can use a “cost-benefit” approach for the typical homeowner.

Health Related Concerns
We always recommend that one perform a “Total Coliform” test on your well. This group of bacteria, which includes E. coli, can get into your water supply at any time, colonize the system and grow to high numbers. The Coliforms are associated with water-borne illnesses. You can get sick from the water. Since most homeowners on wells do not chlorinate their water (the way most public water supplies do) these microorganisms can flourish, leading to problems for you and your family.

In 1986 the EPA banned the use of lead solder in the plumbing of new homes. Lead is found in older homes and in newer homes with brass fixtures or brass cased well pumps. Lead is known to cause developmental disabilities in children. High copper levels also have adverse health effects. Lead and copper concentrations vary from home to home. Some waters are more corrosive than others causing these metals to leach into your drinking water. A lead & copper test will allow you to see if your family is at risk.

Other contaminants that we periodically find in private wells include chloride (from road salt), “heavy metals” (such as arsenic, barium, nickel, and chromium), fluoride and sulfate (both of which can occur naturally).

Lastly, we have found that a small percentage of the deeper drilled wells in this area of New York contain potentially carcinogenic, radioactive components like radon, gross alpha & beta activity and/or radium 226 & 228.

Possible Sources of Contamination
Well water contamination may originate from your septic system. Septic systems are almost always on the same property as your well. Depending on the nature of the contaminants, soil type and your property’s topography (water usually obeys gravity), it is possible for the leachate from your septic system to flow toward and enter your water supply. Human waste contains billions of microorganisms (including E. coli) and a variety of unsavory contaminants that may adversely affect your health.

As a homeowner, you have to ask yourself what other sources of pollution may pose a threat to your well. Do you have a buried gasoline or fuel oil tank on your property? Are you near an active farm or orchard that uses fertilizers and pesticides? Are you near an abandoned gasoline station, landfill or dry cleaning establishment? What type of man-made or applied chemicals may be in the vicinity of your well? Have you spilled any chemicals, gasoline or fuel oil in recent years? This type of information will enable a qualified environmental testing laboratory to tailor an economical testing plan for your home that will cost hundreds of dollars less than testing for all of the contaminants required of public water supplies. Again, nobody can guarantee that your water is free of all health-related contaminants, but performing a few screen tests tailored to your situation will go a long way toward alleviating your concerns.

Aesthetic Problems
Some wells contain objectionable characteristics that make the water taste funny, stain your fixtures & clothing, have an abnormal color or a cloudy appearance, an unusual odor or contain dissolved gases. Iron, manganese, sulfur (hydrogen sulfide), suspended clays (particulates), hardness and methane are common “secondary contaminants” found in wells in our area. The source of these contaminants is typically within the aquifer itself. The water must be treated symptomatically by installing the appropriate water treatment system within your home. Often, several of these contaminants are present at once, requiring multiple treatment systems in order to make the water aesthetically pleasing. A good lab will “fingerprint” your water and determine exactly what is wrong with it. Then you can visit a reputable water treatment dealer and fix the specific the problem at hand.

Wells and their Susceptibility to Contamination
Based upon our years of experience, it is our opinion that deeper (drilled or “pounded”) wells are generally less susceptible to man-made pollution. Shallow wells (points, dug wells, screened wells and cisterns) generally take water close to the earth’s surface and are, therefore, the most susceptible to chemical contamination. Compounds like nitrate, chloride, pesticides and chemicals commonly found in gasoline and fuel oils show up more often in these water supplies. This is probably so because these wells are drilled in coarser, sandy soils where the water table is high. Deep wells, which often have the benefit of many feet of clay, shale and bedrock to filter contaminants before reaching the water table, appear to be more resistant to this type of chemical contamination. These are only generalizations, as we have occasionally found the reverse to be true.

Proper well development and protection is very important. The New York State Department of Health publishes a pamphlet entitled “Rural Water Supplies” which details proper well construction and how to protect your private water supply. It is available free of charge from the New York State Department of Health’s Bureau of Public Water Supply Protection in Troy, NY. Wells need to be properly cased and protected from the environment. The well casing should extend well above ground and the earth should be sloped to shed surface water during rain events. The well must be sealed and grouted properly to prevent infestation by insects and animals. Water entering your well must filter and percolate through the ground before entering the well for best results.

How Frequently Should I Test My Water?
Though no regulations for the homeowner exist on this subject, logic dictates that one should test their well with some degree of regularity. The Coliform Bacteria test, in our opinion, should be performed quarterly and any time that the well is disturbed. If you open the well cap, perform work on the well pump or experience a flood, you can be assured that you have introduced microorganisms into your water supply. Chemical contaminants, depending on the situation, should be tested for semi-annually as these compounds typically move slowly throughout the aquifer. If you suffer a spill on your property (i.e.: gasoline, fuel oil, pesticides, paint, lacquer thinner, etc.), you may wish to analyze for these contaminants quarterly to see if they are migrating towards your water supply. Changes due to developmental pressure, industry, agriculture, etc. may warrant checking your water more frequently to determine the impact of these changes.

My Well Has Changed – Now What?
We have found that wells that have produced good tasting, crystal clear water for many years may change for inexplicable reasons. Overdrawing a well (due to excessive laundry, parties, drought, and increased household members) may explain these changes. Your well’s screen may be plugged causing reduced production. Sometimes a well will change because it has been chemically or bacteriologically adulterated with septic waste or as the result of some other man-made activity. If your well changes for no apparent reason, you should have the water tested to determine the cause of the problem. In the mean time, don’t drink the water until the problem has been isolated and identified.

Conclusion
The Health Department requires that public and bottled water suppliers routinely test their water for a variety of contaminants (see Attachment 1.). This is done because it is known that the quality of water drawn from a given water supply can change suddenly. The homeowner on a well must make the effort to test his or her water to assure its quality and safety. Testing should be performed on a semi-regular basis by a qualified laboratory.

CNA Environmental Inc. can reliably analyze your water supply for the contaminants discussed within this text. We are a New York State Department of Health certified Environmental Laboratory (ELAP #11534). Please contact us by phone at (518) 884-0800 or click here for sampling information.

Attachment 1-A Summary of the Contaminants Regulated in Public Water Supplies
Source: New York State Department of Health, Subpart 5-1, Rules & Regulations for Public Water Systems

Inorganic Chemicals and Physical Characteristics
Asbestos, Antimony, Arsenic, Barium, Beryllium, Cadmium, Chromium, Copper, Cyanide, Lead, Mercury, Nickel, Selenium, Silver, Thallium, Fluoride, Chloride, Iron, Manganese, Sodium, Sulfate, Zinc, Color, Odor, Nitrate, Nitrite and Turbidity

Principle Organic Contaminants (POC’S)
Benzene, Bromobenzene, Bromochloromethane, Bromomethane, n-Butylbenzene, sec-Butylbenzene, t-Butylbenzene, Carbon Tetrachloride, Chlorobenzene, Chloroethane, Chloromethane, 2-Chlorotoluene, 4-Chlorotoluene, Dibromomethane , 1,2-Dichlorobenzene, 1,3-Dichlorobenzene, 1,4-Dichlorobenzene, Dichlorodifluoromethane, 1,1-Dichloroethane, 1,2-Dichloroethane, 1,1-Dichloroethene, cis-1,2-Dichloroethene, trans-1,2-Dichloroethene, 1,2-Dichloropropane, 1,3-Dichloropropane, 2,2-Dichloropropane, 1,1-Dichloropropene, cis-1,3-Dichloropropene, trans-1,3-Dichloropropene, Ethylbenzene, Hexachlorobutadiene, Isopropyl Benzene, p-Isopropyltoluene, Methylene Chloride, n-Propylbenzene, Styrene, 1,1,1,2-Tetrachloroethane, 1,1,2,2-Tetrachloroethane, Tetrachloroethene, Toluene, 1,2,3-Trichlorobenzene, 1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene, 1,1,1-Trichloroethane, 1,1,2-Trichloroethane, Trichloroethene, Trichlorofluoromethane, 1,2,3-Trichloropropane, 1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene, 1,3,5-Trimethylbenzene, m-Xylene, p-Xylene, o-Xylene and t-Butylmethyl ether (MTBE)

Trihalomethanes(THM’s) and Haloacetic Acids (HAA’s)
Bromoform, Chloroform, Bromodichloromethane, Dibromochloromethane, Monochloroacetic Acid, Dichloroacetic Acid, Trichlororacetic Acid, Monobromoacetic Acid and Dibromoacetic Acid

Synthetic Organic Chemicals (SOC’s)
Aldicarb, Aldicarb Sulfone, Aldicarb Sulfoxide, Carbaryl, Carbofuran, 3-Hydroxycarbofuran, Methomyl, Oxamyl, 2,4-D, Dalapon, Dicamba, Dinoseb, Pentachlorophenol (PCP), Pichloram, 2,4,5-TP (Silvex), Alachlor, Aldrin, Atrazine, Butachlor, Chlordane, Dieldrin, Endrin, Heptachlor, Heptachlor Epoxide, Lindane, Methoxychlor, Metribuzin, Propachlor, Simazine, Toxaphene, exachloropentadiene, Hexachlorobenzene, Benzo(a)pyrene, Metolachlor, Di(2-ethylhexyl)adipate Di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate, 1,2-Dibromoethane, 1,2-Dibromo-3-chloropropane, and PCB’s

Microbiological Contaminants
Total Coliform Bacteria and Escherichia coli (E. coli)

Radiological Aspects
Gross Alpha and Beta, Radium-226 & Radium-228

If you have had a positive Coliform Bacteria test, the next logical step is to sanitize the well with bleach. If the source of the contamination is within the well casing or the building, sanitizing the well will often clear up the problem. After completing the well disinfection process, be sure to re-test the water after all of the chlorine is purged from the system.

1) Mix 2 quarts of bleach in 10 gallons of water. Pour the solution into the well while it is being pumped. Keep pumping until the chlorine odor appears at all taps. Re-circulate the water back into the well (via a hose) for at least an hour. Then close the tap and stop the pump.

2) Mix 2 more quarts of bleach in 10 gallons of water and pour this chlorine solution into the well. Allow the well to stand idle for at least 8 hours and preferably 12 to 24 hours.

3) Pump the well to waste, away from grass and shrubbery, through the storage tank and taps, such as an outside connection, until the odor of chlorine disappears. The chlorine may persist for 7 to 10 days depending on how much water is used.

4) After all the chlorine is pumped out, a water sample should be collected and tested to determine whether all contamination has been eliminated. A sterile sample bottle obtained from the testing laboratory is needed to collect the sample.

Remember that disinfection is no assurance that the water entering the well is free of chemical pollution. A positive Coliform Bacteria test after sanitizing the well often indicates that the aquifer itself is contaminated and that the installation of a chlorinator or an ultra-violet light system will be required to control these microorganisms.

Adapted from:
10NYCRR Appendix 5-B “Rural Water Supply”, New York State Department of Health. P. 42

In 1 liter bottle

  • Let water sit undisturbed for 6 – 10 hours (do not to exceed 10 hours).
  • The sample must be taken before using the household water. The best times are in the early morning or when returning from work.
  • At the kitchen (preferable) or bathroom (alternate) cold water tap, fill the 1 quart bottle with stagnant water. Do not run the water first or rinse the container before sampling.
  • Cap the bottle tightly.
  • Fill out all pertinent information on the Chain of Custody form.
  • Bring samples to laboratory immediately. Refrigerate samples to be held longer than one hour before delivery to lab. Samples must be delivered to lab within 24 hours of sampling.
  • Any samples received at the lab without payment of $38.00 will not be tested.
  • Payment must accompany your samples. Please enclose a check/money order for $38.00 (for each sample) made payable to: CNA Environmental Inc. If sample containers were mailed to you, please add a one-time shipping & handling fee of $5.00.
Whether you are on a well or municipal water supply, corrosive waters can leach lead and water from your plumbing leading to high concentrations of these metals in your water. Consuming waters containing high lead and/or copper concentrations can cause specific health problems, especially with children.
Sampling Instructions – Physical Properties

For Samples Submitted to the Ballston Spa Office
Samples should ideally be collected between Monday noon and Friday AM.
Samples should ideally be submitted same day between Monday PM and Friday noon.

Sample #1 – Total Coliform (120mL bottle marked “sterile”)
From the kitchen cold water tap, remove anti-splash screen from the faucet and let the cold water run for 4-5 minutes. Fill sterile bottle to the 110 mL mark and be sure not to touch the inside of the bottle or lid. Do not rinse the bottle. DO NOT TAKE SAMPLE FROM AN OUTSIDE TAP!

Sample #2 – Metals: Fe, Mn, Na (120mL. bottle)
After filling the sterile bottle, fill this bottle to the top (from the same tap).

Sample #3 – Physical Properties:
color, turbidity, odor, pH, conductance, hardness, nitrate, chloride, sulfate, nitrite, fluoride (1 liter wide mouth plastic)

Sample #4 – Alkalinity (250mL plastic). Be sure to fill this bottle completely.
After filling the first two bottles, fill these bottles to the top (from the same tap).

  • Fill out sample “chain of custody” form completely. Be sure to sign where marked “relinquished by.”
  • Fill out labels with your name and the date and time sampled.
  • Note property location and mailing address if different.
  • Include a check for $167.00. Samples received without payment will not be tested.
  • Return samples (within 6 hours – within 24 acceptable) to CNA Environmental, Inc. (27 Kent St. Ballston Spa, NY 12020. Refrigerate (do not freeze) samples to be held longer than one hour before delivery.

Office hours: M-F: 8:00 AM-4:30 PM

Sampling Instructions – Physical Properties

For Samples Submitted to the Glens Falls Office

Samples should ideally be taken directly to the Ballston Spa Office at 27 Kent Street. Otherwise:

Samples should be collected after 11 AM Monday through Thursday.

Samples should be submitted to Glens Falls the same day as taken.

Sample #1 – Total Coliform (120mL bottle marked “sterile”)
From the kitchen cold water tap, remove anti-splash screen from the faucet and let the cold water run for 4-5 minutes. Fill sterile bottle to the 110 mL mark and be sure not to touch the inside of the bottle or lid. Do not rinse the bottle. DO NOT TAKE SAMPLE FROM AN OUTSIDE TAP!

Sample #2 – Metals: Fe, Mn, Na (120mL bottle)
After filling the sterile bottle, fill this bottle to the top (from the same tap).

Sample #3 – Physical Properties:
color, turbidity, odor, pH, conductance, hardness, nitrate, chloride, sulfate, nitrite, fluoride (1 liter wide mouth plastic)

Sample #4 – Alkalinity (250mL plastic). Be sure to fill this bottle completely.

  • After filling the first two bottles, fill these bottles to the top (from the same tap).
  • Fill out sample “chain of custody” form completely. Be sure to sign where marked “relinquished by.”
  • Fill out labels with your name and the date and time sampled.
  • Note property location and mailing address if different.
  • Include a check for $167.00. Samples received without payment will not be tested.
  • Refrigerate or chill (do not freeze) samples to be held longer than one hour before delivery.
Taste, Odor & Staining Problems

Does your water taste or smell objectionable? Does it stain your sink, dishes or bathtub? Does it look cloudy or “fizz”? We can “fingerprint” your water and make specific recommendations on how to correct the problem. Then, as an educated consumer, you can shop for the appropriate water treatment system to address your situation without overspending on unnecessary equipment. We will test for the following contaminants:

Hardness, Alkalinity, Conductivity, pH, Turbidity, Color, Odor, Nitrate, Chloride, Sulfate, Iron, Manganese, Sodium, Coliform Bacteria & E.coli.

Then, after generating a report and highlighting any problem areas, our laboratory director will review the data with you and make specific corrective recommendations.

Sampling Instructions – Home Water Special
For Samples Submitted to the Ballston Spa Office

Samples should ideally be collected between Monday noon and Friday AM.
Samples should ideally be submitted same day between Monday PM and Friday noon.

Sample #1 – Total Coliform (120mL bottle marked “sterile”)
From the kitchen cold water tap, remove anti-splash screen from the faucet and let the cold water run for 4-5 minutes. Fill sterile bottle to the 110 mL mark and be sure not to touch the inside of the bottle or lid. Do not rinse the bottle. DO NOT TAKE SAMPLE FROM AN OUTSIDE TAP!

Sample #2 – Nitrate, Nitrite, Fluoride, Chloride, Sulfate (120mL bottle)

  • After filling the sterile bottle, fill this bottle to the top (from the same tap).
  • Fill out sample “chain of custody” form completely. Be sure to sign where marked “relinquished by.”
  • Fill out labels with your name and the date and time sampled.
  • Note property location and mailing address if different.
  • Please include a check for $69.00. Samples received without payment will not be tested.
  • Return samples (within 6 hours – within 24 acceptable) to CNA Environmental, Inc. (27 Kent St. Ballston Spa, NY 12020. Refrigerate (do not freeze) samples to be held longer than one hour before delivery.

Office hours: M-F: 8:00 AM-4:30 PM.

Sampling Instructions – Home Water Special

For Samples Submitted to the Glens Falls Office

Samples should ideally be taken directly to the Ballston Spa Office at 27 Kent Street. Otherwise:

Samples should be collected after 11 AM Monday through Thursday.

Samples should be submitted to Glens Falls the same day as taken.

Sample #1 – Total Coliform (120mL Bottle marked “sterile”)

From the kitchen cold water tap, remove anti-splash screen from the faucet and let the cold water run for 4-5 minutes. Fill sterile bottle to the 110 mL mark and be sure not to touch the inside of the bottle or lid. Do not rinse the bottle. DO NOT TAKE SAMPLE FROM AN OUTSIDE TAP!

Sample #2 – Nitrate, Nitrite, Fluoride, Chloride, Sulfate (120mL bottle)

  • After filling the sterile bottle, fill this bottle to the top from the same tap.
  • Fill out sample “chain of custody” form completely. Be sure to sign where marked “relinquished by.”
  • Fill out labels with your name and the date and time sampled.
  • Note property location and mailing address if different.
  • Please include a check for $69.00. Samples received without payment will not be tested.
  • Refrigerate (do not freeze) samples to be held longer than one hour before delivery.
  • Office hours: M-F: 8:00 AM-3:30 PM.
Sampling Instructions – Home Water Special
For Samples Submitted to the Ballston Spa Office

Samples should ideally be collected between Monday noon and Friday AM.
Samples should ideally be submitted same day between Monday PM and Friday noon.

Sample #1 – Total Coliform (120mL bottle marked “sterile”)
From the kitchen cold water tap, remove anti-splash screen from the faucet and let the cold water run for 4-5 minutes. Fill sterile bottle to the 110 mL mark and be sure not to touch the inside of the bottle or lid. Do not rinse the bottle. DO NOT TAKE SAMPLE FROM AN OUTSIDE TAP!

Sample #2 – Nitrate, Nitrite, Fluoride, Chloride, Sulfate (120mL bottle)

  • After filling the sterile bottle, fill this bottle to the top (from the same tap).
  • Fill out sample “chain of custody” form completely. Be sure to sign where marked “relinquished by.”
  • Fill out labels with your name and the date and time sampled.
  • Note property location and mailing address if different.
  • Please include a check for $69.00. Samples received without payment will not be tested.
  • Return samples (within 6 hours – within 24 acceptable) to CNA Environmental, Inc. (27 Kent St. Ballston Spa, NY 12020. Refrigerate (do not freeze) samples to be held longer than one hour before delivery.

Office hours: M-F: 8:00 AM-4:30 PM.

Sampling Instructions – Home Water Special

For Samples Submitted to the Glens Falls Office

Samples should ideally be taken directly to the Ballston Spa Office at 27 Kent Street. Otherwise:

Samples should be collected after 11 AM Monday through Thursday.

Samples should be submitted to Glens Falls the same day as taken.

Sample #1 – Total Coliform (120mL Bottle marked “sterile”)

From the kitchen cold water tap, remove anti-splash screen from the faucet and let the cold water run for 4-5 minutes. Fill sterile bottle to the 110 mL mark and be sure not to touch the inside of the bottle or lid. Do not rinse the bottle. DO NOT TAKE SAMPLE FROM AN OUTSIDE TAP!

Sample #2 – Nitrate, Nitrite, Fluoride, Chloride, Sulfate (120mL bottle)

  • After filling the sterile bottle, fill this bottle to the top from the same tap.
  • Fill out sample “chain of custody” form completely. Be sure to sign where marked “relinquished by.”
  • Fill out labels with your name and the date and time sampled.
  • Note property location and mailing address if different.
  • Please include a check for $69.00. Samples received without payment will not be tested.
  • Refrigerate (do not freeze) samples to be held longer than one hour before delivery.
  • Office hours: M-F: 8:00 AM-3:30 PM.
DO NOT TAKE SAMPLE FROM OUTSIDE TAP

  • Remove anti-splash screen
  • Let the cold water run for 4-5 minutes.
  • Fill sterile bottle to the 110mL mark and be sure that you do not touch the inside of the bottle or lid. Do not rinse the bottle!
  • Fill out sample chain of custody form completely. Be sure to sign where marked “relinquished by.”
  • Fill out labels with appropriate information.
  • Note property location and report mailing address if different.
  • Please enclose a check for $36.00 to CNA Environmental Inc.
  • Bring samples to laboratory immediately. Refrigerate samples to be held longer than one hour before delivery to lab. Samples must be delivered to lab within 24 hours of sampling.
What are Coliform Group Bacteria?
Coliforms consist of a related group of bacteria species (see table below)

Where are they found?
Two Distinct Sources:

  • Human and Animal waste (fecal in origin)- septic systems, sewage, animal yards, etc.
  • Within the environment (“vegetative”)- soil, vegetation, sediment, insects etc.

Why test for Coliforms?

  • Coliforms are “indicator” organisms associated with bacteriologically polluted water.
  • Their presence in finished water is indicative of contamination & is not tolerated.
  • Extensively studied – their presence may be associated with disease causing organisms.
  • Coliform testing does not indicate the presence of specific chemical contaminants such as pesticides, metals, solvents, gasoline, nitrates, etc.

Differentiating Coliform Group Bacteria

  • Total Coliform Test-theoretically indicates the presence of all coliform group bacteria, both vegetative and fecal in origin
  • E. coli – a coliform species found in the intestinal tract of warm-blooded animals. – its presence can be indicative of fresh pollution from human or animal waste – though normally benign, some E. coli strains may be deadly (0157:H7)
  • Fecal Coliform-those that ferment lactose & produce gas at 44.5 +/-0.20C within 24 +/- 2 hours
  • Consist of various genera and species of coliforms that are specifically associated with human or animal waste. – includes E. coli as well as others – Fecal Coliform testing can help pinpoint the source of pollution in an aquifer or watershed and is used to monitor the disinfection of sanitary waste water before discharge.

Coliform Group Bacteria:

  • Total Coliforms:
    Escherichia, Enterobacter, Klebsiella, Citrobacter
  • Fecal Coliforms:
    Escherichia, Klebsiella, Citrobacter (60% to 90% of total coliforms are fecal coliforms) 90+% of fecal coliforms are Escherichia (usually E. coli)

Adapted From:
1. American Public Health Association. Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater, 18th Edition, 1992. Table 9225:I, p. 9-66.

When present in drinking water, Coliform Group Bacteria (including E. coli) indicate that the water is bacteriologically polluted. Consuming water contaminated with these microorganisms can lead to water-borne illness. Certain strains of E. coli can be deadly.
1. Lead, Iron, Manganese & Sodium (1 liter bottle).
Let water sit undisturbed in piping for 6-10 hours (do not exceed 10 hours). At the kitchen tap, fill the 1 liter bottle with stagnant water. Do not run the water first or rinse the container, etc. before sampling. Cap the bottle tightly.

2. Total Coliform (120mL bottle marked “sterile”)
From the kitchen cold water tap, remove anti-splash screen from the faucet and let the cold water run for 4-5 minutes. Fill sterile bottle to the top and be sure not to touch the inside of the bottle or lid. Do not rinse the bottle.
DO NOT TAKE SAMPLE FROM AN OUTSIDE TAP!

3. pH, Hardness, Turbidity, Nitrate & Nitrite (1 liter bottle)
After filling the sterile bottle, fill this bottle to the top (from the same tap).

4. Alkalinity (250mL plastic)

  • Fill out sample “chain of custody” form completely. Be sure to sign where marked “relinquished by.”
  • Fill out labels with appropriate information.
  • Note property location and mailing address if different.
  • Please include a check for $149.00. Samples received without payment will not be tested.
  • Return samples (within 24 hours – within 12 preferred) to CNA Environmental, Inc. (27 Kent St. Ballston Spa, NY 12020: M-F 8:00 am – 4:30 pm & Sat. 10 am – 12 pm). Refrigerate samples to be held longer than one hour before delivery.
1. Lead (1 Quart bottle)
Let water sit undisturbed in piping for 6-10 hours (do not exceed 10 hours). At the kitchen tap, fill the 1 quart bottle with stagnant water. Do not run the water first, rinse the container, etc. before sampling. Cap the bottle tightly.

2. Total Coliform (orange capped 4 oz. Bottle marked “sterile”)
From the kitchen cold water tap remove anti-splash screen from the faucet and let the cold water run for 4-5 minutes. Fill sterile bottle to the top and be sure not to touch the inside of the bottle or lid. Do not rinse the bottle.
DO NOT TAKE SAMPLE FROM AN OUTSIDE TAP.

3. Nitrate & Nitrite (yellow capped 4 oz. bottle)
After filling the orange capped bottle, fill this bottle to the top from the same tap.

  • Fill out sample chain of custody form completely. Be sure to sign where marked “relinquished by.”
  • Fill out labels with appropriate information.
  • Note property location and report mailing address if different
  • Please include a check for $100.00. Samples received without payment will not be tested.
  • Return samples (within 24 hours – within 12 preferred) to CNA Environmental, Inc. (27 Kent St. Ballston Spa, NY 12020: M-F 8:00 am – 4:30 pm & Sat. 10 am – 12 pm). Refrigerate samples to be held longer than one hour before delivery.