Surveys have found that about 60 percent of the homes in Pennsylvania served by a private water system (well, spring, or cistern) have some type of water treatment equipment. Today, almost any water quality problem (both nuisance and health based) can be fixed by purchasing the appropriate equipment. However, homeowners with private water systems are often uninformed about water treatment processes and equipment, making them susceptible to unscrupulous businesses selling treatment equipment.
Understand the Water Quality Problem
If you suspect that you have a problem with your water, make sure to have it tested by a state-certified water testing laboratory. A list of state-certified water testing laboratories is available from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. Penn State also runs a state-certified water testing laboratory. Test kits can be obtained at your local Penn State Extension office or directly from the lab.
If test results from a certified laboratory show that your drinking water failed a primary, health-based drinking water standard, such as bacteria or lead, action should be taken to correct the problem to protect the health of you and your family. Other water tests may indicate a problem from a secondary pollutant such as iron or manganese. In this case, your health is not at risk, but you may choose to install water treatment equipment to reduce stains, tastes, or odors that these pollutants can cause.
Consult Unbiased Water Quality Experts
After receiving your test results from the certified water testing laboratory, it is a good idea to go over the results with an unbiased water quality expert. Unbiased experts may be available from the water testing laboratory or from your local Penn State Extension office. They can help you interpret the test results and provide advice on options available to fix any water quality problem.…