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Wally Conway, certified master home inspector, energy auditor, and host of The Home and Garden Show
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bacteria samplesIs water in Jacksonville safe to drink? That's a question that can only be answered through water testing! (learn more about free water testing here...)

Because we live in Florida, we are lucky to have a plentiful source of ground water. Unfortunately, Florida's aquifers can become contaminated by chemicals and microbes that can cause illness. Nitrate/Nitrite and bacteria like E.Coli and Coliform can reach the ground water and wells through poorly maintained septic systems, livestock areas and fertilizer application, or as a result of poorly constructed wells. Chemicals can enter into the ground water from leaking gasoline storage tanks, pesticide applications, landfills, and improper disposal of toxic and hazardous wastes. The EPA and the Florida Department of Health recommends testing your well water annually to detect problems early.

While all "public water systems" in Florida are required to perform routine testing to ensure that they meet state drinking water standards, private well owners are responsible for ensuring that their OWN well water is safe to drink. As a private well owner in Jacksonville, you should be aware of these potential risks to the ground water and your household water supply. List of EPA Water Contaminants

If you are looking for HUD or FHA "approved" water testing, please know that in 2005, these groups elected to leave testing criteria to local authorities or the lender. For VA "approved" water testing, the VA has left testing criteria up to the lender. Unfortunately, many lenders are still confused on this issue, so we offer our standard package (at right) which covers most known lending requirements. If your mortgage company requires specific samples for water testing, please let us know what those are prior to making an appointment so we can price your water testing service accordingly. The Florida Department of Health recommends testing for bacteria and nitrite, which our standard test does.

Free Water Tests: A message from the Florida Attorney General (From here)

Avoid "Free" home water tests
Fraudulent sellers that advertise "free home water testing" may only be interested in selling you their water treatment device, whether you need it, or not. In performing the test, the salesperson may add tablets or droplets of chemicals to your tap water, explaining that the water will change color or that particles will form if the water is contaminated. When the water changes color before your eyes, the salesperson may warn you that the water is polluted and may cause cancer. In almost all of these cases, any water (even spring water) would "fail" the company's test.

Don't be pressured by prize promotion offers
Sellers will sometimes try to sell their water treatment devices by notifying you by mail or by telephone that you have been selected to win an expensive prize. To qualify for the prize, you are required to buy a water treatment device, costing hundreds of dollars. You may later discover that both the prize and the water treatment device are of little value.

Be wary of claims of government approval
Sellers will sometimes claim that certain governmental agencies require or recommend that households use water purification systems, or that the government has approved the seller's particular method of in-home water testing. These claims are false. If you see an EPA registration number on a water-treatment product label, it means only that the manufacturer has registered its product with the Environmental Protection Agency, but not that the EPA has tested or approved the product.


Schedule Your Appointment here...


Water Testing Packages Comparison Chart can be found here...

All samples must meet strict collection criteria, and may only be collected Monday thru Thursday before 3 PM. Samples are shipped overnight to a lab for processing. Other test options available, call for more information.

Call for pricing and details!

Water Sampling Options (5 below) - note that all packages will meet mortgage requirements:

OPTION 1 - "Standard" Package:
This package is specfically designed to cover all known historical MINIMUM banking and local government requirements (inlcuding FHA and VA mortgages). This is our least thorough package, but generally meets your needs when closing on the purchase of a new home, or re-financing, is a top priority. Remember, this limited testing package will not reveal contaminants that can affect your water quality. More inclusive options can be found in Options 2 through 5 below.
Standard Water Test Package Includes:
Total Coliform Bacteria, Fecal/E.coli, Calcium, Copper, Iron, Magnesium, Manganese, Potassium, Sodium, Alkalinity, Chloride, Chlorine, Color, Conductivity, Hardness, Nitrate, Odor, pH, Sediment, Total Dissolved Solids, Sulfate, Turbidity, Lead, Arsenic, Ammonia, Nitrite, Zinc. See comparison chart by clicking this link.

OPTION 2 - "Comprehensive" Package:
This package is often used for mortgage requirements, but when a slightly higher level of testing is desired by the client. In cases where the private well is properly constructed and maintained, this level of testing may be adequate for first time testing of the water (water should not currently have any taste, odor, or color issues, and there are no health issues in the home).
Comprehensive Water Testing Package Includes:
See comparison chart by clicking this link.

OPTION 3 - "Health" Package:
This package is important to choose if there ARE taste, ordor, or color issues in the water, or if the condition of the well suggests poor construction and/or maintenance. Additionally, this package is good for people that have health issues. We typically recommend this package if testing your water for the first time. (This package is not good if industrial or farming/agricultural pollution is suspected.)
Health Water Testing Package Includes: See comparison chart by clicking this link.

OPTION 4 - "Environmental" Package:
This is a very inclusive package. Consider this test if you're concerned about current or old dumps/landfills, or industrial/agricultural pollution.
Environmental Water Testing Package Includes:
See comparison chart by clicking this link.

OPTION 5 - "Advanced Environmental" Package:
This is the most inclusive package available, and includes a micro analysis plus analysis for semi-volatile organic compounds, in addition to everything from the Environmental Package (except plate count).
Advanced Environmental Water Testing Package ncludes:
See comparison chart by clicking this link.

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