Healthy Home, Healthy Water Program - Test the Tap Water - (City Water) - Quality Water At Home Recommendations

Healthy Home, Healthy Water Program - Test the Tap Water - (City Water) - Quality Water At Home Recommendations
Testing and screening your home drinking water with both DIY and laboratory testing with testing recommendations for different situations. The Know Your H2O team desires to bring the best professional advice right to your water faucet.

Testing and screening your home drinking water or tap water with a do-it-yourself or at home (DIY) water testing kit (Level 2) like Safe Home or Health Metric  or a mail-order information water sampling and testing kit (Level 3)  are two cost-effective ways to monitor and track the quality of your drinking water to ensure healthy drinking water for your family.  This approach helps to maintain a healthy home and to protect your plumbing and water appliances and maximize the functional use and to maintain the warranty on your water related appliances, such as dishwashers, clothes washers, boilers, hot water heaters, on-demand systems, or even fixtures.  

Drinking water sources are known by the public using a number of names and types.  There are public drinking water sources and private drinking water sources. Public drinking water sources typically include systems that are associated with a Water Company, Authority, Quasi-Government Agency, Homeowners Associations, or a regulated private business that is open to the public.  The drinking water associated with these systems are often called tap water, city water, or municipal water.  These sources typically use a variety of sources that may include commercial drinking water wells, drilled wells, springs, surface water sources (lakes, reservoirs, river intakes, streams, and in extreme cases the ocean), and in some cases reclaimed water or purified water is used.  During the period from 1982 to 2015, between 9 million and 45 million Americans got their drinking water from a source that violated the Drinking Water Standards, the standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) (Source).  The problem is that not many users are aware of this problem and many users/ customers do not bother to check or monitor the actual quality of the drinking water in their home.  

Remember: Just because the drinking water appears clear does not smell, tastes ok, does not mean it is safe to drink!

For the City Water or Tap Water category, this would include all municipal water systems and public water systems where the water is supplied by someone else, such as a Water Authority or Municipality, Investor, Homeowners Association, or a Water Company. Typically, the water customer is paying a monthly or annual bill or the services, maybe called utilities,  are included in the rent.  If you get an actual water bill, the bill is from a water authority, water company, or a municipal agency.  In order to ensure a healthy home and healthy water, it is critical that the water entering your home not only meets drinking water standards, but does not cause any problems that may damage your plumbing fixtures, create nuisance issues, or create short-term or long-term chronic problems with the existing infrastructure. 

The most common water related problems included chemical corrosion caused by corrosive water, clogging and loss of pressure because of mineral scale formation, damage to fixtures and water appliances, nuisances associated with color, taste, and discolored water, and other aesthetic issues such as bad or strange smells or tastes. Regarding health concerns there can be acute and chronic health related issues that are typically related to disinfection by-products, high metal content because of corrosion (aluminum, chromium, copper, lead, nickel, and  zinc), forever chemicals (pfoa, pfos and more), and waterborne pathogens.

Water companies are required to monitor the quality of the raw and treated drinking water before the water enters the distribution system for a community system.  The available water quality data indicates that about 3 to 10% of these systems report historic problems with water contaminants that are listed as a Primary Drinking Water Standard.  A Primary Drinking Water means the water may contain one or more contaminants that could create an acute or chronic health concern. The primary contaminants of concern include bacteria, pathogens, chlorine by-products, disinfection by-products, forever chemicals, copper, lead, arsenic, and corrosion related-issues.   In addition to the Primary Drinking Water Standards, the water company is required to monitor for the Secondary Drinking Water Standards.  The Secondary Drinking Water Standards relate to the aesthetic quality of the water, i.e., taste, appearance, odor, and any nuisance related issues and many water supplies report issues with discolored water, high levels of chlorine and disinfection by-products, elevated levels of iron/manganese, and problems with taste and odors.

With respect to “forever chemicals”, the highest levels are found in North Carolina, Iowa, Florida, New Jersey, Pennsylvania (Philadelphia), Kentucky, Louisiana, and South Carolina and are typically associated with water sources that include surface water reservoirs or intakes.  With respect to corrosion and corrosion by-products such as aluminum, chromium, copper, lead and zinc, one cause is the poor condition of many community distributions systems, lack of backflow prevention, chemical sequestering of scale  on piping within the distribution system, stagnant conditions in distribution systems, and microbiological regrowth within distribution systems, and the lack of backflow prevention devices. 

Time to Act- Options for Homeowners and Water Customers

Level 2 testing – Help yourself at home !

Level 2 testing – These are at-home water quality screening tests that tract the general quality and in some cases the bacteria quality of your drinking water.  We recommend the following at-home water screening tests.

Health Metric If you are looking to test your drinking water, pool water, spa water, or check for mold or radon in air Health Metric has a DIY or laboratory test that may fit your needs to ensure healthy drinking water and a healthy home.

Safe Home -They offer DIY screening tests for bacteria, well water, city water, and lead. They also provide laboratory tests for city water, tap water, well water, glyphosate, heavy metals, lead, bacteria, and arsenic. The comprehensive laboratory testing covers over 200 different contaminants in your water.

Med Lab Diagnostics – easy to use Test Strips for your Drinking Water, Spa, or Pool, plus personal testing screening for health-related issues.

Schneider Laboratories Global, Inc. screening testing for indoor air, water, and solid material, such as dust, paint, and soil for lead, mercury, hexavalent chromium, asbestos, mold, bacteria, allergens, PCBs, DRO (Diesel Range Organics), GRO (Gasoline Range Organics), and many more inorganic and organic compounds.

Level 3 testing – Professional Unbiased Testing from a Laboratory !

Level 3 Testing – This is a mail-order drinking water testing option that allows the user to conduct a cost-effective and comprehensive informational test of their drinking water.  

Basic Screening Drinking Water Testing - if you are concerned about general water quality and corrosion.

Basic Well Water Test Kit


Corrosion Check Test Kit

Secondary  Screening Drinking Water Testing -  This includes the basic screening test, plus testing for chlorine by-products and volatile organic compounds.

Standard Well Water Test Kit


Standard Well Water with Bacteria
(excludes chlorine and disinfection by-products)

Deluxe Screening Drinking Water Testing - This includes the Secondary Screening Drinking Water Test, plus testing for herbicides, pesticides, synthetic organic compounds, PCBs, and other man-made chemicals.

Deluxe Well Water Test Kit

Specialized Screening Drinking Water Testing - This includes the Secondary screening test, plus testing for herbicides, pesticides, synthetic organic compounds, PCBs, and other man-made chemicals, like forever chemicals and PFOS/ PFOA Screening Testing

Custom Deluxe Well Water Test Kit with PFOA/PFOS for customers West of the Mississippi. (Note: two separate laboratories are used in this testing requiring samples to be mailed to two separate locations.)


Custom Deluxe Well Water Test Kit and PFOA/PFOS for customers East of the Mississippi. (Does not include herbicides and pesticides)

Advance Screening Drinking Water Testing - This a comprehensive screening test that includes metals, volatile organic compounds, general water quality, screening for a range of forever chemicals, and testing for select radiological parameters (gross alpha and beta), but may not include herbicides and pesticides. 

Custom Deluxe Well Water Test with PFAS 18 Compounds, and Basic Radiological Test (Includes herbicides and pesticides)

Ultra Well Water Test, includes alpha and beta, PFAS 18 compounds (Does not include herbicides and pesticides)

The Know Your H20 Blog and News contains affiliate marketing and sales site advice links. Your purchase via these links helps to maintain this effort!