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How to Test Water Quality at Home

How to Test Water Quality at Home

Do we need a water test? This is a common question among Australian households about their water supplies. If your main concern is the health and safety of your family, then the big answer is a resounding YES. But there are several factors that you have to consider when having a water test. Here is some advice from local plumbers Maroubra experts on how to test water quality at home.

When Should I Have My Water Tested?

Below is a list of situations where you also need to test your water quality at home.

Are you considering using a home water treatment unit? If you are considering using a home water treatment unit, you should have your water tested first. This is to check the type of filtration that will work best for your water supply. 

Do you suspect the presence of lead in your water supply? Lead is a very toxic metal. It can be very dangerous to the human body even at low exposure. If you notice some bitter or metallic taste when you drink water or see green rings around your basin, your water supply can be possibly contaminated with lead. You may need to call plumbers in Maroubra to do a water quality test and address the issue.

If someone is pregnant in the household or if there is a new baby, you may also need to have a water quality test. This is to ensure that there is no nitrate presence in your water supply. Nitrate is a harmful chemical that targets the brain of fetuses and infants.

If there is a chemical or fuel spill near you, you should also have your water tested. This is to make sure that your water supply has not been contaminated by such spills.

If you have recently repaired or replaced your plumbing system, you will also need to test your water quality. This is to ensure that your plumbing system is back in good shape. Poor water quality may mean that the pipe repair or replacement has not been done properly.

How to Test Water Quality at Home

Below are ways on how to test water quality at home based on the advice from plumbers in Maroubra. 

Using your Senses

Using your senses is one way to test your water quality at home. 

  • Use your eyes to check for cloudiness and particles in the water. Brown, orange, and red particles are signs of corrosion and rust. Black particles may mean deteriorated water hoses or pipes. While tan particles mean excess calcium or magnesium carbonate in your water. 
  • Use your nose to determine any distinct odour in your water supply. A bleachy smell indicates high-chlorine content. An earthly smell can mean the presence of decaying organic matters inside your plumbing system While a sulphuric smell indicates the growth of bacteria inside your water pipeline. 
  • Use your tongue to taste if your water supply is of good quality. Pure water should be tasteless. A foul taste indicates the presence of harmful contaminants. A metallic taste means that your water has a low pH level or may contain a large number of minerals. Bleachy water means a high chlorine level. While salty water can be caused by industrial pollutants.

Quick In-Home Testing

A quick in-home test can help you know if your water is clean. Get a clean and clear empty bottle with a cap. Fill the bottle with water at least 1/3 full. Put a few drops of liquid soap and shake well. Your water is clean if the resting part at the bottom is clear. While cloudy or milky water at the bottom signals the presence of contaminants or hard minerals.

Hard Water Testing Kit

The most accurate way to test water quality at home is to use a hard water test kit that you can buy at home improvement stores for around $5 to $10. The kit contains a test strip and a colour chart that serves as your guide to determine your water quality. You will need to get a glass of water from your tap, insert the test strip for a few seconds and then remove it. Compare the colour of the strip on the colour chart. It will advise you if your water is clean and safe to drink and use.