Water Testing

Many homeowners do not know what is present in their water. To find out, Sandbar Home Inspections provides laboratory analysis that will test a home's private water well.

Why Should Your Water Be Tested?

If you've never had anything but water from a municipal tap system, a private water supply can seem like virtually the same thing: turn on the faucet, water comes out, very simple right? Many falsely assume that if the water looks good, doesn’t smell bad, and the current owners aren’t sick, that the water must be fine. But that’s a big mistake. Water that is coming from a private well don't fall under the same EPA regulations that ensure what's coming out of your test is safe for consumption. That job falls on you, the private water supply owner. It is essential that before purchasing a property, you have to know what the quality and composition of your water is. Discovering that the water is unfit to drink is something important to discover during the buying process, not after. Drinking contaminated water can cause health problems for yourself, your family, and your pets. Some contaminants cannot be seen, smelled, or tasted, so the best way to ensure your water does not contain these harmful components is through having the water tested.

What Are We Testing For?

There are dozens and dozens of different tests for water. Most public and private water recommendations are for, at a minimum nitrate and total coliform. Both of which are suggested by the EPA, to be tested for at least once per year. Concentrations of lead in drinking water is also a safety hazard, so testing for that is recommended if your property meets certain characteristics. 

  • Bacteria (E. Coli, total coliforms)

    • Coliform bacteria in well water can be an indicator of worsening water quality. Some bacteria come from fecal matters, and others naturally occur in soils, vegetation, insects, etc.

  • Nitrate

    • Common sources are fertilizers, septic systems, animal manure. and leaking sewer lines. High levels of nitrate in well water present a health concern. Drinking large amounts of water with nitrates is particularly threatening to infants. 

  • Lead

    • Properties built before 1986 could have plumbing systems that consist of " lead contributors" like lead piping, copper pipes with lead solder, and brass fixtures. These "contributors" can potentially cause lead to leak into water. Lead is harmful entity which can cause major health problems. 

There is also a comprehensive testing option offered that the state of North Carolina requires when a well is initially built and installed. This test includes the standard things listed above, while also testing for like Copper, Manganese, pH levels, Iron, Sulfate, VOC's and Pesticides. If you want a detailed look at the overall composition of your water, this is the best option.

When is Water Testing Required?

 

For FHA loan:

  • If an Individual Water Supply System is present, “the Mortgagee must ensure that the water quality meets the requirements of the health authority with jurisdiction. If there are no local (or state) water quality standards, then water quality must meet the standards set by the EPA, as presented in the National Primary Drinking Water regulations in 40 CFR 141 and 142.”

 

For HUD loan:

  • When testing is required, the water well must meet the requirements of the local authority. If the local authority does not have specific requirements, the maximum contaminant levels established by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will apply. See Mortgagee Letter 2005-48 and HUD Handbook 4150.2, Chapter 3, Paragraph 3-6, A-5a for more detailed information.

 

For VA loan:

  • VA Loans require connection to a public or community water/sewage disposal system whenever feasible. When the subject property has a well as the water source VA Regional Loan Centers have different requirements for testing the well water to make sure the water meets the requirements of the health authority having jurisdiction.

The water testing we offer conforms to the FHA, HUD and VA standards.