Delay Your Spring Well TestingSubmitted: 04/12/2013
Story By Lex Gray

RHINELANDER - You may not exactly have welcomed today's snow, but on the bright side, you can and should put off one of your spring cleaning chores until it warms up.

Spring thaw and rainfall give bacteria and nitrates more opportunities to get into your well water.

That's why you should test every spring.

Most years, homeowners with a private well would be sending water samples to the lab around this time.

But Oneida County Public Health Sanitarian Todd Troskey says to put it off a little longer.

"People will want to wait until we have all of our snow gone and we have some of our nice spring rains that we'll hopefully be getting," he said. "Once that's done and all the frost is out, that's the best time to sample our wells for both bacteria and nitrates would be recommended."

Troskey says everyone should test, especially if your well cap was knocked off by a plow or shovel, or if there's water pooling around it.

Off-color or different smelling water could also be signs of a problem.

"If bacteria is detected in their well, there's a couple of different options," Troskey said. "The health department does have additional sheets that a homeowner would be able to disinfect their own well using the guidelines we have, or a licensed plumber or well installer would be very familiar with the well disinfection process."

Oneida County Public Health has links to the DNR and EPA, plus information on do-it-yourself well testing.

Related Weblinks:
Oneida County Public Health

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