The 7 Best Well Water Test Kits

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This wiki has been updated 27 times since it was first published in December of 2016. If you are dependent upon an underground H2O supply for your business or residence, you can make sure that your water is safe to drink and/or bathe in with one of these well water test kits. They come in a variety of options, ranging in complexity from basic home sets for bacteria, minerals, and specific contaminants, to laboratory results measuring levels of multiple potential hazards. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. Health Metric Kit

2. Safe Home Ultimate

3. Hach Model 5-B

Editor's Notes

March 15, 2021:

There are various pathogens and contaminants that need investigation if you plan on drinking safe well water. The Hach Model 5-B, for example, is used for hard water detection. The AFWFilters PurTest covers bacteria and nitrates, while the Watersafe WS425W detects bacteria and iron, and the Health Metric Kit and Test Assured Complete Water Analysis both look for a variety of substances.

If you want something more reliable than an in-home reagent test, you'll have to send a sample away to a lab. The Safe Home Ultimate is expensive, but also comprehensive, able to warn of 200 separate contaminants, while the Drinking Water Specialists Essential Indicators is less costly and delivers results that are nearly as complete.

The only major changes we've made to the wiki this time around are the removals of the Watts Premier All-In-One and First Alert WT1, due to availability concerns, as well as their middling performance compared to most others.

July 10, 2019:

When it comes to peace of mind, it's hard to beat professional testing, which is why we've selected the Safe Home Ultimate and the Drinking Water Specialists Essential Indicators. They don't offer immediate results like at-home kits do, but there's no chance of you misreading the results or performing a test incorrectly, so the wait and extra cost are usually worth it. But at-home kits do have their place, since they can help you perform routine, on-going monitoring as well as indicate issues that may need further testing and attention. That's why we've kept the Watersafe WS425W, the AFWFilters PurTest, and added the Health Metric Kit. They are not all-inclusive, and you can only use them once or twice, but they'll help you keep tabs on well and drinking water.

Finally, we decided to include the Hach Model 5-B for hardness testing, since hard water is a common issue for those who have wells. This kit not only lets you know if you need to invest in a water filter, but it can also indicate the degree to which your existing purifier is working.

Special Honors

Tap Score by Simple Water Depending on where you live, you might need more or less thorough testing, which is where the Tap Score by Simple Water comes in. You can choose Essential, Advanced, or Extended kits, each with quick turnaround times, professional results, and a money-back guarantee.

National Testing Laboratories, Ltd. This group of technicians is known around the country for advanced water testing, and whether you live in a rural, urban, or any other area, they offer a range of tests specialized for your situation. Among third-party testers that receive your sample and then send you results, they also have some of the most consistent return times.

4. AFWFilters PurTest

5. Watersafe WS425W

6. Drinking Water Specialists Essential Indicators

7. Test Assured Complete Water Analysis

The Many Benefits Of Hydration

If those things aren’t enough to convince you that you need to drink more water, though, perhaps we can appeal to your vanity.

It’s no secret that the majority of Americans don’t drink enough water. It is true that many of us get close to our recommended daily consumption of water, but it often comes in the form of drinks other than plain water, many of which are heavily laced with sugars, chemicals, and other substances that reduce the effect of that drink’s potential hydration. Even Gatorade, a drink touted for its ability to replenish dehydrated athletes, has too much sugar in it to be an effective hydrator to most of the citizenry. If you look closely, you’ll see that many professional sports players drink a watered-down version of the stuff, or they alternate between sips of H2O and the big G.

The plain truth is that we all need to drink more water. You can still add things to it if you want, but you should stop at simple infusions of ingredients like cucumber, lemon, melon, or ginger. That way, you can get some of the benefits of those foods without negatively affecting your hydration levels.

When you’re well hydrated, all of your body’s systems work more efficiently. Perhaps most importantly is that your kidneys thrive in the presence of an abundance of water, making it easier for them to efficiently clean your blood of all matter of toxins and move them out of your system entirely.

When you’re dehydrated, not only do all those systems have to work harder to be effective, but you’ll also encounter a number of symptoms — from dizziness to distraction — that could reduce your effectiveness at work, and that might increase the danger of everyday activities like driving a car. A large percentage of headaches are also often traced back to dehydration, as well, so if you start to feel a little pain in the brain, it’s always wise to reach for a glass of water.

If those things aren’t enough to convince you that you need to drink more water, though, perhaps we can appeal to your vanity. If you have any interest in losing weight, you’re going to want to rely heavily on water. For starters, drinking water when you’re hungry can help ease the pangs of hunger if you’re trying to avoid an unhealthy snack. Furthermore, the presence of water is essential to the breakdown of fat cells, so staying hydrated while on a diet can help you lose more fat in less time.

There’s Something In The Water

Well water has the potential to be among the tastiest waters available to us. Compared to tap water, well water is usually much healthier for you, as well. Often, the heavy processing of municipal water systems — while effective at reducing the chances of water borne toxins and diseases — creates a product that taste a lot like chlorine. This water is also often a little on the acidic side, and many people believe that drinking pH-balanced water, or even alkaline water, is the healthiest way to consume the clear stuff.

More often than not, however, it’s hard to see that the water’s contaminated with the naked eye.

Most well water contains natural healthy minerals (think of it like flat Pellegrino that doesn’t cost a fortune per bottle). Those minerals help push the pH balance toward the alkaline end of the spectrum, making it a smart choice for the health conscious.

Of course, the picture isn’t always that perfect. Because well water is a natural source, it’s susceptible to a whole host of environmental dangers, most of which are introduced to the ground water by industrial processes like inorganic farming or hydraulic fracking. It’s vital that you know whether the well water on your property or in your town is safe before you consume it, and a test kit can tell you just that.

Obviously, if you have a well hookup for the taps in your house, and that water can be lit on fire as it moves through the faucet, you probably don’t need a testing kit to tell you not to drink it. More often than not, however, it’s hard to see that the water’s contaminated with the naked eye. With the right test kit at your disposal, you can ensure that you and your family are being treated to the healthiest possible means of hydration.

Choosing The Right Testing Kit For Your Well

Depending on how heavily you rely on your well, and what you might want to guard against, there are several different types of test kits that might be appropriate for you. Choosing the wrong one won’t mean that you’re going to get inaccurate results, it just means that you might not get the results you need to know that your water is completely safe.

Depending on how heavily you rely on your well, and what you might want to guard against, there are several different types of test kits that might be appropriate for you.

The first thing you’ll want to do is consider what it is about your well water you want to investigate. You may already be aware of its general mineral content, so a kit that focuses on breaking down the individual minerals in your well might seem unnecessary. The same can be said if you already have a pH tester; a kit that focuses on acidity and alkalinity would be redundant.

All this is to say that you can save a little money by investing in a kit that only does what you absolutely need it to do. If you’ve just moved onto a property that draws well water, however, you’re going to want to get your hands on the most comprehensive kit available.

One testing area that is never redundant examines your water for dangerous chemicals, bacteria, or other pathogens that could be hazardous to your health. Often, these will exist only in trace amounts in the water. Drinking one glass of the stuff might not affect you in the slightest, but chronic exposure to it could cause irreversible damage. That’s why it’s important to look for a kit that’s well regarded for its sensitivity to foreign elements. Once you know your water is clear of everything from e coli to excessive acidity, you’ll be free to enjoy all the benefits that a cool glass of well water can provide. Just make sure you re-test it on a regular basis.

Christopher Thomas
Last updated by Christopher Thomas

Building PCs, remodeling, and cooking since he was young, quasi-renowned trumpeter Christopher Thomas traveled the USA performing at and organizing shows from an early age. His work experiences led him to open a catering company, eventually becoming a sous chef in several fine LA restaurants. He enjoys all sorts of barely necessary gadgets, specialty computing, cutting-edge video games, and modern social policy. He has given talks on debunking pseudoscience, the Dunning-Kruger effect, culinary technique, and traveling. After two decades of product and market research, Chris has a keen sense of what people want to know and how to explain it clearly. He delights in parsing complex subjects for anyone who will listen -- because teaching is the best way to ensure that you understand things yourself.

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