Environmental Analysis - Water Sampling - Data Management
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Testing Your Drinking Water Quality

Where do you get your drinking water from? Is it from a water tank?

Your drinking water might look clean, clear and inconspicuous, but what lurks within? Do you know whether it is of good enough quality and safe to drink?

Harmful chemical and biological contaminants can end up in your drinking water and can be impossible to detect with the naked eye.

Testing the drinking water quality of your tank water is essential for your health

Possible compromises to your drinking water quality

Roofing, guttering and plumbing leading to and from domestic water tanks can leave chemical contaminants – such as lead, copper and zinc – in your water.

Organisms containing faecal matter that fall in the catchment area of your water tank may also end up in your glass of water.

Perhaps you’ve noticed that the water has started to have a bad smell lately, which can happen during collection, storage and piping.

First, you should check if there aren’t any dead animals in the tank. If that is eliminated as a cause, the smell and/or taste of your water may come from the sludge at the bottom of the tank.

Often, when the oxygen-depleted sludge is disturbed (for instance, when the tank fills quickly), a rotten egg odour is released, tainting the water.

Other causes may be soil and decaying matter in the gutters, algae in the pipework or pollen.

Even if the water does look clear and doesn’t smell, you cannot be 100% sure that it contains no contaminants.

While it is not possible to test for every potential scenario, Richmond Water Laboratories have designed several suites which target some key parameters. Feel free to contact the laboratory if you have any specific concerns.

Drinking water testing is one of the main services we provide at Richmond Water Laboratories in Northern NSW. See our suite of drinking water quality tests for bore and tank water.

Rainwater Tanks

While it makes sense to harvest the clean, purified water which falls out of the sky, there are a number of factors which can compromise the quality of this water. The following fact sheet from the NSW Department of Health may be useful for maintaining rainwater tanks

Water, water every where…

Overflowing tanks are often a welcome sight to those who rely on rainwater for their domestic use, especially as it often means no more timed showers! While extra flushing may improve water quality, it is still advisable to have drinking water tested on a regular basis.