• What is 17-alpha-ethynylestradiol?

    This is a human hormone that can enter water supplies from pharmaceutical production or poor removal from waste treatment. It is one of the components of contraceptives.

    How does 17-alpha-ethynylestradiol affect drinking water?

    While the effects of consuming water contaminated with human hormones has not been fully evaluated, exposure to 17-alpha-ethynylestradiol has resulted in enlarged breasts in babies nursed by mothers who consumed this drug. It is also a carcinogen linked to endometrial, ovarian and breast cancer.

  • What is Acenaphthene?

    This is a polyaromatic hydrocarbon or PAH. Chemicals of this type result from the incomplete burning of oil, gas, wood, garbage or even from charbroiled meat. PAHs also emit from asphalt and roofing tar. These chemicals accumulate in the food chain. Like the other PAHs, acenaphthene is manufactured to make dyes, plastics and pesticides.

    How does Acenaphthene affect drinking water?

    PAHs commonly enter the body by breathing them in or eating or drinking contaminated substances. There are more than 100 of these chemicals and they have been linked to cancer in humans and animals. They also cause birth defects, harm to blood, liver, kidneys, lungs, reproductive systems, fertility and immunity. It has been found in the drinking water of two states recently.

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  • What is Acenaphthylene?

    This is a polyaromatic hydrocarbon or PAH. Chemicals of this type result from the incomplete burning of oil, gas, wood, garbage or even from charbroiled meat. PAHs also emit from asphalt and roofing tar. These chemicals accumulate in the food chain. Like the other PAHs, acenaphthene is manufactured to make dyes, plastics and pesticides.

    How does Acenaphthylene affect drinking water?

    PAHs commonly enter the body by breathing them in or eating or drinking contaminated substances. There are more than 100 of these chemicals and they have been linked to cancer in humans and animals. They also cause birth defects, harm to blood, liver, kidneys, lungs, reproductive systems, fertility and immunity. It has been found in the drinking water of two states recently.

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  • What is Acetaminophen?

    Acetaminophen is a well-known and widely sold over-the-counter analgesic. It enters water supplies through releases from pharmaceutical companies, from human wastes of those who have used this drug or from disposal of unneeded drugs in the waste system.

    How does Acetaminophen affect drinking water?

    Levels found in drinking water are low and expected toxicity is low.

  • What is Acifluorfen?

    At one time, sodium acifluorfen was used on both crops and residential properties as an herbicide. It was sold as Acifluorfen 2 or Blazer. Its use is now restricted to agricultural use on just a few crops.

    How does Acifluorfen affect drinking water?

    Acifluorfen is known to leach through soils and reach groundwaters. Use of acifluorfen in areas that are irrigated increase this risk. It is corrosive and can cause irreversible eye damage and skin irritation. Laboratory tests showed kidney and fetal effects and the development of tumors.

  • What is Acinetobacter?

    Acinetobacter is the name of a group of extremely common bacteria that are present almost everywhere. They can commonly be found in many water supplies and can survive well in all types of water supplies, even wastewater sludge.

    How does Acinetobacter affect drinking water?

    Among healthy people, Acinetobacter generally do not pose a serious threat. But among those who are wounded, ill or immunocompromised, they can cause serious illnesses. They are most often seen in hospital-acquired infections. One of the main reasons this type of bacteria is considered a serious threat is that the majority of Acinetobacter strains are resistant to treatment with antibiotics. There are more than 8,000 Acinetobacter infections in hospitals each year.

  • What is Acremonium?

    Acremonium is a type of fungus found on decaying vegetation and food and in soil. Several types of this fungus cause infections in humans. Acremonium have also been found in swimming pools and lakes and have made their way into consumer products.

    How does Acremonium affect drinking water?

    Acremonium infections can result from exposure to standing wanter contaminated with this fungus. Water treatment for drinking water supply may not be sufficient to remove this and other infective fungi. Effects include worsening of asthma symptoms, hypersensitivity pneumonitis and skin irritation. For a person with a compromised immune system, the dangers are greater and a severe infection can result. Showering with water contaminated with Acremonium introduces this fungus into the air.

  • What is Acrolein?

    Acrolein is used as an herbicide for canals and waterways, to keep down the growth of plants and slime in those waterways. It vaporizes faster than water does, which means that it can be found in the air near waste disposal sites or in the air in a home if the water supply contains this chemical. It can also be created by burning wood, tobacco or fuels.

    How does Acrolein affect drinking water?

    Because of its ability to vaporize, it tends to leave water supplies, so little acrolein makes its way into drinking water. If it is inhaled, it can cause nose, eyes and throat irritation. Higher level of exposure can cause harm to the lungs.

  • What is Acrylamide?

    Acrylamide is created industrially, is found in cigarette smoke and results from high-temperature cooking of foods, especially fatty foods. In industry, this chemical is used in the manufacture of paper, dyes, and plastics. It is also used for treatment of drinking water and sewage and may be found in consumer products, such as food packaging and adhesives.

    How does Acrylamide affect drinking water?

    Acrylamide has been found to be carcinogenic, although the research on its effects on humans is incomplete. Exposure from food and water would normally be low, although at higher levels of exposure, it can cause muscle weakness and reduced fertility in men. In laboratory tests, development impairments were seen.

  • What is Alachlor?

    This chemical is used to control the growth of grasses and weeds around crops like corn, sorghum and soybeans. It is also used as a pesticide. It is banned in the European Union and use has declined in the U.S.

    How does Alachlor affect drinking water?

    Use of alachlor in fields can introduce this chemical to groundwater. It breaks down fairly rapidly which reduces the risk of exposure through drinking water. Still, its use in agriculture has been associated with increased incidence of two types of cancer.

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  • What is Alcaligenes faecalis?

    Alcaligenes faecalis is a bacterium that is commonly found in soil, water, and hospital equipment such as respirators, dialysis systems and intravenous solutions. It may be found in the intestinal tract of healthy humans.

    How does Alcaligenes faecalis affect drinking water?

    This bacterium is not likely to harm a healthy person, but it can cause problems for a person who is immunocompromised. It may be resistant to antibiotics. While it may not pose a danger for a person drinking water with Alcaligenes faecalis, its presence in water could indicate the presence of other pathogens, such as those coming from human or animal feces.

  • What is Aldrin?

    Aldrin is a pesticide/insecticide used to control insects such as termites. Concerns arose as early as 1970 that it was potentially carcinogenic, however, use continued until 1989. It is slow to degrade once applied to a field or residence. It has been detected in soil, surface water, groundwater, public water supplies and food crops.

    How does Aldrin affect drinking water?

    In general, levels of Aldrin in drinking water are low. Aldrin accumulates in the body and can increase the risk of cancer or reproductive harm. When heavy exposure occurs, it causes harm to the liver, nervous system, decreased fertility and death.

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  • What is Alkalinity?

    When water contains bicarbonate, carbonate or hydroxide, it is describe as alkaline. It is desirable for drinking water to contain between 30 parts per million and 400 ppm. If alkalinity gets too high, minerals can begin to develop scale within the plumbing system, especially in hot water systems. This scale, when it builds up enough, can increase costs for heating water.

    How does Alkalinity affect drinking water?

    Alkalinity is not harmful to humans drinking this water. In fact, some alkalinity inhibits the corrosion of metal piping in the home.

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    Alkalinity is a measure of water’s ability to neutralize acids. Water with low alkalinity is more likely to be corrosive. High alkalinity can result in scaling on plumbing elements and...

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  • What is Alpha Chlordane?

    Alpha chlordane is a form of chlordane, a termite treatment chemical and pesticide for corn and citrus. It was also used on lawns and in gardens. It was banned in 1988. Alpha chlordane can still be present as a residue in old homes or soil where it was applied. If heated, chlordane can form strongly corrosive gases.

    How does Alpha Chlordane affect drinking water?

    Because alpha chlordane can stay in soil for more than 20 years, it is possible for this chemical to make it into drinking water supplies. Once consumed, it accumulates in the body because it is not eliminated well. It affects the nervous system, digestive system, liver and reproductive system. It is classified as a probable carcinogen.

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  • How does Alpha Hexachlorocyclohexane affect drinking water?

    Exposure to forms of Hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH) can occur through eating foods or water contaminated by this chemical. As HCH breaks down in the body, some of the breakdown products are themselves toxic. All forms of HCH are expected to be carcinogenic to humans.

  • What is Alpha-Hexachlorocyclohexane?

    Alpha-hexachlorocyclohexane was an ingredient of technical-grade hexachlorocyclohexane. Technical-grade hexachlorocyclohexane was a combination product that contained alpha-HCH, beta-HCH, delta-HCH, gamma-HCH and epsilon-HCH. It was used as an insecticide on fruit, vegetables, forest crops, animals and in the areas where animals were raised. Nearly all the insecticidal qualities resided in the gamma form of this chemical. It has not been manufactured in the U.S. since 1976.

  • What is Alternaria?

    Alternaria is a type of fungus that causes leaf rot on plants and grows around areas of a home with water damage. Outside the home, it is more frequently found in sea and river water than in drinking water. However, food, drinking water and bottled water can all be contaminated with Alternaria.

    How does Alternaria affect drinking water?

    Alternaria produces many different types of toxins that can cause harm to humans. They can damage DNA, create allergies, birth defects, mutations within cells, and harm developing fetuses. An immunocomromised person is at greater risk. Food, drinking water and bottled water can be contaminated with Alternaria. These toxins may be carcinogenic.

  • What is Aluminum?

    Aluminum is a lightweight, silvery metal, the most abundant metal on earth. Aluminum is naturally found in the soil, water and air. It is also frequently added to consumer products such as antacids, antiperspirants and food additives. Processed foods contain aluminum but unprocessed foods like fruits, vegetables and meat contain very little. Aluminum salts are sometimes used to treat drinking water before it reaches the home. This treatment can increase the amount of aluminum in the drinking water.

    How does Aluminum affect drinking water?

    If too much aluminum is ingested, bone and brain disease can result. Individuals with kidney disease are less able to eliminate aluminum once it is ingested. In laboratory tests, babies of mothers who ingested aluminum were less active and had poorer memories.

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  • What is Ametryn?

    Ametryn is an herbicide used to control grasses and broadleaf weeds around coffee plants, cocoa, grapefruit trees, orange trees, sugarcane, pineapple and corn crops. It is sometimes combined with Atrazine.

    How does Ametryn affect drinking water?

    Ametryn is seldom found in surface water, and only at very low concentrations. When in water, it is described as only slightly toxic to humans.

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  • How does Aminomethylphosphonic acid affect drinking water?

    Tests of surface water seldom reveal any significant quantity of AMPA. Exposure to AMPA is more likely to occur from food than drinking water. Glyphosate and its breakdown products are listed as “probably carcinogenic” by the International Agency for Research on Cancer and was listed as “known to cause cancer” by the California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment.

  • What is Aminomethylphosphonic acid?

    Aminomethylphosphonic acid is produced when glyphosate products (herbicides and pesticides) break down. Glyphosate is used in agriculture and residential applications. In field tests, glyphosate and/or AMPA were present in 45% of topsoil samples collected, indicating how widespread these chemicals are. Because more than 100,000 tons of these chemicals are spread on American soil and crops each year, they are present in a wide range of foods.

  • What is Ammonia?

    Ammonia is a common contaminant of water that results from the presence of animal wastes and use of fertilizers. In some conditions, ammonia can be the cause of fish kills and an overgrowth of plants in bodies of water. As ammonia levels increase, oxygen in water decreases. Higher levels of ammonia can result if sewers overflow after rainstorms and untreated municipal waste is released into streams and lakes. Leaking septic tanks also contribute ammonia to water sources.

    How does Ammonia affect drinking water?

    Too much ammonia can cause damage to the internal organ systems. Ammonia levels in drinking water tend to be higher in agricultural areas where most of the drinking water comes from groundwater. While ammonia levels themselves are not regulated, excessive amounts of ammonia can increase nitrate levels which can be toxic to infants. High levels of ammonia can also make it hard for water treatment systems to remove arsenic.

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    Ammonia is a colorless gas with a strong odor, and is the result of decomposition of biological matter. Ammonia in well water is an indicator that there is very fresh...

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  • What is Anthracene?

    Anthracene is also called paranaphthalene or green oil. This is a polyaromatic hydrocarbon or PAH. Chemicals of this type result from the incomplete burning of oil, gas, wood, garbage or even from charbroiled meat. PAHs also emit from asphalt and roofing tar. These chemicals accumulate in the food chain. Anthracene is manufactured to make 9,10-anthraquinone, which is then used to make red dyes. Anthracene is also used in wood preservatives and insecticides and a form of anthracene is used topically to treat psoriasis.

    How does Anthracene affect drinking water?

    PAHs commonly enter the body by breathing them in or eating or drinking contaminated substances. There are more than 100 of these chemicals and they have been linked to cancer in humans and animals. They also cause birth defects, harm to blood, liver, kidneys, lungs, reproductive systems, fertility and immunity.

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  • What is Antimony?

    Antimony is a naturally-occurring metal that can make its way into drinking water from mineral sources or plumbing materials. Industrial sources of antimony include producing metal alloys, plastics or batteries. Antimony is also used to make fire retardant materials.

    How does Antimony affect drinking water?

    The CDC reports respiratory effects after inhalation plus changes or harm to heart, gastrointestinal function, development and blood glucose levels after other exposures. Industrial exposures have been associated with increases in lung cancer deaths. Short-term exposure to high concentrations of antimony in water can cause nausea, diarrhea and vomiting. It has no taste, smell or color.

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    Antimony is a heavy metal. It most often comes from petroleum refineries, fire retardants, ceramics and solder. Drinking water with too much antimony can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Long-term...

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  • What is Arsenate?

    Arsenate is a salt of arsenic. Arsenic is much more toxic and water-soluble than arsenate, which is the form commonly found in water supplies. Arsenate was at one time combined with other metals or minerals to create pesticides. It is easier to remove arsenate from drinking water than arsenic.

    How does Arsenate affect drinking water?

    When this form of arsenic is ingested, it can interfere with the normal function of cells, blocking energy production. In the body, arsenate changes into arsenite which can cause the inactivation of many enzymes needed for normal functioning. Very long-term exposure can increase the incidence of bladder and lung cancer, diabetes, heart disease, adverse effects on pregnancy and increased child mortality.

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    Arsenic appears in water supplies around the world. Long-term consumption of water with levels of arsenic that are too high can result in skin, bladder and lung cancers, skin lesions,...

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  • What is Arsenic?

    Arsenic is a naturally-occurring mineral found in rock and groundwater in many locations around the world. It can make its way into food crops that are irrigated with contaminated water as well as drinking water supplies. Shellfish, fish, meat and poultry can also contain arsenic although levels are generally low. Arsenic is used in the production of glass, pigments, textiles, wood preservatives, pesticides and pharmaceuticals.

    How does Arsenic affect drinking water?

    Long-term exposure to arsenic in water or food shows up as skin pigmentation changes and sores and hard patches on hands and feet. These changes may lead to skin cancer. Bladder and lung cancer is also a result of long-term exposure to arsenic in the water supply. Other effects include a greater incidence of diabetes, heart disease, adverse effects on pregnancy and increased child mortality. Even more serious effects of arsenic in water can occur with very long, continuous exposure.

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    Arsenic appears in water supplies around the world. Long-term consumption of water with levels of arsenic that are too high can result in skin, bladder and lung cancers, skin lesions,...

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  • What is Arsenic Speciation?

    Arsenic speciation refers to the detection of which form of arsenic appears in a water supply. It could be arsenate which is not as toxic and is more easily removed, or arsenite, which is more toxic and difficult to filter out.

    How does Arsenic Speciation affect drinking water?

    The use of this test will tell you which kind of filtering is advisable for your water supply to make it completely safe for consumption. A pre-treatment method could oxidize arsenide to arsenate which can then be removed through reverse osmosis or certain types of filters.

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    Arsenic appears in water supplies around the world. The Arsenic Speciation test involves determining the different forms of arsenic that appear in a water sample. Each type has its own...

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  • What is Arsenite?

    Arsenite is one of the forms of arsenic commonly found in rock and groundwater. It is more toxic and harder to remove from water supplies than other forms. At one time, arsenite was used to treat skin diseases and digestive problems until it was realized that people who used this preparation developed cancer more frequently.

    How does Arsenite affect drinking water?

    Long-term exposure to arsenic in water or food shows up as skin pigmentation changes and sores and hard patches on hands and feet. These changes may lead to skin cancer. Bladder and lung cancer is also a result of long-term exposure to arsenic in the water supply. Other effects include a greater incidence of diabetes, heart disease, adverse effects on pregnancy and increased child mortality. More serious effects of arsenic in water require very long, continuous exposure.

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    Arsenic appears in water supplies around the world. Long-term consumption of water with levels of arsenic that are too high can result in skin, bladder and lung cancers, skin lesions,...

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  • What is Asbestos?

    Asbestos is a name given to a group of six fibrous minerals that are naturally-occurring. All forms are hazardous and all can cause cancer. Because they are resistant to both heat and chemical deterioration, they have been widely used in building materials and heat-resistant fabrics. All new uses of asbestos have been banned in the U.S. Asbestos fibers can enter water supplies when asbestos products deteriorate. Water supplies can also pick up asbestos from mineral deposits. Some cement pipes used for drinking water also contain asbestos.

    How does Asbestos affect drinking water?

    If asbestos fibers are consumed in drinking water, few of them will be absorbed by the body. Some people who have drunk water with asbestos fibers have suffered higher than average rates of cancer of the esophagus and intestines but the exact connection is not known. Still, asbestos is classified as a human carcinogen.

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    Some community water systems have pipes made of asbestos cement. As these pipes age, asbestos can enter the water supply. Long-term asbestos consumption has been linked to mesothelioma, a devastating...

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  • What is Aspergillus?

    Aspergillus is a type of fungus that is frequently found on food, and in drinking water and damp environments. People can be exposed to Aspergillus by drinking water that contains this fungus, by inhaling the fungus that has been released while showering and by skin contact with the same water. There are 180 types of Aspergillus but fewer than 40 can cause infections. The most common infective type is Aspergillus fumigatus.

    How does Aspergillus affect drinking water?

    Aspergillus can cause infections in humans. In an iimmunocompromised person, the infection can be serious. Infections can start in the lungs or sinuses and then spread to other parts of the body. An infection with aspergillus is called aspergillosis. The infection can start with wheezing, cough and shortness of breath. An allergy to aspergillus will show up as stuffiness, runny nose, headache and loss of sense of smell.

  • What is Aspergillus flavus?

    Aspergillus is a type of fungus that is frequently found on food, and in drinking water and damp environments. People can be exposed to aspergillus by drinking water that contains this fungus, by inhaling the fungus that has been released while showering and by skin contact with the same water. There are 180 types of aspergillus but fewer than 40 can cause infections. In general, the most common infective type is aspergillus fumigatus but in some areas, aspergillus flavus is more common.

    How does Aspergillus flavus affect drinking water?

    Aspergillus can cause infections in humans. In an immunocompromised person, the infection can be serious. Apergillus flavus will more typically cause superficial infections, such as wound infections, which can become both toxic and serious. Toxins produced by an infection with this fungus can increase the chance of liver cancer. Apergillus flavus can also cause infections of the respiratory tract.

  • What is Aspergillus fumigatus?

    Aspergillus is a type of fungus that is frequently found on food, and in drinking water and damp environments. Aspergillus fumigatus is the most common type that causes health problems for humans. People can be exposed to aspergillus by drinking water that contains this fungus, by inhaling the fungus that has been released while showering and by skin contact with the same water.

    How does Aspergillus fumigatus affect drinking water?

    Aspergillus can cause infections in humans. In an immunocompromised person, the infection can be serious. Infections can start in the lungs or sinuses and then spread to other parts of the body. An infection with Aspergillus is called aspergillosis. The infection can start with wheezing, coughing and shortness of breath. An allergy to Aspergillus will show up as stuffiness, runny nose, headache and loss of sense of smell.

  • What is Aspergillus nidulans?

    Aspergillus is a type of fungus that is frequently found on food, and in drinking water and damp environments. People can be exposed to Aspergillus by drinking water that contains this fungus, by inhaling the fungus that has been released while showering and by skin contact with the same water. There are 180 types of Aspergillus but fewer than 40 can cause infections.

    How does Aspergillus nidulans affect drinking water?

    A. nidulans is found much more rarely than Apergillus fumigatus, but it can cause serious illnesses in individuals suffering from immunodeficiency. In general, it is less likely to cause infections than A. fumigatus except in this situation.

  • What is Aspergillus niger?

    Aspergillus is a type of fungus that is frequently found on food, and in drinking water and damp environments. Aspergillus niger is a common form of this fungus. People can be exposed to Aspergillus by drinking water that contains this fungus, by inhaling the fungus that has been released while showering and by skin contact with the same water. There are 180 types of Aspergillus but fewer than 40 can cause infections.

    How does Aspergillus niger affect drinking water?

    A. niger is a common cause of a fungal (as opposed to bacterial) ear infection. It can also cause pneumonia. An infection with this fungus can produce toxins that are damaging to the kidneys.

  • What is Aspergillus ochraceus?

    Aspergillus is a type of fungus that is frequently found on food, and in drinking water and damp environments. People can be exposed to Aspergillus by drinking water that contains this fungus, by inhaling the fungus that has been released while showering and by skin contact with the same water. There are 180 types of Aspergillus but fewer than 40 can cause infections. The most common infective type is Aspergillus fumigatus but A. ochraceus can cause serious infections in humans. It is mostly found in coffee beans, grapes and wine and has been detected in bottled water.

    How does Aspergillus ochraceus affect drinking water?

    If an infection with A. ochraceus occurs, the fungus produces a toxin called ochratoxin which is toxic to the kidneys and liver. It can also cause birth defects and cancer.

  • What is Aspergillus versicolor?

    Aspergillus is a type of fungus that is frequently found on food, and in drinking water and damp environments. People can be exposed to Aspergillus by drinking water that contains this fungus, by inhaling the fungus that has been released while showering and by skin contact with the same water. There are 180 types of Aspergillus but fewer than 40 can cause infections.

    How does Aspergillus versicolor affect drinking water?

    In laboratory tests, A. versicolor inhalation resulted in inflammation in the brain and spinal cord. Laboratory tests also show that this fungus produces toxins that can cause lung cancer.

  • What is Asterionella?

    Asterionella is a type of algae and one of the most common types of phytoplankton, often showing up in bodies of water in North America. If Asterionella overpopulates a body of water, it can deplete the area of oxygen.

    How does Asterionella affect drinking water?

    For humans, there are no known harmful effects of Asterionella in a water supply.

  • What is Ataton?

    Atatron is a triazine-type herbicide typically used for apples, peaches, blueberries, corn, soybeans and other crops. It is water-soluble and persistent once it is added to soil. It is classified as slightly to moderately poisonous.

    How does Atatron affect drinking water?

    Because of the persistence of this herbicide, it can reach groundwater and therefore be found in water supplies. The EPA considers triazines as possible human carcinogens. They accumulate in the body when a person is exposed.

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  • What is Atrazine?

    Atrazine is an herbicide used to kill weeds around sugarcane, pineapples, sorghum and other crops. It is also used along highways. Any Atrazine that reaches groundwater will persist for a long time which is why Atrazine can be found in drinking water wells in agricultural areas. Winds can blow airborne Atrazine hundreds of miles away.

    How does Atrazine affect drinking water?

    In humans, it can cause hormone disruption, changes to the nervous system, the brain, nervous system and a developing fetus. It is a probable carcinogen. Chronic exposure to atrazine in water supplies can lead to chronic health problems. Atrazine is the most commonly detected pesticide in American water supplies. It has been detected in the drinking water of 36 states in recent years.

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  • What is Aureobasidium?

    Aureobasidium is a yeast-like fungus that produces volatile organic compounds that can be used as anti-fungals. It is a very common fungus in food and outdoor environments and can be found in hospitals where it can cause a variety of infections including peritonitis, meningitis and a fungal blood infection. Aurebasidium pullulans, one strain of this fungus, is generally referred to as black yeast.

    How does Aureobasidium affect drinking water?

    Because Aurebasidium can be found in fresh water, it can make its way into drinking water supplies where it can create persistent biofilms. It can also be encountered on foods. Its presence could trigger allergies, but it does not usually create illness in a healthy person.

  • What is Azobenzene?

    Azobenzenes started out being used as dyes but have more recently started being used in textiles, cosmetics, foods and medicines. It is also used in greenhouses as an insecticide.

    How does Azobenzene affect drinking water?

    Azobenzene has been classified as a carcinogen by the EPA when consumed in water supplies. It could reach water supplies through industrial releases.

  • What is 4-Bromophenyl phenyl ether?

    4-Bromophenyl phenyl ether has been used in the past as a flame retardant.

    How does 4-Bromophenyl phenyl ether affect drinking water?

    It can be found as a drinking water contaminant but primary routes of exposure are industrial or through residues left after prior uses. It is an eye and skin irritant.

  • What is Bacillus Species?

    This test determines which types of disease-causing bacteria are present in a water sample. The results of this test provide an important diagnostic guide to the causes of water quality problems.

    How does Bacillus Species affect drinking water?

    Knowing which bacteria are present in drinking water is important, since some are pathogenic and others are not. Once the list of bacteria is obtained, a plan can be made to disinfect the water supply and/or repair the water source.

  • What are Bacteria?

    Bacteria are common single-celled organisms that live in every lake, river and other source of water. A wide variety of bacteria may be found in drinking water. Some are harmful and others are not. Bacteria causing diseases in humans include Salmonella typhi, Salmonella paratyphi-A and Shigella dysenteriae. Coliform bacteria may or may not be harmful. Knowing which bacteria are present can provide insight into what is causing water contamination.

    How do Bacteria affect drinking water?

    Harmful bacteria in water can cause diarrhea, vomiting, cramps, nausea, headaches, fever, and even death, especially in an immunocompromised person.

  • What is Barium?

    Barium is a metallic element that is found in rock and could make its way into drinking water supplies. It is widely used for making electronic components, fireworks, ceramics and glass.

    How does Barium affect drinking water?

    Barium is found in streams and well waters at low levels that are not considered to be hazardous. Exposure to drinking water with elevated levels of barium could cause an increase in blood pressure or harm to the kidneys.

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  • What are Basidiomycetes?

    Basidiomycetes are types of fungi commonly known as club fungi. They are ubiquitous in the environment, in fact, the majority of familiar mushrooms and toadstools belong to this group. Some types can exist in either fresh or salt water and can form biofilms in water distribution systems.

    How do Basidiomycetes affect drinking water?

    While the only acceptable level of fungi in water supplies is none, most of these fungi do not cause health problems. One of the exceptions is Cryptococcus. Some types of Cryptococcus fungi can cause illness in immunocompromised individuals while one type, C. gatti, can cause illness in healthy people.

  • What is Bentazon?

    Bentazon is a herbicide used to prevent the emergence of weeds in food crops like peanuts, corn and rice. While it is no longer used in the U.S., it was used on lawns, such as golf courses. If rain followed its application, it could be absorbed into soil and make its way into groundwater. Contamination can also occur from manufacturing releases and field runoff.

    How does Bentazon affect drinking water?

    Bentazon has been detected in water supplies at low levels. Low level exposure to Bentazon is unlikely to create health problems. Increased exposures generally only occur in industrial settings. The EPA has classified Bentazon as probably not carcinogenic.

  • What is Benz[a]anthracene?

    Benz[a]anthracene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) that is released from burning wood or other fuels as well as wildfires and volcanic emissions. Exposure can also occur through the consumption of charred meat. Because of the widespread use of these fuels, Benz[a]anthracene is also widespread in our environment. PAHs have been banned in Canada for use in cosmetics; the European Union has listed it as an endocrine disruptor.

    How does Benz[a]anthracene affect drinking water?

    Benz[a]anthracene can enter water supplies through coal tar coatings on drinking water pipes and storage tanks. It is reasonably expected to be carcinogenic for humans as well as causing damage to the immune and nervous systems and harm human fetuses.

  • What is Benzene?

    Benzene is a clear, sweet-smelling liquid that evaporates quickly and is very flammable. Primary sources are industrial manufacture and natural sources such as burning fuels, volcanic emissions, wildfires. The chemical is isolated from coal tar or petroleum. It’s one of the top twenty chemicals manufactured in the U.S. It’s used in the manufacture of plastics, resins, rubbers, lubricants, dyes, pesticides and more. It is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH). It can leak from underground storage tanks, industrial discharges and disposal of products that contain benzene.

    How does Benzene affect drinking water?

    For most people, their exposure to benzene is greater though the air than through water. Drinking water and bottled water typically contain very small amounts of benzene. Well water can be contaminated from leakage from landfills and hazardous waste sites. It has been determined to be carcinogenic to humans. Exposure to even a low level of benzene can cause dizziness, headaches, tremors and confusion. Damage to the immune system and blood can also occur.

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  • What is Benzidine?

    This is a manufactured chemical that is no longer made in the U.S., but that may be imported. At one time, it was used to produce dyes for cloth, paper and leather.

    How does Benzidine affect drinking water?

    Exposure to contaminated air, water, soil or food is not likely; however, people living near hazardous waste sites could be exposed to benzidine. Exposure to this chemical can create cancer in humans and has created liver, kidney, immune and neurological harm in laboratory tests.

  • What is Benzo(a)pyrene?

    Benzo(a)pyrene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) that is released from burning wood or other fuels as well as wildfires and volcanic emissions. Exposure can also occur through the consumption of charred meat. Because of the widespread use of these fuels, Benzo(a)pyrene is also widespread in our environment. PAHs have been banned in Canada for use in cosmetics; the European Union has listed them as endocrine disruptors.

    How does Benzo(a)pyrene affect drinking water?

    The presence of Benzo(a)pyrene in drinking water is very low and exposure to humans through water is minimal. Exposure to higher levels of Benzo(a)pyrene can result in reproductive harm and reduced fertility. It is linked to cancer in both animals and humans. In laboratory tests, it is toxic to the skin, nervous system, blood and immune systems.

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  • What is Benzo(b)fluoranthene?

    Benzo(b)fluoranthene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) that is released from burning wood or other fuels as well as wildfires and volcanic emissions. Exposure can also occur through the consumption of charred meat. It has no commercial use. Because of the widespread use of wood, coal and other fuels, Benzo(b)fluoranthene is also widespread in our environment. PAHs have been banned in Canada for use in cosmetics; the European Union has listed them as endocrine disruptors.

    How does Benzo(b)fluoranthene affect drinking water?

    The presence of Benzo(b)fluoranthene in drinking water is very low and exposure to humans through water is minimal. Exposure to higher levels of Benzo(b)fluoranthene can result in reproductive harm and reduced fertility. It is linked to cancer in both animals and humans. In laboratory tests, it is toxic to the skin, nervous system, blood and immune systems.

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  • What is Benzo(g,h,i)perylene?

    Benzo(g,h,i)perylene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) that is released from burning wood or other fuels as well as wildfires and volcanic emissions. Exposure can also occur through the consumption of charred meat. It has no commercial use. Because of the widespread use of wood, coal and other fuels, Benzo(g,h,i)perylene is also widespread in our environment. PAHs have been banned in Canada for use in cosmetics; the European Union has listed them as endocrine disruptors.

    How does Benzo(g,h,i)perylene affect drinking water?

    The presence of Benzo(g,h,i)perylene in drinking water is very low and exposure to humans through water is minimal. Exposure to higher levels of Benzo(g,h,i)perylene can result in reproductive harm and reduced fertility. It is linked to cancer in both animals and humans. In laboratory tests, it is toxic to the skin, nervous system, blood and immune systems.

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  • What is Benzoic acid?

    Benzoic acid is both naturally-occurring and manufactured. It is used in the manufacture of perfumes, dyes, topical medications and insect repellents. It is also used as a preservative in cosmetics and foods. It may also be found in medicines, foods, gum, juices, and personal care products. In high concentrations, it can cause skin irritation.

    How does Benzoic acid affect drinking water?

    It is very seldom detected in drinking water. Low exposure to Benzoic acid is not expected to be harmful.

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  • What is Benzo(k)fluoranthene?

    Benzo(k)fluoranthene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) that is released from burning wood or other fuels as well as wildfires and volcanic emissions. Exposure can also occur through the consumption of charred meat. It has no commercial use. Because of the widespread use of wood, coal and other fuels, Benzo(k)fluoranthene is also widespread in our environment. PAHs have been banned in Canada for use in cosmetics; the European Union has listed them as endocrine disruptors.

    How does Benzo(k)fluoranthene affect drinking water?

    The presence of Benzo(k)fluoranthene in drinking water is very low and exposure to humans through water is minimal. Exposure to higher levels of Benzo(k)fluoranthene can result in reproductive harm and reduced fertility. It is linked to cancer in both animals and humans. In laboratory tests, it is toxic to the skin, nervous system, blood and immune systems.

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  • What is Benzyl alcohol?

    Benzyl alcohol is also known as Benzylmethanol. It is used as a solvent for inks, paints, waxes, shellacs and lacquers. It can be combined with other chemicals to be used as a stripper. It is also used in cosmetics in the U.S., but is not permitted for use in some other countries and the European Union. Benzyl alcohol is also used as a preservative, solvent, and local anesthetic.

    How does Benzyl alcohol affect drinking water?

    Benzyl alcohol is seldom found in drinking water. Primary exposure for humans comes from inhalation, food and drinking water. Topical exposure can be irritating to the skin at concentrations greater than 3%. Main concerns are allergic reactions and immunotoxicity.

  • What is Benzyl butyl phthalate?

    Benzyl butyl phthalate is a widely-produced chemical that adds flexibility to plastics, paints, vinyl tiles, medical products and packaging. It is also found in cosmetics and fragrances. More than 18 billion pounds of phthalates are manufactured each year, mostly related to the production of plastics. These chemicals easily leak from the products they are made into.

    How does Benzyl butyl phthalate affect drinking water?

    Benzyl butyl phthalate has been found in surface water, groundwater and drinking water at low levels. In laboratory tests, animals suffered more cancerous tumors, cases of leukemia and other types of cancer after being exposed to this chemical. It has been shown to increase harm to reproduction and disruption to hormones.

  • What is Beryllium?

    Beryllium is a toxic metal that is naturally occurring. It is mixed with other metals and used in the aerospace and electronics industries. It is released during manufacturing processes and as a result of incineration. Beryllium in well water can enter the lungs if it is used in a humidifier or when showering. Absorption by the lungs is more dangerous than consumption but when consumed in water supplies, it can damage the intestines.

    How does Beryllium affect drinking water?

    This metal is found in very few drinking water samples in the U.S. When Beryllium enters the atmosphere as dust, it can make its way into water supplies by falling on bodies of water. Long-term exposure to Beryllium in water has been shown to damage the stomach and intestines and weaken the bones.

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  • How does Beta Hexachlorocyclohexane affect drinking water?

    Exposure to forms of HCH can occur through eating foods or water contaminated by this chemical. Beta-hexachlorocyclohexane leaves the body more slowly than the other forms. As HCH breaks down in the body, some of the byproducts are themselves toxic. All forms of HCH are expected to be carcinogenic to humans.

  • What is Beta Hexachlorocyclohexane?

    Beta-hexachlorocyclohexane was an ingredient of technical-grade hexachlorocyclohexane which contained alpha-HCH, beta-HCH, delta-HCH, gamma-HCH and epsilon-HCH. It was used as an insecticide on fruit, vegetables, forest crops, animals and in the areas where animals were raised. Nearly all the insecticidal qualities resided in the gamma form of this chemical. It has not been manufactured in the U.S. since 1976. All forms of HCH have been found in the soil and surface water long after production stopped because they do not break down easily. HCH persists in the soil and air and can travel great distances.

  • What is Bicarbonate?

    There are many forms of bicarbonate, including sodium bicarbonate, arginine bicarbonate and ammonium bicarbonate. Bicarbonate in water tends to be associated with alkaline water with a pH of 7.5 or above. Water from deep aquifers often contains higher levels of bicarbonates. However, water supplies that are naturally acidic may have sodium bicarbonate added to neutralize the acidity.

    How does Bicarbonate affect drinking water?

    Spring water often has higher levels of bicarbonate than other waters, but much less than the amount that could be harmful. Drinking water with too much bicarbonate could make the blood become too alkaline, which will stress the lungs and kidneys as they try to cleanse the bicarbonate out of the blood. Too much bicarbonate will also affect the taste of water.

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  • What is Biological Oxygen Demand?

    Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD) is an index to how much biologically degradable material is present in organic wastes. This test may be needed to determine whether or not plant and animal life can survive in a body of water. A high BOD reduces the dissolved oxygen in water that is needed by plants and animals. It is also an index of local pollution.

    How does Biological Oxygen Demand affect drinking water?

    Biological Oxygen Demand can indicate when a body of water being used as a source of drinking water is receiving too many pollutants. Phosphorus from farms or industry being fed into water sources can increase the growth of algae which can raise the BOD and make the water harmful to humans and animals.

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  • What are Bipolaris and Drechslera?

    Bipolaris and Drechslera are two types of fungus that are very similar to each other. They are commonly found in plant debris and soil but can also thrive in damp rooms and crawl spaces. They are capable of creating allergies and infections that could be life-threatening among those who are immunocompromised.

    How do Bipolaris and Drechslera affect drinking water?

    Because of their ability to cause allergies or infections in humans, Bipolaris and Drechslera do not belong in drinking water. Bipolaris in particular is capable of causing meningoencephalitis, pneumonia and sinusitis in the immunocompromised.

  • What is Bis(2-chloro-1-methylethyl) ether?

    Bis(2-chloro-1-methylethyl) ether is no longer commercially produced in the U.S. It was used as a solvent and was formed when propylene oxide (used in the manufacture of polyurethane foams and propylene glycol) was manufactured. It is rarely found in drinking water supplies.

    How does Bis(2-chloro-1-methylethyl) ether affect drinking water?

    This chemical has been found in industrial waste water and natural water. Bis(2-chloro-1-methylethyl) ether has been shown to create harm to the central nervous systems of humans. It may also cause changes to the blood and reproductive harm and damage to the liver and kidneys. There is some evidence that long-term exposure can cause cancer in animals.

  • What is bis(2-Chloroethoxy)methane?

    Bis(2-Chloroethoxy)methane is a chlorinated solvent used in some cleaners, paint, rubber and varnishes. It has been classified as a hazardous substance by the EPA and other agencies. If it makes its way into soil or water, it is likely to persist for a long time.

    How does bis(2-Chloroethoxy)methane affect drinking water?

    This chemical is found in drinking water in very few U.S. locations. Chronic exposure can result in liver, lung and kidney damage as well as harm to the central nervous system. It does not accumulate in the human body.

  • What is bis(2-Chloroethyl) ether?

    Bis(2-Chloroethyl) ether is a solvent for fats, waxes and greases and is used in the manufacture of paints, varnishes and pesticides. It is also used to purify oil and gasoline and a textile finishing agent. It is an irritant to the nose, throat, lungs, eyes and skin. Exposure can cause bronchitis as well as harm to the kidneys and liver. It is classified as a human carcinogen.

    How does bis(2-Chloroethyl) ether affect drinking water?

    Bis(2-Chloroethyl) ether is seldom found in water supplies and when it is present, concentrations are very low. However, long-term exposure to low levels of this chemical in drinking water can cause cancer.

  • What is bis(2-Chloroisopropyl) ether?

    Bis(2-Chloroisopropyl) ether is used in the production of pesticides and other chemicals, and is used as a solvent, cleaner, rust inhibitor and paint or varnish ingredient. It evaporates easily into the air from surface water or soil. It does not accumulate in plants or animals.

    How does bis(2-Chloroisopropyl) ether affect drinking water?

    The most likely way a person is exposed to bis(2-chloroisopropyl) ether is through drinking water. Few U.S. sites have been found to have this chemical in their drinking water. The EPA has classified this chemical as a probable human carcinogen.

  • What is Bis(2-ethylhexyl) adipate?

    Bis(2-ethylhexyl) adipate is an oily liquid used when making plastics, PVC products, solvents and aircraft lubricants. Being exposed to fumes from this liquid can irritate the skin, eyes, nose and throat.

    How does Bis(2-ethylhexyl) adipate affect drinking water?

    Drinking water containing Bis(2-ethylhexyl) adipate has been found in 24 U.S. states but always at very low levels. Exposure to this chemical can cause changes to fetal development and harm to the liver. It may cause cancer in humans after long-term exposure.

  • What is Bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate?

    Bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate is used as a plasticizer for resins, a solvent for ink and as an ingredient in pesticides and PVC products. This chemical should be handled with great care as it is both a carcinogen and a teratogen, meaning that it can cause birth defects. It can decrease fertility in both men and women. It is a hormone disruptor.

    How does Bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate affect drinking water?

    This chemical has been found in drinking water in nearly every state. In 16 states, levels were higher than levels recommended by the Environmental Working Group. In five states, they were higher than the law allows. Drinking alcohol can increase the liver damage caused by this chemical. The EPA has classified bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate as a probable carcinogen.

  • What is Bismuth?

    Bismuth is a brittle, crystalline metal used in cosmetics, fire extinguishers, ammunition, cosmetics and medications. It is very dense and has a low melting point so it is used as a substitute for lead in some applications.

    How does Bismuth affect drinking water?

    Bismuth has low toxicity and any amounts found in drinking water are very low.

  • What is Bisphenol A?

    Bisphenol A (BPA) has been manufactured for more than 100 years. Within a few decades, it was found to be a synthetic estrogen. This did not prevent its use in a vast number of commercial uses. It has been used in hard plastics, thermal receipt paper, the lining of food containers, piping and sealants. More than a million pounds of BPA are released into the environment each year. It is a ubiquitous pollutant of soil, water and air. It has been found in human blood, urine, breast milk and umbilical cord blood. Humans are frequently exposed to BPA in their food from food packaging. It has been classified as a chemical that can cause cancer or reproductive harm.

    How does Bisphenol A affect drinking water?

    Drinking water typically has low levels of BPA. Treatment of drinking water generally removes 80% to 99% of BPA from drinking water supplies. Exposure from plastic containers, thermal paper and food packaging is more likely. However, BPA possesses moderate bioaccumulation which means that over time, the chemical can build up in the body. Its effects include learning impairment, heart abnormalities, diabetes, obesity, cancer, hormone disruption, early sexual maturation, and changes to fertility.

  • What is Boron?

    Boron is a mineral with hundreds of industrial and manufacturing uses. It appears in more than 200 mineral forms, including borax, colemite and ulexite. Boron is used in the manufacture of glass, ceramics, soaps, bleaches, enamels and glazes and in agriculture. Boron in the form of boric acid is used in pharmaceuticals, pesticides and cosmetics. it can inhibit flammability. It is a micronutrient for plants, animals and humans. It can be released from coal-burning plants and municipal sewage waste water.

    How does Boron affect drinking water?

    Boron can enter drinking water from naturally-occurring sources and from man-made sources. Boron is common in surface water and groundwater. Western states tend to have higher concentrations of boron in their soils. Animals and humans do not accumulate boron in their bodies.

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  • What is Botrytis?

    Botrytis is a fungus that attacks plants and is common in gardens and vineyards. It can also become windborne and make its way into water sources. It is not one of the more common fungi. Primary exposure to Botrytis is through inhalation which can result in lung infections.

    How does Botrytis affect drinking water?

    Botrytis is not thought to be pathogenic when in water supplies, however, the only acceptable level of fungi in drinking water is zero.

  • What is Brevundimonas Diminuta?

    Brevundimonas diminuta is a type of bacteria that is ubiquitous in the environment. There are dozens of species in this genus. This particular species is a very small bacterium so it is popular for use as a test for the effectiveness of various filters. It is also used in the pharmaceutical industry and in water treatment.

    How does Brevundimonas Diminuta affect drinking water?

    It is seldom pathogenic for humans. Any infection usually appears in an immunocompromised person.

  • What is Brevundimonas Species?

    This test will determine which species of the Brevundimonas genus of bacteria is present in a water system. It is been found not only in water but also in various water-related equipment such as tap water aerators, sinks and water tanks, bottled mineral water and contact lenses. Some species of Brevundimonas are more likely to be pathogenic than others.

    How does Brevundimonas Species affect drinking water?

    Drinking water contaminated with different species of Brevundimonas could expose an immunocompromised person to the danger of infection. Brevundimonas infections most frequently occur in hospital settings.

  • What is Brevundimonas Vesicularis?

    Brevundimonas vesicularis is a species of bacteria commonly found in the environment. It is more frequently likely to be pathogenic than Brevundimonas diminuta. It is an opportunistic bacterium that usually affects a person who is immunocompromised, often in a hospital setting. This bacterium has been found in various water-related equipment such as tap water aerators, sinks and water tanks, bottled mineral water and contact lenses

    How does Brevundimonas Vesicularis affect drinking water?

    Any trace of Brevundimonas vesucularis in water served to an immunocompromised person should be treated to eliminate this bacterium.

  • What is Bromacil?

    Bromacil is a weed control agent in a sand-like form that is used to prevent weed growth in non-agriculture or industrial sites such as along railroads or utility right-of-ways. Breathing this herbicide can irritate the lungs, causing wheezing.

    How does Bromacil affect drinking water?

    Bromacil is found in the drinking water of very few states in the U.S. It became more strictly regulated when states began to detect bromacil in groundwater. In general, it is of low short-term toxicity, but longer exposure can affect the thyroid gland and there is limited evidence that it causes cancer in animals. It may cause cancer of the liver and changes to the adrenal gland and fetal development. Bromate may also be found in various forms in foods such as bread or beer.

  • What is Bromate?

    Bromate is a substance formed when water containing bromide is ozonated as a purification and sanitation process. Twenty-nine states have reported some level of bromate in their water supplies.

    How does Bromate affect drinking water?

    The EPA has set a goal of zero for bromate in water, due to its ability to cause cancer. The limit allowed by California is 0.1 parts per billion, an extremely low level compared to other contaminants. Bromate damages DNA and causes cancer in multiple organs.

  • What is Bromide?

    Bromide is an ion of bromine, a naturally-occurring element found in earth’s crust and sea water. When water treatment occurs, bromide can interact with chlorine or other disinfectants which can result in toxic byproducts. Naturally-occurring bromide is less toxic than man-made forms of this chemical. Industrial sources of bromine are gasoline, fire retardants, dyes, photographic chemicals, coal-fired electric plants and fumigants.

    How does Bromide affect drinking water?

    The presence of bromide in water sources increases the formation of carcinogenic disinfection byproducts (DBPs) in the water supplied to households. The effects of these DBPs include cancer and reproductive and endocrine system problems. There is no national standard for the amount of bromide allowed in drinking water, but 24 states have detected this substance in their water.

  • What is Bromobenzene?

    Bromobenzene is also called phenyl bromide. It’s a clear liquid used as a motor oil additive and a solvent. It is also used in the manufacture of other chemicals.

    How does Bromobenzene affect drinking water?

    Bromobenzene has only been found in a couple of locations in the U.S. It has caused DNA damage to humans that affected the liver and kidneys and liver damage, gastrointestinal problems as well as nerve, lung and blood changes and muscle spasticity in animal lab tests.

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  • What is Bromochloromethane?

    Bromochloromethane can be formed when drinking water supplies are disinfected. Trihalomethanes (TTHMs), like bromochloromethane, can be created when chlorine interacts with organic and inorganic compounds that exist in the water. Bromochloromethane is also used in the process of creating other chemicals and it is a product that can extinguish fires. Vapors containing bromochloromethane can be released during showering, bathing and swimming in chlorinated pools.

    How does Bromochloromethane affect drinking water?

    Exposure to bromochloromethane through drinking water has occurred in 42 states as chlorinated water was supplied to homes and businesses. While low levels are not likely to cause harm, the EPA has classified this chemical as a probable human carcinogen.

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  • What is Bromodichloromethane?

    Bromodichloromethane can be formed when drinking water supplies are disinfected. Trihalomethanes (TTHMs), like bromodichloromethane, can be created when chlorine interacts with organic and inorganic compounds that exist in the water. Vapors containing bromodichloromethane can be released during showering, bathing and swimming in chlorinated pools. Bromodichloromethane is primarily used in the process of creating other chemicals.

    How does Bromodichloromethane affect drinking water?

    Exposure to bromodichloromethane through drinking water has occurred in 48 states as chlorinated water was supplied to homes and businesses. While low levels are not likely to cause harm, the EPA has classified this chemical as a probable human carcinogen. It has also been classified as a chemical causing harm to reproduction and child development and fetal growth.

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  • What is Bromoform?

    Bromoform is a colorless liquid that is used in making certain chemicals and is a solvent for waxes, grease and oils. It can also be formed when drinking water supplies are disinfected. Trihalomethanes (TTHMs), like bromoform, can be created when chlorine interacts with organic and inorganic compounds that exist in the water. Vapors containing bromoform can be released during showering, bathing and swimming in chlorinated pools.

    How does Bromoform affect drinking water?

    Exposure to bromoform through drinking water has occurred in 48 states as chlorinated water was supplied to homes and businesses. While low levels are not likely to cause harm, the EPA has classified this chemical as a probable human carcinogen. It has also been classified as a chemical causing harm to reproduction and child development and fetal growth.

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  • What is Bromomethane?

    Bromomethane was used as a fumigant to control fungi, worms and weeds and to fumigate food storage facilities such as mills, warehouses and ships. It is highly toxic. It was banned when it was found to deplete the ozone layer.

    How does Bromomethane affect drinking water?

    Trace exposure to bromomethane through drinking water has occurred in 31 states. It has been found to harm the brain, nervous system, fetal growth and lungs. Direct exposure to the chemical or to vapors can cause skin and eye irritation.

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  • What is Bromopropane?

    Bromopropane (BP-1) is a solvent used in dry cleaning, spot removers, lubricants and adhesives. It was originally used in the manufacture of pesticides, flavors and fragrances. When Bromopropane is released into soil, it can make its way into groundwater.

    How does Bromopropane affect drinking water?

    Traces of this chemical have been found in drinking water. In tests to detect this chemical in the bodies of Americans, more than three out of four people had the chemical in their systems. The National Toxicology Program classifies BP-1 as a probable carcinogen and able to cause reproductive harm.

  • What is BTEX?

    BTEX is an acronym for benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylene. These compounds are found in petroleum products. BTEX can make its way into groundwater and our drinking water supplies from spills of gasoline and diesel fuel and from leaking tanks underground. It is a common pollutant in water resources. These chemicals have use as solvents to manufacture paints, thinners, sealants, printing ink, polystyrene, nail polish, automotive components and food containers. BTEX can be found in automobile emissions and fracking wastewater.

    How does BTEX affect drinking water?

    The negative effects of being exposed to these chemicals include cancer, liver damage, drowsiness and organ irritation. These chemicals are carcinogens and can adversely affect the nervous system Over a long period of time, skin irritation, respiratory effects and nervous system irritation can occur. BTEX compounds are untreated in municipal water systems.

  • What is Burkholderia Cepacia?

    Burkholderia cepacia refers to a complex of different bacteria found in the natural environment. There are nearly 20 different bacteria in this group. They can be resistant to treatment with antibiotics. They can cause pneumonia, especially in a person who is immunocompromised. They are found in both soil and water and can be contaminants in pharmaceutical products.

    How does Burkholderia Cepacia affect drinking water?

    Burkholderia cepacia can cause serious or even fatal illness in an immunocompromised person, especially those with cystic fibrosis. It seldom causes illness in a healthy person.

  • What is Butachlor?

    Butachlor is a herbicide that is no longer used in the U.S. It has been detected in only four U.S. states. It can persist in soils to which it is applied and make its way into groundwater.

    How does Butachlor affect drinking water?

    Butachlor is moderately toxic to mammals. Exposure to butachlor in water supplies would be very low.

  • What is Butyl Benzyl Phthalate?

    Butyl benzyl phthalate is a widely-produced chemical that adds flexibility to plastics, paints, vinyl tiles, medical products and packaging. It is also found in cosmetics and fragrances. More than 18 billion pounds of phthalates are manufactured each year, mostly related to the production of plastics. These chemicals easily leak from the products they are made into.

    How does Butyl Benzyl Phthalate affect drinking water?

    Butyl benzyl phthalate has been found in surface water, groundwater and drinking water at low levels. In laboratory tests, animals suffered more cancerous tumors, cases of leukemia and other types of cancer after being exposed to this chemical. It has been shown to increase harm to reproduction.

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  • What is Butylate?

    Butylate is a colorless liquid used as an herbicide on corn crops. It is considered a restricted use herbicide because of ground water concerns. There is a possible association between butylate and cancer but results were not consistent. It is classified as non-carcinogenic for humans.

    How does Butylate affect drinking water?

    Butylate has only been detected in water supplies in one state. It can cause eye and skin irritation. It is not thought to make changes in DNA or cause cancer.

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  • What is 11-Chloroeicosafluoro-3-oxaundecane-1-sulfonic acid?

    11-Chloroeicosafluoro-3-oxaundecane-1-sulfonic acid, also called 11Cl-PF3OUdS, is one of a group of chemicals known as PFAS or per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances. These chemicals are highly stable, oil- and water-resistant which makes them useful in consumer products such as nonstick cookware, fabrics, food packaging, cleaners and electronics. But when disposed of, they do not break down so they can persist in soils and groundwater. After decades of widespread use, they can be found in surface water, groundwater, drinking water, rainwater, ice caps, human blood and plants around the world.

    How does 11-Chloroeicosafluoro-3-oxaundecane-1-sulfonic acid affect drinking water?

    11Cl-PF3OUdS and PFAS chemicals can cause serious health issues including endocrine and hormone disruption, thyroid changes, liver and immune system damage and cancer. They accumulate in the environment and in people’s bodies.

  • What is 1,2-Chlorotoluene?

    This chemical is a solvent and is produced in the manufacture of industrial and consumer products.

    How does 1,2-Chlorotoluene affect drinking water?

    Drinking water contaminated with 1,2-Chlorotoluene is associated with harm to the central nervous system. Inhalation of the gas can irritate nose, throat and lungs, causing wheezing and shortness of breath. High exposure can cause dizziness, loss of coordination and convulsions. It has been found in the drinking water of seven states in recent years.

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  • What is 2-Chlorobiphenyl?

    This chemical has many names, including 2-PCB. As a PCB, it’s in a class of chemical that has been banned since 1979. It may be found in many products still in use, such as motor oil, electrical equipment, transformers, cable insulation, oil-based paint, caulking, plastics and much more. PCBs are still being released into the environment from burned wastes, illegal dumping of wastes, leaks from transformers or disposal of consumer products that contain these chemicals. Once in the environment, they do not readily break down. They can be carried long distances and are now found all over the world.

    How does 2-Chlorobiphenyl affect drinking water?

    Consuming water containing this chemical can have many negative effects including increasing the risk of cancer and harm to reproductive, nervous, immune and endocrine systems.

  • What is 2-Chloronaphthalene?

    The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration has classified 2-Chloronaphthalene as a toxic chemical. It is unlikely that this chemical will be encountered outside of laboratory or industrial situations. In lab animals, it caused difficulty breathing and enlarged livers.

    How does 2-Chloronaphthalene affect drinking water?

    Health effects of exposure through contaminated water have not been well studied. However, documented effects of industrial exposure include severe skin reactions, liver disease, anemia, impotency and anorexia.

  • What is 2-Chlorophenol?

    The primary reason 2-chlorophenol is found in drinking water is that it can be a product of water disinfection with chlorine. Thus, it may be detected in the effluent of wastewater facilities. In manufacturing, it is used to make dyes, resins, disinfectants and other chemicals. It can also enter water, soil, fish or land animals as a result of the deterioration of certain herbicides.

    How does 2-Chlorophenol affect drinking water?

    Laboratory tests showed that this chemical has damaging effects to the neurological system, blood and kidneys.

  • What is 4-Chloro-3-methylphenol?

    This chemical may also be known as p-Chlorocresol, OCMC, Preventol or p-chloro-m-cresol. It has been used as a disinfectant, preservative, and antimicrobial pesticide. It is not a chemical of concern when released in either air or water.

    How does 4-Chloro-3-methylphenol affect drinking water?

    It is not expected that humans will be exposed to this chemical in drinking water. It is not likely to accumulate in the human body. It may be found in cosmetics and other consumer products and has a low to moderate risk of eye, skin or lung irritation, endocrine disruption and organ toxicity.

  • What is 4-Chlorophenylphenyl ether?

    Because this chemical has a low conductivity of electricity, it is used in electrical equipment.

    How does 4-Chlorophenylphenyl ether affect drinking water?

    Breathing in this chemical can irritate the eyes and skin. Industrial exposure can result in liver toxicity. Information on other health effects is limited.

  • What is 9-Chlorohexadecafluoro-3-oxanonane-1-sulfonic acid?

    9-Chlorohexadecafluoro-3-oxanonane-1-sulfonic acid is a PFAS, a type of chemical used for stain resistance and non-stick cookware. These chemicals have also been used in firefighting foams, carpets, fabrics and even some cosmetics. This class of chemical has been discontinued in the U.S., but other countries still manufacture it. Once this chemical passes into the soil, water and air, it does not break down. This chemical and other PFAS chemicals are therefore found in the blood of people and animals all over the world.

    How does 9-Chlorohexadecafluoro-3-oxanonane-1-sulfonic acid affect drinking water?

    Exposure comes from eating food grown near or water contaminated by sources of PFAS. Proximity to PFAS production facilities has been associated with increased rates of two types of cancer, thyroid disease, pregnancy complications and more. it bioaccumulates in human and animal bodies. It also causes hormone disruption and liver damage.

  • What is Cadmium?

    Cadmium is a heavy metal that is frequently found in food and drinking water. It mostly enters the air from the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and oil. Smoking also exposes people to cadmium. Cadmium can also enter water from the corrosion of pipes and erosion of deposits in the soil or rock. If consumed or inhaled long-term, cadmium can build up in the kidneys, causing kidney disease.

    How does Cadmium affect drinking water?

    Cadmium in water supplies has been linked to kidney toxicity, damage to bones, cancer, harm to fetuses, changes in behavior and cancer in laboratory tests. Harm to humans has not been conclusively proven. Recommended level of cadmium in drinking water is very low. Cadmium has been found in the water of 42 states in recent years.

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  • What is Caffeine?

    Caffeine is a stimulant present in such drinks as coffee, black tea and cocoa, and in chocolate. It also occurs in dozens of other plants and can be synthetically produced. Caffeine is appearing in our water supplies in greater quantities because of the amount of coffee grounds or tea leaves being sent to landfills or caffeine being excreted into water systems. The presence of caffeine in drinking water indicates incomplete processing of water supplies.

    How does Caffeine affect drinking water?

    The effect on humans from long-term exposure to caffeine via drinking water is unknown. Caffeine in water supplies can be harmful to water organisms.

  • What is Calcium?

    Calcium is necessary for a healthy body and strong bones. But in water it can cause a buildup of scale on the insides of pipes and plumbing appliances. Calcium can enter water as it passes over calcium-bearing rock such as limestone.

    How does Calcium affect drinking water?

    There are no significant health effects related to drinking water with elevated levels of calcium.

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  • What is Candida Guilliermondii?

    Candida guilliermondii is an environmental fungus that has been found in surface water and swimming pools. Home appliances such as humidifiers or shower heads can also be contaminated.

    How does Candida Guilliermondii affect drinking water?

    Most of the infections caused by Candida guilliermondii have been in immunocompromised individuals and resulted from exposure in lakes or swimming pools. It is not commonly found in drinking water.

  • What is Candida Tropicalis?

    Candida tropicalis is a type of fungi. Fungi are ubiquitous and are able to grow in water sources such as drinking water wells. Candida tropicalis occurs in food, plants and the digestive tract of mammals, including humans. It can create biofilms in medical equipment and colonies in mammals. It is used in the production of xylitol.

    How does Candida Tropicalis affect drinking water?

    Candida tropicalis is more pathogenic than all other Candida fungi except for Candida albicans. Most of the infections caused by Candida tropicalis have occurred in immunocompromised individuals. It can cause infections in the mouth, lungs, throat and other areas.

  • What is Carbamazepine?

    Carbamazepine is an drug used for epilepsy. Through either pharmaceutical production or human use, it can make its way into our water supplies.

    How does Carbamazepine affect drinking water?

    Any exposure to Carbamazepine in drinking water will be very small. However, because multiple drugs may appear in any sample of drinking water, it’s possible that humans are being exposed to tiny doses of many drugs at the same time. Carbamazepine may act as a neuroteratogen, meaning that it can create defects or malformations in the brain of a fetus. It can also trigger cell death in a baby’s developing brain.

  • What is Carbon Tetrachloride?

    Carbon tetrachloride is a clear liquid that evaporates quickly, which means that this chemical can easily be released into the atmosphere. It has long been used as a dry cleaning agent for clothing. It is also used in industrial chemical production and in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals, to make refrigerants, in aerosol cans as a propellant, and in the manufacture of oils, fats, lacquers and resins. If it reaches groundwater, it can last for months.

    How does Carbon Tetrachloride affect drinking water?

    Carbon Tetrachloride has been found in the drinking water of 32 U.S. states. Effects on health from long-term ingestion of carbon tetrachloride include damage to liver, kidneys and central nervous system as well as cancer. It is classified as a human carcinogen. It may also decrease fertility.

  • What is Carbonate?

    Carbonate in water is usually found as calcium carbonate, a mineral that makes water hard. Higher levels of calcium carbonate can result in mineral deposits inside plumbing pipes, equipment and appliances. Deposits that get too thick can begin to reduce water pressure and damage water heaters.

    How does Carbonate affect drinking water?

    Carbonate in drinking water does not pose any health risks but it can dry out skin and hair.

  • What is Carboxin?

    Carboxin in a fungicide used to control the growth of fungi on seeds for planting barley, oats, corn, rice, cotton and other plants.

    How does Carboxin affect drinking water?

    Carboxin degrades quickly once applied to soil. The most immediate product of carbon degradation is carboxin sulfoxide. Neither chemical is highly toxic. It is expected that traces of carboxin found in drinking water will be so low and of such low toxicity that they will not present a problem for human or animal health.

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  • What is Cesium?

    Cesium is a soft metal that turns into a liquid at 83 degrees. Cesium dissolves into water, binds to soil and may be taken up into plants in small quantities. It is used in the medical treatment of cancer and has various industrial uses. The most common radioactive form of cesium is Cs-137. It is a byproduct of nuclear fission and nuclear weapons testing. Exposure to either stable or radioactive cesium occurs from eating contaminated food or drinking water contaminated by cesium. Granite contains a very small amount of stable cesium.

    How does Cesium affect drinking water?

    The amount of cesium that may be found in water is generally extremely low. It is very unlikely that a person could consume enough cesium in water to make a difference in their health.

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  • What is Cesium-137?

    Cesium-137 (Cs-137) is one of the two radioactive forms of the soft metal cesium. Most of the cesium in the environment, such as that found incorporated in granite deposits, is made of stable (non-radioactive) cesium. Radioactive forms are produced by the fission of uranium in fuel rods in nuclear power plants or as a result of nuclear explosions. Some Cs-137 will be released into the environment as power plants operate or as a result of accidents involving these plants. Small amounts of Cs-137 can enter food or water after reactor accidents such as the one in Chernobyl.

    How does Cesium-137 affect drinking water?

    The amount of cesium that may be found in water is generally extremely low. It is very unlikely that a person could consume enough cesium to make a difference in their health. Cs-137 has not been detected in the drinking water of any U.S. states.

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  • What is Chaetomium?

    Chaetomium is a very common fungus found in damp or water-damaged homes. This type of fungus produces high quantities of chemicals referred to as mycotoxins that can be very harmful to health. These mycotoxins can enter the body by breathing them in, by absorption through the skin (as in showering) or by consuming food or water contaminated with them.

    How does Chaetomium affect drinking water?

    Exposure to Chaetomium mycotoxins through drinking water can produce skin and nail infections, allergic reactions, asthma, coughing, seizures and fever. Serious autoimmune illnesses such as lupus and multiple sclerosis have also been linked to exposure to Chaetomium. One of the mycotoxins produced by Chaetomium gives water an earthy smell and taste. The only acceptable level of any fungus in your drinking water is zero.

  • What is Chlorate?

    Chlorate is formed in drinking water as a result of the disinfection process. When chlorine dioxide gas is used to disinfect drinking water supplies, chlorate may be formed as the water interacts with the gas. Once formed, it can be reduced through treatment with activated carbon and other methods.

    How does Chlorate affect drinking water?

    Low levels of chlorate remain in drinking water served to consumers. However, pregnant women, infants and children may be affected even by low levels. It impairs thyroid function and is a hormone disruptor. Chlorate has been detected in all 50 states, most of them above levels recommended by the Environmental Working Group.

  • What is Chlordane?

    Chlordane is a termite treatment chemical and pesticide for corn and citrus. It was also used on lawns and in gardens. It was banned in 1988. Chlordane can still be present as a residue in old homes or soil where it was applied. If heated, chlordane can form strongly corrosive gases.

    How does Chlordane affect drinking water?

    Because chlordane can stay in soil for more than 20 years, it is possible for this chemical to make it into drinking water supplies. Once consumed, it accumulates in the body because it is not eliminated well. It affects the nervous system, digestive system, liver and reproductive system. It is classified as a probable carcinogen.

  • What is Chlordane technical?

    Chlordane technical is a mixture of pure chlordane plus at least 140 related chemicals, mostly pesticides. It was used as a broad spectrum pesticide and was sprayed onto crops or seeds. Chlordane is a termite treatment chemical and pesticide for corn and citrus. It was also used on lawns and in gardens. It was banned in 1988. Chlordane can still be present as a residue in old homes or soil where it was applied. If heated, chlordane can form strongly corrosive gases.

    How does Chlordane technical affect drinking water?

    Because chlordane can stay in soil for more than 20 years, it is possible for this chemical to make it into drinking water supplies. Once consumed, it accumulates in the body because it is not eliminated well. It affects the nervous system, digestive system, liver and reproductive system. It is classified as a probable carcinogen. Chlordane technical also contained heptachlor, another banned chemical that was classified as a probable carcinogen.

  • What is Chlorella species?

    Chlorella describes a class of unicellular green algae. They grow in soil and water. There are more than 100 species of chlorella, two of which are used in nutritional supplements or food products, Chlorella vulgaris and Chlorella pyrenoidosa. To be beneficial as a food supplement, however, Chlorella must go through a process to break down the cell wall. Chlorella can also be used to remove contaminants from wastewater.

    How does Chlorella species affect drinking water?

    There appears to be little or no research information on the effects of drinking water with chlorella. Some people with mold sensitivities may have a reaction to Chlorella in their water.

  • What is Chloride?

    While there are many different chlorides, the most common chloride in drinking water is sodium chloride, also known as table salt. The presence of this substance in drinking water not only gives it a salty taste, it also contributes to the corrosion of the pipes and plumbing equipment in a home. This corrosion can damage appliances and pipes and result in the addition of contaminants to the drinking water.

    How does Chloride affect drinking water?

    Drinking water with elevated levels of chloride is not generally harmful except for people who maintain a low-sodium diet.

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  • What is the Chloride-to-sulfate mass ratio (CSMR)?

    If it appears that a home or business could be suffering a high rate of corrosion of their water system, a chloride-to-sulfate mass ratio (CSMR) test may be recommended. This test starts by calculating the concentrations of chloride and sulfate in the water, both of which can come from natural sources. They can also come from salt placed on icy roads and seawater intrusion into drinking water sources. Sulfate in the water tends to protect a system from corrosion and chloride contributes to higher levels of corrosion. The ratio between these two substances will provide insight into the degree of corrosion occurring inside the pipes and equipment making up that water system.

    How does the Chloride-to-sulfate mass ratio (CSMR) affect drinking water?

    The chloride-to-sulfate mass ratio (CSMR) itself is not meant to provide an index of water quality. However, if corrosion is taking place, the drinking water coming from that system is likely to contain more metals and other contaminants than it would if there were no corrosion. The CSMR test can be an important step in protecting the equipment in a water system and detecting the cause of poor water quality.

  • What is Chlorine?

    Chlorine is a well-known chemical used in the disinfection of public water supplies. It kills or inactivates pathogens such as those causing typhoid and cholera. It is also used for disinfecting swimming pools and other water features. After chlorine is added to water, however, it can form disinfection byproducts by interacting with organic material in the water. The technical name for these byproducts is trihalomethanes.

    How does Chlorine affect drinking water?

    The EPA regulates the presence of the four trihalomethanes that result from the interaction of chlorine and organic material in drinking water: chloroform, bromodichloromethane, bromoform and dibromochloromethane. These trihalomethanes have been detected in drinking water in all 50 states. They increase the risk of bladder cancer, skin cancer and harm to fetal growth and development.

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  • What is Chlorine (Free)?

    The free chlorine test measures how much of the chlorine added to water is available to disinfect a body of water. In other words, it hasn’t been “used” yet. When chlorine is first added to clean water, the total amount would register as free chlorine.

    How does Chlorine (Free) affect drinking water?

    Adding chlorine to drinking water supplies disinfects it of harmful pathogens such as those that cause dysentery and typhoid. But once chlorine is in the water, harmful byproducts called trihalomethanes are formed, such as chloroform, bromodichloromethane, bromoform and dibromochloromethane. These substances are all regulated by the EPA because they are harmful to human health, being associated with an increased risk of bladder cancer, skin cancer and harm to fetal growth and development.

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  • What is Chlorine (Total)?

    A total chlorine test measures the amount of chlorine that has been added to water as a disinfectant that is available to kill pathogens and how much has already been bound to pathogenic contaminants. The bound chlorine is called combined chlorine. The chlorine that has not yet interacted with pathogens is called free chlorine.

    How does Chlorine (Total) affect drinking water?

    Adding chlorine to drinking water supplies disinfects it of harmful pathogens such as those that cause dysentery and typhoid. But once chlorine is in the water, harmful byproducts called trihalomethanes are formed, such as chloroform, bromodichloromethane, bromoform and dibromochloromethane. These substances are all regulated by the EPA because they are harmful to human health, being associated with an increased risk of bladder cancer, skin cancer and harm to fetal growth and development.

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  • What is Chlorobenzene?

    Chlorobenzene is a solvent and degreasing agent and is used in the manufacture of other chemicals. Most exposures with adverse effects on humans occur in occupational settings. Slight amounts of chlorobenzene are released into the atmosphere in manufacturing the processes.

    How does Chlorobenzene affect drinking water?

    Chlorobenzene has been found in the drinking water of 17 states. Long-term consumption has been found to cause harm to the liver, the kidneys and the central nervous system. The EPA regulates the amount of chlorobenzene permitted in water supplies.

  • What is Chlorobenzilate?

    Chlorobenzilate was used until 1999 as a pesticide for citrus and fruit trees. It was classified as a probable human carcinogen after laboratory tests found that it caused various types of cancer in animals.

    How does Chlorobenzilate affect drinking water?

    Exposure to chlorobenzilate was possible through contaminated groundwater from wells as well as by eating contaminated food. If chlorobenzilate still exists in groundwater, the risk of cancer may be increased.

  • What is Chlorodibromomethane?

    Adding chlorine to drinking water supplies disinfects it of harmful pathogens such as those that cause dysentery and typhoid. But once chlorine is in the water, harmful byproducts called trihalomethanes form, such as chloroform, bromodichloromethane, bromoform and chlorodibromomethane. The amount of chlorodibromonethane permitted in water is regulated by the EPA because it is harmful to human health.

    How does Chlorodibromomethane affect drinking water?

    Chlorodibromomethane has not only been found in drinking water supplies, it has also been found in some bottled purified drinking water. Levels found in drinking water are normally well below the 10 parts per billion considered safe. It is both carcinogenic and capable of causing changes to human DNA.

  • What is Chloroethane?

    Chloroethane is also called ethyl chloride. Previously, its biggest use was in the production to tetraethyl lead, a gasoline addictive. Since leaded gasolines were discontinued, it is now used as a refrigerant and in the manufacture of dyes, medicinal drugs and other chemicals. It is sometimes used to numb the skin prior to a medical procedure such as an ear piercing or skin surgery. When it reaches groundwater, it breaks down slowly into ethanol and a chloride salt.

    How does Chloroethane affect drinking water?

    Extremely low levels of chloroethane may make its way into drinking water as a result of leakage from storage or disposal at waste sites. While long-term exposure of high levels of chloroethane has caused cancer in animals, there is no information on whether or not this will occur in humans. It has been shown to cause harm to the brain, nervous system and immune system. It has been found in the drinking water of 15 states.

  • What is Chloroform?

    Adding chlorine to drinking water supplies disinfects it of harmful pathogens such as those that cause dysentery and typhoid. But once chlorine is in the water, harmful byproducts called trihalomethanes form, such as chloroform, bromodichloromethane, bromoform and dibromochloromethane. The amount of chloroform permitted in water is regulated by the EPA because it is harmful to human health.

    How does Chloroform affect drinking water?

    Chloroform has not only been found in drinking water supplies, it has also been found in some bottled purified drinking water. Levels found in drinking water are normally well below the 70 parts per billion considered safe. It is both carcinogenic and capable of causing harm to fetal growth and development. It has been detected in the drinking water of 48 states.

  • What is Chloromethane?

    Chloromethane is also called methyl chloride. It is a volatile solvent used in manufacturing, as a refrigerant and aerosol propellant. At one time, it was used in refrigerators but this use was discontinued due to toxicity. It is widely used to make silicones and other substances. It has been found in the air, surface water, groundwater and soil. Small amounts may make it into groundwater when it rains. It is also a naturally-occurring gas. It may be present at very low levels in water that has been chlorinated. Significant exposure outside occupational or industrial settings is unlikely.

    How does Chloromethane affect drinking water?

    Extremely low levels of chloromethane may make its way into drinking water as a result of leakage from storage or disposal at waste sites. While long-term exposure of high levels of chloromethane has caused cancer in animals, there is no information on whether or not this will occur in humans. It has been shown to cause harm to the brain, nervous system and immune system. It has been found in the drinking water of 15 states.

  • What is Chloroneb?

    Chloroneb is a pesticide and fungicide that is used on food crops as well as lawns and golf courses. Tests have shown a low level of toxicity unless there is a direct exposure, such as handling the product or entering areas after they have been treated. Chloroneb is expected to reach groundwater by seeping through sandy soils. Runoff can carry chloroneb to surface waters.

    How does Chloroneb affect drinking water?

    There is little information available on the effect of chloroneb on drinking water. Toxicity is low and it is not expected to be carcinogenic.

  • What is Chlorothalonil?

    Chlorothalonil is a common fungicide used on food crops. It is sometimes sold with the name Bravo and is also used to fight bacteria, mildew, and insects.

    How does Chlorothalonil affect drinking water?

    Chlorothalonil is seldom found in groundwater but some products of breakdown were detected. Chlorothalonil has some carcinogenic and endocrine-disrupting effects, especially for children.

  • What is Chlorotoluene 2?

    Chlorotoluene 2 is also known as 2-chlorotoluene, o-chlorotoluene and benzyl chloride. It is used as a solvent and in the manufacturing of other chemicals.

    How does Chlorotoluene 2 affect drinking water?

    It has been detected in the drinking water of seven states. It has not been evaluated for or classified as a human carcinogen, but there is evidence of harm to the central nervous system and possible harm to fertility.

  • What is Chlorotoluene 4?

    Chlorotoluene 4 is also known as 4-chlorotoluene and p-chlorotoluene. It is an industrial chemical and is used as a solvent, disinfectant and in the manufacture of dyes.

    How does Chlorotoluene 4 affect drinking water?

    It has been detected in the drinking water of four states. There is evidence that it creates harm to the central nervous system.

  • What is Chlorpropham?

    Chlorpropham is a plant growth inhibitor. In addition to inhibiting the growth of weeds, it is also sprayed on potatoes to inhibit their sprouting. Chlorpropham works by inhibiting the cell division in the products it is sprayed onto which is why it can’t be used for potatoes that will be used for plantings. Because of this, it may be detrimental to other life forms which come in contact with it. While chlorpropham is not categorized as carcinogenic, it metabolizes into 3-chloroaniline which is classified as a carcinogen. It has been banned in the European Union.

    How does Chlorpropham affect drinking water?

    It is expected that little chlorpropham will make its way into drinking water supplies since use of chlorpropham is limited.

  • What is Chlorpyrifos?

    Chlorpyrifos is an organophosphate insecticide. In 2021, the EPA banned all uses of chlorpyrifos on food products. Non-food uses are still allowed at this time.

    How does Chlorpyrifos affect drinking water?

    Even in small amounts, exposure to chlorpyrifos during pregnancy has been shown to harm the developing brain and delay development. Chlorpyrifos has been detected in the drinking water of three states.

  • What is Chromium?

    Chromium is a dark grey, lustrous and brittle metal. It is naturally occurring, being found in rock deposits and volcanic dust. In trace amounts, it is needed by the body for healthy functioning. There are several forms of chromium and some are harmful to health. Measuring the amount of chromium in drinking water is challenging because the metal can change its form back and forth, depending on the conditions of the drinking water.

    How does Chromium affect drinking water?

    The most common types of chromium are chromium-6 (hexavalent) and chromium-3, a trace mineral beneficial to health. Chromium-6 can cause dermatitis, pneumonia, complications during childbirth or cancer. Chromium-6 is classified as a carcinogen,

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    A heavy metal, chromium may be found in drinking water due to discharge from steel and pulp mills or erosion from natural deposits. According to the EPA, water systems must...

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  • What is Chromium-6 (hexavalent)?

    Chromium is a dark grey, lustrous and brittle metal that has several different forms. The most common are chromium-3 and chromium-6. While most chromium-6 is produced by industries, some of it is naturally occurring. Chromium-6 in drinking water has been associated with serious and even deadly health conditions. Measuring the amount of chromium in drinking water is challenging because the metal can change its form back and forth, depending on the conditions of the drinking water or the human body.

    How does Chromium-6 (hexavalent) affect drinking water?

    Chromium-6 can cause dermatitis, pneumonia, complications during childbirth or cancer. It has been found in the drinking water supplies of 42 states.

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    Chromium-6 (hexavalent chromium) is a product of industrial processes. It is known to cause cancer and targets the respiratory system, kidneys, liver, skin and eyes. It’s found at higher-than-recommended levels...

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  • What is Chromium (Total)?

    This test measures the total amount of all types of chromium in a drinking water sample. The most common types of chromium are chromium-6 (hexavalent) and chromium-3, a trace mineral beneficial to health. The EPA has set the standard at 100 parts per billion (ppb) for all forms of chromium, including chromium-6.

    How does Chromium (Total) affect drinking water?

    The effects of chromium-6 (hexavalent chromium) can be severe, with effects including dermatitis, pneumonia, complications during childbirth or cancer. Chromium-6 is classified as a carcinogen.

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  • What is Chrysene?

    Chrysene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH), a class of chemical that results from burning coal, oil, gas, wood, garbage, and tobacco. High heat when cooking meat and other foods will form PAHs. They can also be manufactured for industrial purposes. Based on laboratory tests, chrysene is classified as a probable human carcinogen.

    How does Chrysene affect drinking water?

    PAHs, including chrysene, can increase the risk of cancer, damage the immune, nervous and reproductive systems and harm developing fetuses. Four states have reported chrysene in their water supplies.

  • What is Ciprofloxacin?

    Ciprofloxacin is a broad spectrum antibiotic, meaning that it can be used to treat a wide range of bacterial infections or mixed infections in a single patient. It is used for urinary tract infections, sexually transmitted infections. skin, bone, joint infections and more. Ciprofloxacin has a black box warning for causing tendinitis and tendon rupture, especially involving the Achilles tendon.

    How does Ciprofloxacin affect drinking water?

    In some areas, measurable amounts of antibiotics including ciprofloxacin have been detected in drinking water supplies. These residues can result from water discharges from pharmaceutical manufacturing or elimination after human use. The effects of this exposure have not been determined.

  • What is cis-1,2 Dichloroethylene?

    cis-1,2-Dichloroethylene is an odorless liquid that can be used to produce solvents, pharmaceuticals, waxes, resins and artificial pearls. It may also be used to extract oils from fish and meats. It may be used as a refrigerant.

    How does cis-1,2 Dichloroethylene affect drinking water?

    cis-1,2-Dichloroethylene is associated with harm to the brain and nervous system, kidneys, and liver. It has been found in the water supplies of 31 states.

  • What is cis-1,3 Dichloropropene?

    cis-1,3-Dichloropropene is a carcinogenic chemical used to kill certain types of worms in agricultural areas. In an attempt to preserve the purity of drinking water, it may not be used in areas that have groundwater close to the surface of the land or within 100 feet of a well providing drinking water.

    How does cis-1,3 Dichloropropene affect drinking water?

    This carcinogenic chemical has been found in the drinking water of two states.

  • What is the Citrobacter Species?

    Citrobacter is a family of bacteria. The Citrobacter species test determines which species of citrobacter are present in the water. Citrobacter can be found in soil and water and in the intestines of humans. While they are rarely the primary cause of illness, they can cause meningitis in newborns, lung infections in newborns and children and infections of the urinary tract.

    How does the Citrobacter Species test affect drinking water?

    Citrobacter may not itself cause illness when it is found in drinking water. But it may be an indicator of other bacteria or a sign of bacterial infiltration of a drinking water well.

  • What is Cladosporium?

    Cladosporium is a very common type of fungus that’s ubiquitous in the environment. There are more than 40 species of Cladosporium and most of them are not dangerous. They can cause allergies or make asthma worse. A vulnerable or immunocompromised person may develop an infection when exposed to Cladosporium.

    How does Cladosporium affect drinking water?

    Any quantity of Cladosporium in water is not ideal. A person sensitive to Cladosporium can develop infections in the eyes, ears, skin or sinus. Allergies can result in sneezing, dry skin, hives, itchy throat, runny nose and coughing. Sinus headaches and asthma attacks can result.

  • What is Closterium?

    Closterium is a type of fungus with more than 100 species. It is found in soil, water and intestinal tracts of humans and animals. Some species can cause dangerous illness in humans. An imbalance of Closterium in human intestines can cause diarrhea, nausea, and stomach pain. Closterium botulinum produces the toxin botulinum, causing weakness, blurred vision and swelling of the abdomen. Closterium perfringens causes food poisoning and cellulitis and may indicate the presence of other harmful contaminants. Closterium tetani causes tetanus.

    How does Closterium affect drinking water?

    Closterium is not likely to create a serious problem when water contains low levels of this fungus, but if the same water is used for improper cooking or storage of foods, the effects can be severe. However, any fungus in drinking water can be harmful.

  • What is Clostridium Beijerinckii?

    Clostridium are bacteria found in the environment and intestines of humans and animals. When found in water supplies, clostridium can be an indication of fecal contamination of the water source. When flooding occurs around animal raising sites, the water can become high in Clostridium bacteria. Clostridium beijerinckii can be used industrially to convert sugars to acetone.

    How does Clostridium Beijerinckii affect drinking water?

    Clostridium beijerinckii is not known to cause disease in humans, but drinking water in which it is present should be checked for other types of contamination.

  • What is Clostridium Innocuum?

    Clostridium are bacteria found in the environment and intestines of humans and animals. When found in water supplies, clostridium can be an indication of fecal contamination of the water source. When flooding occurs around animal raising sites, the water can become high in Clostridium bacteria.

    How does Clostridium Innocuum affect drinking water?

    Clostridium Innocuum is generally thought of as harmless in healthy people. Some people who are immunocompromised may suffer severe or even fatal infections. Those who died suffered from conditions such as cancer, diabetes, liver disease or organ transplant.

  • What is Cobalt?

    Cobalt is a metal that is found in mineral deposits and is used in refining processes and the production of pigments. Erosion of mineral deposits, volcanic eruptions and forest fires can add cobalt to the atmosphere. The most likely way most people will be exposed to high levels of cobalt is through contaminated food or water.

    How does Cobalt affect drinking water?

    Elevated levels of cobalt in drinking water can result in gastrointestinal effects and changes to the blood and liver. It is not classified as carcinogenic.

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  • What is Cocconeis species?

    Cocconeis is a group of microscopic diatoms, tiny algae that are encased in silica, or little glass houses. It is capable of photosynthesis like plants are. They can exist in both salt and freshwater.

    How does Cocconeis species affect drinking water?

    The presence of Cocconeis species is used as an indicator of a healthy ecosystem and better water quality.

  • What is a Color test of water?

    An assessment of water’s color is a way to determine what might be contaminating that water supply. Iron can make it turn reddish. Sulphur can make it yellow, plant matter or sediment can make it muddy or green.

    How does a Color test affect drinking water?

    This assessment can be the key to determining what is contaminating the water supply and how it can be addressed.

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  • What is Conductivity?

    Conductivity is the ability of the water to conduct an electrical current. When conductivity is increased, it indicates that there is an excess of dissolved ions such as sodium, calcium, potassium, magnesium or bicarbonate in the water supply. High conductivity is associated with a salty tasty and colored water. It can also indicate contamination by salt deposits, sea water, industrial wastewater and other sources. Water with a high level of dissolved ions will tend to deposit greater amounts of minerals on the insides of pipes and plumbing equipment. Greater corrosion of copper and other metals in the plumbing system can also occur, with these metals being added to the water supply.

    How does a Conductivity test affect drinking water?

    While small amounts of these minerals are necessary for health, too much in drinking water can cause gastrointestinal distress such as vomiting, diarrhea and stomach pain. A conductivity test can provide information on filtering needed for drinking water.

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  • What is Copper?

    Copper is an element found naturally in rock deposits. In drinking water, elevated levels of copper normally come from plumbing fixtures made of copper. Small amounts of it are necessary for health, but too much in drinking water can be problematic. Water that is too acidic or that has too high conductivity tends to leach copper out of the fixtures and into the water.

    How does Copper affect drinking water?

    Health problems that may result from drinking water with too much copper include stomach distress, diarrhea, liver damage and kidney disease. For children under one year of age, getting too much copper in their water can be especially damaging because they have not yet developed the ability to eliminate it. Hot tap water should not be used to prepare infant formula because hot water is more likely to contain higher levels of copper. Copper is dangerous to people who have Wilson’s disease, a genetic disorder from which they can’t eliminate copper.

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  • What is Cryptococcus Neoformans?

    Cryptococcus neoformans is a fungus that commonly infects birds, especially pigeons. Pet birds such as parakeets, parrots, cockatoos and turtledoves can also be infected with this fungus. It is also found in cats, cattle, goats and other animals. It can be picked up from their fecal matter either through touch or inhalation. Contact with soil contaminated with this fungus is another route of infection. Most people exposed to this fungus do not get sick unless they are immunocompromised. A person who gets ill can suffer fever, brain, lung infection or coughing of blood.

    How does Cryptococcus Neoformans affect drinking water?

    Cryptococcus neoformans infection from contaminated water is not a significant concern. However, it is never good to permit there to be fungi in a water supply as this can indicate contamination with fecal, animal or insect matter.

  • What is Cryptococcus Uniguttulatus?

    Cryptococcus is a fungus that commonly infects animals of all kinds, including domestic, wild and marine animals. While the most common Cryptococcus infections come from C. neoformans and C. gatti, occasionally a case of infection with Cryptococcus uniguttulatus in a human is seen. In most cases, these rare infections occur in people who were immunosuppressed or who suffered from serious illnesses. The fungus exists mainly in soil, vegetation and bird droppings.

    How does Cryptococcus Uniguttulatus affect drinking water?

    Cryptococcus uniguttulatus infection from contaminated water is not a significant concern. However, it is never good to permit there to be fungi in a water supply as this can indicate contamination with fecal, animal or insect matter.

  • What is Cryptosporidium?

    Cryptosporidium is a microscopic parasite that can be contacted in drinking water and recreational water such as a swimming pool or lake. It can also be passed from an animal to a human. It is tolerant of chlorine disinfection which can mean that it is hard to eliminate from a water source.

    How does Cryptosporidium affect drinking water?

    Cryptosporidium in drinking water can cause cryptosporidiosis. Symptoms of cryptosporidiosis include watery diarrhea, stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, fever and weight loss. A healthy person will usually recover from this illness on their own. A person with a weakened immune system could become seriously ill.

  • What is Curvularia?

    Curvularia is a type of fungus that mostly attacks plants. It can also grow in damp areas indooors. Humans can become infected with this fungus as well. In fact, there are 13 types of Curvularia fungus that can attack humans. The most common one by far is C. lunata which can also cause allergies. A healthy person will usually suffer a mild infection but an imunocompromised person could become seriously ill.

    How does Curvularia affect drinking water?

    Curvularia infections can attack the nails, cornea, sinuses, heart, lungs, and brain. Curvularia has been found in drinking water. It is never good to permit there to be fungi in a water supply as this can indicate contamination with fecal, animal or insect matter.

  • What is Cyanazine?

    Cyanazine is an herbicide that was mostly used on corn crops until 2002. The breakdown products of cyanazine may still be detected in surface water, groundwater and private wells because the herbicide is quite persistent in the environment. It is made from the herbicide atrazine with cyanide added to it.

    How does Cyanazine affect drinking water?

    It is not advisable to drink water with a cyanazine concentration of more than one part per billion for any length of time. Animals that consumed cyanazine suffered changes to their endocrine and nervous systems. It can cause birth defects, genetic mutations and cancer. It has been detected in the drinking water of two states.

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  • What is Cyanide?

    Cyanide is a well-known poison. Cyanide is a naturally-occurring substance and is a product used in industrial processes. There are many different types of cyanide. Most of the cyanide humans are exposed to comes from industrial discharges. Mining, iron and steel plants, chemical industries and wastewater treatment plants can emit cyanide. Pesticides may contain cyanide. Groundwater can be contaminated by cyanide leaching from landfills. Smoking also exposes people to cyanide.

    How does Cyanide affect drinking water?

    If cyanide levels in water are elevated, drinking this contaminated water can harm the brain, nervous system, thyroid and heart. Convulsions may occur. Low levels of cyanide have been found in the drinking water of 39 states.

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  • What is Cycloate?

    Cycloate is an herbicide used to fight weeds around beets and spinach. Once applied to soils, it is moderately persistent and can make its way to groundwater.

    How does Cycloate affect drinking water?

    Cycloate has been found to cause developmental and reproductive harm, including birth defects.

  • What is Cyclotella?

    Cyclotella is a genus of algae that is encased in a glass-like shell. There are more than 100 species included in this group. It has been found in surface water and aquifers, as well as sea water. It has been detected in many locations across the country. While it is not itself harmful to water quality, the presence of Cyclotella can result in clogged screens and filters in water treatment facilities.

    How does Cyclotella affect drinking water?

    Cyclotella is not known to be harmful to humans when consumed in drinking water.

  • What is Cymbella species?

    Cymbella is a very large genus of algae that is encased in a glass-like shell. This kind of algae is called a diatom. Diatoms convert carbon dioxide into oxygen because they are capable of photosynthesis. There are more than 800 species included in this group.

    How does Cymbella species affect drinking water?

    Cymbella is not known to be harmful to humans when consumed in drinking water.

  • What is 1,1-Dichloroethane?

    11DHL is a solvent used as a raw material in making plastics, paint, varnish and finish removers. It is also used as a pesticide. California, New York and New Jersey have the highest number of utilities reporting 11DHL in their water supplies.

    How does 1,1-Dichloroethane affect drinking water?

    Water with 1,1-Dichloroethane can cause cancer and changes to the heart and blood vessels, skin irritation, central nervous system depression and liver, kidney, lung damage.

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  • What is 1,1-Dichloroethylene?

    1,1-DCE is a product created during the manufacture of plastics for textiles, furniture and food wrapping.

    How does 1,1-Dichloroethylene affect drinking water?

    This chemical can damage human DNA, harm the central nervous system and create changes to the liver and body weight. It causes cancer in laboratory animals.

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  • What is 1,1-Dichloropropene?

    11DCPE is a solvent used for industrial cleaning and manufacturing. If it reaches soils, it has a high ability to leach through the soil and reach groundwater.

    How does 1,1-Dichloropropene affect drinking water?

    While information on its toxicity is incomplete, it may be toxic to human organs. It has been detected in the drinking water of three states in recent years. Exposure via drinking water is expected to be very low.

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  • What is 1,2-Dibromo-3-Chloropropane?

    DBCP is a pesticide fumigant banned in the 1970s, when it was discovered that men working with this chemical became sterile. Exposure is also associated with testicular cancer. It was previously used to kill worms in agricultural soil used for more than 40 different crops. Despite the ban, thirteen states still report contamination in their drinking water. Acceptable contaminant levels set by the EPA are extremely low, .02 parts per billion.

    How does 1,2-Dibromo-3-Chloropropane affect drinking water?

    Long-term exposure to DBCP through water or air in humans causes male reproductive effects, such as decreased sperm counts. Testicular effects and decreased sperm counts were observed in animals chronically exposed to DBCP by inhalation. It has been found in the drinking water of 13 states in recent years.

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  • What is 1,2-Dibromoethane?

    This chemical has been used to protect against insects and other pests in citrus, vegetable and grain crops and as a fumigant on golf courses. These uses were banned in 1984, but this chemical is still used in manufacturing and aviation fuel. May also be called ethylene dibromide.

    How does 1,2-Dibromoethane affect drinking water?

    The European Union classifies it as an endocrine disruptor. In the U.S., it is classified as likely to be cancer-causing and toxic when in contact with the skin or inhaled. The EPA notes that it is “extremely toxic to humans,” causes testicular atrophy, adrenal degeneration and liver damage if it is contacted through skin contact, air or water. It reaches groundwater mostly from leaking underground storage tanks.

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  • What is 1,2-Dichlorobenzene?

    This chemical is used in the production of dyes, products used for cleaning, degreasing and painting. It is also used in the manufacture of plastics, printing ink, lubricants and more.

    How does 1,2-Dichlorobenzene affect drinking water?

    Twenty-three states have reported contamination with 1,2-Dichlorobenzene in their drinking water. Exposure results in liver, kidney, thyroid and blood cell damage. This chemical has caused liver and kidney tumors in laboratory animals. In 2019, the EPA designated this a high-risk chemical needing further risk evaluation.

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  • What is 1,2-Dichloroethane?

    1,2-Dichloroethane is used in the manufacture of PVC, the third-most commonly produced synthetic polymer. PVC or polyvinyl chloride is used for plumbing pipes, medical devices, wire and cable insulation and much more. It is also used to clean carpets and textiles.

    How does 1,2-Dichloroethane affect drinking water?

    The EPA classifies this chemical as a likely human carcinogen. Exposure can cause cancer, damage to the immune system, stomach, intestine, liver, kidney, brain and nervous system if ingested in drinking water. In laboratory animals, it has caused DNA changes.

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  • What is 1,2-Dichloropropane?

    DCP (also called propylene dichloride) is a solvent used in chemical manufacture. Contamination can be found in landfills and farmland because of its prior use as a soil fumigant. It is currently used to produce carbon tetrachloride and perchloroethylene, a dry cleaning fluid.

    How does 1,2-Dichloropropane affect drinking water?

    Its consumption in water or contact through inhalation is associated with liver cancer, plus harm to the kidneys and blood cells. Twelve states report contamination with this chemical. In 2021, the EPA listed this as a human carcinogen and slated it for further risk evaluation.

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  • What is 1,2-Diphenylhydrazine?

    Humans are not likely to be exposed to 1,2-Diphenylhydrazine directly because it doesn't last long when released into the environment. When 1,2-Diphenylhydrazine reaches water, however, it rapidly breaks down into two other toxic chemicals, benzidine and azobenzene. While it is rarely used in the U.S. at this time, it was once used to make certain medicines and fabric dyes. It may be found near hazardous waste or manufacturing sites.

    How does 1,2-Diphenylhydrazine affect drinking water?

    Exposure in drinking water creates harmful effects on the liver, stomach, intestines and lungs.

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  • What is 1,3-Dichlorobenzene?

    1,3-Dichlorobenzene is a colorless liquid used to make herbicides, insecticides, medicines and dyes. Chemicals of this type are called DCBs.

    How does1,3-Dichlorobenzene affect drinking water?

    Less is known about 1,3-Dichlorobenzene than its sister chemicals 1,2 and 1,4 Dichlorobenzene, but it is expected that effects of exposure would be similar, meaning that it may cause cancer, harm to the liver, kidneys and thyroid. It has been found in the drinking water of 23 states in recent years.

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  • What is 1,3-Dichloropropane?

    1,3-Dichloropropane is an industrial solvent that is infrequently found in drinking water. It is found in some fumigants used to kill roundworms.

    How does 1,3-Dichloropropane affect drinking water?

    Exposure to this chemical is irritating to the eyes, skin and respiratory system. Only four states report finding this contaminant in their water.

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  • What is 1,3-Dichloropropene?

    1,3-Dichloropropene is considered by the EPA to be a hazardous substance when found in our water. Like other forms of dichloropropene, this chemical is often used as a fumigant for the soil around food crops.

    How does 1,3-Dichloropropene affect drinking water?

    In lab tests, nose and bladder damage were noted. Limited evidence links exposure to vapors causing cancers in humans. Short-term industrial exposure results in chest pain and breathing difficulties. It is classified as a probable human carcinogen. It has been found in the drinking water of 2 states in recent years.

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  • What is 1,4-Dichlorobenzene?

    1,4-Dichlorobenzene is also called para-dichlorobenzene or p-Dichlorobenzene. It has a sharp smell similar to mothballs and indeed, is used in both mothballs and urinal deodorizing cakes. It’s also used to make lacquers, rubber, waxes, foam sealants, disinfectants and resins and is applied to tobacco seeds, leather and fabric to control mildew.

    How does 1,4-Dichlorobenzene affect drinking water?

    It is carcinogenic and causes harm to the kidneys, liver and thyroid. In laboratory animals, this chemical caused kidney and liver tumors in rats. Primary methods of exposure are breathing vapors in the air or consuming contaminated water. It is considered a possible human carcinogen. It has been found in the drinking water of 23 states in recent years.

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  • What is 1,4-Dioxane?

    1.4-Dioxane is a chemical used as a stabilizer in solvents, paint strippers, and greases. It is also used in pesticides, antifreeze and aircraft deicing fluids. It can even be found in some consumer personal care products such as deodorants and shampoos and is used as a purifying agent in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals. It may be called by these other names: dioxane, dioxan, p-dioxane, diethylene dioxide, diethylene oxide, diethylene ether and glycol ethylene ether.

    How does 1,4-Dioxane affect drinking water?

    Forty-five states have reported drinking water contamination with 1,4-Dioxane. While it is likely to be a human carcinogen, the EPA does not currently regulate how much of this chemical is permitted in water supplies. It is frequently found near military, waste and industrial facilities. It has been found in the drinking water of 45 states in recent years.

  • What is 2,2-Dichloropropane?

    2,2-Dichloropropane is a colorless, flammable liquid that smells like chloroform. It has been used as a soil fumigant and solvent and has also been used to make paint strippers, varnishes and furniture finish removers. Currently, nearly all of it is created in the manufacture of perchloroethylene and similar chemicals.

    How does 2,2-Dichloropropane affect drinking water?

    Exposure for the general public is unlikely except where it is used in agriculture. It is not thought to be particularly toxic. If heated, however, it produces phosgene, a highly toxic chemical. It has been found in the drinking water of five states in recent years.

  • What is 2,3-Dichlorobiphenyl?

    2,3-Dichlorobiphenyl is also known as PCB-5, placing it in this category of toxic, banned chemicals. More than a billion pounds of PCBs were manufactured before they were banned in 1977. They have been used in transformers, capacitors, paints, plastics, chewing gum and much more.

    How does 2,3-Dichlorobiphenyl affect drinking water?

    They are endocrine disruptors, cause liver damage and are carcinogenic for humans. Once in the environment, they do not break down.

  • What is 2,4-D?

    This chemical has been used as an herbicide and pesticide for eighty years. It is used these days to kill weeds that have adapted to the presence of glyphosate.

    How does 2,4-D affect drinking water?

    Its use is associated with hypothyroidism, cancer, reduced immune function, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, Parkinson’s disease, and other health problems. People with brief exposure to 2,4-D vomited, had diarrhea, headaches, and were confused or aggressive. It also creates reproductive harm. Children may be more sensitive to this chemical than adults. It has been found in the drinking water of 33 states.

  • What is 2,4-DB?

    The full name is 4-(2,4-dichlorophenoxy)butyric acid. It is a synthetic herbicide, controlling specific weeds around crops like alfalfa, peanuts, peppermint and spearmint. It can enter drinking water as a result of agricultural runoff or chemical spills. This substance may be applied to crops by airplane.

    How does 2,4-DB affect drinking water?

    2,4-DB is toxic to skin, mouth, lungs, eyes. In California, it is listed as causing developmental toxicity. It has been classified as possibly carcinogenic to humans. In Europe, it is classified as an endocrine disruptor.

  • What is 2,4-Dichlorophenol?

    When the common herbicide herbicide 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) degrades in soil or water, the process results in 2,4-dichlorophenol. 2,4-Dichlorophenol is used in the manufacture of pesticides. It can also result from the manufacture of other chemicals, water disinfection with chlorine or wood bleaching.

    How does 2,4-Dichlorophenol affect drinking water?

    Exposure can occur from drinking water contaminated with this chemical or eating fish or shellfish from sites near the shore. It has also been found in some drinking water sources. This class of chemicals has been listed as potentially carcinogenic.

  • What is 2,4-Dimethylphenol?

    2,4-Dimethylphenol occurs naturally in coal and petroleum and it is manufactured as a fungicide, pesticide and coal tar disinfectants. It’s used as a solvent in making plastics insecticides, rubber and dyes.

    How does 2,4-Dimethylphenol affect drinking water?

    Exposure can come from inhalation of tobacco smoke, automobile exhaust, or eating fish or shellfish from waters near land. It has been found in finished drinking water. Drinking surface or community water is possibly a significant source of exposure. It is acutely toxic to freshwater aquatic life at very low concentrations.

  • What is 2,4-Dinitrophenol?

    At one time, 2,4-Dinitrophenol was used as a weight loss drug. This use led to many adverse effects, including death for 62 people. It is currently used in the manufacture of dyes and wood preservative and as a pesticide and photographic developer. It can enter the environment from agricultural runoff and airborne releases from manufacturing plants.

    How does 2,4-Dinitrophenol affect drinking water?

    Long-term exposure can lead to cataracts, skin lesions and harm to bone marrow, the cardiovascular system and the central nervous system. It may affect human and animal reproductive ability.

  • What is 2,4-Dinitrotoluene?

    2,4-Dinitrotoluene is used in the manufacture of polyurethanes, explosives, dyes and gunpowder. This chemical has been found in surface and groundwater as a result of wastewater discharges from manufacturing sites and poor waste disposal.

    How does 2,4-Dinitrotoluene affect drinking water?

    It is classified as a carcinogen and a mutagen. Exposure to high levels can cause death, anemia, harm to male reproductive systems and damage to liver and kidneys.

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  • What is 2,6-Dinitrotoluene?

    Also known as 2,6-DNT. It is used in the production of explosives (including TNT), automobile air bags, dyes, bedding, polyurethane foams and ammunition. Most environmental exposures have come from air and surface water releases.

    How does 2,6-Dinitrotoluene affect drinking water?

    Its presence in surface water is minimal at this time except around factories that may have released this chemical. Exposure to this chemical has caused lower sperm counts and reduced fertility. It has been classified as a probable human carcinogen as it has caused cancerous tumors in lab animals. The combination of 2,4-DNT and 2,6-DNT is further classified as a probable human carcinogen. It has also caused reproductive harm in animals, along with damage to the nervous system, liver and kidneys

  • What is 3,3 Dichlorobenzidine?

    3,3 Dichlorobenzidine was used in manufacturing dyes, printing inks, fabrics, plastics, paints and rubber. It is no longer used for most of these purposes.

    How does 3,3 Dichlorobenzidine affect drinking water?

    Long-term exposure creates harm to gastrointestinal, respiratory and central nervous systems in humans. It has not been detected in air samples and is present at very low levels in water. It is a probable human carcinogen.

  • What is 3,5-Dichlorobenzoic acid?

    3,5-Dichlorobenzoic acid is used to make herbicides. It can enter the water supply as runoff after being used in agriculture or industry.

    How does 3,5-Dichlorobenzoic acid affect drinking water?

    In laboratory animals, it caused muscle weakness or spasms and changes to the respiratory system.

  • What is 4,4'-DDD?

    This is a pesticide similar to DDT and is a breakdown product of DDT. It is a probable human carcinogen, having caused tumors in laboratory animals. It can also cause reproductive harm. It is no longer used in agriculture but is long lasting in soils where it was once applied.

    How does 4,4'-DDD affect drinking water?

    The primary route of exposure for humans is eating food or drinking water contaminated with DDD. It is capable of bioaccumulation in the body. Its use was banned in 1972. One form of this chemical has been medically to treat adrenal cancer.

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  • What is 4,4'-DDE?

    This pesticide has been largely banned in the U.S. It is a product of the breakdown of the well-known pesticide DDT. Because DDT does not dissolve easily in water, remnants of DDT and DDE can be found in the sediment on the floor of bodies of water.

    How does 4,4'-DDE affect drinking water?

    Small amounts may still be found in food grown in contaminated soil or water. Exposure to DDE can cause reproductive harm for men. People with higher levels of these pesticides have a greater risk of developing liver cancer.

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  • What is 4,4'-DDT?

    While the use of DDT in the U.S. has been banned for several decades, this pesticide is still produced by three Asian countries. Once released into the envinronment, it is very persistent. Many African countries still use it to reduce insect-borne disease. Any foods that come from source countries or other countries using it could be contaminated with this carcinogenic chemical.

    How does 4,4'-DDT affect drinking water?

    Exposure to DDT in the U.S. could come from contact with dirt or water near hazardous waste sites. It may also be detected in sediment on the floor of bodies of water. These residues can make their way into meat, fish, poultry or dairy products.

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  • What is 4,4'-Diazinon?

    4,4'-Diazinon is a pesticide that was once used not only on agricultural crops but around residences. Since 2004, it was not been sold for residential uses because of the chemical’s risk for children who are especially vulnerable to the effects of pesticides. While it doesn’t often seep into groundwater, it has been detected in streams that feed from agricultural areas where the pesticide was used.

    How does 4,4'-Diazinon affect drinking water?

    When it’s applied to food crops, it degrades rapidly so humans generally do not consume much of the chemical. Industrial exposure can result in weakness, headache, nausea and vomiting.

  • What is 4,8-dioxa-3H-perfluorononanoic acid?

    4,8-dioxa-3H-perfluorononanoic acid is a PFAS, a type of chemical used for stain-resistance and non-stick cookware. These chemicals have also been used in firefighting foams, carpets, fabrics and even some cosmetics. This class of chemical has been discontinued in the U.S., but other countries still manufacture it. Once this chemical passes into the soil, water and air, it does not break down. This chemical and other PFAS chemicals are then found in the blood of people and animals all over the world.

    How does 4,8-dioxa-3H-perfluorononanoic acid affect drinking water?

    Proximity to PFAS production facilities has been associated with increased rates of two types of cancer, thyroid disease, pregnancy complications and more. It bioaccumulates in human and animal bodies. It also causes hormone disruption and liver damage.

  • What is Dalapon?

    Dalapon is an herbicide used around fruit trees, coffee, corn and other plants, and to prevent weed growth along railroad tracks, lawns and drainage ditches. Once applied to the soil, it can last as long as six months. It is capable of reaching groundwater deposits. The EPA has set 0.2 parts per million as the acceptable level to be found in drinking water.

    How does Dalapon affect drinking water?

    When drinking water contains dalapon, this chemical is readily absorbed into the body and then is widely distributed throughout the body. It has been shown to cause changes to and harm to kidneys. It has been found in the drinking water of 33 states.

  • What is DCPA?

    Dacthal or DCPA (Dimethyl tetrachloroterephthalate) is an herbicide and pesticide used around strawberries, seeded and transplanted vegetables, cotton, and field beans. It is also used on lawns and turf. It keeps down the growth of weeds. The European Union has banned the use of dacthal. In 2022, the EPA announced that it planned to suspend all future uses of this herbicide.

    How does DCPA affect drinking water?

    The EPA has classified DCPA as a carcinogen, and notes that it causes liver and thyroid tumors. DCPA can also create harm to lungs, liver, kidney and thyroid.

  • What is delta-BHC?

    Delta-hexachlorocyclohexane was an ingredient of technical-grade hexachlorocyclohexane. Technical-grade hexachlorocyclohexane was a combination product that contained alpha-HCH, beta-HCH, delta-HCH, gamma-HCH and epsilon-HCH. It was used as an insecticide on fruit, vegetables, forest crops, animals and in the areas where animals were raised. Nearly all the insecticidal qualities resided in the gamma form of this chemical. It has not been manufactured in the U.S. since 1976.

    How does delta-BHC affect drinking water?

    All forms of HCH have been found in the soil and surface water long after production stopped because they do not break down easily. HCH persists in the soil and air and can travel great distances. Exposure to forms of HCH can occur through eating foods or water contaminated by this chemical. As HCH breaks down in the body, some of the breakdown products are themselves toxic. All forms of HCH are expected to be carcinogenic to humans.

  • What is Delta-Hexachlorocyclohexane (delta-HCH or delta-BHCC)?

    Delta-hexachlorocyclohexane was an ingredient of technical-grade hexachlorocyclohexane. This combination contained alpha-HCH, beta-HCH, delta-HCH, gamma-HCH and epsilon-HCH. It was used as an insecticide on fruit, vegetables, forest crops, animals and in the areas where animals were raised. Nearly all the insecticidal qualities resided in the gamma form of this chemical. It has not been manufactured in the U.S. since 1976.

    How does Delta-Hexachlorocyclohexane affect drinking water?

    All forms of HCH have been found in the soil and surface water long after production stopped because they do not break down easily. HCH persists in the soil and air and can travel great distances. Exposure to forms of HCH can occur through eating foods or water contaminated by this chemical. As HCH breaks down in the body, some of the breakdown products are themselves toxic. All forms of HCH are expected to be carcinogenic to humans.

  • What is Deuterium?

    Deuterium is an isotope of hydrogen. It is also known as heavy hydrogen. Naturally-occurring water contains extremely small quantities of deuterium. Bottled water contains approximately 130 parts per million of deuterium.

    How does Deuterium affect drinking water?

    Since all water naturally contains extremely tiny amounts of deuterium, it is not harmful to health.

  • What is Di (2-Ethylhexyl) Phthalate?

    Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) is added to PVC plastics to soften them. It can be found in medical products such bags used for blood, food packaging, kidney dialysis machines and intravenous equipment. Its use in food storage films is a primary method of exposure for humans because di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate can migrate from the plastic wrap to the food.

    How does Di (2-Ethylhexyl) Phthalate affect drinking water?

    Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate has been found at low levels in the drinking water of 43 states. Exposure to DEHP is higher when a person receives intravenous fluids delivered through plastic tubing or from eating or drinking food that has been packaged in plastics containing DEHP. Health concerns related to di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate include change in fetal development, the male reproductive system and the immune systems of both sexes. It is a hormone disruptor.

  • What is Di-n-butyl phthalate?

    Di-n-butyl phthalate is used in making plastics for all types of consumer products including paints, coatings, sealants and adhesives. It is also used in shower curtains, food wraps, car interiors, floor tiles and kitchen equipment. Di-n-butyl phthalate can enter groundwater if it does not break down after being released into soil.

    How does Di-n-butyl phthalate affect drinking water?

    Drinking water usually has about 0.1 to 0.2 parts per billion of Di-n-butyl phthalate. Health concerns related to di-n-butyl phthalate include change in child development. It is a hormone disruptor.

  • What is Di-n-octyl phthalate?

    Di-n-octyl phthalate (DNOP) is a chemical that keeps plastics soft and flexible. It is used in dyes, wiring, adhesives, packaging, medical tubing, blood storage bags, cosmetics and pesticides. Between 5% and 60% of a flexible plastic may be composed of DNOP.

    How does Di-n-octyl phthalate affect drinking water?

    In laboratory tests, di-n-octyl phthalate was toxic to thyroid and liver. It is also associated with birth defects, developmental delays and harm to the male reproductive system. Exposure is more likely to occur from plastics than from drinking water.

  • What is Di(2-Ethylhexyl) Adipate Adipate?

    Di(2-ethylhexyl) adipate is a liquid that is widely used as a plasticizer in making plastic products such as food storage films. It is also used in other plastics, lubricants and cosmetics. Its use in food storage films is a primary method of exposure for humans because di(2-ethylhexyl) adipate can migrate from the plastic wrap to the food, especially when the foods contain higher amounts of fat, such as cheese and meat. In laboratory animals, exposure to this chemical resulted in liver cancer.

    How does Di(2-Ethylhexyl) Adipate affect drinking water?

    Di(2-ethylhexyl) adipate has been found at low levels in the drinking water of 24 states. Health concerns related to di(2-ethylhexyl) adipate include change in fetal growth and development and harm to the liver including cancerous tumors in the liver.

  • What is Dibenzo (a,h) Anthracene?

    Dibenzo (a,h) anthracene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH), a class of chemical that result from burning coal, oil, gas, wood, garbage, and tobacco. High heat when cooking meat and other foods will form PAHs. They can also be manufactured for different purposes such as power steering fluids, brake fluids and gas treatments. Based on laboratory tests, dibenzo (a,h) anthracene is classified as a probable human carcinogen.

    How does Dibenzo (a,h) Anthracene affect drinking water?

    Dibenzo (a,h) anthracene has been found in the drinking water of two states. Polyaromatic hydrocarbons or PAHs, including dibenzo (a,h) anthracene, can increase the risk of cancer, damage the immune, nervous and reproductive systems and harm developing fetuses.

  • What is Dibenzofuran?

    Dibenzofuran is a powder derived from coal tar and used in manufacturing to make other chemicals. It is also an insecticide and is used in printing and dyeing textiles. It is chemically similar to dioxin, a chemical that is no longer manufactured in the U.S. Chemicals of this type tend to bioaccumulate, or build up in the body, being attracted to fat tissue.

    How does Dibenzofuran affect drinking water?

    When dibenzofurans make their way into drinking water, they tend to persist rather than break down. They can cause a variety of problems including immunosuppression, developmental disturbance, birth defects, endocrine disruption and cancer. Only a few states have detected these chemicals in their drinking water.

  • What is Dibromoacetic Acid (DBA)?

    Dibromoacetic acid is a haloacetic acid that is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used in treating drinking water. The five types of haloacetic acids (HAA5) are regulated by the federal government because of the potential harm they can do to people consuming the treated water.

    How does Dibromoacetic Acid (DBA) affect drinking water?

    Dibromoacetic acid in drinking water increases the risk of cancer and harm to fetal growth and development. It has been found in the drinking water of 45 states. Dibromoacetic acid has also been identified as causing birth defects and reproductive harm in laboratory tests. Children may be more susceptible to the effects of HAA5.

  • What is Dibromochloromethane?

    Adding chlorine to drinking water supplies disinfects it of harmful pathogens such as those that cause dysentery and typhoid. But once chlorine is in the water, harmful byproducts called trihalomethanes form, such as chloroform, bromodichloromethane, bromoform and dibromochloromethane. The amount of dibromochloromethane permitted in water is regulated by the EPA because it is harmful to human health.

    How does Dibromochloromethane affect drinking water?

    Dibromochloromethane has not only been found in drinking water supplies, it has also been found in some bottled purified drinking water. Levels found in drinking water are normally well below the 10 parts per billion considered safe. At higher exposure, it is both carcinogenic and capable of causing changes to human DNA.

  • What is Dibromochloropropane?

    Dibromochloropropane is also identified as 1,2-dibromo-3-chloropropane. It was used as a soil and crop fumigant but has been banned for decades. It has been classified by the EPA as a probable carcinogen. It is quite persistent in the environment.

    How does Dibromochloropropane affect drinking water?

    Between 2017 and 2019, dibromochloropropane was detected in the drinking water of 13 states. It has been found to cause great reproductive harm to men who have worked with the chemical, including infertility and testicular cancer. It also causes genetic mutations.

  • What is Dibromomethane?

    Dibromomethane is also known as ethylene dibromide. It is a banned chemical that was used as an additive for leaded gasoline and as a fumigant for citrus, vegetables and grain crops as well as turf, particularly on golf courses. It is also used as a solvent in the manufacture of other chemicals.

    How does Dibromomethane affect drinking water?

    Dibromomethane can make its way to groundwater after being applied to soil or when spilled on land. Levels of dibromomethane in drinking water that are considered safe are very low. It is extremely toxic to humans, targeting the liver, kidneys and testis. Long-term exposure damages sperm cells and has caused a variety of tumors in animals. It has been detected in the drinking water of 17 states.

  • What is Dicamba?

    Dicamba is an herbicide used for agriculture and residences. Certain crops such as corn and soybeans have been modified to tolerate its application. Dicamba is prone to drift after application. Damage to wildlife and nearby crops that are not tolerant to the herbicide have been observed.

    How does Dicamba affect drinking water?

    Dicamba has been found to harm the brain and nervous system and may possibly harm reproductivity and child development. It has been detected in the drinking water of ten states.

  • What is Dichloroacetic Acid (DCA)?

    Dichloroacetic acid (DCA) acid is a haloacetic acid that is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used in treating drinking water. Haloacetic acids (HAA5) are regulated by the federal government because of the potential harm they can do to people consuming the treated water.

    How does Dichloroacetic Acid (DCA) affect drinking water?

    Dichloroacetic acid in drinking water increases the risk of cancer and harm to fetal growth and development. It has been found in the drinking water of 47 states. Dichloroacetic acid has also been identified as causing reproductive harm in laboratory tests. Children may be more susceptible to the effects of HAA5 in their drinking water.

  • What is Dichlorodifluoromethane?

    This chemical is used as a refrigerant in air conditioners and refrigerators, a leak detecting agent and in aerosol cans as a propellant. It is also used in the manufacture of plastics. It may be referred to as FC-12 and is a type of freon. Long-term exposure by humans can cause liver damage. It was banned in 2000 because of its damage to the ozone layer and was phased out of use, but is still in use by the military.

    How does Dichlorodifluoromethane affect drinking water?

    Thirteen states have identified dichlorodifluoromethane in their water supplies. It has been shown to cause changes to the central nervous system and harm to the liver, heart and blood vessels. It has been shown to cause cancer in animals.

  • What is Dichloromethane?

    Dichloromethane is also called methylene chloride. It is a solvent used for stripping paint, printing, manufacturing electronics and degreasing and is used in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals and film coatings. It is also a propellant in aerosol containers.

    How does Dichloromethane affect drinking water?

    The EPA states that exposure to this chemical causes decreased visual, auditory and motor functions but that these functions can be restored once exposure ceases. After long-term exposure, harm to the central nervous system may occur. In laboratory tests, liver and lung cancer resulted. Primary route of exposure is inhalation. Dichloromethane has been found in surface water and ground water at very low concentrations. Thirty-nine states have detected this chemical in their drinking water.

  • What is Dichlorprop?

    Dichlorprop has been used as a pesticide and herbicide in agricultural or aquatic areas and in non-crop land. It is no longer used as a pesticide.

    How does Dichlorprop affect drinking water?

    Chronic exposure to dichlorprop can lead to central nervous system defects resulting in poor motor control. In laboratory tests, it caused kidney damage. No states have recently reported drinking water contamination with this chemical.

  • What is Dichlorvos?

    Dichlorvos is an insecticide used to kill flies, caterpillars and other bugs on food crops. It is also an ingredient on pest strips and in pet collars. In animal and human tests, it has had neurotoxic effects. At high concentrations, it has caused convulsions and comas. It is banned the Europe.

    How does Dichlorvos affect drinking water?

    Dichlorvos interferes with the human nervous system and creates changes to DNA. While it does not seem to directly cause cancer, there are signs that its effects can combine with the effects of other chemicals to disrupt the body’s processes and overwhelm the body’s defenses so cancer is able to develop.

  • What is Diclofenac Sodium?

    Diclofenac sodium is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug. It can arrive in drinking water supplies through water discharges from pharmaceutical companies and through waste products from human use.

    How does Diclofenac Sodium affect drinking water?

    Diclofenac sodium is largely removed from drinking water with normal water treatment methods. The effect of being exposed to this and other pharmaceuticals in drinking water is not known.

  • What is Dieldrin?

    When the pesticide/insecticide aldrin breaks down, dieldrin is formed. These chemicals were used on cotton or corn or to control insects such as termites. Concerns arose as early as 1970 that it was potentially carcinogenic, however, use continued until 1989. It is slow to degrade once applied to a field or residence. It has been detected in soil, surface water, groundwater, public water supplies and food crops.

    How does Dieldrin affect drinking water?

    In general, levels of aldrin and dieldrin in drinking water are low. These chemicals accumulate in the body, however, and can increase the risk for cancer or reproductive harm. When heavy exposure occurs, it harms the liver and nervous system, decreases fertility and causes death.

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  • What is Diethyl phthalate?

    Diethyl phthalate is a chemical added to plastics manufacturing to make the products more flexible or durable. It is also used in cleaning products and air fresheners. It can be found in blood bags, vinyl flooring, toys and cosmetics such as nail polishes and hair spray. Phthalates are found in PVC which is a ubiquitous substance, meaning chemicals released from PVC can be found in many areas.

    How does Diethyl phthalate affect drinking water?

    In general, phthalates are associated with hormone disruption. Diethyl phthalate has been detected in the drinking water of four states. Human exposure is more likely to occur from plastics than from drinking water.

  • What is Dimethyl phthalate?

    Dimethyl phthalate is a chemical added to plastics manufacturing to make the products more flexible or more durable. It is also used in insect repellents and pesticides, safety glass and lacquer coating. It can also be found in rocket propellants. Phthalates are found in PVC which is a ubiquitous substance, meaning chemicals released from PVC can be found in many areas.

    How does Dimethyl phthalate affect drinking water?

    In general, phthalates are associated with hormone disruption. Dimethyl phthalate has been detected in the drinking water of three states. Human exposure is more likely to occur from plastics than from drinking water. This chemical is capable of persisting in the environment and accumulating in the human body.

  • What is Dinoseb?

    Dinoseb is herbicide used around soybeans and vegetables that has been banned since 1986. It was also used as an insecticide around grapes and was used to dry seed crops. It was discontinued when it proved to cause birth defects and other harmful health effects among people working with it. The EPA has set a limit of seven parts per billion for drinking water. While six states have found traces of dinoseb in their water in recent years, one state had this chemical above the legal limit.

    How does Dinoseb affect drinking water?

    Dinoseb applied to farms in the past can still cause contamination of groundwater supplies. Six states have reported recent contamination of drinking water supplies in recent years. It causes harm to reproduction, fetal growth and development, and child development.

  • What is Diphenamid?

    Diphenamid was an herbicide used to prevent weeds around cotton, potatoes, soybeans, tobacco, fruits and ornamental plants. It was discontinued in 1988. It has been found to leach through soils and reach groundwater.

    How does Diphenamid affect drinking water?

    Exposure to diphenamid has had neurotoxic effects.

  • What is Dipropylnitrosamine?

    Dipropylnitrosamine is also called n-nitrosodipropylamine. It is a carcinogenic contaminant that can form during water treatment when a disinfectant like chloramine is used. It is also produced during some manufacturing processes and may be a contaminant in certain weed killers. It has no commercial use.

    How does Dipropylnitrosamine affect drinking water?

    This chemical has been carcinogenic in laboratory tests, causing tumors in legs, sinuses, livers and stomachs. Sufficient laboratory evidence was available to classify this as a possible human carcinogen. No states have recently reported the presence of dipropylnitrosamine in their drinking water supplies.

  • What is Diquat?

    Diquat is also called diquat dibromide. It is an herbicide used on potato crops and to prevent aquatic weeds and the growth of algae in ponds, lakes and commercial greenhouses. Its use has been banned in the European Union.

    How does Diquat affect drinking water?

    Exposure to diquat has been associated with changes to fetal growth and development, harm to kidneys, liver and lungs, and the development of cataracts. Changes in body weight may also occur. Eleven states have recently reported the presence of diquat in their drinking water. The EPA has set a limit of six parts per billion of diquat in drinking water.

  • What is Disulfoton?

    Disulfoton was used as an insecticide on ornamental flowers and shrubs, including rose bushes, as well as vegetable crops. It was mostly used in agriculture but smaller amounts were used around residences and in swamps for mosquito control. Manufacturing ceased when its use as a pesticide was canceled by the EPA in 2009 and it was sold until 2011.

    How does Disulfoton affect drinking water?

    Disulfoton has the capacity to travel long distances and leach into groundwater. It has an adverse effect on the development of fetuses and the neurological system.

  • What is E. coli?

    Escherichia coli is an indicator that a water supply has been contaminated by human or animal fecal matter. In a community water supply, this can indicate inadequate water treatment. In a well, it points out the necessity of checking for local contamination sources. Surface water tends to contain E. coli but groundwater should be free from this bacteria as bacteria is removed as water seeps through bedrock.

    How does E. coli affect drinking water?

    Some strains of E. coli can cause serious illness in humans. Symptoms of drinking contaminated water can cause hemorrhagic colitis accompanied by cramps, watery diarrhea, vomiting, fever and intestinal bleeding and possibly renal failure. An immunocompromised or young person is at greater risk of illness.

  • What is E. coli Enumeration?

    Tests for Escherichia coli (E. coli) in water can detect fecal contamination of drinking water, swimming pools, lakes or other bodies of water. A greater quantity of E. coli in the water tends to be associated with adverse health effects for any individuals coming in contact with that water.

    How does E. coli Enumeration affect drinking water?

    While there are many different strains of E. coli, a higher E. coli count will indicate a greater need for water purification, well repair or detection of a source of animal or human fecal contamination. Some strains of E. coli can cause serious illnesses.

  • What is Endosulfan I?

    Endosulfan I is an insecticide that was phased out of use because of its toxicity, even at low concentrations. Its last approved use was in 2016. It was used on food crops and ornamental plants.

    How does Endosulfan I affect drinking water?

    Endosulfan I is persistent in the environment and highly toxic to the kidneys. It has also been linked to endocrine disruption, liver damage, reproductive disorders, and birth defects. It is very toxic to aquatic life, and has long-lasting effects. It had the ability to travel long distances and show up in environments far from its original use. In recent years, no states have reported the presences of endosulfan I in their water supplies.

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  • What is Endosulfan II?

    Endosulfan II is an insecticide that was phased out of use because of its toxicity, even at low concentrations. Its last approved use was in 2016. It was used on cotton and food crops as well as on beef and dairy cattle.

    How does Endosulfan II affect drinking water?

    Endosulfan II is persistent in the environment and highly toxic to the kidneys. It has also been linked to endocrine disruption, liver damage, reproductive disorders, and birth defects. It is very toxic to aquatic life, and has long-lasting effects. It had the ability to travel long distances and show up in environments far from its original use. In recent years, no states have reported the presence of endosulfan II in their water supplies.

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  • What is Endosulfan Sulfate?

    When endosulfan I or II break down, they form endosulfan sulfate. It has the same toxicity as the original endosulfan products. It can be found in locations far from any sites where endosulfan I or II were ever used. All endosulfan products were phased out of use years ago.

    How does Endosulfan Sulfate affect drinking water?

    Like the original forms of endosulfan, endosulfan sulfate can cause endocrine disruption, liver damage, reproductive disorders, and birth defects. It is very toxic to aquatic life, and has long-lasting effects.

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  • What is Endrin?

    Endrin is a banned insecticide and pesticide that was proven to damage the nervous, immune and reproductive systems of both humans and wildlife. It is also carcinogenic. Once introduced into the environment, it persists for a long time which extended the harm it could do. It was used to control rodents and birds. It has not been sold since 1986.

    How does Endrin affect drinking water?

    In recent years, 12 states have reported the presence of endrin in their water supplies, all at low levels except for one state. People who are exposed to endrin above recommended levels may suffer tremors, labored breathing, mental confusion and convulsions. Endrin accumulates in the fat tissues of the body.

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  • What is Endrin Aldehyde?

    The pesticide endrin breaks down to endrin aldehyde. Endrin aldehyde accumulates mostly in sediments at the bottom of bodies of water. It is expected to have similar effects to endrin before breakdown: harm to nervous, immune and reproductive systems. Endrin was banned in 1986.

    How does Endrin Aldehyde affect drinking water?

    It has not recently been found in the drinking water of any of the states. Endrin aldehyde can accumulate in the body and is linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

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  • What is Endrin Ketone?

    The pesticide endrin breaks down to endrin ketone when it has been exposed to light. Endrin ketone accumulates mostly in sediments at the bottom of bodies of water. It is expected to have similar effects to endrin before breakdown: harm to nervous, immune and reproductive systems. Endrin was banned in 1986.

    How does Endrin Ketone affect drinking water?

    It has not recently been found in the drinking water of any of the states. Endrin ketone can accumulate in the body and is linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

  • What is Enterobacter Aerogenes?

    An alternate name for this bacterium is Klebsiella aerogenes. It is a coliform bacteria. This bacterium is often spread in hospitals among patients who have had surgery or use catheters. Infections with this bacteria are growing increasingly resistant to treatment with antibiotics. It lives in soil and various types of waste. Healthy people are generally reasonably resistant to infection.

    How does Enterobacter Aerogenes affect drinking water?

    According to the EPA, coliform bacteria like Enterobacter aerogenes are naturally present in the environment. The presence of any coliform bacteria in drinking water may indicate fecal contamination of a water supply. Consumption of water contaminated with E. aerogenes can cause gastrointestinal problems and if used for bathing, can cause wound or urinary tract infections.

  • What are Enterococci?

    Enterococci are bacteria that live in the intestinal tracts of humans and other warm-blooded animals. Drinking water sources can become contaminated by Enterococci through fecal contamination from treatment plant effluent, sewage from recreational boats, domestic or wild animal waste, leaking septic systems and grazing pastures. The presence of any Enterococci in a well indicates a need for disinfection as well as detection of the source of the contamination.

    How do Enterococci affect drinking water?

    While Enterococci live in human intestines, they do not belong in drinking water. It’s possible to suffer fever, headache, abdominal pain, nausea and other symptoms from an Enterococci infection. The presence of this baceria in water is an indication of fecal contamination. The source of that contamination must be found and eliminated.

  • What is Enterococcus Faecalis?

    Enterococcus faecalis is a type of bacteria that can be found in fecal matter and can be spread from one person to another. It is a common hospital-acquired infection. It can cause serious infections such as urinary tract infections, endocarditis and bacteremia. Enterococcus faecalis is frequently resistant to treatment with antibiotics.

    How does Enterococcus Faecalis affect drinking water?

    Its presence in drinking water indicates fecal contamination of the water supply. It can reach a well or community water supply from wastewater effluent, leaking septic systems, sewage discharges from boats and other sources. Adverse effects include infections of skin, eyes, ears and respiratory tract.

  • What is Epicoccum?

    Epicoccum is a type of fungus found throughout the world. It is spread in both wind and water.

    How does Epicoccum affect drinking water?

    Epicoccum in water or air has been associated with reduced pulmonary function and increased asthma. While it is a common allergen, it seldom causes systemic diseases in humans. It is never a good idea to consume water with fungal contamination.

  • What is Erythromycin?

    Erythromycin is a commonly-used antibiotic used to treat bacteria infections such as respiratory tract infections, Legionnaire’s disease and pertussis. It reaches drinking water through releases from pharmaceutical companies or as result of human consumption. It is prescribed more than two million times a year.

    How does Erythromycin affect drinking water?

    In tests of various types of water (groundwater, drinking water, coastal water, etc.), levels of erythromycin were high enough to have an effect on health in 18% of the tests. This exposure can increase the possibility of antibiotic resistance. California classifies this antibiotic as “known to cause developmental toxicity.”

  • What is Estrone?

    Estrone is a female sex hormone, the weakest type of estrogen. Surface water can receive estrogen as a result of pharmaceutical water release or human use followed by elimination. Surface water could be treated so it can be used for drinking water, but still contain traces of estrone and other hormones and pharmaceuticals. Natural estrogens from soy and dairy products and animal waste also contribute estrogen-type substances to our water supplies.

    How does Estrone affect drinking water?

    Because there are estrogen-type substances in many of our foods, exposure to estrone and other hormone residues through drinking water is not likely to have significant effects.

  • What is Ethoprpo?

    Ethoprpo is an insecticide used on food crops like potatoes, cabbage, bananas, and sugarcane plus tobacco and ornamental plants. It is effective against soil insects such as various kinds of worms.

    How does Ethoprpo affect drinking water?

    Ethoprpo has been found in the drinking water supplies of five states. It can also be found in food. Exposure to ethoprpo can cause harm to the nervous system causing nausea, dizziness and confusion. In animal tests, anemia and liver toxicity was seen. Exposure to food is not considered a problem, but drinking water exposure is potentially problematic. It is classified as likely to be carcinogenic.

  • What is Ethyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (ETBE)?

    ETBE is an additive for gasoline intended to improve air quality. It can reach water supplies through vehicle emissions and leaking underground tanks. Once ETBE is released into the environment, it degrades very slowly and is highly soluble in water.

    How does Ethyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (ETBE) affect drinking water?

    Exposure through inhalation is more likely than exposure through drinking water. In recent years, no states have reported ETBE in their drinking water supplies. Exposure has caused harm to kidneys. There is some evidence of ETBE’s ability to cause cancer, based on laboratory tests.

  • What is Ethylbenzene?

    Ethylbenzene is widely used in the manufacture of styrene, also known as polystyrene. It is also used in gasoline, paints, insecticides and tobacco. Small amounts of ethylbenzene exist in air, water and soil, but most ethylbenzene exposure will come from human manufacture.

    How does Ethylbenzene affect drinking water?

    Ethylbenzene can enter water or soil from leaking underground tanks or from chemical releases from factories. Exposure through air or water can affect the central nervous system, causing sleepiness, headaches, eye irritation. Long-term exposure can have a lasting effect on the nervous system. Animal studies show that it causes liver and kidney damage as well as multiple types of cancer.

  • What is Ethylene dibromide?

    This chemical is also known as 1,2-dibromoethane. This chemical has been used to protect against insects and other pests in citrus, vegetable and grain crops, and as a fumigant on golf courses. These uses were banned in 1984, but it still has uses in manufacturing and aviation fuel,.

    How does Ethylene dibromide affect drinking water?

    In the U.S., it is classified as likely to be cancer-causing and toxic when in contact with the skin or inhaled. The European Union classifies it as an endocrine disruptor. The EPA notes that it is “extremely toxic to humans,” causes testicular atrophy, adrenal degeneration, and liver and kidney damage. It reaches groundwater mostly from leaking underground storage tanks.

  • What is Ethylene Glycol?

    Ethylene glycol is used in manufacturing antifreeze, brake fluid, ballpoint pens, solvents, paints, fabrics such as Dacron, explosives and cosmetics, among many other products. It is toxic to humans and animals. When antifreeze is due to be replaced, old product must be recycled to prevent ethylene glycol from reaching soil and groundwater.

    How does Ethylene Glycol affect drinking water?

    Laboratory tests showed that animals exposed to ethylene glycol suffer kidney and liver harm. The CDC reports harm to the nervous system, heart and kidneys. It is not categorized as a carcinogen. In recent years, no states have reported that their drinking water is contaminated with ethylene glycol.

  • What is Etridiazole?

    Etridiazole is also called terrazole. It is a fungicide and pesticide used on golf course turf, cotton and other plants. It is also used as a seed treatment for soybeans, safflower, wheat, peas, peanuts and other plants. While use on food crops is not any longer permitted, its use as seed treatment to disinfect seeds before being planted can result in residues making their way to foods.

    How does Etridiazole affect drinking water?

    In animal tests, etridiazole caused smaller offspring, external and skeletal malformation, liver toxicity and tumor formation. It is classified as a probable human carcinogen.

  • What is Exophiala?

    Exophiala is a type of black yeast (fungus) that is found around the world in decaying wood, organic waste, soil and surface water. There are more than two dozen different fungi in this genus, some of which are capable of causing illness in humans.

    How does Exophiala affect drinking water?

    Some species of Exophiala like E. dermatitidis can cause lung infections, especially among immunocompromised individuals. These infections can be difficult to treat. Contamination of a kitchen dishwasher can spread this black yeast to the kitchen environment, enabling infections to occur. The only acceptable quantity of fungus in drinking water is zero.

  • What is 4:2 Fluorotelomer sulfonic acid?

    4:2 Fluorotelomer sulfonic acid is a PFAS, a type of chemical used for stain-resistance and non-stick cookware. These chemicals have also been used in firefighting foams, carpets, fabrics and even some cosmetics. This class of chemical has been discontinued in the U.S. but other countries still manufacture it. Once this chemical passes into the soil, water and air, it does not break down. This chemical and other PFAS chemicals are then found in the blood of people and animals all over the world.

    How does 4:2 Fluorotelomer sulfonic acid affect drinking water?

    Exposure comes from eating food grown near or water contaminated by sources of PFAS. Proximity to PFAS production facilities has been associated with increased rates of two types of cancer, thyroid disease, pregnancy complications and more. It bioaccumulates in human and animal bodies. It also causes hormone disruption and liver damage.

  • What is 6:2 Fluorotelomer sulfonic acid?

    6:2 Fluorotelomer sulfonic acid is a PFAS, a type of chemical used for stain-resistance and non-stick cookware. These chemicals have also been used in firefighting foams, carpets, fabrics and even some cosmetics. This class of chemical has been discontinued in the U.S., but other countries still manufacture it. Once this chemical passes into the soil, water and air, it does not break down. This chemical and other PFAS chemicals are then found in the blood of people and animals all over the world.

    How does 6:2 Fluorotelomer sulfonic acid affect drinking water?

    Exposure comes from eating food grown near or water contaminated by sources of PFAS. Proximity to PFAS production facilities has been associated with increased rates of two types of cancer, thyroid disease, pregnancy complications and more. It bioaccumulates in human and animal bodies. It also causes hormone disruption and liver damage. It has been found in the drinking water of two states in recent years.

  • What is 8:2 Fluorotelomer sulfonic acid?

    8:2 Fluorotelomer sulfonic acid is a PFAS, a type of chemical used for stain-resistance and non-stick cookware. These chemicals have also been used in firefighting foams, carpets, fabrics and even some cosmetics. This class of chemical has been discontinued in the U.S., but other countries still manufacture it. Once this chemical passes into the soil, water and air, it does not break down. This chemical and other PFAS chemicals are then found in the blood of people and animals all over the world.

    How does 8:2 Fluorotelomer sulfonic acid affect drinking water?

    Exposure comes from eating food grown near or water contaminated by sources of PFAS. Proximity to PFAS production facilities has been associated with increased rates of two types of cancer, harm to the immune systen, liver damage, thyroid disease, pregnancy complications and more. It bioaccumulates in human and animal bodies. It also causes hormone disruption and liver damage. It has been found in the drinking water of two states in recent years.

  • What is Fecal E. coli Count?

    There are many species of E. coli bacteria, and many are harmless. Any E. coli will be an indicator of possible fecal contamination of the water source. A water test that is positive for E. coli should be followed with a test to determine if fecal E. coli is present.

    How does Fecal E. coli Count affect drinking water?

    Waterborne outbreaks of illnesses have occurred with only a very low level of coliform bacteria being present in drinking water. The correct level of E. coli to prevent illness is zero. However, it is essential if E. coli or fecal E. coli are detected that any source of contamination be corrected immediately. Exposure to drinking or washing water contaminated with fecal E. coli can cause diarrhea, cramps, nausea and headaches.

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  • What is Fenamiphos?

    Fenamiphos is used to kill insects and certain worms on turf, particularly golf courses. It is no longer used on food crops in the U.S., but foods may be imported that were treated with fenamiphos.

    How does Fenamiphos affect drinking water?

    If used in soils that drain water easily, fenamiphos is capable of making its way to shallow water tables. For that reason, its use is restricted from these soils and shallow water tables to prevent human exposure to this insecticide. Long-term exposure to drinking water contaminated with fenamiphos can result in muscle weakness, glassy eyes, excessive salivation, agitation and blurry vision.

  • What is Ferric Iron?

    Ferric iron is an oxidized form of dissolved iron. It can give the water a reddish or orange appearance. It may not be harmful but it can indicate other problems in the plumbing system, such as water that is too acidic and causing corrosion of iron components in the system. Ferric iron can also enter a water system from natural deposits of iron in the aquifer.

    How does Ferric Iron affect drinking water?

    In addition to coloring water red or orange, ferric iron in household water can stain laundry and plumbing fixtures. The water may have a disagreeable metallic taste. Vegetables cooked in the water may turn dark. Some people may suffer from abdominal pain or bowel issues.

  • What is Ferrous Iron?

    Ferrous iron is a soluble form of iron. Unlike ferric iron, it has not been oxidized by contact with oxygen. It can leave stains on laundry, tableware and plumbing that are very hard to remove. As rainwater moves through the soil and rock, it can pick up soluble iron and transport it to groundwater supplies.

    How does Ferrous Iron affect drinking water?

    A certain amount of ferrous iron can be present in drinking water before there is any discoloration or change in taste. It is not considered harmful to health but is considered undesirable because it can change the taste or color of the water.

  • What is an FHA Water Test?

    The FHA has a requirement that any home with a well be tested to ensure adequate quality of water from that well. The test to satisfy FHA requirements will look for Total Coliform, E.coli, Iron, Lead, pH, Turbidity, Nitrate, Nitrite and Total Nitrate/Nitrite.

    How does an FHA Water Test affect drinking water?

    An FHA water test ensures that some of the most important indicators of water quality are examined before a home changes hands. Both buyers and sellers get a measure of protection.

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  • What is a First Draw and Flush - Lead and Copper?

    This test is intended to find out where water contaminants could be coming from. The first draw and flush test utilizes a first sample that comes out of the tap as soon as the water begins to run and then a second sample that comes out after the water has been allowed to run for a while. By comparing the lead and copper contamination of these two tests, it’s possible to determine whether contamination is coming from the plumbing of the home or from an outside source.

    How does a First Draw and Flush - Lead and Copper affect drinking water?

    Sometimes determining what is contaminating a water supply requires multiple steps to zero in on the exact source of a problem. The first draw and flush test enables a homeowner, business owner or institutional manager to protect those who consume that drinking water.

  • What is Fluoranthene?

    Fluoranthene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH), a class of chemical that is toxic to humans. It is a byproduct of combustion, found in emissions from coal, gas, oil, wood, tobacco or charbroiled meat.

    How does Fluoranthene affect drinking water?

    PAHs as a class of chemical have been linked to cancer in laboratory animals, birth defects and harm to reproductive and nervous systems. It is also harmful to the development of children. Especially for families expecting pregnancies and growing children, it is important to ensure that the water supply does not contain fluoranthene. While only two states have detected fluoranthene in their drinking water, this chemical was found stored in the blood of eight out of eight individuals whose blood was tested.

  • What is Fluorene?

    Fluorene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon, a class of chemical toxic to humans. It is a byproduct of combustion, found in emissions from coal, gas, oil, wood, tobacco or charbroiled meat.

    How does Fluorene affect drinking water?

    PAHs as a class of chemical have been linked to cancer in laboratory animals, birth defects and harm to reproductive and nervous systems. It is also harmful to the development of children. Especially for families expecting pregnancies and growing children, it is important to ensure that the water supply does not contain fluorene. While only two states have detected fluorene in their drinking water, this chemical was found stored in the blood of eight out of eight individuals whose blood was tested.

  • What is Fluoride?

    Fluoride is a naturally-occurring mineral. Groundwater can pick up fluoride as the water travels through rock. Fluoride is often added to water supplies as a public health measure. Fluoride exposure also comes from fluoridated toothpastes, pesticides, pharmaceuticals and industrial emissions. Fluoride is also added to bottles of water intended for use in nurseries.

    How does Fluoride affect drinking water?

    No more than four milligrams per liter of fluoride is permitted in drinking water. The EPA warns that no more than two mg of fluoride is recommended for children to protect them from the tooth discoloration and pitting that can be caused by excessive fluoride ingestion prior to the eruption of their teeth. Over a lifetime, being exposed to excessive amounts of fluoride can increase the risk of bone pain and fractures. In tests from 2017 to 2019, nine states had fluoride levels in their drinking water that were over the legal limit.

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  • What is Fluorotrichloromethane?

    Fluorotrichloromethane is also known as trichlorofluoromethane and freon-11. It is used as a refrigerant, an aerosol propellant and fire fighting material. It is a chlorofluorocarbon, determined to damage the ozone layer. Production ended in 1996 in the U.S., but it is still used in other countries.

    How does Fluorotrichloromethane affect drinking water?

    Between 2017 and 2019, this chemical was found in the drinking water of ten states. Health concerns associated with fluorotrichloromethane include harm to the liver, changes to the central nervous system and harm to the heart and blood vessels.

  • What is Fluoxetine?

    Fluoxetine is a drug best known by the brand name Prozac. It is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, meaning that it changes the balance of chemicals in the brain. Through elimination after human consumption and industrial water releases, fluoxetine can make its way into our water supplies. Testing by the Environmental Working Group of water supplies in New York showed that pharmaceuticals are not effectively removed from waste water by water treatment, meaning that these drugs could end up in the water served to consumers.

    How does Fluoxetine affect drinking water?

    In one study, fluoxetine and other antidepressants were found in the brain tissue of fish exposed to river water that received treated wastewater. The effect of these residual pharmaceuticals in drinking water has not been properly studied so is not well understood at this time. Only minute amounts of drugs remain in water supplies but a person can be exposed to them continually for their entire lives. There are no EPA guidelines about pharmaceutical drugs in drinking water.

  • What is Fluridone?

    Fluridone is an herbicide used to prevent aquatic plant growth in lakes and canals. To be effective, it must be added to water and kept in contact with problematic plant growth for more than a month.

    How does Fluridone affect drinking water?

    While fluridone is approved for use in sources of potable water, animal tests showed that this chemical can result in kidney, reproductive and eye injury. No states have recently reported fluridone in their drinking water supplies.

  • What is Formaldehyde?

    Formaldehyde is alternately known as methanal, methylene oxide, methylaldehyde and other names. Formaldehyde is found in cleaning products, cosmetics, carpet, plastics, textiles, glues, partical board and other materials. Water treated with ozone can form some formaldehyde. Formaldehyde is emitted from cigarette smoke, gas furnaces, cooking appliances and open fireplaces.

    How does Formaldehyde affect drinking water?

    Formaldehyde has caused cancer in laboratory tests and it is believed to cause cancer in humans after long-term exposure. It irritates the eyes, nose, throat and skin. In recent years, no states have reported finding formaldehyde in their drinking water.

  • What are Fungi?

    While there are literally millions of different types of fungi, most of them do not show up in drinking water. Of those that do, many are harmless. However, the remainder can harm humans and animals by producing allergies or infections. Many fungi also create toxins that can poison the person drinking the water. The most common types of fungi contaminating drinking water include Alternaria, Aspergillus, Aureobasidium, Botrytis, Candida, Cladosporium and Fusarium.

    How do Fungi affect drinking water?

    Individuals that suffer the most from fungi in water are usually the immunocompromised such as those in treatment for cancer or AIDS or someone who has had an organ transplant. Also, in some cases, children. Infections from water with fungi can be fatal in rare cases. Any drinking water source such as a well that tests positive for fungi must be carefully checked for any leaks that permit contaminants to enter the water. Repairs must be made before fungal contamination will cease. The only acceptable measurement of fungi in drinking water is none.

  • What is Fusarium?

    Fusarium is a class of fungus commonly found in drinking water as well as grains used for both human and animal food. There are more than 300 species of Fusarium

    How does Fusarium affect drinking water?

    Fusarium in a water supply is capable of producing many different mycotoxins—poisons that can harm both humans and animals. One mycotoxin causes vomiting, digestive disorders and reproductive harm. Any water test that is positive for fungi should be followed by an inspection and repair of the water source or water treatment that is permitting fungi in the drinking water.

  • What is Gamma Chlordane?

    Gamma chlordane is a pesticide that was banned in 1988 after it was discovered to cause cancer. It was widely used for termite treatment and then made its way into water supplies. Gamma chlordane is persistent in the environment and accumulates in the human body.

    How does Gamma Chlordane affect drinking water?

    Gamma chlordane is not only associated with causing cancer, it is a hormone disruptor and causes reproductive and child development harm. In recent years, only one state has reported gamma chlordane in their drinking water. Despite this fact, in a project to test individuals in different cities for the presence of this class of pesticide in their blood, 23 out of 23 tested positive. This project included testing the umbilical cord blood from ten babies. All ten babies’ samples tested positive.

  • What is Gamma-Hexachlorocyclohexane (gamma-HCH or gamma-BHC)?

    Gamma-hexachlorocyclohexane was an ingredient in technical-grade hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH). This combination contained alpha-HCH, beta-HCH, delta-HCH, gamma-HCH and epsilon-HCH. It was used as an insecticide on fruit, vegetables, forest crops, animals and in the areas where animals were raised. Nearly all the insecticidal qualities resided in the gamma form of this chemical. HCH has not been produced in the U.S. since 1976. However, imported gamma-HCH is available as an insecticide and prescription medication to treat scabies and head lice.

    How does Gamma-Hexachlorocyclohexane (gamma-HCH or gamma-BHC) affect drinking water?

    All forms of HCH have been found in the soil and surface water long after production stopped because they do not break down easily. HCH persists in both soil and air and can travel great distances. Exposure to forms of HCH can occur through eating foods or water contaminated by this chemical. As HCH breaks down in the body, some of the breakdown products are themselves toxic. Exposure to gamma-HCH can also occur from use of the prescription medications containing the chemical. Frequent use of gamma-hexachlorocyclohexane products on the body can cause blood disorders or seizures. All forms of HCH are expected to be carcinogenic to humans.

  • What is Gemfibrozil?

    Gemfibrozil is a pharmaceutical drug used to treat high cholesterol. It may be sold under the brand name Lopid. It may be the choice to treat high cholesterol and triglyceride levels in those individuals with pancreatitis. In American waters, it is the fifth most-commonly detected prescription drug.

    How does Gemfibrozil affect drinking water?

    The effect of these residual pharmaceuticals in drinking water has not been properly studied so is not well understood at this time. Only minute amounts of drugs remain in water supplies but a person can be exposed to them continually for their entire lives. There are no EPA guidelines about pharmaceutical drugs in drinking water.

  • What is GenX?

    GenX is a class of chemical that was intended to replace perfluorooctanoic acid  (PFOA) which was found to cause testicular and kidney cancer as well as harm to growth, development, reproduction and liver function. A global ban of perfluorooctanoic acid resulted in its replacement with GenX. This chemical is used to make food wrappers non-stick, to coat outdoor clothing and to make coatings that resist heat, oil and stains. In 2021, the EPA announced that GenX is toxic and hazardous at much lower exposures than the chemical it replaced.

    How does GenX affect drinking water?

    Health concerns related to the use of GenX include cancer, harm to the immune system, fetal growth, child development and liver health, plus hormone disruption. At this time, only one state has reported recent drinking water contamination with GenX.

  • What is Giardia?

    Giardia is a type of tiny parasite that causes the disease giardiasis, with symptoms including diarrhea, cramps and nausea. Once a person is infected with giardiasis, they can pass this disease to others through fecal contamination. Inadequate or poorly maintained water treatment systems can permit water containing Giardia to reach consumers. Giardiasis can also be contracted by swimming in lakes or rivers. It is expected that all surface waters will contain Giardia.

    How does Giardia affect drinking water?

    A person drinking water contaminated with Giardia may develop diarrhea, cramps and nausea within one to two weeks. Symptoms will generally last two to six weeks although an immunocompromised person may suffer longer. Those most likely to contract Giardiasis are those drinking from lakes or rivers, swimming in these bodies of water, drinking household water from a shallow well, or who have contact with fecal matter as could happen in a children’s daycare situation or when caring for animals.

  • What is Glyphosate?

    Glyphosate products (herbicides and pesticides) are used in both agriculture and residential applications. In field tests, glyphosate and/or its metabolites were present in 45% of topsoil samples collected, indicating how widespread these chemicals are. Because more than 100,000 tons of these chemicals are spread on American soil and crops each year, they are present in a wide range of foods.

    How does Glyphosate affect drinking water?

    Tests of surface water seldom reveal any significant quantity of glyphosate or metabolites. Exposure is more likely to occur from food than drinking water. Glyphosate and its breakdown products are listed as “probably carcinogenic” by the International Agency for Research on Cancer and were listed as “known to cause cancer” by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. Glyphosate that reaches our drinking water can also cause kidney problems and reproductive harm.

  • What is a Grains per gallon test?

    A grains per gallon test is a measurement of the hardness of drinking water. Hardness results from the accumulation of minerals in water as it passes through rock of different types. The primary minerals measured and that cause concern are calcium and magnesium. However, aluminum, barium, manganese, zinc and other minerals can contribute to hardness. Grains per gallon is an indication of the quantity of minerals in the water. Water sourced from groundwater is normally harder than water sourced from surface water.

    How does a Grains per gallon test affect drinking water?

    An indication of the hardness of the water informs a home or business owner of the need for a water filtration system that will improve the quality of water. Hard water will make it more difficult to get clothes clean and can affect the taste and clarity of the water. Not all minerals in water will adversely affect the health of the person drinking this water. Calcium and magnesium are normally harmless.

  • What are Gram negative bacteria?

    Bacteria are classified into two broad categories: Gram negative or Gram positive. A determination of classification is made by staining the cells and seeing what color they become. This method was developed by Hans Christian Gram and was named after him. The difference comes from the structure of the walls of the cells. Gram negative bacteria have a thinner cell wall. Despite being thinner, the special characteristics of this shell make it harder to kill with antibiotics. A Gram negative bacterium produces a bacterial toxin called an endotoxin that can cause toxic shock in humans if it enters the blood. Some Gram negative bacteria also secrete toxic proteins called exotoxins that can seriously damage organs and tissues. Gram negative bacteria are more likely to become antibiotic-resistant. Medications like fluorquinolones or cephalosporins may be required to treat them. Examples of Gram negative bacteria: E. coli, Klebsiella pneumonia, Meningococcus, Heliocobacter pylori.

    How do Gram negative bacteria affect drinking water?

    To protect the health of Americans, the EPA has set a standard for the quantity of microbial contaminants including Gram negative bacteria in drinking water. For many bacteria, the acceptable level is zero. Water treatment procedures are designed to remove all microbial life. The presence of Gram negative bacteria in water may indicate fecal contamination of the water source that should be addressed immediately before illness can result.

  • What are Gram positive bacteria?

    Bacteria are classified into two broad categories: Gram negative or Gram positive. A determination of classification is made by staining the cells and seeing what color they become. This method was developed by Hans Christian Gram and was named after him. The difference comes from the structure of the walls of the cells. Gram positive bacteria have a more protective outer shell. However, this thick outer shell absorbs antibiotics more easily. Penicillin, cloxacillin, and erythromycin are effective against most Gram-positive infections. Gram positive bacteria secrete toxic proteins called exotoxins that can seriously damage organs and tissues. (Some Gram negative bacteria also produce these exotoxins.) Two Gram positive pathogens are Staphylococcus and Streptococcus.

    How do Gram positive bacteria affect drinking water?

    To protect the health of Americans, the EPA has set a standard for the quantity of microbial contaminants including Gram negative bacteria in drinking water. For many bacteria, the acceptable level is zero. Water treatment procedures are designed to remove all microbial life. The presence of Gram positive bacteria in water may indicate fecal contamination of the water source that should be addressed immediately before illness can result.

  • What is Gross Alpha Activity?

    Gross alpha activity and gross beta activity both refer to the measurement of radioactivity picked up by drinking water as it passes through natural or man-made deposits. Alpha-emitting articles are more likely to occur in areas where there has been a high level of mining. They can also occur where the bedrock contains radioactive materials. The EPA has set standards for the acceptable measurement of gross alpha activity that is permitted in drinking water to keep customers safe. The primary materials likely to contaminate drinking water are uranium, radium-226 and radon. Alpha particles are heavier than beta particles and possess more energy.

    How does Gross Alpha Activity affect drinking water?

    Alpha particles that originate in radium can become deposited in bone, triggering bone cancer. Radon is more dangerous as an inhaled contaminant but it can become aerosolized and then be inhaled by showering with or boiling radon-contaminated water. It is estimated that 20,000 cases of lung cancer each year are associated with radon contamination. Gross alpha particles can be removed with reverse osmosis treatment.

  • What is Gross Beta Activity?

    Gross alpha activity and gross beta activity both refer to the measurement of radioactivity picked up by drinking water as it passes through natural or man-made deposits. Beta-emitting particles are more likely to occur in areas where water passes through natural deposits or nuclear waste or testing sites. The EPA has set standards for the acceptable measurement of gross beta activity that is permitted in drinking water to keep customers safe. The primary material likely to contaminate drinking water with beta particles is radium-228. Beta particles are lighter than alpha particles and can travel greater distances through the air.

    How does Gross Beta Activity affect drinking water?

    The toxicity of beta-emitting particles depends on the type of particles they are. More than alpha-emitting particles, they can penetrate the skin and cause cellular and DNA damage and cancer. Ion exchange and reverse osmosis treatment can remove beta-emitting particles.

  • What is 2,2',3,3',4,4',6-Heptachlorobiphenyl?

    It is categorized as a PCB which is a long-lasting chemical used in hundreds of applications such as electrical equipment, paints and much more.

    How does 2,2',3,3',4,4',6-Heptachlorobiphenyl affect drinking water?

    This chemical is known to cause damage to organs after prolonged or repeated exposure. It is very toxic to aquatic life.

  • What is 2,2',4,4',5,6'-HexachloroBiphenyl?

    This is a PCB, no longer used in manufacturing. Before 1977, 1.5 billion pounds of this type of chemical had been manufactured. They were banned because of the damage they do and their persistence in the environment. This chemical could still be found in millions of industrial applications.

    How does 2,2',4,4',5,6'-HexachloroBiphenyl affect drinking water?

    It has been found to be an endocrine disruptor and cause liver damage. While exposure can come from drinking water, animal food sources are more likely.

  • What are Haloacetic acids (HAA5)?

    Haloacetic acids are substances created when disinfectants such as chlorine are used to treat drinking water. When the disinfectant reacts with naturally-occurring chemicals in the water, haloacetic acids are formed. There are five of these acids: monochloroacetic acid, dichloroacetic acid, trichloroacetic acid, monobromoacetic acid and dibromoacetic acid. These five haloacetic acids (HAA5) are regulated by the federal government because of the potential harm they can do to people consuming the treated water.

    How do Haloacetic acids (HAA5) affect drinking water?

    Haloacetic acids have been detected in the drinking water of all 50 states. They are associated with harm to fetal growth and development and cancer. In laboratory tests, they have caused toxicity to liver and kidneys plus harm to the neurological and reproductive systems. Children may be more susceptible to harm from HAA5.

  • What is Hardness?

    Hardness results from the accumulation of minerals in water as it passes through rock of different types. The primary minerals that are measured and that cause concern are calcium and magnesium. However, aluminum, barium manganese, zinc and other minerals can contribute to hardness. Water sourced from groundwater is normally harder than water sourced from surface water. Hardness may be expressed as grains per gallon.

    How does Hardness affect drinking water?

    An indication of the hardness of the water informs a home or business owner of the need for a water filtration system that will improve the quality of water. Hard water will make it more difficult to get clothes clean and can affect the taste and clarity of the water. Not all minerals in water will affect the health of the person drinking this water. Calcium and magnesium are normally harmless. Very hard water can be corrosive to the inside of plumbing which then can release heavy metals into the household water.

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  • What is Hardness (Ca,Mg)?

    Hardness results from the accumulation of minerals in water as it passes through rock of different types. The primary minerals that are measured and that cause concern are calcium and magnesium. Water sourced from groundwater is normally harder than water sourced from surface water. Hardness may be expressed as grains per gallon.

    How does Hardness (Ca,Mg) affect drinking water?

    Water high in calcium carbonate will interact poorly with soap, making it hard to get laundry clean and leaving soap scum on water fixtures. Water with high levels of calcium and magnesium can dry hair and skin, irritating eczema. Very hard water can be corrosive to the inside of plumbing which can release heavy metals into the household water.

  • What is Hardness (Total)?

    Total hardness is a test that detects and quantifies all the dissolved minerals in your drinking water, including calcium, magnesium, aluminum, copper, barium, iron, manganese, strontium and zinc. While calcium and magnesium are the primary minerals making water hard, all these minerals contribute to water harness. These minerals are added to source water as it passes through bedrock, especially in regions containing sedimentary rock.

    How does Hardness (Total) affect drinking water?

    An indication of the hardness of the water informs a home or business owner of the need for a water filtration system that will improve the quality of water. Hard water will make it more difficult to get clothes clean and can affect the taste and clarity of the water. Not all minerals in water will affect the health of the person drinking this water. Calcium and magnesium are normally harmless. Very hard water can be corrosive to the inside of plumbing which can release heavy metals into the household water.

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  • What are Heavy Metals?

    Metals included in this category include antimony, arsenic, cadmium, chromium, copper, lead, mercury, selenium and others. Small amounts of some of these metals are essential for good health while others are unnecessary and even harmful or deadly. Heavy metals can make their way into drinking water from plumbing lines and water supply pipes, mining operations, municipal waste disposal, electronics manufacturing and naturally-occurring mineral deposits.

    How do Heavy Metals affect drinking water?

    Even at low levels of exposure, heavy metals in drinking water increase the risk for serious organ damage. Some are classified as human carcinogens and target the brain and nervous system. In blood tests of 94 individuals across the country, traces of heavy metals were found in all 94 people. Babies and children are especially vulnerable to the effects of heavy metals in drinking water.

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  • What is Helicobacter Pylori?

    Helicobacter pylori is a bacterium that infects more than half the world’s population. Most people are infected as children. Transmission can be person to person, from exposure to fecal matter, or through consumption of contaminated drinking water. This points out the importance of relying on safe water sources. While many people suffer no symptoms, others can develop ulcers.

    How does Helicobacter Pylori affect drinking water?

    H. pylori has been found to cause more than 90% of duodenal (small intestine) ulcers and as much as 80% of gastric (stomach) ulcers. Long-term infection can lead to stomach cancer.

  • What is Heptachlor?

    Heptachlor is a pesticide used by itself and as a component of technical chlordane. Its use was phased out of nearly all uses by 1988. It was used to treat soil and seeds to protect corn, small grains and sorghum. Once applied to foods or soils, it does not break down quickly. It can last in soils for many years.

    How does Heptachlor affect drinking water?

    Heptachlor has been detected in food, especially animal products like fish, shellfish and dairy products. It has also been detected at low concentrations in drinking water wells. It creates harm to the liver, kidney, immune and nervous systems when ingested over a long period of time and is classified as a probable carcinogen.

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  • What is Heptachlor epoxide?

    Heptachlor epoxide is the breakdown product of heptachlor, a highly toxic pesticide used until 1988. While heptachlor itself was classified as a probable carcinogen, so is heptachlor epoxide. In fact, heptachlor epoxide is even more harmful than heptachlor. Heptachlor epoxide can leach out of soils used for growing corn, sorghum and other grains and reach groundwater where it can remain for many years. The EPA regulates how much heptachlor epoxide is permitted in drinking water.

    How does Heptachlor epoxide affect drinking water?

    Heptachlor epoxide in water supplies is associated with liver cancer, hormone disruption and harm to the liver. Heptachlor epoxide has been detected in the drinking water of 17 states.

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  • What are Herbicides?

    Herbicides are chemicals used to kill unwanted plants. There are dozens of different commonly-used herbicides employed in industrial, park, community or residential settings. Many of them are capable of persisting in soils and making their way into groundwater supplies. Others may be applied to bodies of water to restrict the growth of aquatic plants. The top herbicides in use in America are atrazine, glyphosate and 2,4-D.

    How do Herbicides affect drinking water?

    The effects of herbicides vary by which herbicide makes its way into drinking water. They can have any of the following effects: endocrine disruption, reproductive toxicity, breast and other types of cancer, delayed sexual maturation, reduction of antioxidants in the body, cell damage or death, changes to brain function and mood, attention disorders and many other problems.

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  • What is Hexachlorobenzene?

    Hexachlorobenzene is a toxic chemical used as a pesticide until 1984. It is also produced as part of the manufacturing process for some other chemicals, such as cleaning fluids. According to the CDC, it is still found in groundwater, surface water and drinking water in very small quantities. Despite being banned, it can still be found in landfills, hazardous waste sites, water supplies and humans. It is very slow to break down to harmless components.

    How does Hexachlorobenzene affect drinking water?

    In recent years, it has been detected in the drinking water of six states. This chemical can accumulate in the body, meaning that long-term low-dose exposure can be more damaging than higher, short-term exposure. In laboratory tests, hexachlorobenezene caused cancer of the liver, kidney, and thyroid. It can also cause neurological, developmental, endocrine, and immunological toxicity.

  • What is Hexachlorobutadiene?

    Hexachlorobutadiene is a chemical used for or existing as a byproduct of manufacturing substances like rubber, lubricants and gases used as refrigerants, solvents and aerosol sprays.

    How does Hexachlorobutadiene affect drinking water?

    Hexachlorobutadiene is a possible human carcinogen that has been found in the drinking water of two states. Animals exposed to low doses of hexachlorobutadiene developed liver and kidney damage.

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  • What is Hexachlorocyclohexane?

    Hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH) is best known for its inclusion in Lindane, an insecticide used on fruit, vegetables, forest crops, animals and in the areas where animals were raised. It has also been used as a treatment for wood. Nearly all the insecticidal qualities resided in the gamma form of this chemical. Gamma-HCH has not been produced in the U.S. since 1976. However, imported gamma-HCH is available as an insecticide and prescription medication to treat scabies and head lice.

    How does Hexachlorocyclohexane affect drinking water?

    All forms of HCH have been found in the soil and surface water long after production stopped because they do not break down easily. HCH persists in both soil and air and can travel great distances. Exposure to forms of HCH can occur through consuming foods or water contaminated by this chemical. As HCH breaks down in the body, some of the breakdown products are themselves toxic. Exposure to HCH can also occur from use of the prescription medications containing the chemical. Frequent use of hexachlorocyclohexane products on the body can cause blood disorders or seizures. All forms of HCH are expected to be carcinogenic to humans.

  • What is Hexachlorocyclopentadiene?

    Hexachlorocyclopentadiene is a byproduct of the manufacture of pesticides like endrin and dieldrin. While the pesticides it was used for are no longer made, it is still used to make flame-retardant materials, plastics and dyes. It is very toxic when consumed orally or through inhalation.

    How does Hexachlorocyclopentadiene affect drinking water?

    In the last few years, it has been detected in the drinking water of 24 states. Health concerns related to this chemical include harm to the stomach and intestines, changes to the liver and kidneys and lung irritation.

  • What is Hexachloroethane?

    Hexachloroethane is used to create insecticides and in metal and alloy production. It is released into the air by pyrotechnics or smoke-producing devices by the military. It is no longer produced except as a byproduct in the manufacture of other chemicals. It may be found as an ingredient in some fungicides, insecticides, lubricants and plastics.

    How does Hexachloroethane affect drinking water?

    In laboratory tests, harm to kidneys and liver occurred, along with liver cancer. It is classified as a possible human carcinogen.

  • What is Hexazinone?

    Hexazinone is an herbicide used to control weeds around crops like pineapples, sugarcane and blueberries, as well as weeds in rangeland, pasture and woodland.

    How does Hexazinone affect drinking water?

    Hexazinone has not been found to be highly toxic. It is not classified as a carcinogen. It is a severe eye irritant.

  • 3-Dichlorobenzene affect drinking water? "

    Less is known about 1,3-Dichlorobenzene than its sister chemicals 1,2 and 1,4 Dichlorobenzene, but it is expected that effects of exposure would be similar, meaning that it may cause cancer, harm to the liver, kidneys and thyroid. It has been found in the drinking water of 23 states in recent years.

  • What is Hydrogen Sulfide?

    If you are exposed to hydrogen sulfide, you will probably know it because it smells like rotten eggs. It is a colorless, flammable gas. It is produced by burning petroleum and natural gas and is emitted from volcanic fissures and hot springs. It’s used in the production of sulfuric acid and textiles. It is an irritant to the eyes, nose and throat and can make breathing difficult for asthmatics. Once in the air, it can convert to sulfur dioxide which is also an eye, nose, throat and lung irritant.

    How does Hydrogen Sulfide affect drinking water?

    It’s possible to be exposed to hydrogen sulfide by drinking contaminated water, but levels are normally low because hydrogen sulfide evaporates quickly. Generally, the only water that is contaminated with hydrogen sulfide is near industries that work with this substance. In the last few years, It has been detected in the drinking water of three states.

  • What is Ibuprofen?

    Ibuprofen is an over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug. Through human elimination, disposal of ibuprofen into water supplies and industrial releases, it can make its way into wells and community water supplies. Ibuprofen is the second-most common pharmaceutical product found in drinking water. Once it reaches drinking water supplies, it tends to persist for longer than 10 days.

    How does Ibuprofen affect drinking water?

    Levels of ibuprofen residues in our drinking has been increasing and water treatment methods do not necessarily eliminate it. The effect of pharmaceutical products in our water is not fully understood.

  • What is Imidacloprid?

    Imidacloprid is a type of neonicotinoid insecticide used on food crops. It has been banned by the European Union because of the harm it does to pollinators like bees. Testing of produce such as spinach, potatoes, lettuce and eggplant found detectable residues on half the items. Since 1999, it has been the world’s most widely used insecticide. Once in soil or water, it can last for years.

    How does Imidacloprid affect drinking water?

    Current research indicates that imidacloprid is not toxic to humans. However, laboratory tests on animals did result in behavioral, respiratory, and developmental changes as well as damage to livers.

  • What is Indeno[1,2,3-c,d]pyrene?

    Indeno[1,2,3-c,d]pyrene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon or PAH, a class of chemical toxic to humans. It is a byproduct of combustion, found in emissions from coal, gas, oil, wood, tobacco or charbroiled meat.

    How does Indeno[1,2,3-c,d]pyrene affect drinking water?

    PAHs as a class of chemical have been linked to cancer in laboratory animals, birth defects and harm to reproductive and nervous systems. It is also harmful to the development of children. Especially for families expecting pregnancies and growing children, it is important to ensure that the water supply does not contain indeno[1,2,3-c,d]pyrene. Only three states have detected indeno[1,2,3-c,d]pyrene in their drinking water in recent years.

  • What are Insects?

    Insects are small animals with six legs, such as ants, flies, beetles, earwigs, crickets, thrips, lice, bees and butterflies. Some insects like to make their way into the safe, dark recesses of wells where they can introduce bacteria and contaminants into drinking water. Once in a well, they may build nests. Earwigs in particular are attracted to wells.

    How do Insects affect drinking water?

    Insects can bring coliform bacteria or viruses into a well. The presence of coliform bacteria in an annual test should be followed by further inspection or testing because it may mean that the well has insect contamination or there could be fecal contamination from some other source. Any change of odor or taste to well water should also be followed by inspection and testing.

  • What is Iodide?

    Iodine is a mineral found in soil, sea water, fresh water and the air. Iodide is a salt formed when iodine combines with calcium, sodium or potassium. The human thyroid collects iodides and converts them into hormones needed to regulate the body’s metabolism. Small amounts are needed for health, however higher levels may enter water supplies through industrial or wastewater discharges.

    How does Iodide affect drinking water?

    The low levels of iodide present in water are generally not harmful. Most people get their greatest exposure to iodide from food, especially fish. Higher exposures can result in hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism and thyroid malignancies.

  • What is Iron?

    Iron is a metallic element found in soil and water around the world. In water, it can be found as ferrous iron which is soluble and clear or insoluble ferric iron which can give water a reddish or orange appearance. Ferrous iron will not color water, but may leave stains on laundry or tableware. Water that is too acidic can increase the amount of iron in the water. An annual test of well water should always be done to ensure that acidity and iron are within acceptable limits.

    How does Iron affect drinking water?

    Iron content in water is not generally harmful but elevated levels of ferric iron can produce abdominal pain or bowel issues.

  • What is Isophorone?

    Isophorone is a clear liquid that smells like peppermint and is widely used as a solvent in printing inks, paints and adhesives. It is a byproduct in the manufacture of other chemicals.

    How does Isophorone affect drinking water?

    The EPA reports that isophorone has been detected in the drinking water water of several cities at low concentrations. It is classified as a human carcinogen. Exposure to isophorone can damage the kidneys.

  • What is Isopropylbenzene?

    Isopropylbenzene is also known as cumene. It is used as a thinner for paints and enamels and it is an intermediate in the production of industrial chemicals such as phenol and acetone. It is often found as a groundwater contaminant at sites where petroleum has been released or where there have been leaks from storage tanks.

    How does Isopropylbenzene affect drinking water?

    In general, it is considered to have low toxicity for humans. It is classified as a probable carcinogen although this has not yet been proven. Health effect information is still limited. Isopropylbenzene has been detected in the drinking water of nine states in the last few years.

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  • What is Klebsiella Pneumoniae?

    Klebsiella pneumoniae is a bacterium that often causes infections in healthcare settings. It is part of a group of bacteria called Enterobacterales, and they are commonly antibiotic-resistant. The majority of surface water has been found to be positive for Klebsiella bacteria, with Klebsiella pneumoniae being the most common.

    How does Klebsiella Pneumoniae affect drinking water?

    Klebsiella pneumoniae is normally present in most people’s intestines and feces and most people do not become ill from its presence. If it spreads to another part of the body, the infection can become severe. In most cases, people suffering serious infection are immunocompromised.

  • What is a Langelier Saturation Index?

    A Langelier Saturation Index is calculated by looking at a water supply’s alkalinity, total dissolved solids, calcium carbonate content, temperature and pH. This index is considered an accurate indication of the corrosive ability of water. Corrosive water is more likely to cause metals from plumbing to enter the water, cause damage to plumbing equipment and result in scale being deposited in pipes and appliances.

    How does Langelier Saturation Index affect drinking water?

    Corrosive water can contain more lead, iron and copper than neutral water, so knowing the Langelier Saturation Index of a water source is an important way to know if filtering is necessary to make drinking water healthy.

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  • What is Lead?

    Lead can make its way into drinking water from naturally-occurring deposits or water pipes that contain lead. It can also contaminate water supplies from mining operations, municipal waste disposal and electronics manufacturing, but the primary source is plumbing materials. The EPA has determined that there is no safe exposure to lead in drinking water.

    How does Lead affect drinking water?

    Lead interferes with the chemistry of human blood and causes delays in mental and physical development of children and their ability to learn. It can also increase blood pressure of adults and create harm for kidneys and reproductive functions. In one project to run blood tests to check for lead, of 73 people in different areas who were tested for lead, all 73 tested positive, along with nearly all of 13,900 people tested by the CDC as part of a separate project.

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  • What is Legionella Pneumophila?

    Legionella pneumophila is a type of bacteria found throughout the world. Airborne Legionella pneumophila growing in an air conditioning system in a hotel caused a serious outbreak of illness and death in 1976 and led to its isolation. The hotel had housed hundreds of American Legion members at a convention, resulting in this bacteria being named after that event. It is spread through water droplets in the air that are inhaled.

    How does Legionella Pneumophila affect drinking water?

    Most healthy people will not become ill after being exposed to Legionella pneumophila. Those who are older than 50, who are or have been smokers or have lung problems or weakened immune systems are more susceptible. The most likely way Legionella pneumophila is spread is through water used for showering, water passing through cooling towers in large buildings, decorative fountains or hot tubs.

  • What is Lindane?

    Lindane is another name for gamma-hexachlorocyclohexane which was usually seen in combination with alpha-HCH, beta-HCH, delta-HCH and epsilon-HCH. It was used as an insecticide on fruit, vegetables, forest crops, animals and in the areas where animals were raised. Nearly all the insecticidal qualities resided in the gamma form of this chemical. Gamma-HCH has not been produced in the U.S. since 1976. However, imported gamma-HCH is available as an insecticide and prescription medication to treat scabies and head lice.

    How does Lindane affect drinking water?

    Lindane has been found in the soil and surface water long after production stopped because its components do not break down easily. Its primary ingredients, different forms of hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH), persist in the soil and air and can travel great distances. Exposure to Lindane can occur through eating foods or water contaminated by this chemical. As HCH breaks down in the body, some of the breakdown products are themselves toxic. Exposure to gamma-HCH can also occur from use of the prescription medications containing the chemical. Frequent use of hexachlorocyclohexane products like Lindane on the body can cause blood disorders or seizures. All forms of HCH are expected to be carcinogenic to humans.

  • What is Lithium?

    Lithium is a rare metal that is used in manufacturing batteries, aircraft and pharmaceuticals. It occurs naturally in soil and rock.

    How does Lithium affect drinking water?

    High levels of lithium in drinking water can cause abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting. They can also impair thyroid and kidney function. Traces of lithium in drinking water can pass through a placenta and create complications for the baby just before or after birth. Four states have detected lithium in their drinking water in the last few years.

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  • What is 2-Methyl-4,6-dinitrophenol?

    2-Methyl-4,6-dinitrophenol is more likely to be encountered through airborne exposure than through drinking water. It has been used to manufacture pesticides, but currently is used in the production of other chemicals.

    How does 2-Methyl-4,6-dinitrophenol affect drinking water?

    Information on health effects for humans is limited. The EPA lists this chemical as a hazardous air pollutant although it is possible to be exposed to it by eating fish and shellfish obtained from waters near land.

  • What is 2-Methylnaphthalene?

    This chemical is used to create dyes, resins and other chemicals, as well as synthesizing vitamin K. These chemicals are present in cigarette and wood smoke, tar and at some hazardous waste sites. Exposure is most likely to occur through airborne pollution, although exposure to soil or water near a waste site is possible.

    How does 2-Methylnaphthalene affect drinking water?

    This chemical is classified as a human carcinogenic however it is contacted; plus it is damaging to the lungs. It has been found in the drinking water of one state in recent years.

  • What is 3,4-Methylphenol?

    3,4-Methylphenol is made from a combination of m-cresol and p-cresol, two corrosive chemicals. Cresols are present in nature, occurring in plant oils and resulting from wildfires and volcanic eruptions. Cresols are also introduced into the environment through industrial use, automobile exhaust, cigarette smoke and burning of trash.

    How does 3,4-Methylphenol affect drinking water?

    Cresols are not normally found in drinking water because they are readily degraded by microorganisms. Industrial exposure at high levels can result in skin irritations and internal and external burns. There is some limited evidence of it being carcinogenic in laboratory animals.

  • What are m-Cresol and p-Cresol?

    These two chemicals have a medicinal smell and are used to dissolve other chemicals, or as disinfectants and deodorizers. Cresols are corrosive. They have the ability to create harm to the skin, nervous system, and respiratory system. Low exposure causes irritation to eyes, nose and throat. High levels can cause skin and internal burns, liver and kidney damage and possibly death. Cresols are present in nature, occurring in plant oils and resulting from wildfires and volcanic eruptions.

    How do m-Cresol, p-Cresol affect drinking water?

    Cresols are not normally found in drinking water because they are readily degraded by microorganisms. Cresols are introduced into the environment through industrial use, automobile exhaust, cigarette smoke and burning of trash. There is some limited evidence for carcinogenicity in laboratory animals. The EPA has classified p-cresol and m-cresol as possible carcinogens.

  • What is m-Dichlorobenzene?

    m-Dichlorobenzene is also called 1,3-dichlorobenzene. It has been used as a fumigant and insecticide and is an intermediate product in the manufacture of other chemicals such as medicine and dyes.

    How does m-Dichlorobenzene affect drinking water?

    When consumed in drinking water, this chemical can cause harm to the central nervous system. Primary methods of exposure are breathing vapors in the air or consuming contaminated water. In recent years, six states have detected m-dichlorobenzene in their drinking water.

  • What are m-Xylene and p-Xylene?

    Xylene occurs naturally in gasoline but it is also created synthetically. It is produced in three forms: m-xylene, p-xylene and o-xylene. The three forms are similar in function and effects. Total xylene or xylene refers to a mixture of all three, although a product referred to as mixed xylene may also contain ethylbenzene. Xylene is used in printing and the creation of rubber, leather products and pharmaceuticals. It can be used as paint thinner, varnish or cleaner. Xylenes are added to gasoline to reduce knocking. Leaking underground tanks can contribute m-xylene, p-xylene, o-xylene or total xylene to groundwater contamination.

    How do m-Xylene and p-Xylene affect drinking water?

    Xylenes cause nervous system damage and may cause harm to developing fetuses such as delayed skeletal development and decreased body weight. Chronic exposure to xylenes may cause memory loss and impaired concentration as well as harm to liver, kidney, gastrointestinal tract and blood. Because xylene products evaporate easily, they are seldom found in surface water. Higher levels may be found in groundwater, especially near areas where industrial leaks may have occurred. There are no EPA regulations on the amount of m-xylene or p-xylene that can exist in drinking water. No states have recently detected m-xylene or p-xylene in drinking water.

  • What is Magnesium?

    Magnesium is a metallic element found throughout the world. Magnesium can enter drinking water as groundwater or surface water when in contact with limestone or dolomite. Magnesium can make household water hard which leaves soap scum on fixtures and makes getting clothes clean a difficult task. High levels of magnesium and calcium can also leave deposits inside plumbing fixtures that can eventually develop into blockages or corrosion.

    How does Magnesium affect drinking water?

    Drinking hard water (water with high levels of magnesium and calcium) is not known to be harmful. In fact, magnesium is essential for health and can have protective effects toward certain health conditions. According to the EPA, there is no regulation on how much magnesium can be detected in drinking water. When both magnesium and sulfate appear in drinking water, the effect can be laxative.

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  • What is Manganese?

    Manganese is a naturally-occurring mineral that is essential for health in very small doses. At higher levels, it can be harmful to health, and can leave black stains on sinks and bathroom fixtures and rust-colored deposits in pipes. It can also affect the color of drinking water.

    How does Manganese affect drinking water?

    At higher levels, manganese can make drinking water taste and smell unpleasant. Too much manganese in drinking water can harm brain development in infants and young children. In older adults, it can cause a disorder similar to Parkinson’s disease. All 50 states have detected manganese in their drinking water.

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  • What is Massachusetts Title V Scan (Plus VOCs)?

    The State Environmental Code for Massachusetts requires specific tests for properties with septic systems that are about to change hands, except for certain instances such as familial transfers. This test checks for coliform bacteria, nitrate and ammonia. This test can reveal animal or human fecal contamination in the septic system.

    How does Massachusetts Title V Scan (Plus VOCs) affect drinking water?

    With this test done, and including volatile organic compounds as well, a new homeowner can rule out some of the most harmful things that could be contaminating their well.

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  • What is Melosira species?

    This is a type of algae with a cell wall made of silica. It is found in rivers and lakes of both good quality and poor quality water. Melosira cells join together into long chains which can block filters. There are dozens of different types of Melosira.

    How does the Melosira species affect drinking water?

    Poor water conditions can contribute to the overgrowth of algae including Melosira, which can affect both taste and odor of drinking water. The only acceptable measurement of algae in drinking water is zero.

  • What is Mercury?

    Mercury is a heavy metal that is liquid at room temperature. It makes its way into drinking water through industrial discharges and dumping of toxic residues, naturally-occurring mineral deposits, incineration of municipal waste and contamination of water supplies by fungicides that contain mercury.

    How does Mercury affect drinking water?

    Even short-term exposure to mercury levels in drinking water above the maximum recommended levels can cause kidney damage. If consumed in drinking water over a long period of time, brain damage and harm to unborn babies can occur. It can also affect vision, hearing and memory.

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  • What is Merphos?

    Merphos is a defoliant commonly used on cotton to remove the leaves from the plant before the cotton is harvested. It is no longer used in the U.S.

    How does Merphos affect drinking water?

    Merphos is a neurotoxin. Direct exposure has caused the paralysis of certain muscles. When merphos is released into water, it oxidizes into DEF, a carcinogenic chemical that targets the stomach and intestines. It also makes changes to the blood and is a neurotoxin. DEF has been found in the drinking water of two states in recent years.

  • What is Methoxychlor?

    Methoxychlor was an insecticide similar to DDT that was used on farm animals and in their feed, and on lumber, gardens, stored grains and agricultural crops. It created harm to the liver, kidney and nervous system as well as reproductive and developmental harm.

    How does Methoxychlor affect drinking water?

    Methoxychlor is an endocrine disruptor and neurotoxin. Methoxychlor was banned by the EPA in 2002 and the EPA has determined that drinking water should contain no more than 40 parts per billion of methoxychlor. Ten states have detected methoxychlor in their water supplies in recent years.

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  • What is Methyl Paraoxon?

    Methyl paraoxon is an insecticide that is no longer used (discontinued in 2003). When it breaks down, it produces methyl paraoxon. Methyl paraoxon is much more toxic to humans than methyl parathion. If a person becomes exposed to parathion, it is the metabolite paraoxon that actually creates the harm.

    How does Methyl Paraoxon affect drinking water?

    Long-term exposure can lead to memory loss, depression, confusion, anorexia and other symptoms. In laboratory tests, exposure to paraoxon created growth retardation for offspring, toxic symptoms and death. It is a possible carcinogen.

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    Lead is a soft and malleable element with many uses in construction, batteries, bullets and shot, weights, and as a component of solders, pewters and alloys. Lead enters our water...

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  • What is Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (MTBE)?

    MTBE was a gasoline additive created to make gas burn cleaner, but it turned out to contaminate drinking water after it leaked from faulty underground tanks. By the early 2000s, as many as 40 million people were being served water with MTBE contamination. Once MTBE enters soil or water, it breaks down very slowly. It was replaced by ethanol in 2005.

    How does Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (MTBE) affect drinking water?

    MTBE gives water a foul taste and odor, even at very low levels. At higher levels, it is a suspected carcinogen. People exposed to higher levels of MTBE complain of headaches, upset stomach, dizziness and confusion. Despite this, the EPA does not regulate how much MTBE can exist in drinking water. In recent years, 27 states have detected MTBE in their drinking water.

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  • What are Methylene Blue Active Substances (MBAS)?

    MBAS are used to detect the presence of detergents and foaming agents in drinking water. Nearly all foaming agents are synthetic. None of these substances belong in drinking water. Using MBAS to test water quality helps prevent corrosion as well as contamination.

    How do Methylene Blue Active Substances (MBAS) affect drinking water?

    MBAS assists in the detection of sulfonates, phosphates, sulfates and other substances that are associated with detergents that may be contaminating drinking water supplies.

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    This is one of the most thorough scans available in this industry. The scan includes a microbiological analysis and analysis for semi-volatile organic compounds that are not included in the...

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  • What is Methylene Chloride?

    Methylene chloride is also called dichloromethane. It is an industrial solvent used for stripping paint, cleaning and manufacturing electronics. As of 2019, the EPA has banned all manufacturing, imports and use of methylene chloride which can reach groundwater and other water supplies after industrial releases or landfill leaching.

    How does Methylene Chloride affect drinking water?

    Long-term ingestion of drinking water contaminated with methylene chloride can cause liver damage and cancer in humans. The EPA regulates how much methylene chloride may be present in drinking water, requiring no more than 5 parts per billion. In recent years, 39 states have detected methylene chloride in their drinking water.

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  • What is Metolachlor?

    Metolachlor is an herbicide used for soybeans, sorghum, corn and other crops to keep down the growth of grasses and weeds. It degrades into metolachlor ethane sulfonic acid and four other products that can all leach from soil into surface and ground waters and that are themselves toxic.

    How does Metolachlor affect drinking water?

    In laboratory tests, exposure to metolachlor caused a decrease in body weight and reduced reproductive success. The EPA considers metolachlor a possible carcinogen. While the EPA does not regulate how much metolachlor or its degraded forms are detected in drinking water, some states do.

  • What is Metribuzin?

    Metribuzin is an herbicide used on soybeans, potatoes, alfalfa and other food crops as well as lawns and turf. Areas with shallow groundwater and high soil permeability are most susceptible to drinking water contamination with metribuzin.

    How does Metribuzin affect drinking water?

    Long-term exposure to metribuzin can harm the brain, nervous system, thyroid and liver. It is also associated with developmental toxicity. Those not working industrially with metribuzin may only be exposed through dietary and water sources but these routes are expected to result in low exposure. In recent years, three states have detected metribuzin in their water supplies.

  • What is Mevinphos?

    Mevinphos is an insecticide that was used on vegetables, alfalfa, fruits and nuts. The company distributing mevinphos voluntarily terminated its use in 1994 when the FDA indicated it was going to cancel its authorization for use due to toxicity to workers using the insecticide. Mevinphos is toxic to humans, birds and aquatic life.

    How does Mevinphos affect drinking water?

    When ingested, mevinphos targets the eyes, kidneys, skin, respiratory system, central nervous system and cardiovascular system. The exposure effects of mevinphos can be long-lasting.

  • What is MGK 264?

    MGK 264 is not itself an insecticide, but is a chemical that increases the effectiveness of insecticides. It is low in toxicity, but may be mixed with other chemicals that are more toxic such as pyrethrins or pyrethroids. MGK 264 is used in products applied to animals to control fleas and ticks, and is used to control ants, aphids and other insects.

    How does MGK 264 affect drinking water?

    MGK 264 caused liver tumors in animal tests and is classified as a possible human carcinogen. It can also have harmful effects on the thyroid, reproduction, fetal development and the liver.

  • What is Micrococcus Luteus?

    Micrococcus luteus is a bacterium found in soil, dust, water and on human skin. It’s also found in foods like milk and goat cheese. It may also be detected in both fresh and marine water.

    How does Micrococcus Luteus affect drinking water?

    Micrococcus luteus is capable of being an opportunistic pathogen that creates infections in hospital settings. It can create skin infections and even result in septic shock in a person who is immunocompromised. It has also been associated with brain abscess, endocarditis, bacteremia and septic arthritis in the immunocompromised.

  • What are Microplastics?

    Microplastics are tiny bits of plastic that measure between 5 millimeters and 1 nanometer (one millionth of a millimeter). The smallest ones are not visible to the human eye. They are present in every ecosystem in the planet from the Antarctic to tropical waters and are also found in both tap and bottled water.

    How do Microplastics affect drinking water?

    These bits of plastic release the chemicals they are made from, such as polychlorinated biphenyls, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and bisphenol A. While research on microplastics is not yet complete, the current opinion among researchers is that they can lead to DNA damage and inflammation. Another possible effect is oxidative stress which can lead to such symptoms as memory loss, fatigue, joint pain and sensitivity to noise.

  • What are Minerals?

    Minerals are natural substances that make up the earth. There are many minerals present in every sample of groundwater or surface water, many of which are needed for good health and good-tasting water. However, there are many minerals we don’t need in our water and want to remove. There are other minerals that are healthy, but when their concentrations get too high, they can damage our pipes or plumbing fixtures.

    How do Minerals affect drinking water?

    Helpful, healthy minerals include zinc, iron, sodium, potassium, magnesium, iron and calcium. Too much iron, manganese, calcium or magnesium should be reduced so they don’t stain clothes or fixtures or damage equipment. Minerals like lead, mercury, uranium, arsenic, aluminum, barium and antimony are natural but they don’t belong in your drinking water and should be filtered out.

  • What are Mold & Fungi?

    Just like there is an animal kingdom and plant kingdom, there is a fungi kingdom. It includes mushrooms, molds and yeasts. Of greatest concern when testing drinking water for purity are testing fungi in general and then knowing which types of fungi and mold are present in the sample of water.

    How do Mold & Fungi affect drinking water?

    Any kind of fungi infiltrating water supplies or growing within a water system can affect the taste and odor of the water. Large colonies of fungi can block pipes and fixtures. While some fungi are harmless, others can be dangerous and pathogenic, especially for a person who is immunocompromised. The only acceptable level of fungi in water is zero. The presence of fungi in drinking water can also be a clue that the well structure and integrity need to be examined for sources of contamination.

  • What is Molinate?

    Molinate is an herbicide specifically used on rice crops to control the growth of grass. It is no longer used in the U.S. or Europe.

    How does Molinate affect drinking water?

    In animal tests, molinate caused testicular toxicity, impaired fertility and testicular degeneration along with other reproductive harm. There were also neurotoxic effects.

  • What is Molybdenum?

    Molybdenum is often classified with heavy metals, although its characteristics are somewhat different. When found in water or food, it is much less toxic than heavy metals. It occurs naturally in soil and water.

    How does Molybdenum affect drinking water?

    Too much molybdenum in drinking water can result in a buildup of too much uric acid in human bodies and produce symptoms similar to gout. It is capable of causing changes to blood chemistry.

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  • What is Monobromoacetic Acid (MBA)?

    Monobromoacetic acid is one of five haloacetic acids (HAA5) formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Monobromoacetic acid forms as chlorine interacts with organic material in the water. The amounts of monobromoacetic acid or any haloacetic acid in drinking water are regulated by the EPA because of their potential to create harm.

    How does Monobromoacetic Acid (MBA) affect drinking water?

    Monobromoacetic acid in drinking water is associated with a greater risk of harm to fetal growth and child development. Children may be more susceptible to the effects of HAA5 in their drinking water. Monobromoacetic acid has been found in the drinking water of 44 states.

  • What is Monochloroacetic Acid?

    Monochloroacetic acid is one of five haloacetic acids (HAA5) formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Monochloroacetic acid forms as chlorine interacts with organic material in the water. The amount of monochloroacetic acid or any haloacetic acid in drinking water is regulated by the EPA because of their potential to create harm.

    How does Monochloroacetic Acid affect drinking water?

    Monochloroacetic acid in drinking water is associated with a greater risk of harm to fetal growth and child development. Children may be more susceptible to the effects of HAA5 in their drinking water. Monochloroacetic Acid has been found in 45 states.

  • What are Mycobacteria (all)?

    Mycobacterium is a genus of bacteria that includes nearly a hundred species. They are slow-growing. Twenty of them can cause a wide range of illnesses such as tuberculosis and other lung infections, chronic ulcers and leprosy. They are present in soil, water and dust.

    How do Mycobacteria (all) affect drinking water?

    Piped water can harbor colonies of mycobacteria. They can especially colonize biofilms that develop in wells, pipes or pumps. Healthy people do not normally suffer infections from these ubiquitous bacteria, but an immunocompromised person is at greater risk.

  • What is 2-Nitroaniline?

    2-Nitroaniline is also known as o-Nitroaniline, 88-74-4 Benzenamine and 2-nitro-2-Nitrobenzenamine. It is a bright yellow powder used in the manufacture of dyes, pharmaceuticals and pesticides.

    How does 2-Nitroaniline affect drinking water?

    In industrial exposures, it can irritate eyes and skin, cause mutations and damage to the liver. Exposure can also occur near manufacturing or waste sites or by consuming water that comes from these sites.

  • What is 2-Nitrophenol?

    2-Nitrophenol has a bright yellow color that causes it to be used in hair dyes. It is toxic when in contact with the skin; therefore, it may not be used in high concentrations. It is also used in the production of paints, dyes, rubber and fungicides. It can be found in groundwater as a result of the breakdown of pesticides like parathion and fluoridifen.

    How does 2-Nitrophenol affect drinking water?

    Exposure to 2-Nitrophenol can also occur through air and water contaminated by waste sites and landfills. Effects include liver damage, reduction of fertility and lowered ability of the blood to carry oxygen.

  • What is 3-Nitroaniline?

    This chemical is also known as Benzenamine or m-nitroaniline. It is used in the production of dyes or as a pesticide. It may be found in hair dye.

    How does 3-Nitroaniline affect drinking water?

    There is strong evidence that it is toxic when applied to the skin and can create allergies. Strong exposure can cause changes to the blood, liver and heart function.

  • What is 4-Nitrophenol?

    4-Nitrophenol is a light yellow solid and is used to make drugs, fungicides, and dyes and in the processing of leather. It can be found in groundwater as a result of the breakdown of pesticides like parathion and fluoridifen. Once 4-Nitrophenol has entered soil, it takes a long time for the chemical to break down.

    How does 4-Nitrophenol affect drinking water?

    Exposure to 4-Nitrophenol can also occur through air and water contaminated by waste sites and landfills or by drinking water contaminated by its use as a fungicide. Short-term ingestion of 4-nitrophenol causes headaches, drowsiness, nausea, and cyanosis. Contact with eyes causes irritation.

  • What is n-Butylbenzene?

    n-Butylbenzene is used to make insecticides and other chemicals. It is also a solvent in paints and a plasticizer and is found in asphalt.

    How does n-Butylbenzene affect drinking water?

    n-Butylbenzene has been determined to be a neurotoxin in animal tests. In recent years, nine states have detected n-butylbenzene in their drinking water. The EPA does not regulate the amount of n-butylbenzene that is permitted in drinking water.

  • What is n-Nitrosodimethylamine?

    n-Nitrosodipropylamine is also called dipropylnitrosamine. It is a carcinogenic contaminant that can form during water treatment when a disinfectant like chloramine is used. No states have recently reported the presence of n-nitrosodipropylamine in their drinking water supplies. It is also produced during some manufacturing processes and may contaminate certain weed killers. It has no commercial use.

    How does n-Nitrosodimethylamine affect drinking water?

    This chemical has been carcinogenic in laboratory tests, causing tumors in legs, sinuses, liver and stomach. Sufficient laboratory evidence was available to classify this as a possible human carcinogen.

  • What is n-Propylbenzene?

    n-Propylbenzene is a component of petroleum and coal and so can enter the atmosphere and water sources as a result of burning petroleum or coal. It is used in manufacturing other chemicals and in dyeing textiles and printing. It enters air and water sources from auto and boat exhaust as well as industrial discharges.

    How does n-Propylbenzene affect drinking water?

    n-Propylbenzene has been found to cause harm to the central nervous system as well as eye and skin irritation. Symptoms include headache, weakness, incoordination, and confusion. In recent years, 14 states have detected n-propylbenzene in their drinking water.

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  • What is Naphthalene?

    Naphthalene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon or PAH, a class of chemical toxic to humans. It is a byproduct of combustion, found in emissions from coal, gas, oil, wood, tobacco or charbroiled meat. Naphthalene is also produced for the manufacture of PVC plastics, oven cleaners, mothballs, air fresheners and insecticide. It evaporates easily, meaning that exposure can be airborne or waterborne.

    How does Naphthalene affect drinking water?

    PAHs as a class of chemical have been linked to cancer in laboratory animals, birth defects and harm to reproductive and nervous systems. It is also harmful to the development of children. Especially for families expecting pregnancies and growing children, it is important to ensure that the water supply does not contain naphthalene. Twenty states have detected naphthalene in their drinking water, and this chemical was found stored in the blood of eight out of eight individuals whose blood was tested.

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  • What is Naproxen?

    Naproxen is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, sold as Aleve, Anaprox DS and other names. It can enter water supplies from human use and waste discharge as well as industrial water discharges.

    How does Naproxen affect drinking water?

    Currently, naproxen has been detected at low concentrations in all types of water. It is not completely eliminated in wastewater treatment. Therefore, it can make its way into groundwater as well as surface water that is used for drinking water. While research on the effects of naproxen and other pharmaceutical products in drinking water is incomplete, low levels are unlikely to have an adverse effect on humans.

  • What is Navicula species?

    Navicula is a genus of algae that has a silicon shell shaped like a microscopic boat. It is found in both fresh water and sea water. There are 22 Navicula species.

    How does Navicula species affect drinking water?

    They can accumulate into colonies that block filters in water systems. Ironically, they are used to remove pollutants from black, stinky water samples. They can also be used to degrade certain toxins. Navicula species in drinking water are not thought to be harmful.

  • What is NEtFOSAA?

    NEtFOSAA is also called 2‐(N‐ Ethylperfluorooctanesulfonamido)acetic acid. It is part of a group of perfluoridated compounds (PFAS) that have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate. CDC scientists found this class of chemical in the serum of nearly all of the people tested as part of an extensive testing project. This indicates widespread exposure to these perfluoridated chemicals in the U.S. population.

    How does NEtFOSAA affect drinking water?

    Like other PFAS chemicals, NetFOSAA is likely to cause serious health effects, including cancer, liver and immune system damage, endocrine disruption, accelerated puberty and thyroid changes. More research on the effects of exposure to NEtFOSAA is needed.

  • What is Nickel?

    Nickel is a silvery metal that occurs in mineral deposits around the world. It is often used in chrome-plated plumbing fixtures. Nickel can be released into the air from furnaces of power plants, incinerators or manufacturing facilities that make metallic alloys. Once released into the air, it may take a month for the particles to settle out of the air and end up in the soil where it can migrate into groundwater.

    How does Nickel affect drinking water?

    Because the concentration of nickel in rivers and lakes is very low, there is little exposure to nickel from drinking water unless a person lives near an industry that uses or mines nickel. Some people are allergic to nickel and may develop a rash if they have contact with elevated levels of nickel.

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    Nickel can enter drinking water from metals in pipes and fittings. It can also be present in groundwater when nickel leaches out of rock. Bathing in nickel-contaminated water can cause...

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  • What is Nitrate?

    Nitrate is a common contaminant that can result from the application of fertilizers to soil, animal waste or human waste from septic or municipal systems. It is a form of nitrogen combined with oxygen. Nitrate travels easily through soil to reach groundwater and can contaminate shallow or poorly constructed wells.

    How does Nitrate affect drinking water?

    Nitrate normally exists in drinking water at low levels. Elevated levels can affect the ability of the blood to carry oxygen through the body. In an infant, exposure to higher levels of nitrate can result in an illness called blue baby syndrome, accompanied by shortness of breath and bluish skin. The EPA regulates how much nitrate may exist in drinking water. In the last few years, 15 states have detected nitrates at higher-than-mandated levels. Exposure to high levels can be carcinogenic.

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    In farming communities or around golf courses, parks, livestock facilities, landfills or wastewater disposal sites, nitrates in the drinking water can exceed acceptable levels. High levels of nitrate-nitrogen can be...

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  • What is Nitrite?

    Nitrite is closely related to the chemical fertilizer nitrate. It enters drinking water from urban runoff and seepage to groundwater after fertilizer application to fields. Nitrite is more toxic than nitrate.

    How does Nitrite affect drinking water?

    Elevated levels can affect the ability of the blood to carry oxygen through the body. Nitrite exposure is particularly hazardous for infants below the age of six months. In an infant, exposure to higher levels of nitrate can result in an illness called “blue baby syndrome,” accompanied by shortness of breath and bluish skin. A similar problem can also affect pregnant women. The EPA regulates how much nitrite may exist in drinking water. In the last few years, three states have detected nitrite in drinking water at higher-than-mandated levels. Exposure to high levels can be carcinogenic.

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    Nitrites in the form of mineral salt are commonly found in the ground, and are often a component in road salt. The most common cause of nitrite contamination is from...

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  • What is Nitrobenzene?

    Nitrobenzene is a man-made chemical that is used in the manufacture of other chemicals or as a solvent. It is used in the production of lubricants, pesticides, synthetic rubber, drugs and dyes.

    How does Nitrobenzene affect drinking water?

    Nitrobenzene has been classified as “likely to be carcinogenic” for humans. The spleen and liver are targeted by this chemical when it is ingested. Nitrobenzene has not been detected in the drinking water of any U.S. states in recent years.

  • What is Nitzschia?

    Nitzschia is a type of algae encased in a silicon shell, referred to as a diatom. It is mostly found in cold fresh or marine waters. There are hundreds of species in this group. Diatoms can improve the quality of a body of water by converting dissolved carbon dioxide into oxygen.

    How does Nitzschia affect drinking water?

    Low levels of nitzschia in drinking water are generally not harmful but an algal bloom can elevate the population to hazardous levels. Algae is normally removed from community drinking water during the treatment process. A well can suffer increased levels of algae if there is too much nitrogen or phosphorus in the water. Drinking this water can cause allergies or gastrointestinal symptoms.

  • What is NMeFOSAA?

    NMeFOSAA is also called N-methyl perfluorooctanesulfonamidoacetic acid. It is part of a group of perfluoridated compounds (PFAS) that have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down, so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate. CDC scientists found this class of chemical in the serum of nearly all of the people tested as part of an extensive testing project. This indicates widespread exposure to these perfluoridated chemicals in the U.S. population.

    How does NMeFOSAA affect drinking water?

    Like other PFAS chemicals, NMeFOSAA is likely to cause serious health effects, including cancer, liver and immune system damage, hormone disruption and harm to fetal growth and child development. More research on the effects of NMeFOSAA is needed. NMeFOSAA has been found in the drinking water of four states in recent years.

  • What are Non-Spore Forming Fungi?

    Some well-known and common fungi do not reproduce through the creation of spores, such as Cladosporium, Alternaria, and Aspergillus. Contact with fungal spores is what creates health problems for some humans, but even non-spore forming fungi can create allergies and health problems.

    How do Non-Spore Forming Fungi affect drinking water?

    It is never safe to consume drinking water that contains fungi. Having a non-spore forming fungus in drinking water can still cause infections, especially for the immunocompromised. Aspergillus fumigatus is the most common infective fungus found in drinking water.

  • What is Norflurazon?

    Norflurazon is an herbicide used on vegetables, nuts, cotton and other crops. It can leach through soil and reach groundwater.

    How does Norflurazon affect drinking water?

    It is not considered highly toxic for humans, however, based on animal testing, it was classified as a possible carcinogen.

  • What is 2,2',3,3',4,5',6,6'-OctachloroBiphenyl?

    2,2’,3,3',4,5',6,6'-OctachloroBiphenyl is one of the PCBs, a large group of chemicals used in transformers, insulation, paints, hydraulic fluids and hundreds of other uses.

    How does 2,2',3,3',4,5',6,6'-OctachloroBiphenyl affect drinking water?

    Human PCB exposure can result from eating contaminated fish, meat and dairy products or consuming water contaminated with PCBs. Exposure to high levels of PCBs has resulted in damage to skin, liver and blood, plus liver and biliary cancer. In animal studies, effects include immune suppression plus thyroid and reproductive harm.

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  • What is o-Chlorotoluene?

    o-Chlorotoluene is also known as 2-chlorotoluene and benzyl chloride. It is used as a solvent and in the manufacturing of other chemicals.

    How does o-Chlorotoluene affect drinking water?

    It has been detected in the drinking water of seven states. It has not been evaluated for or classified as a human carcinogen, but there is evidence of harm to the central nervous system and possible harm to fertility.

  • What is o-Cresol?

    o-Cresol has a medicinal smell and is used to dissolve other chemicals or as disinfectants and deodorizers. Cresols are corrosive. They have the ability to create harm to the skin, nervous system, and respiratory system.

    How does o-Cresol affect drinking water?

    Low exposure causes irritation to eyes, nose and throat. High levels can cause skin and internal burns, liver and kidney damage and possibly death. Cresols exist in small quantities in nature but are rarely found in drinking water because they readily degrade. The EPA has classified o-cresol as a possible carcinogen.

  • What is o-Dichlorobenzene?

    o-Dichlorobenzene is also called ortho-dichlorobenzene or 1,2-dichlorobenzene. It is used in herbicides, bathroom cleaners, glues, degreasers, lubricants, and fluids for auto maintenance.

    How does o-Dichlorobenzene affect drinking water?

    Repeated exposure to o-dichlorobenzene can harm the nervous system, kidneys and liver. In laboratory tests, this chemical caused cancer in animals. Primary methods of exposure are breathing vapors in the air or consuming contaminated water. Ten states have detected this chemical in their drinking water in recent years. The allowable level of o-dichlorobeneze in drinking water is regulated by the EPA.

  • What is o-Xylene?

    Xylene occurs naturally in gasoline, but it is also created synthetically. It is produced in three forms: m-xylene, p-xylene and o-xylene. The three forms are similar in function and effects. Total xylene or xylene refers to a mixture of all three, although a product referred to as mixed xylene may also contain ethylbenzene. Xylene is used in printing and the creation of rubber, leather products and pharmaceuticals. It can be used as paint thinker, varnish or cleaner. Xylenes are added to gasoline to reduce knocking.

    How does o-Xylene affect drinking water?

    Xylenes cause nervous system damage and may cause harm to developing fetuses such as delayed skeletal development and decreased body weight. Chronic exposure to xylenes may cause memory loss and impaired concentration as well as harm to the liver, kidneys, gastrointestinal tract and blood. Because xylene products evaporate easily, they are seldom found in surface water. Higher levels may be found in groundwater, especially near areas where industrial leaks may have occurred. Leaking underground tanks can contribute m-xylene, p-xylene, o-xylene or total xylene to groundwater contamination. There are no EPA regulations on the amount of o-xylene that can exist in drinking water. No states have recently detected o-xylene in drinking water.

  • What is Odor?

    Analysis of the odor of drinking water can be a guide to understanding what contaminants may exist in that water supply. For example: rotten eggs or sulfur. Chemical smell: petrochemicals and volatile organic compounds. Fishy smell: barium, cadmium or algal blooms. Earthy smell: iron bacteria.

    How does Odor affect drinking water?

    Not every substance giving drinking water an odor is harmful; but clean, healthy fresh water should not have any odor. Testing drinking water to determine the contaminants is a first step to ensuring water is healthy.

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  • What are Oil and Grease?

    Petroleum products such as oil and grease can leak from storage tanks either above or below ground or from industrial spills and discharges.

    How do Oil and Grease affect drinking water?

    Short-term exposure to drinking water containing petroleum products can result in an upset stomach, vomiting, nausea, cramping and diarrhea. Long-term exposure to petroleum products in drinking water can cause cancers, thyroid dysfunction, kidney and liver problems.

  • What is Orthophosphorus?

    Orthophosphorus is an additive that water treatment plants add to water to prevent corrosion of water pipes. The orthophosphorus creates a coating on the inside of pipes to form a barrier between lead pipes and the water passing through them. In this way, less lead is passed along to water customers.

    How does Orthophosphorus affect drinking water?

    While orthophosphorus is considered a food-grade additive, there is some concern about skin irritation, allergies and respiratory irritation that could result in asthma. There is also a possibility that the addition of phosphorus could damage blood vessels and increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.

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    O-Phosphate is short for Orthophosphate, a form of phosphorus that stimulates excessive algae growth in bodies of water. This excessive growth can deplete dissolved oxygen and kill off any animal...

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  • What is Oscillatoria?

    Oscillatoria is a type of cyanobacteria (sometimes called blue-green algae). They live in fresh, brackish or sea water. They can use sunlight to make their own food.

    How does Oscillatoria affect drinking water?

    Ingestion of oscillatoria via contaminated water can result in illness in humans and animals and can even cause death. These cyanobacteria produce toxins that can cause liver damage, neurotoxicity and even liver cancer.

  • What is 2,2',3',4,6-Pentachlorobiphenyl?

    It is a type of PCB, a chemical that has hundreds of applications in manufacturing, including adhesives, paints, electrical equipment and thermal paper. Once in the environment, these chemicals have remarkable persistence.

    How does 2,2',3',4,6-Pentachlorobiphenyl affect drinking water?

    Pentachlorobiphenyl has been found to be an endocrine disruptor and carcinogenic to humans.

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  • What is p-Chlorotoluene?

    p-Chlorotoluene is an industrial chemical used as a solvent and in the manufacture of dyes, pharmaceuticals, synthetic rubber, and other chemicals. It is also used as an insecticide and bactericide.

    How does p-Chlorotoluene affect drinking water?

    p-Chlorotoluene can be harmful to the liver and kidneys. Four states have reported p-Chlorotoluene in their drinking water in recent years.

  • What is p-Cresol?

    p-Cresol has a medicinal smell and is used to dissolve other chemicals or as disinfectants and deodorizers. Cresols are corrosive. They have the ability to create harm to the skin, nervous system, and respiratory system.

    How does p-Cresol affect drinking water?

    Low exposure causes irritation to eyes, nose and throat. High levels can cause skin and internal burns, liver and kidney damage and possibly death. Cresols exist in small quantities in nature but are rarely found in drinking water because they readily degrade. The EPA has classified p-cresol as a possible carcinogen.

  • What is p-Dichlorobenzene?

    p-dichlorobenzene is also called para-dichlorobenzene or 1,4-dichlorobenzene. It has a sharp smell similar to mothballs and indeed, is used in both mothballs and urinal deodorizing cakes. It’s also used to make lacquers, rubber, waxes, foam sealants, disinfectants and resins and is applied to tobacco seeds, leather and fabric to control mildew.

    How does p-Dichlorobenzene affect drinking water?

    It is carcinogenic and causes harm to the kidneys, liver and thyroid. In laboratory animals, this chemical caused kidney and liver tumors in rats. Primary methods of exposure are breathing vapors in the air or consuming contaminated water. It is considered a possible human carcinogen. The allowable level of p-dichlorobenzene in drinking water is regulated by the EPA. Twenty-three states have detected p-dichlorobenzene in their drinking waters in recent years.

  • What is p-Isopropyltoluene?

    p-Isopropyltoluene is also known as p-cymene. It is a naturally occurring organic compound found in orange juice, oregano, lemon oil and other spices. Most people’s exposure to p-isopropyltoluene comes from foods. p-Isopropyltoluene is also an industrial solvent derived from the distillation of coal and oil. It is used as a thinner for paints and for the manufacture of flavors and fragrances.

    How does p-Isopropyltoluene affect drinking water?

    p-Isopropyltoluene exposures that are too high can create harm for the central nervous system.

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  • What are PAHs?

    PAHs are polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, a category of chemicals that are toxic to humans. They are byproducts of combustion, found in emissions from coal, gas, oil, wood, tobacco or charbroiled meat.

    How do PAHs affect drinking water?

    PAHs have been linked to cancer in laboratory animals, birth defects and reproductive harm. The EPA has classified seven of these chemicals as probable human carcinogens: benz[a]anthracene, benzo[a]pyrene, benzo[b]fluoranthene, benzo[k]fluoranthene, chrysene, dibenz[a,h]anthracene, and indeno[ 1,2,3-c,d]pyrene

  • What are Parasites?

    Parasites that could contaminate drinking water are tiny organisms that rely on other life forms to stay alive. In drinking water, this could mean Cryptosporidium, Giardia, Toxoplasma, Dracunulus, or many other organisms. These parasites and others are capable of causing human illnesses which could become severe. Water treatment normally removes these parasites from community water systems but well water owners need to inspect and treat their own water to eliminate parasites. Parasitical contamination can result from fecal contamination of a well or water source.

    How do Parasites affect drinking water?

    Infections resulting from parasites include gastrointestinal illness; toxoplasmosis resulting in body aches, fever and fatigue; skin sores; dysentery resulting in stomach pain, fever and diarrhea.

  • What is PCB-1221?

    PCBs are polychlorinated biphenyls. They are toxic, persistent synthetic chemicals.There are hundreds of different types of PCBs and they were used to make thousands of different plastic items in everyday use. PCB-1221 is also known as Aroclor which contained a mixture of PCBs plus 21% chlorine. This class of chemical has been banned since 1979. It may be found in many products still in use, such as motor oil, electrical equipment, transformers, cable insulation, oil-based paint, caulking, plastics and much more. PCBs are still being released into the environment from burned wastes, illegal dumping of wastes, leaks from transformers or disposal of consumer products that contain these chemicals. Once in the environment, they do not readily break down. They can be carried long distances and are now found all over the world. Once consumed via food or water or absorbed through other contact, these chemicals accumulate in the human body.

    How does PCB-1221 affect drinking water?

    Consuming water containing this chemical can have many negative effects including increasing the risk of breast cancer, prostate cancer, hormone distruption and harm to reproductive, nervous, immune and endocrine systems. Exposure in the womb is associated with decreased IQ, damaged immunity and skin disease.

  • What are PCBs?

    PCBs are polychlorinated biphenyls. They are toxic and persistent synthetic chemicals.There are hundreds of different types of PCBs and they were used to make thousands of different plastic items in everyday use. This class of chemical has been banned since 1979. It may be found in many products still in use, such as motor oil, electrical equipment, transformers, cable insulation, oil-based paint, caulking, plastics and much more. PCBs are still being released into the environment from burned wastes, illegal dumping of wastes, leaks from transformers or disposal of consumer products that contain these chemicals. Once in the environment, they do not readily break down. They can be carried long distances and are now found all over the world. Once consumed via food or water or absorbed through other contact, these chemicals accumulate in the human body.

    How do PCBs affect drinking water?

    Consuming water containing this chemical can have many negative effects including increasing the risk of breast cancer, prostate cancer, hormone distruption and harm to reproductive, nervous, immune and endocrine systems. Exposure in the womb is associated with decreased IQ, damaged immunity and skin disease.

  • What is Pebulate?

    Pebulate is an herbicide and pesticide used for sugar beets, tobacco and tomatoes. There are no residential uses of this pesticide.

    How does Pebulate affect drinking water?

    Little information is available on pebulate which is a type of thiocarbamate herbicide. Some thiocarbamates have a harmful effect on reproduction. Pebulate is also reported to be neurotoxic.

  • What is Pentachlorophenol?

    Pentachlorophenol is a pesticide used mostly to preserve wood for power poles and log homes. It is extremely toxic to humans.

    How does Pentachlorophenol affect drinking water?

    If pentachlorophenol is found in drinking water, it can cause cancer, harm to fetal development and the immune system. It is a hormone disruptor. It has been found in the drinking water of 19 states in recent years. It may be a factor in spontaneous abortion and infertility. The EPA has set a limit of one part per billion for this chemical.

  • What is Perchlorate?

    Perchlorate is a chemical used in flares, fireworks and rocket fuel. It also occurs naturally in small quantities in the Southwest U.S. Plants can also take up perchlorate from soil that naturally contains it or from chemical contamination. Contamination of food and water from natural and man-made sources is extremely widespread.

    How does Perchlorate affect drinking water?

    Perchlorate interferes with the function of the thyroid in humans. This can lead to fatigue, weakness, sensitivity to cold, weight gain and depression. Exposure during pregnancy or childhood can impair child development and cognitive ability.

  • What is Perfluorobutane sulfonate?

    Perfluorobutane sulfonate (PFBS) is one of a group of perfluorinated chemicals (PFAS) that have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate. Perfluorobutane sulfonate is a newer chemical that is meant to be a replacement for perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS).

    How does Perfluorobutane sulfonate affect drinking water?

    PFBS can cause serious health effects, including cancer, endocrine disruption, hormone disruption resulting in accelerated puberty, liver and immune system damage and thyroid changes. PFBS has been found in the drinking water of 16 states in recent years.

  • What is Perfluorobutyric acid?

    Perfluorobutyric acid (PFBA) is also called perfluorobutanoic acid. It is a chemical produced when stain-resistant and grease-proof coatings on food packaging, couches and carpets break down. It is also a chemical used for wetting, dispersing, emulsifying, and foaming other mixtures. It is one of a group of chemicals referred to as perfluorinated carboxylic acids (PFCAs).

    How does Perfluorobutyric acid affect drinking water?

    PFBA and PFCAs are associated with cancer, birth defects, developmental delays, and changes to the endocrine system. They may also affect the kidneys, reproduction and fertility, brain, nervous system, immune system and behavior. They are found in the blood of many people and animals. PFBA has been found in the water of five states in recent years.

  • What is Perfluorodecanoic acid?

    Perfluorodecanoic acid is one of a group of perfluorinated chemicals (PFAS) that have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate. CDC scientists found this class of chemical in the serum of nearly all of the people tested as part of an extensive testing project. This indicates widespread exposure to these perfluoridated chemicals in the U.S. population.

    How does Perfluorodecanoic acid affect drinking water?

    Perfluorodecanoic acid (PFDoA) can cause serious health effects, including cancer, endocrine disruption, accelerated puberty, liver and immune system damage, and thyroid changes. PFDoA has been found in the drinking water of one state in recent years.

  • What is Perfluoroheptanoic acid?

    Perfluoroheptanoic acid is one of a group of perfluorinated chemicals (PFAS) that have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate. CDC scientists found this class of chemical in the serum of nearly all of the people tested as part of an extensive testing project. This indicates widespread exposure to these perfluoridated chemicals in the U.S. population.

    How does Perfluoroheptanoic acid affect drinking water?

    Perfluoroheptanoic acid (PFHPA) can cause serious health effects, including cancer, endocrine disruption, accelerated puberty, liver and immune system damage, and thyroid changes. PFHPA has been found in the drinking water of eight states in recent years.

  • What is Perfluorohexane sulfonic acid?

    Perfluorohexane sulfonate (or sulfonic) acid (PFHxS) is one of a group of perfluorinated chemicals (PFAS) that have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate. CDC scientists found this class of chemical in the serum of nearly all of the people tested as part of an extensive testing project. This indicates widespread exposure to these perfluoridated chemicals in the U.S. population.

    How does Perfluorohexane sulfonic acid affect drinking water?

    PFHxS can cause serious health effects, including cancer, endocrine disruption, hormone disruption harming fetal growth and child development, liver and immune system damage. PFHxS has been found in the drinking water of 27 states in recent years.

  • What is Perfluorohexanoic acid?

    Perfluorohexanoic acid (PFHxA) is part of a group of chemicals referred as PFAS, a large group of chemicals used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. Many will bioaccumulate. CDC scientists found this class of chemical in the serum of nearly all of the people tested as part of an extensive testing project. This indicates widespread exposure to these perfluoridated chemicals in the U.S. population.

    How does Perfluorohexanoic acid affect drinking water?

    PFHxA and others like it are associated with health problems such as cancer, hormone disruption, liver and immune system damage. These chemicals can persist in soil and water and can accumulate in humans. PFHxA has been found in the drinking water of 11 states in recent years.

  • What is Perfluorononanoic acid?

    Perfluorononanoic acid is also known as PFNA or C9. It’s part of a group of chemicals called perfluorochemicals or PFCs, which are similar in structure and function to PFAS (per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances). The chemicals are found in well-known brands of non-stick cookware and stain-resistant fabrics. Most PFAS chemicals have been phased out and have been replaced with different chemicals. CDC scientists found this class of chemical in the serum of nearly all of the people tested as part of an extensive testing project. This indicates widespread exposure to these perfluoridated chemicals in the U.S. population.

    How does Perfluorononanoic acid affect drinking water?

    PFNA can cause serious health effects, including cancer, endocrine disruption, hormone disruption harming fetal growth and child development, liver and immune system damage. PFNA has been found in the drinking water of 13 states in recent years.

  • What is Perfluorooctane sulfonic acid?

    Perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), also called perfluoroocatane sulfate, is part of a group of chemicals referred to as PFAS, per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances. They have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate.

    How does Perfluorooctane sulfonic acid affect drinking water?

    PFOS can cause serious health effects, including cancer, endocrine disruption, hormone disruption resulting in accelerated puberty, liver and immune system damage, and thyroid changes. PFOS has been found in the drinking water in 28 states in recent years.

  • What is Perfluorooctanoic acid?

    Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) is part of a group of chemicals referred to as PFAS, per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances. They have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. PFOA is also created when some other chemicals break down. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down fully so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate.

    How does Perfluorooctanoic acid affect drinking water?

    PFOA can cause serious health effects, including cancer, hormone disruption, liver and immune system damage, and harm to fetal growth and child development. PFOA has been found in the drinking water in 30 states in recent years.

  • What is Perfluoropentanoic acid?

    Perfluoropentanoic acid (PFPeA) is part of a group of chemicals referred to as PFAS, per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances. They have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate.

    How does Perfluoropentanoic acid affect drinking water?

    Perfluoropentanoic acid can cause serious health effects, including cancer, liver and immune system damage, hormone disruption, harm to fetal growth and child development. Perfluoropentanoic acid has been found in the drinking water in 8 states in recent years.

  • What is Perfluorotetradecanoic acid?

    Perfluorotetradecanoic acid (PFTA) is one of a group of perfluorinated chemicals (PFAS) that have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate. CDC scientists found this class of chemical in the serum of nearly all of the people tested as part of an extensive testing project. This indicates widespread exposure to these perfluoridated chemicals in the U.S. population.

    How does Perfluorotetradecanoic acid affect drinking water?

    Perfluorotetradecanoic acid can cause serious health effects, including cancer, liver and immune system damage, hormone disruption, harm to fetal growth and child development. Perfluorotetradecanoic acid has been found in the drinking water in one state in recent years.

  • What is Perfluorotridecanoic acid?

    Perfluorotridecanoic acid (PFTrDA) is one of a group of perfluorinated chemicals (PFAS) that have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate. CDC scientists found this class of chemical in the serum of nearly all of the people tested as part of an extensive testing project. This indicates widespread exposure to these perfluoridated chemicals in the U.S. population.

    How does Perfluorotridecanoic acid affect drinking water?

    Perfluorotridecanoic acid can cause serious health effects, including cancer, liver and immune system damage, hormone disruption and harm to fetal growth and child development. Perfluorotridecanoic acid has been found in the drinking water in one state in recent years.

  • What is Perfluoroundecanoic acid?

    Perfluoroundecanoic acid (PFUnA) is one of a group of perfluorinated chemicals (PFAS) that have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate. CDC scientists found this class of chemical in the serum of nearly all of the people tested as part of an extensive testing project. This indicates widespread exposure to these perfluoridated chemicals in the U.S. population.

    How does Perfluoroundecanoic acid affect drinking water?

    Perfluoroundecanoic acid can cause serious health effects, including cancer, liver and immune system damage, hormone disruption and harm to fetal growth and child development. Perfluorotridecanoic acid has been found in the drinking water in four states in recent years.

  • What is Permethrin?

    Permethrin is a synthetic pesticide commonly used in mosquito control programs. It is also sold in foggers and bug sprays, in flea products for dogs, termite products, lice treatments and other insect control products. It is also used on food crops.

    How does Permethrin affect drinking water?

    Extended exposure can be damaging to the liver. It is classified by the EPA as likely to be carcinogenic to humans if it is ingested. Nine states have detected permethrin in their drinking water in recent years.

  • What are Pesticides?

    A pesticide is any substance or mixture intended to prevent, destroy or repel any pest, or to regulate, remove the leaves from or dry out a plant. Pesticides include insecticides, herbicides, fungicides and rodenticides. Some of these chemicals kill algae, others kill bacteria. Disinfectants kill microorganisms; nematicides kill worm-like organisms.

    How do Pesticides affect drinking water?

    Pesticides normally show up in drinking water in low concentrations so they are unlikely to have a severe effect on the consumer. When a pesticide bioaccumulates, or is stored in the body rather than passing out quickly, it can have a more toxic effect. Long-term exposure to a pesticide that bioaccumulates can create chronic health problems. The exact symptoms would depend on which pesticide was ingested.

  • What are PFAS chemicals?

    PFAS are per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances, a large group of chemicals that have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. Many will bioaccumulate. CDC scientists found this class of chemical in the serum of nearly all of the people tested as part of an extensive testing project. This indicates widespread exposure to these perfluoridated chemicals in the U.S. population.

    How do PFAS chemicals affect drinking water?

    Perfluorinated chemicals are known to create serious health effects among people who have been exposed to and accumulated these chemicals. For example: cancer, endocrine disruption, accelerated puberty, liver and immune system damage and thyroid changes.

  • What is PFOA?

    PFOA (also called perfluorooctanoic acid) is part of a group of chemicals referred to as PFAS, per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances. They have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. PFOA is also created when some other chemicals break down. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down fully so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate.

    How does PFOA affect drinking water?

    PFOA can cause serious health effects, including cancer, hormone disruption, liver and immune system damage, and harm to fetal growth and child development. PFOA has been found in the drinking water in 30 states in recent years. In recent testing, the CDC found PFOA in the blood of nearly every person tested, proof that PFOA exposure is widespread throughout the U.S. population.

  • What is PFOS?

    PFOS is also referred to as perfluorooctane sulfonic acid or perfluoroocatane sulfate. It’s part of a group of chemicals referred to as PFAS, per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances. They have been used in industry and consumer products for decades. They have been used to manufacture nonstick cookware, water-repellent clothing, cosmetics, firefighting foams and coatings that resist staining and grease. Some PFAS chemicals have been phased out and new PFAS chemicals are being used in their place. PFAS chemicals can migrate into soil, water and air during production and use. They do not break down so they persist in the environment and they can migrate through soils to end up in groundwater. They are found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. Many will bioaccumulate.

    How does PFOS affect drinking water?

    PFOS can cause serious health effects, including cancer, endocrine disruption, hormone disruption resulting in accelerated puberty, liver and immune system damage, and thyroid changes. PFOS has been found in the drinking water in 28 states in recent years.

  • pH

    What is pH?

    pH is a measurement of whether water or soil is acidic or basic. Water should measure between 6.5 and 8.7. Neutral is a pH of 7.0. Acidic water will cause corrosion of a water system which can lead to increased metals from plumbing equipment entering drinking water. Alkaline water with a higher pH can taste or smell bad and damage plumbing equipment.

    How does pH affect drinking water?

    The corrosiveness of acidic water can add lead, copper or zinc to drinking water, making it less healthy and giving it a bad taste and smell. A low pH can also make some contaminants, such as heavy metals, more damaging to the body than they would be with a higher pH to the water. The water itself is unlikely to be harmful or helpful to health.

  • What is Phenanthrene?

    Phenanthrene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon or PAH, a class of chemical toxic to humans. It is a byproduct of combustion, found in emissions from coal, gas, oil, wood, tobacco or charbroiled meat. It is also used to make dyes, plastics, pesticides, drugs and explosives.

    How does Phenanthrene affect drinking water?

    PAHs as a class of chemical have been linked to cancer in laboratory animals, birth defects and harm to reproductive and nervous systems. It is also harmful to the development of children. Especially for families expecting pregnancies and growing children, it is important to ensure that the water supply does not contain phenanthrene. While only three states have detected phenanthrene in their drinking water, this chemical was found stored in the blood of all eight individuals whose blood was tested in one project and nearly 90% of more than 8000 people tested as part of CDC monitoring.

  • What is Phenol?

    Phenols are chemicals used to kill slime or as antiseptics or disinfectants. They have a sharp, sweet odor. Phenols may be referred to as carbolic acid, hydroxybenzene, monohydroxybenzene or other names. Exposure may be highest in the petroleum industry or in plants that manufacture nylon, epoxy resins or herbicides. Phenols are used in throat lozenges and some ointments. They can reach bodies of water because of industrial water water discharges and from agricultural activities. Phenolic compounds also exist in nature.

    How does Phenol affect drinking water?

    Phenols are very toxic to humans. They are carcinogens and damage red blood cells and the liver, even at low concentrations.

  • What is Phoma?

    Phoma is a type of fungus that is found in plant material and soil around the world. It can grow quickly when it contaminates a damp home. While it is not particularly toxic, it can cause hay fever, respiratory infections or asthma.

    How does Phoma affect drinking water?

    Like many other fungi, Phoma can form biofilms in water systems that are difficult to fully remove. This can change the taste and odor of the water and introduce allergenic or toxic compounds into the water. Fungi in drinking water can indicate a source of water or well contamination that should be resolved.

  • What is Phosphorus?

    When drinking water sources contain too much phosphorus, this can cause the increased growth of algae and aquatic plants which then decrease the level of dissolved oxygen in the water. Reduced oxygen can kill aquatic animals. Algal blooms resulting from excessive phosphorus can be harmful to humans as well. Phosphorus can be added to water supplies from urban runoff and excessive fertilizer use.

    How does Phosphorus affect drinking water?

    Excessive phosphorus in a water supply can make water treatment less efficient. The result can be a bad taste or odor to drinking water, a cloudy appearance or the presence of microorganisms that otherwise would have been removed. If levels get too high, digestive problems could result.

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  • What is Picloram?

    Picloram is an herbicide used on pastures, rangelands, forestry and small grain crops. Picloram has a high ability to leach through soils and reach groundwater.

    How does Picloram affect drinking water?

    Animal tests have shown that picloram is toxic to the liver, kidneys and reproductive system. The EPA regulates how much picloram is permitted in drinking water. Twenty-nine states have detected picloram in their drinking water in recent years.

  • What is a Pond Scan?

    This test examines pond water for the presence of Escherichia coli or Enterococci, both of which can cause serious illness in humans. If this water is used as a water supply for humans or animals or for swimming, this is an important test.

    How does Pond Scan affect drinking water?

    A pond scan test can inform a homeowner of the need to correct the health of the pond or to determine what type of water treatment or filtering is required to use that pond water as a household water supply or as a watering source for animals.

  • What is Potassium?

    Potassium is a mineral that is essential for health. It is seldom found in any quantity in drinking water. Some households may have water softening systems that use potassium instead of sodium and this can add potassium to their water supply.

    How does Potassium affect drinking water?

    Certain people are susceptible to high levels of potassium in their blood (hyperkalemia). This can also be a side effect of many medications and a few herbal remedies. These people should refrain from using a potassium-based water softening system. Few other individuals are likely to have any problem with the levels of potassium in drinking water.

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  • What is Primidone?

    Primidone is a type of barbiturate used to control seizures and essential tremors. It can be detected in the wastewater discharges of water treatment facilities, indicating that it is not completely removed from water during treatment.

    How does Primidone affect drinking water?

    Primidone can reach drinking water as a result of human consumption followed by elimination, pharmaceutical company water discharges and disposal of unused prescriptions. It is not yet understood how the many pharmaceutical residues in drinking water sources affect human health.

  • What is Progesterone?

    Progesterone is a hormone produced by the ovaries. Through use of pharmaceutical products containing progesterone or the production of progesterone by women, this hormone makes its way into our water supplies. It is not completely removed by water treatment processes.

    How does Progesterone affect drinking water?

    Levels of progesterone in drinking water are extremely low. However, research is incomplete on the long-term effect of hormones and pharmaceuticals in our water supplies.

  • What is Prometon?

    Prometon is an herbicide of the triazine class. It is used to control weed growth in non-agricultural areas such as bare fields and under asphalt. Once in the soil, it is highly persistent. It then has the ability to leach through soil and reach groundwater where it can persist for a considerable period of time.

    How does Prometon affect drinking water?

    Prometon has low toxicity for humans. It is only slightly toxic for birds, plants and small animals. In recent years, prometon has been detected in the drinking water of one state.

  • What is Prometryn?

    Prometryn is an herbicide of the triazine class. It is used to control grasses and weeds around cotton, celery, dill and other food crops. It has the ability to reach groundwater through certain types of soils and so its use is restricted.

    How does Prometryn affect drinking water?

    Prometryn has low toxicity for humans although it is harmful for birds, plants and small animals. It was detected in the groundwater of California.

  • What is Pronamide?

    Pronamide is an herbicide used to prevent weed growth or kill it after it has emerged. It is used on food crops, Christmas trees, turf, and unused land. It is capable of leaching through soil and reaching groundwater where it is persistent.

    How does Pronamide affect drinking water?

    Pronamide has caused cancer in animal studies and targets the liver, thyroid, pituitary and testes. It is classified as a probable human carcinogen.

  • What is Propachlor?

    Propachlor is an herbicide used for corn, sorghum, and onion seed. Propachlor is not expected to be persistent in soil. However, as propachlor degrades, it can form three degradates that are themselves toxic.

    How does Propachlor affect drinking water?

    It is classified as likely to be a human carcinogen, and additionally, as having a high toxicity for the eyes. It is also harmful to human development and toxic to the reproductive function. It has been detected in drinking water supplies in four states.

  • What is Propazine?

    Propazine is an herbicide used to kill weeds in greenhouses and on sorghum crops. It is a triazine-type herbicide, a very widely used type of herbicide. Once in soil, propazine degrades into desthylatrazine which is a hormone disruptor for both humans and wildlife.

    How does Propazine affect drinking water?

    In humans, it can cause endocrine disruption. Propazine does not persist in soil but degrades into desethylatrazine which is a hormone disruptor. Desethylatrazine also causes harm to a developing fetus, harm to the reproductive system, and changes to the nervous system, brain and behavior. Desethylatrazine has been found in the drinking water of two states.

  • What is Pseudomonas?

    Pseudomonas is a bacterium commonly found in soil and drinking water sources. It helps break down sewage before it gets further processing. Pseudomonas can sometimes be found in bottled water and may create biofilms in filtering or plumbing equipment which are more likely sources of contamination than the drinking water itself.

    How does Pseudomonas affect drinking water?

    Healthy people normally do not suffer ill effects from contacting Pseudomonas since it is ubiquitous in the environment. A susceptible person may suffer infections in many parts of the body including the ears, skin, eyes, digestive tract, lungs or urinary tract. This type of infection may be spread in a hospital rather than through drinking water.

  • What is Pseudomonas Aeruginosa?

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a bacterium commonly found in soil and drinking water sources. It helps break down sewage before it gets further processing. Pseudomonas can sometimes be found in bottled water and may create biofilms in filtering or plumbing equipment. An infection with P. aeruginosa is most likely to occur in a hospital. It is antibiotic-resistant and is estimated to cause nearly 3,000 deaths per year in hospital settings.

    How does Pseudomonas Aeruginosa affect drinking water?

    Of all the types of Pseudomonas in the environment, Pseudomonas aeruginosa is the most likely to cause infections in humans. However, it is seldom found as a contaminant in drinking water. It may form biofilms in filters, shower heads and taps and thus make its way into drinking water. Healthy people seldom suffer infections from P. aeruginosa.

  • What is Pseudomonas Stutzeri?

    Pseudomonas stutzeri is a bacterium commonly found in soil and drinking water sources. It helps break down sewage before it gets further processing. Pseudomonas can sometimes be found in bottled water and may create biofilms in filtering or plumbing equipment. In one examination of bottled water brands, P. stutzeri was the most common type of Pseudomonas detected. These bacteria are not as antibiotic-resistant as other species of Pseudomonas. It is an opportunistic type of bacteria, meaning that, in general, it only creates infections among those whose immunity is impaired.

    How does Pseudomonas Stutzeri affect drinking water?

    Pseudomonas stutzeri contamination is generally traced to water distribution or plumbing equipment rather than the drinking water itself. It is seldom found as a contaminant in drinking water.

  • What is Pump, Filtration and Well Testing?

    Pumps and filtration systems can develop biofilms that continuously contaminate drinking water. Wells are subject to contamination from insects, animals, bacteria, fungi, industrial chemicals and toxic minerals. Pump, filtration and well testing determines if there are any contaminants and what they are, enabling the owner to keep equipment clean and functional.

    How does Pump, Filtration and Well Testing affect drinking water?

    A regular schedule of pump, filtration and well testing can identify the exact contaminants in a water system and help the owner determine the exact service that will keep the water healthy for the whole household.

  • What is Pyrene?

    Pyrene is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon or PAH, a class of chemical toxic to humans. It is a byproduct of combustion, found in emissions from coal, gas, oil, wood, tobacco or charbroiled meat. It is also manufactured to be used in the production of dyes, plastics and pesticides.

    How does Pyrene affect drinking water?

    PAHs as a class of chemical have been linked to cancer in laboratory animals, birth defects and harm to reproductive and nervous systems. It is also harmful to the development of children. Especially for families expecting pregnancies and growing children, it is important to ensure that the water supply does not contain pyrene. While only four states have detected pyrene in their drinking water, this chemical was found stored in the blood of all eight individuals whose blood was tested in one project and nearly 90% of more than 8000 people tested as part of CDC monitoring.

  • What is Radium-226?

    Radium-226 can produce both gross alpha activity and gross beta activity. Gross alpha activity and gross beta activity both refer to the measurement of radioactivity picked up by drinking water as it passes through natural or man-made deposits. Alpha-emitting articles are more likely to occur in areas where there has been a high level of mining. They can also occur where the bedrock contains radioactive materials. The EPA has set standards for the acceptable measurement of gross alpha activity that is permitted in drinking water to keep customers safe. Alpha particles are heavier than beta particles and possess more energy.

    How does Radium-226 affect drinking water?

    Alpha particles that originate in radium can become deposited in bone, triggering bone cancer. They can also cause cataracts, anemia and fractured teeth.

  • What is Radium-228?

    Radium-228 produces gross beta activity which refers to the measurement of radioactivity picked up by drinking water as it passes through natural or man-made deposits. Beta-emitting particles are more likely to occur in areas where water passes through natural deposits or nuclear waste or testing sites. The EPA has set standards for the acceptable measurement of gross beta activity that is permitted in drinking water to keep customers safe. The primary material likely to contaminate drinking water with beta particles is radium-228 while radium-226 can produce lesser amounts. Beta particles are lighter than alpha particles and can travel greater distances through the air.

    How does Radium-228 affect drinking water?

    The beta particles emitted by radium-228 are less damaging than alpha particles but if ingested, can damage internal cells and organs.

  • What is Radon?

    Radon is a naturally-occurring radioactive gas that seeps from bedrock and can enter homes as a gas leaking through the foundations of homes. It can also enter water supplies as groundwater passes through rock with radioactive deposits. Radon gas introduces alpha, beta and gamma radioactive particles into a home. Exposure can occur through breathing radon-contaminated air or showering in or ingesting radon-contaminated water. Tests are available that measure the radon in air or the radon in water.

    How does Radon affect drinking water?

    Whether exposure to radon occurs through gas seeping into a home or through radon-contaminated water, the EPA estimates that radon causes 20,000 deaths each year from lung cancer related to radon exposure.

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  • What is Ralstonia Pickettii?

    Ralstonia pickettii is a type of bacteria found in moist environments such as soils, rivers and lakes. They are resistant to many disinfectants and so may make their way through water treatment and into drinking water supplies. Most infections occur in immunocompromised patients and hospital or medical treatment settings.

    How does Ralstonia Pickettii affect drinking water?

    Ralstonia pickettii has the ability to create biofilms in water piping and industrial high-purity water. It can therefore be found in municipal drinking water supplies. It is resistant to many antibiotics. In immunocompromised individuals, it has caused meningitis, septic arthritis and osteomyelitis.

  • What is Real Estate Transaction Testing?

    Real estate transaction testing is a key way of expediting the transaction by determining if water supplies are contaminated. The real estate transaction test checks for pesticides, herbicides, minerals making the water too hard, heavy metals, volatile organic compounds, semi-volatile organic compounds, radon, bacteria, fungi and many other substances.

    How does Real Estate Transaction Testing affect drinking water?

    Both buyers and sellers are protected by completing this test before closing on a home. Buyers can confirm that no well repairs are needed before residence and sellers can reassure buyers of the healthy quality of water in their new homes.

  • What is Rhizoclonium?

    Rhizoclonium is a class of algae common in both fresh water and salt water.

    How does Rhizoclonium affect drinking water?

    Rhizoclonium is a non-pathogenic algae, meaning that it is not known to create any health problems.

  • What is Rhodotorula Glutinis?

    Rhodotorula glutinis is a type of yeast that can cause infections in humans. This yeast is widespread and can be found in soil, air, sea water, dairy products, and a household environment, especially bathrooms where they have an affinity for plastics and grout.

    How does Rhodotorula Glutinis affect drinking water?

    Rhodotorula glutinis has been detected in groundwater sources of drinking water, bottled water and tap water. Infections from Rhodotorula glutinis are most likely to occur in those who are immunocompromised such as transplant patients, those with congenital heart disease or cancer patients.

  • What is Rhodotorula Mucilaginosa?

    Rhodotorula mucilaginosa (formerly named R. rubra) is a type of yeast that can cause infections in humans. This yeast is widespread and can be found in soil, air, sea water, milk and fruit juice. It is occasionally found in drinking water. Rhodotorula mucilaginosa can create colonies in residential dishwashers from which yeast-laden aerosols can be emitted, distributing this fungus to the residents and other parts of the home. In an examination of 30 different dishwashers, every one was contaminated with a type of yeast.

    How does Rhodotorula Mucilaginosa affect drinking water?

    Rhodotorula mucilaginosa was long thought to not be pathogenic, but that changed with the discovery of R. mucilaginosa infections in humans. These infections generally occur in patients with serious health conditions such as cancer, use of a central venous catheter and immunosuppressive drugs.

  • What is Roseomonas Species?

    Roseomonas is a class of bacteria found in soil, water and air. They are most likely to exist in murky water or contaminated water taps.

    How does Roseomonas Species affect drinking water?

    The different Roseomonas species are unlikely to cause infections in a healthy person, even when Roseomonas can be found in their blood or other fluids. The exception is R. mucosa. In most cases, Roseomonas infections occur in patients treated with immunosuppressive drugs.

  • What is S-Ethyl dipropylthiocarbamate (EPTC)?

    S-Ethyl dipropylthiocarbamate (EPTC) is an herbicide used to prevent weed growth in every region of the U.S. It is used on corn, potatoes, beans, peas, alfalfa, trees and ornamentals. It may also be used at residential and public sites such as parks, gardens and golf course sand traps. It is capable of leaching into drinking water sources but usually at a low level.

    How does S-Ethyl dipropylthiocarbamate (EPTC) affect drinking water?

    S-Ethyl dipropylthiocarbamate (EPTC) is highly toxic, targeting the brain and the nervous system. While studies are not yet conclusive, some evidence points to it being associated with colon cancer and leukemia.

  • What is a Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM)?

    With the use of a scanning electron microscope, the exact genus and species of fungi, bacteria and other microorganisms can be identified. This identification can be a guide to what might be causing contamination of a well or water source. The quantity of each contaminant can also be determined. Deposits of minerals can also be detected.

    How does Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) affect drinking water?

    Especially for businesses that rely on the purity of their water, such as medical or biopharmaceutical companies, the precise information received from an examination with a SEM can be essential. Any contamination of the water or medical equipment can be precisely diagnosed and a correction can then be planned.

  • What is sec-Butylbenzene?

    sec-Butylbenzene is used as a plasticizer, in the manufacture of plastics, as a solvent and in the manufacture of other chemicals.

    How does sec-Butylbenzene affect drinking water?

    sec-Butylbenzene has been detected in the drinking water of eight states in recent years. While information on sec-butylbenzene is incomplete, some reports state that sec-butylbenzene may target the brain, leading to brain and spinal cord hemorrhage, and may cause liver enlargement and lung damage.

  • What is Sediment?

    Sediment is the inclusion of sand, rocks, minerals, plant material, fungi or bacteria in drinking water. All this material in drinking water can give the water a cloudy or colored appearance. It may remain suspended and not settle to the bottom. Any water with a poor taste or appearance should be tested to determine what type of sediment is contaminating the water.

    How does Sediment affect drinking water?

    Sediment can not only affect the taste and odor, it can also wear out pumps and create clogs in the plumbing system. Some sediment is harmless, but sediment can also contain bacteria, fertilizers, pesticides and heavy metals that can harm health.

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  • What is Selenium?

    Selenium is a naturally-occurring mineral and so can be picked up in surface or groundwater as the water passes over mineral deposits containing selenium. However, it can also make its way into water supplies from petroleum refineries and mining. Industrial contamination is the primary source of water contamination. The EPA recommends that no more than 0.05 milligrams of selenium per liter is present in drinking water to protect the health of water customers (equal to 50 parts per billion).

    How does Selenium affect drinking water?

    Extended exposure to drinking water with more than 0.05 milligrams of selenium per liter of water can result in the loss of fingernails or hair, numbness in extremities or circulation problems. Selenium has been found in the drinking water of 49 states and above mandated levels in five states.

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    Heavy metals can enter your water supply from nearby industrial sites or from naturally occurring deposits. These minerals accumulate in the body which means they can have serious health effects...

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  • What are Semi-Volatile Organic Compounds?

    An organic compound is one in which one or more atoms of carbon are linked to other elements. A volatile organic compound is one that is capable of rapid evaporation from the solid or liquid form to a gaseous form. A semi-volatile organic compound is one that is not emitted from a product or surface as rapidly. SVOCs are found in pesticides, fire retardants or plasticizers (compounds used to make products more durable).These compounds are released into our homes or offices, a process called “off-gassing” and can often (but not always) be smelled. Many of these gasses are toxic and can contaminate our water supplies as well as our air. Chemicals in this group include aniline, benzyl alcohol, fluorene, naphthalene, the pesticide DDT, plasticizers like phthalates, and fire retardants like PCBs.

    How do Semi-Volatile Organic Compounds affect drinking water?

    Breathing or ingesting these chemicals over an extended period of time can be harmful to health. Many are endocrine disruptors. Others are neurotoxic (toxic to the nervous system) or carcinogenic. Some have harmful neurodevelopment effects and can affect the thyroid.

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  • What is Silica?

    Silica is a compound of silicon and oxygen. Most water supplies will contain some silica in a dissolved form. Water may also contain silica in a suspended (colloidal) form consisting of very small particles that do not settle to the bottom. Silica in drinking water has some healthful effects but too much can cause scale deposits to build up on plumbing equipment and glassware.

    How does Silica affect drinking water?

    Silica is in many types of food and water supplies around the world. Drinking water that contains silica can improve the appearance of the hair and nails and may decrease the risk of osteoporosis. Silica can also help reduce the risk of some heart problems.

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  • What is Silver?

    Silver is a metallic element popularly used in jewelry but also having many industrial applications. Solar panels, mobile phones, computers, engine bearings, photography and water treatment all utilize silver. Water can pick up silver from naturally-occurring deposits and from industrial contamination of soil, air and water. More than a quarter of the silver compounds released by industry go into water supplies with most of the rest entering the earth.

    How does Silver affect drinking water?

    Silver is not an essential element for human health. In low concentrations, silver in water does not have an adverse effect. At higher concentrations, silver can be deposited in the eyes and skin, causing a gray-blue discoloration.

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    Low levels of silver that are naturally present in water and soil are generally not harmful but high levels should be detected. Some silver compounds can cause liver and kidney...

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  • What is Silvex?

    The full name of this chemical is 2(2,4,5-Trichlorophenoxy) propionic acid (2,4,5-TP). It’s a carcinogenic herbicide that has been banned since 1985 because of its health effects. It was used as an herbicide in agricultural land and lawns. It was also employed to control weeds in ditches and on riverbanks. It is strongly absorbed by soils.

    How does Silvex affect drinking water?

    It not only causes cancer but also harms the liver and causes weakness, skin irritation, stomach irritation and depression. Humans may be exposed to this chemical through contaminated foods including fruits and milk. It has been detected in the drinking water of eight states.

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    Low levels of silver that are naturally present in water and soil are generally not harmful but high levels should be detected. Some silver compounds can cause liver and kidney...

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  • What is Simazine?

    Simazine is a triazine-type herbicide that is restricted in the U.S. and banned in the European Union. The EPA recommends that no more than four parts per billion be present in drinking water. It readily leaches to groundwater after being applied to many fields.

    How does Simazine affect drinking water?

    It is a hormone disruptor, affecting both male and female reproductive systems. In animal tests, it caused mammary and ovarian tumors and can cause harm to a developing fetus, changes to the nervous system. changes in brain and behavior and cancer. Simazine has been found in the drinking water of 22 states in recent years.

  • What is Simetryn?

    Simetryn is a triazine-type herbicide used on green beans, bell peppers, rice and other food crops. The World Health Organization classifies simetryn as slightly hazardous.

    How does Simetryn affect drinking water?

    This class of herbicides affects the normal operation of the neuroendocrine system, and increases the risk of preterm deliveries and low birth weight.

  • What is Sodium?

    Sodium is normally present in water as salt, an essential nutrient. Salt levels can derive from natural mineral deposits, sea spray, road de-icing or the use of fertilizers of water softening systems that use sodium. Sewage contamination can also increase sodium.

    How does Sodium affect drinking water?

    Too much salt may give drinking water a undesirably salty taste, but for most people higher levels of salt have no adverse health effects. A person on a reduced-salt diet, or who suffers from kidney problems, cardiovascular problems or high blood pressure would be wise to avoid higher levels of sodium in drinking water.

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  • What is Sphaerotilus natans?

    Sphaerotilus natans is a type of bacteria that often inhabits certain industrial waters. It often forms in sewage waters, complicating the task of purifying these waters. It received the nickname “sewage fungus” because of its prevalence in partly-treated wastewater, however, it only resembles a fungus.

    How does Sphaerotilus natans affect drinking water?

    Sphaerotilus natans itself is not considered to be a pathogenic bacterium. It can use iron and oxygen to create deposits of slime looking like rust, which can then block pipes.

  • What is Sphingomonas Paucimobilis?

    Sphingomonas paucimobilis is present in a wide number of environments, including soil and water. It is a common contaminant in hospitals where dialysis solutions or drug solutions containing this bacterium caused blood and peritoneal infections. Most patients infected with S. paucimobilis had some underlying condition or were newborn babies, but healthy people have also suffered hospital-related infections. The tiny size of this bacterium enables it to pass through the finest of filters.

    How does Sphingomonas Paucimobilis affect drinking water?

    S. paucimobilis has the ability to create biofilms in drinking water supplies which can develop into blockages in pipes, filtering systems and taps. It is an opportunistic bacterium, meaning that it is particularly likely to cause an infection in an immunocompromised person. However, infections in healthy people have also been noted.

  • What is a Standard Plate Count?

    The Standard Plate Count is also known as a heterotrophic plate count. This test is a measurement of the microorganism population of a drinking water sample. A heterotroph is an organism that does not produce its own food (as occurs in photosynthesis). Instead, a heterotroph finds nutrition in organic carbon-based material, mostly plant or animal matter. A high count indicates poor water quality and a greater likelihood of biofilms forming within the water supply system.

    How does a Standard Plate Count affect drinking water?

    The CDC recommends fewer than 500 CFUs (colony forming units) per milliliter of water as an indicator of good-quality and healthy water supply. Learning water has a high Standard Plate Count informs a homeowner or business of the need to look for sources of contamination and the need to disinfect a well.

  • What is Staphylococcus Aureus?

    Staphylococcus aureus is a type of bacteria commonly found in the nose, armpit, groin and on the skin. When it remains an external bacterium, it is seldom harmful. When it enters the body through a cut or gets into the lungs, it can cause serious, antibiotic-resistant infections. Abscesses, cellulitis, pneumonia, blood infections, and septic shock can result. Those who are immunocompromised are most at risk.

    How does Staphylococcus Aureus affect drinking water?

    Staphylococcus aureus can be found in rural well water and filters on household taps. Water disinfectant methods are normally sufficient to kill the bacteria unless chlorine levels drop. Ingesting water with S. aureus can result in nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and low blood pressure.

  • What is Staphylococcus Epidermidis?

    Staphylococcus epidermidis is the most common organism found on the human skin. It is also one of the most common bacteria causing hospital-caused infections. Once inside the body, S. epidermidis can cause cellulitis, endocarditis, blood infections, and other serious and antibiotic-resistant infections.

    How does Staphylococcus Epidermidis affect drinking water?

    While it is possible for S. epidermidis to be found in household water supplies and biofilms, infections of S. epidermidis are normally only found in healthcare settings.

  • What is Stenotrophomonas Maltophilia?

    Stenotrophomonas maltophilia is an antibiotic-resistant bacterium that can create healthcare-related and community-acquired infections. It is generally found in aquatic environments and may be found in hospital tap water, irrigation supplies, intravenous fluids and other healthcare-related fluids. Those most likely to suffer infections are the immunocompromised.

    How does Stenotrophomonas Maltophilia affect drinking water?

    Stenotrophomonas maltophilia can be found in water, sponges, taps and other water-related equipment. Infections with S. maltophilia usually cause respiratory symptoms such as difficulty breathing and coughs.

  • What is Stirofos?

    Stirofos is a pesticide also referred to as tetrachlorvinphos. It is used on the skin and in the feed of animals such as cattle, hogs, goats and horses to control flies. Some formulas for control of ticks and fleas on pets also contain stirofos.

    How does Stirofos affect drinking water?

    Stirofos is mildly toxic to humans but highly toxic to water life. It is, however, classified as a possible carcinogen. Those not working around stirofos in an industrial setting are unlikely to experience any significant exposure.

  • What is Streptococcus Pneumoniae?

    Streptococcus pneumoniae is a bacterium normally spread from person to person via respiratory droplets or environmental surfaces. It is a common cause of ear infections as well as pneumonia, bacteremia, and meningitis.

    How does Streptococcus Pneumoniae affect drinking water?

    Streptococcus pneumoniae is not normally contracted through drinking water. Ingesting swimming pool water where other swimmers are infected with Streptococcus pneumoniae can cause illness, however.

  • What is Strontium?

    Strontium is a metallic element that exists in both radioactive and non-radioactive forms. It can enter drinking water when the water source is groundwater from carbonate-rock aquifers. When ingested, it can accumulate in the bones. Conventional water treatment methods do not remove strontium from water supplies.

    How does Strontium affect drinking water?

    At high levels, strontium can damage the bones of humans. Strontium has been found in the drinking water of all 50 states. The US Geological Survey estimates that strontium exists at harmful levels in the drinking water of 2.3% of the population.

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  • What is Strontium-90?

    Strontium is a metallic element that exists in both radioactive and non-radioactive forms. Strontium-90 is a man-made form of this metal that was produced for use in medicine and industry as well as for nuclear fission. Strontium-90 was widely dispersed in the environment in the 1950s and 1960s.

    How does Strontium-90 affect drinking water?

    Strontium-90 can reach groundwaters and thus be ingested. Once in the body, it acts like calcium and enters the bones and teeth. It can cause cancers of the bone, bone marrow or soft tissues around the bone. It has been detected in the drinking water of nine states in recent years.

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  • What is Styrene?

    Styrene is a man-made chemical used in the manufacture of rubber, plastics, carpet backing, food packaging, home insulation and products such as Styrofoam (polystyrene). Small amounts of natural styrene exist in many fruits and vegetables. After industrial releases and disposal of products containing styrene, it can be found in the air, soil and water.

    How does Styrene affect drinking water?

    It causes cancer and harm to the liver, brain and nervous system. It may also harm the reproductive function in women. Styrene has been found in the drinking water of 33 states.

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  • What is Sulfamethoxazole?

    Sulfamethoxazole is a sulfonamide or “sulfa drug” used to treat bacterial infections. It may be used for bronchitis, urinary tract infections, ear infections, burns, meningitis and other problems. It is one of the primary ingredients in the drug Bactrim.

    How does Sulfamethoxazole affect drinking water?

    Sulfamethoxazole and other drugs reach drinking water through industrial releases of water or through human waste residues added to water supplies. Wastewater treatment is not able to remove all traces of sulfamethoxazole from water supplies. It is not known how residues of sulfamethoxazole and other pharmaceutical products affect the health of those drinking water containing these residues.

  • What is Sulfate?

    Sulfates are naturally-occuring, sulfur-containing substances found in minerals, soil and rocks. They make their way into groundwater as the water moves through soil and rock that contain sulfates. Sulfates are also used in industry and so may be discharged as part of their waste or be added to the atmosphere. Industrially, sulfates are formed when sulfuric acid reacts and mixes with other chemicals. Sulfates are found in fertilizers, pesticides and personal care products.

    How does Sulfate affect drinking water?

    The EPA recommends no more than 250 milligrams of sulfate per liter of drinking water to maintain an attractive look and taste of water. Any levels over 500 mg per liter can cause diarrhea resulting in dehydration. High levels of sulfate can also make water taste bitter and may corrode plumbing.

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  • What are Surfactants?

    Surfactants are foaming agents such as detergents and soaps. Besides detergents and soaps, surfactants can be found in oven cleaners, toilet cleaners, drain openers, hard water stain removers, baby wipes, furniture polish and many household cleaners. There are hundreds of products that contain surfactants. In drinking water, they can cause a foam to appear on the surface or give water a bitter, oily or fishy taste and make the water cloudy.

    How do Surfactants affect drinking water?

    Surfactants can be responsible for triggering asthma or respiratory symptoms, skin allergies and irritations and developmental and reproductive problems.

  • What is Surirella species?

    Surirella is a genus of algae that includes dozens of species. It is a diatom which means that each cell is encased in silicon. Algae such as Suriella are found in water supplies all over the world. In some cases, they contribute to an improvement in water quality because they convert carbon dioxide into oxygen.

    How does Surirella species affect drinking water?

    In general, algae found in drinking water are seldom harmful but too many can become toxic. Water with too much algae can result in skin irritation and mild respiratory effects when consumed. Blooms of algae like Surirella can make water sources allergenic.

  • What are SVOCs?

    An organic compound is one in which one or more atoms of carbon are linked to other elements. A volatile organic compound is one that is capable of rapid evaporation from the solid or liquid form to a gaseous form. A semi-volatile organic compound (SVOC) is one that is not emitted from a product or surface as rapidly. They are found in pesticides, fire retardants or plasticizers (compounds used to make products more durable).These compounds are released into our homes or offices, a process called “off-gassing” and can often (but not always) be smelled. Many of these gasses are toxic and can contaminate our water supplies as well as our air. Chemicals in this group include aniline, benzyl alcohol, fluorene, naphthalene, the pesticide DDT, plasticizers like phthalates, and fire retardants like PCBs.

    How do SVOCs affect drinking water?

    Breathing or ingesting these chemicals over an extended period of time can be harmful to health. Many are endocrine disruptors. Others are neurotoxic (toxic to the nervous system) or carcinogenic. Some have harmful neurodevelopment effects and can affect the thyroid.

  • What is Synedra species?

    Synedra is a genus of algae that includes dozens of species. It is a commonly found diatom in fresh water. Each cell is encased in silicon. Algae such as Synedra are found in water supplies all over the world.

    How does Synedra species affect drinking water?

    They are not considered harmful but they can affect the look and taste of water. Synedra tend to clump up which means they can clog filters and plumbing. Synedra can also affect the odor of drinking water.

  • What is 1,1,1-Trichloroethane?

    This chemical is also known as methyl chloroform. It is used as a metal degreaser and dry-cleaning solvent and is also used in the process of making other chemicals.

    How does 1,1,1-Trichloroethane affect drinking water?

    In the home, a person can be exposed to this chemical by drinking contaminated water or by breathing vapors when cooking, bathing or doing laundry. Drinking this water can harm the nervous system, liver and circulatory system. It is present at low levels in the water supplies of at least 19 states.

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  • What is 1,1,1,2-Tetrachloroethane?

    This is a chemical used in metal degreasing and the production of other chemicals.

    How does 1,1,1,2-Tetrachloroethane affect drinking water?

    At very low levels, there is a slightly increased risk of cancer when one has been exposed to 1,1,1,2-Tetrachloroethane by drinking water that contains this chemical. It has caused cancer in laboratory animals. It can also cause harm to the liver and changes to the central nervous system. It has been found in the drinking water of three states in recent years.

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  • What is 1,1,2-Trichloroethane?

    1,1,2-Trichloroethane (TCE) is used in the manufacture of refrigerants and cleaning solvents. But it also can be found in dozens of household products such as cleaning wipes, aerosol cleaners, paint removers, carpet cleaners and spot removers. It is also known as Trilene. It previously was used as a solvent to extract fats and oils from palm, coconut and soybeans and for the decaffeination of coffee. It was even used as an inhaled surgical anesthetic. Because of its toxicity, these uses were banned in 1977.

    How does 1,1,2-Trichloroethane affect drinking water?

    Exposure to TCE by drinking water contaminated with TCE is or may be associated with kidney cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma and liver cancer. It can accumulate in soil or groundwater and is often found near current or former military bases. It has been found in the drinking water of eight states in recent years.

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  • What is 1,1,2,2-Tetrachloroethane?

    It is a solvent and is used in paint removers, vanishes, lacquers, and in photographic film. It is also used to extract oils and fats. This chemical is now seldom used in the United States, but emissions into the air may occur as other chemicals are manufactured.

    How does 1,1,2,2-Tetrachloroethane affect drinking water?

    It has been classified by the EPA as a human carcinogen. Long-term exposure to 1,1,2,2-Tetrachloroethane by drinking contaminated water has resulted in an enlarged liver, tremors, numbness and drowsiness. It has been found in the drinking water of two states in recent years.

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  • What is 1,2,3-Trichlorobenzene?

    123 TCB is a solvent and a chemical produced in the manufacture of other chemicals. It was once used as an insecticide during treatment for termites. It is still used as a dye carrier, degreaser and lubricant.

    How does 1,2,3-Trichlorobenzene affect drinking water?

    Exposure can result from consuming contaminated drinking water or food, especially fish. It is expected to be a human carcinogen. Few states have reported drinking water contamination with 123 TCB.

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  • What is 1,2,3-Trichloropropane?

    It is also known as 1,2,3-TCP. It is a potent carcinogen that is found as a contaminant in agricultural areas where it was used as a fumigant. Hundreds of utilities serving millions of people across the country have reported drinking water contamination with this chemical. It was also used as a paint and varnish remover, solvent and degreasing agent.

    How does 1,2,3-Trichloropropane affect drinking water?

    The EPA reports that it travels quickly from subsurface soil to groundwater and that it is likely to be carcinogenic. Once it reaches groundwater, it will not degrade for a long period of time. Animal studies indicate that it causes liver and kidney damage and tumors in numerous organs. It has been found in the drinking water of 18 states in recent years.

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  • What is 1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene?

    1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene is used to make industrial products such as dyes, herbicides, synthetic oils or transformers. Exposure outside industrial settings can result from consuming contaminated drinking water or food, especially fish.

    How does 1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene affect drinking water?

    While it is not considered to be carcinogenic, laboratory tests show that it causes harm to the adrenal gland, liver, central nervous system, blood and lungs. It may increase the risk of cancer.

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  • What is 1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene?

    1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene is found in coal tar and petroleum. It is a gasoline additive and is used to make solvents, plastics, paints, dyes, paint thinners and pharmaceuticals. Symptoms of industrial exposure include anemia, bronchitis and alterations in blood clotting. It has been found in the drinking water of 10 states in recent years.

    How does 1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene affect drinking water?

    Laboratory tests show that it can cause damage to the nervous system, cognitive damage, decreased pain sensitivity and respiratory and blood problems. It may cause skin irritation and reproductive toxicity. It is not thought to cause cancer. Waste sites and the soil and water near them can cause exposure. Twenty-four states have reported contamination of their drinking water from this chemical.

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  • What is 1,3,5-Trimethylbenzene?

    This chemical is also known as Mesitylene. 1,3,5-TMB is used in dyes, solvents, paint thinners and plastics. It reaches drinking water supplies through stormwater runoff or leaking storage tanks and is released into the air by gas-powered vehicles, waste treatment plants and coal-fired power stations.

    How does 1,3,5-Trimethylbenzene affect drinking water?

    It has been found to be neurotoxic, creating harm to the central nervous system, eyes, lungs and blood cells. Nineteen states have reported contamination of their water supplies. Long-term effects include asthma, liver damage and anemia.

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  • What is 2,2',4,4'-Tetrachlorobiphenyl?

    2,2’,4,4'-Tetrachlorobiphenyl is another type of PCB. This chemical readily enters human skin and then is absorbed into the body. Once absorbed, this chemical can last for months. The use of this chemical ended in 1977.

    How does 2,2',4,4'-Tetrachlorobiphenyl affect drinking water?

    It has effects on reproductive function. In laboratory tests, it has caused liver tumors. Exposure can result from eating contaminated fish, repairing old equipment that contains PCBs or fighting fires with such equipment.

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  • What is 2,3,7,8-TCDD?

    2,3,7,8-TCDD is a form of dioxin, a pollutant that results from incinerating waste and fertilizer use. its full name is 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-Dioxin. It is not intentionally produced by industry but can be created when city or industrial wastes are burned, or during certain manufacturing processes, such as the production of pulp or paper.

    How does 2,3,7,8-TCDD affect drinking water?

    It is carcinogenic for several types of cancer. It’s also neurotoxic and a hormone disruptor. It also causes reproductive harm, skeletal deformities, kidney defects and weakened immune responses.

  • What is 2,4,5-T?

    2,4,5-trichlorophenoxyacetic acid was once used as a defoliant and herbicide. It was an ingredient in Agent Orange, the defoliant used during the Vietnam War. Even though it has not been manufactured for many years, it can still be found in surface and groundwater.

    How does 2,4,5-T affect drinking water?

    2,4,5-T contained dioxin which was found to cause cancer and other health problems which is why its no longer allowed by the EPA to be used in the U.S. It has been found in the drinking water of one state in recent years.

  • What is 2,4,5-TP?

    The full name of this chemical is 2(2,4,5-Trichlorophenoxy) propionic acid (2,4,5-TP). It was sold under the brand name Silvex. It’s a carcinogenic herbicide that has been banned since 1985 because of its health effects. It was used as an herbicide in agricultural and lawn uses. It was also employed to control weeds in ditches and on riverbanks. It is strongly absorbed by soils.

    How does 2,4,5-TP affect drinking water?

    It not only causes cancer but also harms the liver and causes weakness, skin irritation, stomach irritation and depression. Humans may be exposed to this chemical through contaminated foods including fruits and milk.

  • What is 2,4,5-Trichlorobiphenyl?

    Also known as PCB-29, it poses a long-term hazard as it is slow to degrade. PCBs were banned from commercial use in the 1970s. They are capable of bioaccumulation in the human body, being attracted to fatty tissues such as the liver and fat tissues. PCBs still exist in lubricants, transformers and other electrical devices.

    How does 2,4,5-Trichlorobiphenyl affect drinking water?

    This chemical was discovered to damage human organs and cause cancer after prolonged or repeated exposure. It is also a hormone disruptor and can change brain dopamine levels. It is very toxic to aquatic life and the environment in general.

  • What is 2,4,5-Trichlorophenol?

    2,4,5-Trichlorophenol is used as a pesticide and herbicide and is used as a fungicide in paper and pulp mills. It’s also used in the manufacture of other pesticides. Its widespread use has left deposits in water supplies, the air and soil.

    How does 2,4,5-Trichlorophenol affect drinking water?

    Low levels it of can be found in the air, food and in drinking water. Short-term exposure can cause burns on the skin as well as irritation of eyes, nose and lungs. In laboratory tests, damage to animal liver and kidneys have been detected.

  • What is 2,4,6-Trichlorophenol?

    It is also known as TCP. It has a strong odor and is used as a wood and glue preservative, bactericide, insecticide, antiseptic and as a treatment for mildew. Its uses have been discontinued in the U.S. because of its carcinogenic effects.

    How does 2,4,6-Trichlorophenol affect drinking water?

    It was shown to cause leukemia and liver cancer in animals. It is still found in the environment as a result of its applications as well as its release from toxic waste sites and locations where it was manufactured. Exposure can result in burns and possible eye damage. High exposure can result in weakness, tremors, seizures, coma and death.

  • What is T-Phosphorus?

    A T-phosphorus test detects the total amount of all types of phosphorus in a water source. The three types of phosphorus found in drinking water are orthophosphate, condensed phosphate and organic phosphate. When drinking water sources contain too much phosphorus, this can cause the increased growth of algae and aquatic plants which then decrease the level of dissolved oxygen in the water. Reduced oxygen can kill aquatic animals. Algal blooms resulting from excessive phosphorus can be harmful to humans as well. Phosphorus can be added to water supplies from urban runoff and excessive fertilizer use.

    How does T-Phosphorus affect drinking water?

    Excessive phosphorus in a water supply can make water treatment less efficient, therefore detecting the total phosphorus in water is an important step in protecting the quality of that water. The result of too much phosphorus can be a bad taste or odor to drinking water, a cloudy appearance or the presence of microorganisms that otherwise would have been removed. If levels get too high, digestive problems could result.

  • What is Tabellaria?

    Tabellaria is one of the most widely distributed types of algae in fresh water. It’s a diatom, meaning that each cell is encased in silicon. Algae such as Tabellaria are found in water supplies all over the world.

    How does Tabellaria affect drinking water?

    They are not considered harmful, but they can affect the look and taste of water. Tabellaria tend to form chains which means they can clog filters of surface water treatment equipment. Tabellaria can also affect the odor of drinking water, giving it a fishy smell.

  • What are Tannins?

    Tannins are fermented organic materials that make their way into water supplies. Water picks up these materials as it contacts vegetation and peaty soil. Both surface water and groundwater can become yellow or tea-colored. When used in a household, laundry and dishwater may become stained. Tannins can reduce the effectiveness of some home water treatment systems.

    How do Tannins affect drinking water?

    Drinking water with tannins may have a tangy or tart aftertaste and a musty odor. There is no health hazard associated with drinking water with tannins.

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  • What is Tebuthiuron?

    Tebuthiuron is an herbicide used to control weeds along roadsides and in non-crop areas such as industrial sites. It is highly likely to leach to groundwater and persist for a long period.

    How does Tebuthiuron affect drinking water?

    While the EPA considered tebuthiuron only slightly toxic, laboratory tests showed that tebuthiuron is an endocrine disrupter among fish. Other animal tests showed that the pancreas was affected by the administration of tebuthiuron.

  • What is Terbacil?

    Terbacil is an herbicide used to control weeds around crops like apples, mint, sugarcane, blackberries, peaches and many other crops. Terbacil is capable of leaching into ground or surface water after being applied to fields. The US Geological Survey has detected terbacil in both ground and surface water at low levels.

    How does Terbacil affect drinking water?

    In low doses, terbacil is considered nearly non-toxic.

  • What is Terbufos?

    Terbufos is a pesticide and insecticide used on corn, sorghum, sugar beets and other crops. Both terbufos and its degradates are capable of leaching through soils to reach groundwater and are persistent in soil and water.

    How does Terbufos affect drinking water?

    Exposure to drinking water contaminated with terbufos can result in neurodevelopment harm. A 2013 study found a link between aggressive prostate cancer and four insecticides commonly used by farmers, including terbufos. It presents high risks to wildlife, such as birds and fish.

  • What is Terbutryn?

    Terbutryn is a triazine-type herbicide and pesticide used on food crops and fallow land. It is also used to control algae and water plants in reservoirs and fish ponds and as a biocide in construction materials subject to microbial deterioration. It is not currently approved for use in the U.S. as a pesticide.

    How does Terbutryn affect drinking water?

    Terbutryn was classified by the EPA as a possible human carcinogen. In animal tests, it affected the central nervous system, leading to lack of coordination, labored breathing and convulsions. It also caused liver damage.

  • What is tert-Butylbenzene?

    tert-Butylbenzene is used as a solvent and in the manufacture of polymers. It is harmful to the lungs if inhaled.

    How does tert-Butylbenzene affect drinking water?

    tert-Butylbenzene is a neurotoxin that also targets the respiratory system, cardiovascular and central nervous systems, bone marrow, liver and kidneys. It has been detected in the drinking water of four states.

  • What is Tetrachloroethylene?

    Tetrachloroethylene is known to most people as dry cleaning fluid. It is also used in the manufacture of other chemicals and in products such as water repellents, silicone lubricants and spot removers. Industrial operations release this chemical into the air, water and soil. Tetrachloroethylene travels easily through soils and so can reach groundwater.

    How does Tetrachloroethylene affect drinking water?

    Tetrachloroethylene can accumulate in the fat of the human body. The EPA has classified tetrachloroethylene as a probable human carcinogen. It also affects the nervous system, liver, kidneys and reproductive system. It can be harmful to developing babies.

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  • What is Thallium?

    Thallium can make its way into drinking water from discharges from ore processing sites; electronics, glass, cement or drug manufacturing operations; smelting; steel or iron production or any operation that burns coal. Thallium combines with other chemicals and becomes soluble in water, so water contamination in areas near these activities becomes a higher risk. Thallium is highly toxic.

    How does Thallium affect drinking water?

    The EPA regulates the amount of thallium in drinking water because of the risks involved in consumption. It can cause hair loss, blood chemistry changes or kidney, intestine or liver problems.

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  • Tin

    What is Tin?

    While there is no dietary requirement for this metallic element, the human body normally contains a small amount of tin. Exposure to tin can occur through soil contaminated by industrial use of tin or through consumption of canned foods. Some plumbing pipes contain tin and may introduce this element into drinking water. Tin is generally non-toxic in the environment. Some tin compounds have been created that are quite toxic to humans. These are called organotins. They can cause anemia, damage to the immune system, kidneys and liver.

    How does Tin affect drinking water?

    Tin itself is insoluble in water and so is not toxic in drinking water.

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  • What is Titanium?

    Titanium is a metallic element that occurs naturally in rock and soil. It is also used as an industrial pigment and in various metal alloys. Titanium has many uses in the medical field especially in joint replacement prosthetics. The weathering of rocks and industrial processes may introduce titanium to water supplies.

    How does Titanium affect drinking water?

    The presence of titanium in drinking water is generally very low. Test have shown that exposure to titanium in drinking water has low toxicity.

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  • What is a Title V Scan?

    A Title 5 scan of drinking water is a Massachusetts requirement to look for coliform bacteria, ammonia and nitrates. The result of this test will reveal if a septic system is leaking into well water.

    How does a Title V Scan affect drinking water?

    A Title V scan will reassure a homeowner that the well water on the property is not being contaminated by a septic system.

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    Title V requires that some properties be tested for Coliform Bacteria, Nitrate and Ammonia. This test meets those requirements.

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  • What is Toluene?

    Toluene is derived from crude oil and is produced in the process of making gasoline and other fuels. Toluene is used in manufacturing paints, thinners, nail polish, rubber, adhesives and lacquers. It is also used in printing and tanning leather. Toluene enters the air through automobile exhaust. and industrial discharges. It is quite volatile so enters the atmosphere easily. From there it can make its way to surface waters. Spills and leaking underground tanks can add it to groundwater. The EPA regulates how much toluene can be found in drinking water.

    How does Toluene affect drinking water?

    Toluene harms the brain and nervous and immune systems and damages the liver. It may increase the risk of miscarriage and can harm fetal growth. It has been found in the drinking water of 46 states.

  • What is Total Bacteria Count?

    Total bacteria count gives a home or business owner a look at how many bacteria, living or dead, are present in their water supply. Not all bacteria are pathogenic (disease-causing) and all water supplies contain some bacteria but the counts should be low.

    How does Total Bacteria Count affect drinking water?

    Knowing the total bacteria count of water informs a home or business owner if their water supply is sanitary and healthful or if a well or water supply needs to be addressed.

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  • What is Total Coliform?

    A total coliform test provides a close look at how sanitary a water supply system is. Coliforms are types of bacteria that are found in the soil, water and the digestive tract of animals, including humans. Coliforms found in drinking water may indicate that a water source has been contaminated by fecal matter or surface water. A total coliform test looks at all the types of coliforms present in a water system, including both types that can be pathogenic and those that are harmless. A high coliform count can indicate a water supply that will easily form biofilms.

    How does Total Coliform affect drinking water?

    While many coliform bacteria are harmless, E. coli can cause serious illness resulting in severe diarrhea, abdominal cramps and nausea. A total coliform test can also point out the need to disinfect or repair a well to restore it to a sanitary condition.

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  • What is Total Dissolved Solids?

    A total dissolved solids test (TDS) is a measurement of how many parts of a sample of water are something other than water. For example, a TDS result may be 500 parts per million, meaning that out of one million parts of water, 500 are composed of something other than water. Those inclusions could be sodium, potassium, chloride, sulfate, nitrate, calcium, magnesium, carbonate or bicarbonate. They could also be organic matter like fungi, bacteria or algae. A high TDS score is not necessarily bad because many people choose to buy mineral water with a higher TDS score than most tap water. A very low TDS score can result in water having a flat taste. This test is especially important for many industries such as pharmaceutical or medical companies that rely on pure water.

    How does Total Dissolved Solids affect drinking water?

    A TDS test guides correction of high minerals or organic matter that can affect the water system or taste. A high TDS score can result in mineral deposits in pipes and plumbing equipment or a salty or poor taste to the water.

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  • What is Total Fungi?

    While some fungi are harmless, others are pathogenic and can even trigger toxic shock in susceptible individuals. For that reason, it’s important to monitor the quantity of fungi that exists in a drinking water sample. Too many fungi can indicate contamination of a well or water supply or a need for better filtering or disinfection.

    How does Total Fungi affect drinking water?

    Completing a total fungi water test provides information on whether or not a water supply needs disinfection or filtering to be healthy and good-tasting.

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  • What is a Total Heterotrophic Plate Count (HPC)?

    A heterotroph is an organism that needs to eat other organisms such as plants and animals. (For comparison, autotrophs generate their own food through photosynthesis.) Heterotrophic bacteria are those bacteria that use organic carbon as food, for example, yeast, molds and some bacteria like Escherichia, Salmonella and Pseudomonas. This plate count determines how many viable colonies of these organisms exist in the water.

    How does a Total Heterotrophic Plate Count (HPC) affect drinking water?

    A high result on a heterotrophic plate count indicates water that is likely to form biofilms. Additionally, this test monitors general bacteriological water quality. It does not necessarily provide a definitive answer as to the healthiness of the water.

  • What is Total Organic Carbon?

    The total organic carbon test measures the amount of carbon coming from organic compounds that exist in a sample of water. Organizations that rely on purity of water need to know if their water supply is suitable for their industrial or medical purposes. Homeowners can use this test to detect contamination with bacteria, fertilizers, fecal matter, or other compounds. Too much organic matter in water can result in the formation of toxic trihalomethanes (THM) as this organic matter interacts with disinfectants used in water treatment.

    How does Total Organic Carbon affect drinking water?

    The total organic carbon test is an important measure of purity of drinking or industrial water supplies.

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  • What are Total Petroleum Hydrocarbons (TPH)?

    The total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPH) test detects all types of petroleum products that might contaminate drinking water. Petroleum products can enter water supplies from leaking underground tanks and industrial releases. The substances detected in this test include naphthalene, benzene and toluene.

    How do Total Petroleum Hydrocarbons (TPH) affect drinking water?

    Determining the total petroleum hydrocarbons count provides information on the amount of contamination of the water supply. Ingesting water contaminated with petroleum products can cause damage to the liver, kidneys and lungs. These contaminants can also affect fetal growth and increase the risk of miscarriage.

  • What are Total Suspended Solids?

    Total suspended solids (TSS) is an important indicator of water quality. The test looks for anything that can be suspended in water which includes sand, sediment and organic materials such as decaying plant or animal matter or microorganisms. Substances detected by the TSS test tend to remain suspended in the water rather than settling to the bottom. A high TSS count will be accompanied by a cloudy appearance. TSS include clay, bacteria, extremely tiny particles of gravel, pesticides, algae and more.

    How do Total Suspended Solids affect drinking water?

    Depending on which TSS are found, the water can be pathogenic. Bacteria and algae can cause gastrointestinal issues, chemicals in the water can be toxic, silt or sand can make water cloudy. The taste may suffer. Algae and minerals can damage plumbing and cause clogs.

  • What are Total Yeasts?

    Yeasts are a specific type of fungus that frequently contaminate drinking water. Yeasts and yeast-like fungi present in drinking water include Aureobasidium, Exophiala, and Candida. Yeasts can enter drinking water from soil, dead plant material and man-made sources.

    How do Total Yeasts affect drinking water?

    Those who are immunocompromised may suffer fungal infections if they drink water contaminated with yeasts. Infections can range from the superficial to the life-threatening.

  • What is Toxaphene?

    Toxaphene is an insecticide that smells strongly of turpentine. At one time, it was one of the most widely used insecticides in the country. In 1990, its use (but not its manufacture) was banned.

    How does Toxaphene affect drinking water?

    Toxaphene is a neurotoxin and is classified by the EPA as a human carcinogen. It also causes problems of brain, kidney, adrenal, liver and thyroid function. Once in the body, it tends to accumulate rather than be fully eliminated. It is also a hormone disruptor and has been found in the drinking water of two states in recent years.

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  • What is trans-1,2-Dichloroethylene?

    trans-1,2-Dichloroethylene is one of the two forms of 1,2-dichoroethylene. It is a neutotoxic solvent that may be used in adhesives, sealants, refrigerants, stain removers and lubricants.

    How does trans-1,2-Dichloroethylene affect drinking water?

    trans-1,2-Dichloroethylene is associated with harm to the brain and nervous system, immune system and liver. trans-1,2-Dichloroethylene has been found in the drinking water of 17 states in recent years.

  • What is trans-1,3-Dichloropropene?

    trans-1,3-Dichloropropene is one of two forms of 1,3-dichloropropene, which is considered by the EPA to be a hazardous substance when found in our water. Like other forms of dichloropropene, this chemical is often used as a fumigant for the soil around food crops.

    How does trans-1,3-Dichloropropene affect drinking water?

    In lab tests, nose and bladder damage were noted. Limited evidence links exposure to vapors with cancers in humans. Short-term industrial exposure results in chest pain and breathing difficulties. It is classified as a probable human carcinogen. It has been found in the drinking water of two states in recent years.

  • What is Trans-Nonachlor?

    Trans-nonachlor is a component of technical chlordane, a mixture of 140 different chemicals used as termite treatment and as a pesticide for corn and citrus. Trans-nonachlor is known to accumulate and persist in the fat tissues of humans. All uses of chlordane were banned in 1988.

    How does Trans-Nonachlor affect drinking water?

    Comparisons of trans-nonachlor and technical chlordane showed that trans-nonachlor was more toxic. Otherwise, the two chemicals act in much the same way. Because chlordane can stay in soil for more than 20 years, it is possible for this chemical to make it into drinking water supplies. Once consumed, it accumulates in the body because it is not eliminated well. It affects the nervous system, digestive system, liver and reproductive system. It is classified as a probable carcinogen.

  • What is Triadimefon?

    Triadimefon is a broad spectrum fungicide used for pineapple and non-food crops like ornamental shrubs, sod and Christmas trees. Triadimefon can reach drinking water supplies through applications to golf courses.

    How does Triadimefon affect drinking water?

    In animal tests, triadimefon caused neurotoxicity. It is categorized as a possible human carcinogen and causes harm to both female and male reproductive systems.

  • What is Trichloroacetic Acid (TCA)?

    Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) is one of five haloacetic acids (HAA5) formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. TCA forms as chlorine interacts with organic material in the water. The amount of TCA or any haloacetic acid in drinking water is regulated by the EPA because of its potential to create harm.

    How does Trichloroacetic Acid (TCA) affect drinking water?

    Trichloroacetic acid in drinking water is associated with a greater risk of cancer and harm to reproduction and child development. Trichloroacetic acid has been found in 47 states. Children may be more susceptible to the effects of HAA5 in their drinking water.

  • What is Trichloroethylene (TCE)?

    Trichloroethylene (TCE) is a solvent used as a grease remover. It is also found in a wide array of household products, such as paint removers, adhesives, correction fluid and spot removers. It is also used in dry cleaning. It can reach drinking water supplies through improper disposal of industrial or household chemicals.

    How does Trichloroethylene (TCE) affect drinking water?

    Trichloroethylene is classified as a probable human carcinogen. Some people exposed to elevated levels of trichloroethylene in drinking water developed heart defects and leukemia, but it was not known if trichloroethylene directly caused these effects. Animal studies showed that trichloroethylene may cause liver and lung cancer in animals. It also harms a developing fetus and is a hormone disruptor. It has been found in the drinking water of 43 states in recent years.

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  • What is Trichlorofluoromethane?

    Trichlorofluoromethane is a type of Freon, a refrigerant. It was banned in 2000 because of its ozone-depleting characteristics. It was also used in hair sprays, cosmetics, spray paints and furniture polish. This chemical can be found in the air, ground and surface water and in breast milk.

    How does Trichlorofluoromethane affect drinking water?

    Trichlorofluoromethane can cause heart, nervous system and liver damage. It has been found in the drinking water of 10 states in recent years.

  • What is Trichoderma?

    Trichoderma is a type of fungus found in all soils. One species of this fungus is utilized as a pesticide to protect crops from a harmful mold, Botrytis cinerea.

    How does Trichoderma affect drinking water?

    While trichoderma species are not generally considered harmful, fungi can cause skin irritation, allergies or infections in immunocompromised individuals.

  • What is Trichosporon Beigelii?

    Trichoderma beigeilli is a yeast-like class of fungus that is present in all soils. While water treatment processes remove the bulk of fungi like this, some remain and are capable of creating biofilms in water distribution systems.

    How does Trichosporon Beigelii affect drinking water?

    Those who are immunocompromised due to conditions like renal disease, HIV, prosthetic heart valves or reduced white blood cells are at particular risk for infection due to Trichosporon. This type of fungus can cause serious infections that spread from one location to other organ systems and can even be life-threatening.

  • What is Triclosan?

    Triclosan is a chemical that is often used to fight the growth of bacteria. It has been used for decades in detergents, soils, deodorants, toothpastes and dishwashing liquids and products claimed to be anti-bacterial or odor-fighting. In 2017, the FDA banned the use of triclosan in antibacterial hand soaps. Manufacturers still added it to a variety of other products, but it may not be stated on the ingredient list.

    How does Triclosan affect drinking water?

    Triclosan exposure is linked to liver toxicity and disruption of the thyroid function. Because it is not totally removed from wastewater, it makes its way into lakes and rivers where it has a toxic effect on aquatic life. In animal tests, it proved to be carcinogenic.

  • What is Tricyclazole?

    Tricyclazole is a type of fungicide used on rice crops.

    How does Tricyclazole affect drinking water?

    Tricyclazole in drinking water can cause toxic effects to the liver.

  • What is Trifluralin?

    Trifluralin is an herbicide used on non-agricultural lands and food crops like beans, soybeans, tomatoes and vineyards to control weeds. Out of 2000 surface water samples, trifluralin was found in 172 samples.

    How does Trifluralin affect drinking water?

    In animal tests, trifluralin was toxic to embryos but it did not cause birth defects. However, in other animal tests, it was carcinogenic to the liver, lungs and stomach.

  • What are Trihalomethanes (THM)?

    Trihalomethanes (THM) are chemicals formed when organic material in a water supply reacts with chlorine disinfectants added to the supply. There are four chemicals in this group: chloroform, bromodichloromethane, dibromochloromethane and bromoform.

    How do Trihalomethanes (THM) affect drinking water?

    Studies have shown that these chemicals are associated with rectal, bladder and pancreatic cancer. The U.S. Public Health Service also suggested that these chemicals are associated with birth defects like spine and neural disorders. The EPA permits a concentration of 0.10 milligrams per liter of the chemicals although the National Academy of Sciences recommended a lower standard. Liver, kidney or central nervous system problems are also a possible result.

  • What is Turbidity?

    Turbidity is a measurement of the clarity of a water sample. While turbidity itself might not indicate a health problem related to consuming this water, it is a measurement of the effectiveness of treatment processes preparing this water for customers.

    How does Turbidity affect drinking water?

    High turbidity is often associated with the presence of disease-causing microorganisms like parasites and bacteria. The result of drinking this water can be nausea, stomach cramps and diarrhea.

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  • What is Uranium?

    Uranium is a silvery-white metallic element. It is present in low concentrations in soil, rock and water and its radioactive properties enable it to be used as a power source.

    How does Uranium affect drinking water?

    In recent years, 45 states have detected uranium in drinking water supplies. The EPA estimates that over a lifetime, nearly 16,000 people develop cancer resulting from drinking radioactive water. Uranium in drinking water can also harm the kidneys. The EPA recommends a limit of 20 picocuries (a measurement of radioactivity) per liter of drinking water which would cause nearly five cases of cancer per population of 100,000. California set a goal of 0.43 picocuries per liter.

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  • What is Vanadium?

    Vanadium is a metallic element used to make steel alloys as well as being used in space vehicles, nuclear reactors and aircraft carriers because of its strength. Vanadium can enter the water supply as a natural occurrence or industrial contamination. Some carbon and mineral filters used in municipal water treatment plants can introduce vanadium into the water supply.

    How does Vanadium affect drinking water?

    Humans need extremely small amounts of this mineral for health. Too much can be toxic during pregnancy and childhood as it causes changes in blood chemistry and harm to child development.

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  • What is Vernolate?

    Vernolate is a pesticide in a class of thiocarbamates. It is approved for use on corn.

    How does Vernolate affect drinking water?

    Vernolate is not expected to reach groundwater by leaching through soils. It is slightly toxic to mammals and nearly completely nontoxic to birds.

  • What is Vinyl Chloride?

    Vinyl chloride is used to manufacture PVC, such a pervasive material that 15 billion pounds of vinyl chloride are manufactured every year. It is also used in the automobile industry and in making electric wire insulation, household equipment, medical supplies, rubber and glass. It can enter the environment from their emissions or wastewater produced during plastics manufacture. It can also enter food when it’s used in food wrappings.

    How does Vinyl Chloride affect drinking water?

    In the short term, exposure to vinyl chloride can cause damage to the nervous system. Long-term exposure to low levels of vinyl chloride can cause cancer and liver damage. In recent years, it has been detected in the drinking water of 22 states.

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  • What are Volatile Organic Compounds?

    An organic compound is one in which one or more atoms of carbon are linked to other elements. A volatile organic compound is one that is capable of rapid evaporation from the solid or liquid form to a gaseous form. VOCs are found in many products used to build, maintain and clean our homes, vehicles and other possessions. These compounds are released into our homes or offices, a process called off-gassing, and can often (but not always) be smelled. These chemicals are contained in paints, flooring, upholstery, air fresheners, fuel, tobacco products, photocopiers and much more. Many of these gasses are toxic and can contaminate our water supplies as well as our air.

    How do Volatile Organic Compounds affect drinking water?

    Breathing or ingesting these chemicals in drinking water over an extended period of time can be harmful to health. Low levels may worsen asthma or cause allergies. Higher levels for a short time can cause: eye or throat irritation; headaches; nausea; dizziness. Chronic exposure can cause: liver and kidney damage, central nervous system damage and cancer.

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  • What is a Water Microanalysis?

    Using a scanning electron microscope and nuclear magnetic resonance, the exact types of bacteria, fungi and other microorganisms can be identified and quantified.

    How does a Water Microanalysis affect drinking water?

    If there is any question about a water supply causing illness in a household or business, a water microanalysis test can provide a detailed report enabling a well or business owner to zero in on the cause of contamination that could be causing this problem.

  • 3-Dichlorobenzene? "

    1,3-Dichlorobenzene is a colorless liquid used to make herbicides, insecticides, medicines and dyes. Chemicals of this type are called DCBs.

    3-Dichloropropene? "

    1,3-Dichloropropene is considered by the EPA to be a hazardous substance when found in our water. Like other forms of dichloropropene, this chemical is often used as a fumigant for the soil around food crops.

  • What is Xylene?

    Xylene occurs naturally in gasoline, but it is also created synthetically. It is produced in three forms: m-xylene, p-xylene and o-xylene. The three forms are similar in function and effects. Total xylene or xylene refers to a mixture of all three, although a product referred to as mixed xylene may also contain ethylbenzene. Xylene is used in printing and the creation of rubber, leather products and pharmaceuticals. It can be used as paint thinker, varnish or cleaner. Xylenes are added to gasoline to reduce knocking.

    How does Xylene affect drinking water?

    Xylenes cause nervous system damage and may cause harm to developing fetuses such as delayed skeletal development and decreased body weight. Chronic exposure to xylenes may cause memory loss and impaired concentration as well as harm to liver, kidney, gastrointestinal tract and blood. Because xylene products evaporate easily, they are seldom found in surface water. Higher levels may be found in groundwater, especially near areas where industrial leaks may have occurred. Leaking underground tanks can contribute m-xylene, p-xylene, o-xylene or total xylene to groundwater contamination. The EPA regulates the amount of xylene that can exist in drinking water. Forty-eight states have recently detected xylene in drinking water.