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Module

1.7
Module 1.7 Water Qualities and Testing

The determination of good water requires testing of the water quality.


Tests are used to identify good water sources and to identify those sources
which must be purified before use as drinking water. This module
explains the indicators of good quality water and various methods to test
for these indicators. The methods for sampling and storage are also
discussed. The participants will do water tests and obtain information
about the equipment and procedures required to set up a small field lab.
The analysis of the risks involved in a water system will be discussed.
Module 1.6
Water Quality and Testing

MODULE 1.7 WATER QUALITIES AND TESTING...................................................1


SAFE WATER.......................................................................................................................2
CONTAMINANTS...................................................................................................................2
WATER QUALITY STANDARDS...............................................................................................3
BACTERIA TESTING..............................................................................................................4
CONTAMINATION INDICATORS................................................................................................5
Membrane Filtration Technique – Exact Count...........................................................6
EXACT COUNT – MEMBRANE FILTRATION TECHNOLOGY........................................................8
TEST PROCEDURES USING Disposable MEMBRANE FILTRATION
BACTERIOLOGICAL TEST KITS................................................................................8
Filtration.......................................................................................................................9
Incubation.....................................................................................................................9
Colony counting............................................................................................................9
Presence/Absence Test................................................................................................10
ARSENIC TESTING..............................................................................................................10
OTHER WATER ANALYSIS...................................................................................................14
Testing the pH of water samples.................................................................................14
Colour.........................................................................................................................15
Turbidity......................................................................................................................15
Turbidity Tube.............................................................................................................15
Salinity (electrical conductivity).................................................................................16
Heavy metals...............................................................................................................16
Other Testing...............................................................................................................16
WATER SAMPLE COLLECTION AND PRESERVATION................................................................17
RESOURCES.......................................................................................................................18

Safe Water
Water that is safe can be characterised by the following:
• Pathogen Free
• Low in concentrations of toxic chemicals
• Clear
• Not salty
• Tasteless and colourless
• Non corrosive; does not cause scaling of pipes or staining of clothes

Contaminants
The following are substances that result in poor quality water.
• Inorganic Toxic Compounds
arsenic, mercury, selenium, lead, chromium, cyanide, fluoride, nitrate

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• Organic Toxic Compounds
pesticides, herbicides, dioxins, PCBs
• Turbidity
sediment
• Salinity
Dissolved salts such as chlorides
• Colour, taste, odour
iron, manganese, hydrogen sulfide
• Hardness
Calcium, Magnesium

Water Quality Standards


Access to clean water requires testing of the water quality, in order to identify clean water
sources and to identify those sources which must purified before use as drinking water.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has produced water quality guideline levels for
use as targets and as an aid for countries who wish to produce their own guidelines. In
many regions, however, the WHO guideline levels may not be achievable in the short
term and, therefore, interim national standards should be set which promote improved
water quality and which are realistic. Setting targets that are too high can be
counterproductive; they may be ignored if they are not attainable. National standards
should reflect national conditions, priorities and capacity to improve water supplies,
especially in small communities where the choice of source and treatment are limited,
and finances are constrained.

The primary objective of water treatment should be the removal of pathogens in the water
to levels that are sub-infectious to the local population. These levels can vary from place
to place, and the question of ‘To what standard should the water be treated?’ is a difficult
one.

To apply the stringent standards recommended by the World Health Organization and by
most governmental regulators may result in:
• Condemnation of acceptable water supplies, thus placing unnecessary stress on
the local population
• Unnecessary expense to bring the water to desired quality, as opposed to investing
in other essential services such as education and health care.
• Ignoring of the rules by the locals, thus bringing similar regulations into disrepute

Cairncross and Feachem emphasize that it is necessary to use a great deal of common
sense in the use and interpretation of bacteriological water quality standards. These
standards or goals must be set realistically, and national authorities must decide
themselves what are reasonable levels to aim for, given the particular environmental and
economic circumstances of the country.

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Water Quality and Testing
Water quality testing alone is an inadequate response to the challenges of ensuring water
safety. Occasional tests conducted on a water supply may provide a false sense of
security as water quality can vary widely and rapidly. For these reasons water quality
testing should be accompanied by verification of the state of the source or supply, for
instance, by sanitary inspection as described in the WHO Guidelines for Drinking-water
Quality Volume 3. End-product testing is now only one of several key management
tools in the provision of safe drinking water under the forthcoming Guidelines for
Drinking Water Quality. The development, implementation and use of a Water Safety
Plan that considers the quality and overall management of drinking water from source to
consumer is the goal for all water supplies. In such a plan, now including hazard analysis-
critical control points (HACCP), end product testing is not a critical control point (CCP).

This is a recent paper on the WHO web site that describes risk assessment of water
supply. It is one of the documents that will go into the new WHO water quality
guidelines
http://whqlibdoc.who.int/publications/2001/924154533X_chap9.pdf (Apr 05)

Bacteria Testing
Testing for every conceivable pathogen in water would be both time consuming and
expensive. Instead, the presence or absence of certain indicator organisms is used to
determine the biologic safety of the water. Indicator tests are cheaper, easier to perform
and yield faster results, compared to direct pathogen monitoring. These indicator
organisms possess the following characteristics:

• They are present when pathogens are present


• They are identified rapidly and reliably
• They occur in high numbers
• They survive longer than pathogens
• They are not themselves pathogenic

Commonly used indicators are total coliforms, E.coli, and H2S bacteria, which are all
fecal indicators. Thermo-tolerant (i.e. faecal) coliform bacteria (particularly Escherichia
coli) are a sub group of the total coliform group which are produced in the gastro
intestinal tract of warm blooded animals and occur almost entirely in faeces. Among the
coliforms in human faeces, 96.4% are faecal coliforms.

It should be noted that bacteriological water testing is expensive and should be


undertaken only when needed to influence practical decisions with respect to supply or
treatment. Other indicators of the effectiveness of the water treatment, such as the
incidence of diarrhoeal diseases, can be just as significant as or more significant than the
bacteriological water quality. The general health, well-being or energy levels of the local
population can also provide some insight into the quality of the community water supply.

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Contamination Indicators
E.coli (preferred indicator choice) or thermo tolerant coliforms (also called faecal
coliform, acceptable alternative to E.coli indicator) are used as indicators of faecal
pollution. If E.coli is present then it is likely that pathogens are also present. The WHO
recommends that all water intended for drinking should have non-detectable faecal
pollution in any 100 ml sample.

Alternative figures in the following table are often quoted which may be more
appropriate for rural communities:

Table 1. Faecal Pollution and its Associated Risk


FAECAL POLLUTION AND RISK
E. Coli level (colony forming Inference
units per 100 mL sample)
0-10 Reasonable quality
10-100 Polluted
100-1000 Dangerous
> 1000 Very Dangerous

Guidelines for Drinking Water Quality, Third edition, 2003


The WHO third edition of its Guidelines for Drinking-Water Quality, represents a major
updating of the second edition of the Guidelines. An extensive suite of documents has
been prepared. These include:
• risk-based approaches to drinking-water safety management
• water safety plans (HACCP-type approaches to drinking-water safety)
• detailed substantiation for the guidelines related to around 70 chemicals
• guidance on identifying priority chemicals in drinking-water
• a series of documents on different aspects of microbial quality of
• drinking-water
• a series of documents on "good practice" in drinking-water safety management
http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/dwq/gdwq3/en/ (Apr 05)

The previous version (2nd Edition) has Volumes 1, 2 and 3. They are each about 250
pages long! Good bed time reading.
http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/dwq/guidelines4/en/ (Apr 05)

Canadian water quality standards summary table (Guidelines booklet must be purchased)
http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hecs-sesc/water/pdf/summary.pdf (Apr 05)

United States – Environmental Protection Agency - Drinking water standards


http://www.epa.gov/safewater/standards.html (Apr 05)

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Bacteria Testing
There are three main testing techniques for water analysis of bacteria - Membrane
Filtration, Most probablye Number and Presense/absence. The following are typical
prodecures that are used for these techniques.

Membrane Filtration Technique – Exact Count


The main pieces of equipment needed are: membrane filter unit, pre-sterilized petri
dishes with absorbent pads, filter paper with grid, forceps, methanol, incubator, and
media broth.

Procedure:
1. Disposable Whirlpack Bags are used for sample collection, as shown in Figure 1.
Each new bag is pre-sterilized and sealed. During sampling, a bag is unsealed,
filled up with sample water, and closed. The bag should be refrigerated (i.e.
placed in a cooler) until analysis. Analysis must be performed as soon as
possible, ideally within 2 hours.

2. The working surface of the filter apparatus should be sterilized by burning


methanol on it. The top part of the membrane filter unit can be sterilized by
placing it in boiling water for 5 minutes. This part is then allowed to cool to
below 35oC for about 15 minutes. While cooling down, the part should be
covered with sterile aluminum paper. Figure 2 is a picture of the filter assembly
unit.

3.

Cup where
Figure 1. Collect samples the a Whirlpack bag.
using
sample is poured
Top part:
sterilized
between each
sample
The filter paper is under the cup

Tube attached to pump-syringe that


creates a vacuum within the filter

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Figure 2. Membrane Filtration Unit

4. The top filter part must be sterilized between each sample.

5. Steps five to seven outline the procedure to test for one water sample.

6. Remove the lid from a Petri dish. Place an absorbent pad inside the dish using a
steralized forcep. Pour 2 mL of the media broth evenly over the absorbent pad.
Depending on the type of analysis required, the type of media broth differs. For
thermo-tolerant coliform (i.e. faecal), “m-FC” broth is frequently used. For
E.coli, “Coliblue-24” broth can be used. For total coliform, “m-Endo” is
commonly used. Broths can be purchased as pre-packaged ampoule or the broths
can be prepared from dry powder.

7. Setup the membrane filtration unit. One filter paper, grid side up, is placed into
the assembly using sterile forceps. Pour a pre-measured amount (usually 100mL)
of the water sample into the funnel. Apply a vacuum below the filter using the
pump-syringe attached to the assembly in order to force the water through the
filter paper.

8. Transfer the filter paper, grid side up, on the absorbent pad in the previously
prepared Petri dish using sterile forceps. A slight rolling motion was applied
during the transfer to avoid air to be trapped in between the pad and the filter.
Cover the petri dish with its lid.

9. Invert the petri dish (upside down) and place the petri dish in the incubator.
Incubate at the required temperature for the required time.

Total Coliform and E.coli: 35.0 °C ± 0.5 °C for 24 hours.


Thermo-tolerant coliform: 44.5 °C ± 0.2 °C for 24 hours.

10. Remove the Petri dishes from the incubator and count the colonies, using the grid
of the filter to avoid double-counting or missing some colonies. A magnifying
glass and a white fluorescent light source can be very helpful.

11. Report the coliform density as number of colony forming units (CFU) per 100 mL
of sample. Preferably, each plate should have between 20 and 80 colonies for

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easy and accurate counting. Samples producing more than 250 colonies can be
reported as “too numerous to count” (TNTC). Some colonies may overlap thus
creating counting errors. Dilutions of water samples can be made to avoid this.
Dilution water must contain zero coliform and other sources of interference/
contamination. Ideally, non-chlorinated water that has been boiled and cooled
down to room temperature can be used as the dilution water.

Figure 3. Thermo-tolerant coliforms Figure 4. E.coli colonies appear as


colonies appear as blue dots using m- blue dots using m-Coliblue24 broth.
FC broth The red dots indicate total coliform
colonies

Figure 5. Total coliform colonies


appear as red dots with metal sheen
using m-Endo broth.

Exact Count – Membrane Filtration Technology


TEST PROCEDURES USING Disposable MEMBRANE FILTRATION
BACTERIOLOGICAL TEST KITS

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No preparation of petri dishes is required. These kits usually come with prepared media
(M-Endo Broth), Petri Dishes (with Absorbent Pads/Filters), Petri Dish Monitors
(funnels), and Petri Dish Bottom Caps.

Filtration
• Prepare filtration apparatus.
• Lock in a pre-sterilized petri dish with monitor in position. Do not touch the
inside of the petri dish to avoid cross-contamination.
• Mix the water sample thoroughly to obtain a uniform composition. Samples
should be 20 ml or larger. Pour samples directly into the funnel (monitor).
• Apply vacuum to the sample. Hold the lower body of the funnel and swirl liquid
while filtering to ensure uniform mixing and distribution. If sample size is 100 ml,
swirling action is not required.
• Rinse the funnel walls with at least 30 ml of boiled, dechlorinated water. (To
dechlorinate water, use tap water and leave exposed to atmosphere for 48 hours.
Boil for 10 minutes.) Draw rinse buffer through filter. Repeat for a total of three
rinses.
• Turn off the vacuum and lift off the petri dish with funnel. Remove funnel from
the dish. Dispense a 2 ml M-Endo Broth into the dish.
• Reapply vacuum to draw off excess liquid.
• Replace the cover tightly, and then cap the bottom.

Incubation
• Place the petri dish in the incubator and incubate at the required temperature for
the required time.
Total Coliform bacteria - m-Endo 35 oC ± 0.5 oC for 24 hours.
Fecal Coliform bacteria - m-FC 44.5 oC ± 0.2 oC for 24 hours.
• The bacteria will grow and individual colonies can be counted after 24 hours.

Colony counting
• After the required incubation period, take out the dish and remove the cover.
Place the dish in the stereoscope microscope with a daylight white fluorescent
light source. Examine and count all colonies with a golden-green sheen
appearance. (Colors may be different depending on media used)
• Colonies shown in every grid square are to be counted. To facilitate this counting
procedure, proceed from top to bottom and left to right until all grid squares are
covered.

Indicator organism levels in water samples are expressed as the number per 100 ml. The
following relation can be used to enumerate bacterial density:
M = A/B x 100

Where:
M = number of micro organisms/100 ml.

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A = number of bacterial colonies counted.
B = volume of sample filtered, ml.

Presence/Absence Test

The hydrogen sulphide test (H2S) paper strip bacteriological test is used to detect the
presence of certain micro organisms in the water.

This experiment is a test for H2S. In order to check for the presence of these "sentinel" or
"indicator" bacteria in water, we put them in contact with a strip of paper that has been
impregnated with a nutritive substance (food for bacteria) plus a colour indicator that
turns black when it comes in contact with hydrogen sulphide. If the test paper turns black,
it means that H2S was produced, which in turn means that bacteria of faecal origin are
likely present in the water sample.

In assessing the applicability of the H2S test


in presence/absence format, the limitations of
P/A testing should be recalled. P/A testing
was developed for and is applicable where
most tests provide a negative result. Where a
significant proportion of tests provide a
positive reaction, quantitative testing is
preferred. This will determine the relative
health risk and therefore relative priority of
need for improved treatment or for finding a
higher quality source water for supply.

Arsenic Testing
Arsenic is a toxic substance. Long-term ingestion of arsenic contaminated water can
cause melanosis (pigmentation on skin), keratosis (hardening skin bulges on palms and
feet), cancer of lungs, bladder, kidney, skin, and liver, as well as vascular and
neurological diseases.

WHO set a guideline value of 10 ug/L (equivalent to 10 parts per billion). Many
industrialized countries have also adopted 10 ug/L as their national standard. For
developing countries, most have a national standard of 50 ug/L, partly due to economic
considerations and the lack of tools and technique to measure accurately at such low
concentration. Refer to Table 2 for the current national standard for arsenic for various
countries.

Table 2. National Standards for Selected Countries for Arsenic in Drinking Water
(source: Towards a More Effective Operational Response – Arsenic Contamination of Groundwater in
South and East Asian Countries, Volume I, Policy Report. Page 31. The World Bank. March 2005.)

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Laboratory and Field Analysis

The quantification of arsenic can be performed using laboratory methods or field


methods. Laboratory methods are in general more accurate, but require electricity,
trained technician, and expensive instruments. Not all developing countries have a
reliable laboratory for arsenic testing. Field methods are cheap, simple, and easy to
perform, but the accuracy is usually not as good as laboratory methods. The choice of
laboratory vs. field methods depends on the specific conditions such as available
infrastructure, skilled personnel, desired level of accuracy, and funding. Tables 3 and 4
describe the various laboratory and field analysis methods for arsenic.

Table 3. Laboratory Analysis Methods for Arsenic


(source: Towards a More Effective Operational Response – Arsenic Contamination of Groundwater in
South and East Asian Countries, Volume II, Technical Report. Page 186. The World Bank. March 2005.)

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Table 4. Laboratory Analysis Methods for Arsenic


(source: Towards a More Effective Operational Response – Arsenic Contamination of Groundwater in
South and East Asian Countries, Volume II, Technical Report. Page 188. The World Bank. March 2005.)

For most of the test kits, the arsenic measurement is based on the Gutzeit procedure. In
this procedure, inorganic arsenic is reduced to As(III) and then converted to arsenic gas.
Various chemicals may be added to facilitate the reduction of arsenic to As(III), as well as
to remove interferences. Then the arsenic gas reacts with a paper strip impregnated with
mercuric bromide and produces a yellow to brown stain. The amount of arsenic present
in the water is directly related to the intensity of the colour. The colour developed on the

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paper strip can be compared to a standard colour chart to determine the arsenic
concentration in the sample water. Figure 6 shows an arsenic test kit developed by
Industrial Test Systems, Inc. of USA. Figure 7 shows a colour chart taken from an
arsenic test kit developed by Environment and Public Health Organization of Nepal.

Figure 6. ArsenicCheckTM, an arsenic test kit developed by a US-based company,


Industrial Test Systems, Inc.

Figure 7. A colour chart corresponding the yellow-brown colour intensity to the arsenic
concentration. Taken from an arsenic test kit developed by Environment and Public
Health Organization of Nepal.

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Other Water Analysis


Water quality identification falls into two categories: qualitative and quantitative.

Qualitative identification involves our senses of smell, taste and sight and includes the
following properties:
• Colour, clarity, smell, taste, scaling, staining, sediment, corrosion

Quantitative identification involves measurements such as the following to tell us how


much is in the water:
• pH, TDS, Conductivity/resistivity, Turbidity (NTU,JTU,FTU), TOC (Total
Organic Compounds), COD (Chemical Oxygen Demand), BOD (Biological
Oxygen Demand), Bacterial and virus content, arsenic concentration
.

Testing the pH of water samples


Liquids can be divided into two categories,
Acids or Bases. Acids
contain lots of hydrogen atoms (a short
notation is "H+"). When a liquid tastes sour,
like vinegar or lemon juice, it usually
contains an acid. Bases are the opposite of
acids. They contain hydroxide ions ("OH-"
for short), and feel soapy or slippery.

The acidic or basic condition of a liquid is


measured by the pH scale. Acidic solutions
have a pH ranging from 6 (for a weak acid)
to 1 (for a strong acid). The pH of a basic
solution ranges from 8 (for a weak base) to
14 (for a strong base). Solutions with pH
values between 6 and 8 are said to have a
"neutral" pH. Pure water has a pH of about 7.

The pH scale is divided into 14 units going


from 0 (maximum acidity) to 14 (maximum
basic level).

The pH of the water in a stream, river, lake or underground flow will vary depending on a
number of conditions: the source of the water; the type of soil, bedrock and vegetation
through which it travels; the types of contaminants the water encounters in its path; and
even the amount of mixing and aeration due to turbulence in its flow. The effects of a
specific type of water pollution on living plants and animals can vary greatly depending
on the pH.

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Colour
Apparent colour is a measure of the optical effects of both dissolved and suspended
matter. It is measured relative to a set of standard samples (the Hazen scale). Humus and
peat materials carried by many rivers can give their waters a characteristic brown colour.

Color and odor have no direct chemical significance but indicate quality or pollution.
Dark brown or yellowish water usually contains tannins and other vegetable chemicals,
sediments usually cause reddish colors. True color is due to dissolved materials and
apparent color is due to turbidity or suspended particles. Filtration is used to
distinguish between the two colors. Pure water does not have odor or taste.

Turbidity
Turbidity is a measure of the light-scattering properties of water and hence an index of
the amount of suspended particles. The current standard for potable (drinking) water is a
maximum turbidity of 5 ‘nephelometric turbidity units’ (NTU), though less than 1 NTU is
recommended if the water is to be efficiently treated.

Total suspended solids is a direct measure of suspended matter. Often turbidity is


measured because it is easier and faster than measuring suspended sediment.

Turbidity is actually an optical property of the fluid. An increase in turbidity is visually


described as an increase in cloudiness. Turbidity in streams is usually caused by
suspended particles of silt and clay (eroded soils), but other materials such as colored
organic compounds and microorganisms can add turbidity.

Turbidity Tube
The turbidity tube is a simple and easy way to estimate water clarity.

Equipment (to make three tubes)


• 8 ft. fluorescent light sleeve
• 3- 1 9/16 to 1 5/8 inch Plexiglas discs
• 3- 1½ inch white Plexiglas discs
• Sharp knife (e.g., Exacto knife)
• Black permanent marker or electrical tape
• Plexiglas sealant
• Measuring tape or yard stick

1. Using the knife-cut the 8-foot fluorescent light sleeve into three equal lengths (32
inches).
2. Insert the 1 9/16 to 1 5/8-inch white Plexiglas disc into one end and seal with
Plexiglas sealant. If disc has a center hole, plug it with sealant. (Note: this will
likely have to be treated with sealant more than once to fill all spaces. An easy
way to check to see if more sealant is necessary, is to blow into the tube at the

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opposite end of the disc and feel if air escapes near the end with the disc inserted
into it.)
3. Using the black marker or electrical tape (and razor blade to cut edges smooth),
color half of the white Plexiglas disc or color two opposite quadrants black,
similar to a secchi disc.
4. Drop the white and black disc (target) into the tube.
5. Starting from the top of the target draw a line around the tube, leaving a space
(gap) in the circular line for a label.

Place lines at the heights above the target as shown in the following table:
Line Distance above target (inches) Turbidity Units (roughly NTUs)
1 2.875 200
2 4.5 100
3 7.5 50
4 12.25 20
5 17 15
6 20.75 10

Note that turbidity unit labels are not always equally spaced, therefore if using this
method you cannot estimate NTUs between lines on the turbidity tube.
These directions are based on information from Jim Peterson, UWEX Environmental
Resources Center, UW-Madison.
http://clean-water.uwex.edu/wav/monitoring/turbidity/tubedirections.htm (Apr 05)

This web site also describes how to build and use a turbidity tube.
http://www.environmentmonitor.green.net.au/water/turbid.htm (Apr 05)

Salinity (electrical conductivity)


Electrical conductivity (EC) is commonly used to determine salinity indirectly because of
its sensitivity and ease of measurement. The recommended guideline fresh water is less
than 1500 µS/cm (micro-siemens per centimetre) although some crops can be
successfully irrigated with water up to 5500 µS/cm.

Heavy metals
Heavy metal pollution is typically associated with mining activities or discharges from
some industries. Persistent toxicants (heavy metals) in water and sediments affected by
heavy metal pollution can have serious affects on the aquatic ecosystem and can make
water unsuitable for human consumption. Some animals can also ‘bioaccumulate’ metals,
making them unsafe to eat.

Other Testing
Levels of certain compounds and their impacts on water quality are indicated by the
biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) of the water. A high BOD is often accompanied

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by a low DO level.

To determine the content and amount of other contaminants in water, more sophisticated
water testing is required. This test usually can not be performed in a field setting.

Water Sample Collection and Preservation


Collecting and preserving a good water sample is crucial. If done poorly or incorrectly,
the results reported may be misleading. Depending on the analysis to be performed, the
sampling and preservation method varies.

Microbial Samples
• Refer to the earlier section on Membrane Filtration Technique
When sampling, make sure that your hands do not touch the lip of the bottle. You should
also pay special care and attention to handling the bottle cap to prevent contamination.
Ask the laboratory to explain the proper way to place the water sample into the bottle.
Use an ice chest to keep the water samples below stream temperature during
transportation. Try to get the samples to the lab within 24 hours. In general, the shorter
the time between collection of a sample and its analysis, the more reliable the results.

Metal Samples (including arsenic)


• Use an appropriate container with a tightly fitting lid – use sampling containers if
supplied by a lab
• Rinse out containers three or four times with the water to be analyzed
• Allow the water to run for several minutes if contained within piping system such
as treatment plants or tube well.
• Make sure nothing touches the water inside the sample container (fingers, tools)
• Add preserving agents if applicable. The preservation method is dependent on the
water parameters to be tested.
• Test water samples as soon as possible, ideally within 24 hours after sampling.
• If the sample is transported in warm weather or the analysis will be performed
later than 24 hours after sampling, it should be refrigerated or kept cold.

Failure to follow proper field handling protocol and laboratory techniques can be a source
of error. Make a record of every sample collected and identify every bottle, preferably by
attaching an appropriately inscribed tag or label. Record sufficient information to provide
positive sample identification at a later date. Include the name of the collector, date, hour,
exact location, water temperature, and any other data that may be needed for correlation,

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Resources
The following is a list of companies that supply water testing equipment and materials.
Many of them have good web sites and will provide you with significant information if
requested. Remember that good testing equipment is very expensive and it takes a
considerable amount of skill to do tests successfully.

Fisher Scientific Thomas Scientific


711 Forbes Ave. 99 High Hill Road at I-295
Pittsburgh, PA 15219-4785 P.O. Box 99
(800) 766-7000 Swedesboro, NJ 08085-0099
www.fisherscientific.com www.thomassci.com

Hach Company Carolina Biological Supply Company


P.O. Box 389 2700 York Court
Loveland, CO 80539 Burlington, NC 27215-3398
(800) 525-5940 (800) 334-5551
www.hach.com www.carolina.com

Anachemia Science VWR Scientific


P.O. Box 147 P.O. Box 2643
Lachine, QC H8S 4A7 Irving, TX 75061
(800) 361-0209 (800) 527-1576
www.anachemia.com www.vwr.com

Hydrolab Corporation Wildlife Supply Company


P.O. Box 50116 301 Cass Street
Austin, TX 78763 Saginaw, MI 48602
(512) 255-8841 (517) 799-8100
www.hydrolab.com www.wildco.com

LaMotte Chemical Products Onset Instrument*


P.O. Box 329 P.O. Box 2450
Chestertown, MD 21620 Pocasset, MA 02559-3450
(800) 344-3100 tel. (508) 563-9000
www.lamotte.com fax (508) 563-9477

Millipore Corporation YSI Corporation


397 Williams Street 1725 Brannum Lane
Marlborough, MA 01752 Yellow Springs, Ohio 45387
(800) 225-1380 (513) 767-7241
http://www.millipore.com www.ysi.com

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The following site is a short article from the mid 1990’s about low cost methods for
detecting contaminants in water supplies. These methods were developed by the
Canadian International Development Research Council
http://web.idrc.ca/es/ev-5527-201-1-DO_TOPIC.html (Apr 05)

The following is a web site that is set up as a school water testing program that can be
done by students. It may be very useful for teaching water quality.
http://www.aquatox.net/index.cfm?op=ShowNews (Apr 05)

The following is a publication of the WHO entitled “Evaluation of the H2S Method for
Detection of Fecal Contamination of Drinking Water”, Geneva, WHO, 2002.
http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/dwq/wsh0208/en/ (Apr 05)

UNICEF info sheet on fluoride


http://www.unicef.org/wes/fluoride.pdf (Apr 05)

WHO fact sheet on arsenic


http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/dwq/arsenic/en/ (Apr 05)

This is an excellent guide to learn more on water samples, and analysis. It include a
description of the contaminant, health impacts, and treatment options.
http://wilkes.edu/~eqc/helpguide.htm (Apr 05)

This site shows the Colilert test system. It used a combination of Presence/Absence tests
and Most Probable Number Tests for E. Coli and Coliform.
http://www.idexx.com/water/products/Colilert/ (Apr 05)

This site shows the Coliplate system which is a Most Probable Number test. Each plate
costs about $ 8 CDN.
http://www.bluewaterbiosciences.com/coliplate.asp (Apr 05)

This site shows a water analysis field kit from India


http://www.cleanindia.org/jaltarakit.htm (Apr 05)

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