Many families, including my own, are among the one million residents of Minnesota who rely on private wells. Most of us take it for granted that when we turn on the tap our water will be safe to drink and use for day-to-day household tasks. But there are no guarantees, unless that water is tested. The State recommends water testing. The Minnesota Department of Health recommends wells should be tested for: -- Coliform bacteria annually -- Nitrates every other year -- Arsenic and lead at least once -- Manganese levels before a baby drinks well water Regular testing becomes more important when families include children.
The responsibility for testing falls on us. Cities regularly test and treat community water supplies. If you live in a rural area you may be on your own. As private well owners, we are responsible for regularly testing our well water.
I found this video by The Clean Water Council on well testing to be very helpful. It offers a good step-by-step process to ensure that our water is as pure as we hope it is.
Out of sight, out of mind? The groundwater sources of drinking water for a million rural Minnesotans may be far out of sight, but must be kept in mind when it comes to groundwater protection, testing, and the quality and safety of our private wells.