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Water Testing Question

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Any of you guys do water testing?

There are kits available for inspector to

do on site test for Total Coliform.

Also do it yourself kits for several water contaminants.

Figure for liability reasons to send it all

off the lab for analysis.

What you - all think?


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I looked into water testing when I first started up. I typically do inspections right after the PA is signed. The mortgage companies want the testing done within 30 days of closing. As the closing is ussually more than 30 days after closing doing water testing would require a second trip to the home. With lab and travel costs I could not compete with other water test companies.


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For several years we did water testing and still offer it as an add-on to a full inspection. We really never made any money at it, even tho' it looked good on paper. We charged 6x the cost of lab fee and 8x lab fee for total analysis. We are in a state capitol city so used the state's lab and got wonderful service and turn-around time. Here the testing is done along with the inspection or within a few days.

Finally I realized the "add-ons" were affecting total sales, as our fees were twice what others were charging. Long story short: stopped doing them as we could not make any money!

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We do water testing but only through a certified lab. Chain of custody is all important in any sort of test. The mail in tests are suspect because of that. For example for coliform the sample must be kept below 40 degrees and analyzed within 24 hours of being taken. There is too much at stake not to do everything just right. I wouldn’t do water testing myself unless I wanted to become a certified lab (I don’t) it’s not worth the risk. Being the sample taker / courier is all I want to do.



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