Water Quality Testing

Subscribe to our free E-Newsletter, "Agri-News" (formerly RTW This Week)Agri-News
This Week
In rural Canada, most people rely on private water supplies such as wells, dugouts and ponds. Quality water is vital to the social, health and economic well being of the prairies and its people.

Monitoring your water quality by having it tested regularly is an important part of maintaining a safe and reliable source.

Testing the water allows a knowledgeable approach to address the specific problems of a water supply. This helps ensure that the water source is being properly protected from potential contamination, and that an appropriate treatment system is selected and is operating properly.

It is important to test the suitability of your water quality for its intended purpose, whether it is livestock watering, irrigation, spraying, or drinking water. This will assist you in making informed decisions about your water and how you use it. The purpose of this section of RWQIT is to provide water quality testing information that will assist rural residents using a private water supply. It provides information on the importance of water quality monitoring and how you can get it tested.

Why test my water?
  • Regular testing is necessary to determine specific water quality problems.
  • To help ensure you are using water suitable for your intended agricultural use.
  • To help ensure that your drinking water is safe.
  • To help determine the effectiveness of your water treatment system.
The quality of a water source may change over time, sometimes suddenly. Many changes can go unnoticed as the water may look, smell and taste the same as it always did.

Monitoring your water quality is necessary to ensure your treatment system is working effectively, providing the best quality water for your intended use.

Are there problems with my water quality?

The water you are using may or may not have problems with it. Many people are aware of some of their water quality problems. For example, some people may be plagued with high concentrations of iron, which causes aesthetically unpleasing coloring and staining.

Unfortunately, not all water quality problems can be easily detected without proper testing. The water may look good but may actually be unsuitable for the specific application you are using it for.

Proper sampling, testing and interpretation of the results are required to determine the suitability of your water supply and identify any problems it may have.

Other Documents in the Series

  Water Quality Testing - Current Document
Water Quality Testing: Agricultural Water
Water Quality Testing: Drinking Water
Water Quality Testing: How Do I Go About Getting My Water Tested?
Water Quality Testing: What Do the Test Results Mean?
Water Quality Testing: Common Water Quality Terms/Parameters
Water Sampling
Water Sampling: Methods Based on Source
Water Sampling: Field Equipment and Techniques
Water Sampling: Shipping of Samples
Share via AddThis.com
For more information about the content of this document, contact Shawn Elgert.
This information published to the web on November 15, 2006.
Last Reviewed/Revised on January 11, 2016.