"How to" Instructional and Informational Materials
The items listed below are for
assistance and informational use only. Just "click" on the title line to view the complete article. They are not the last word on these topics, however, they may be of assistance to our
current or future clients. Remember, sampling instructions are also available on this web site, and at the laboratory office. In addition, laboratory personnel are available for most
types of sample collection.
Basic Water Quality Information
What are some of the
common "standards" for drinking water? What do these terms mean? Contained in this paper are some of the common water quality criteria examined for public, and often, private water
supplies. There is a short description of what these analytical parameters mean and their impact.
Maximum Contaminant Levels (Safe limits for certain contaminants)
Contaminants and materials found in drinking water have Federal maximum levels that are considered safe. Secondary contaminants are items that produce aesthetic effects, yet may not be
a hazard to health. The limits currently established are listed here. Laboratory reports may be compared to these values or they may be considered prior to sample analysis to determine
appropriate analytical parameters.
Chester County (Chapter 500), Water, Wells, Nuisances, Sewage and Liquid Waste Regulations
It will take a moment or two for this page to load. This is the complete text of Chester County Pennsylvania's regulations on the location, construction and
placement of wells and septic systems, including related structures. There are standards for water quality for new domestic wells and the required methods for analysis and reporting. Type and
grade of materials for construction are listed as are the setback minimums.
Bacterial Sample Collection Information and Procedures
This paper presents the proper methods for collection, transport and holding samples for the common bacterial analyses. Includes instructions to prepare your own container if necessary.
Volatile Organic Chemicals (Including Trihalomethanes) Sampling and Collection Procedures
Samples for volatile solvents and trihalomethanes must not only be collected by specific procedures, but specially prepared containers must be used. These should come from the
laboratory. Collectors should give strong consideration to having travel blanks run with samples. These will be provided by the laboratory with your two duplicate sample containers,
however, will not be run without instructions from the client (due to the additional cost).
Well Chlorination Information and Procedure
Work on wells or plumbing may be the cause for temporary well contamination. Opening the well for any reason, cracks or imperfection in the case or well seal, tall vegetation around the
well cap and a number of other conditions may cause a temporary change in water quality. Proper chlorination may clear this problem before it causes human disease.
Abbreviations and symbols
Laboratory reports will contain certain symbols and abbreviations that may need additional explanation. This page contains some of the more common items resulting in questions.
Individual Contaminants, (probably more information than you would like)
Some contaminants or small groups of contaminants need more detailed explanations. This link will take you to yet another page from which you may select individual analytes for a
more complete description of their importance and health effects. REMEMBER, these are not conclusive nor complete. Information is offered only as a guide, not as a complete answer to all
questions and problems.