Tips for testing your well

Posted June 24, 2014, at 10:48 a.m.
Last modified June 24, 2014, at 12:01 p.m.

Well water can be contaminated but still look, smell and taste fine. One in 10 Maine wells contains highs levels of arsenic.

Test private well water:

— Every year for bacteria, nitrates and nitrites.

— Every three to five years for arsenic, radon, uranium, lead and fluoride.

Also test if:

— You’re expecting a baby.

— Your water changes in color, taste or smell.

— Test for bacteria if you introduce new parts, such as a new pump, pipes or water softener, or a well runs dry and comes back.

— You put in a water treatment system to address a problem. Test the treated water each year for that problem.

If elevated levels of arsenic are detected, use bottled water for drinking and cooking, or install a water filtration system.

For information, visit or call 866-292-3474.

For a list of labs certified to test private well water in Maine, visit

Source: Maine CDC