The Virginia Cooperative Extension office offering drinking water test clinics

Published: Jun. 2, 2023 at 4:53 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 2, 2023 at 6:47 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) - The Virginia Cooperative Extension is offering a well and spring drinking water test clinic to residents in Augusta and Rockingham County.

The test kits will cost $65 and must be brought to a clinic site to be tested for contaminants. The contaminants examined will include:

  • Bacteria
  • Harmful metals (lead, copper, arsenic, iron and manganese)
  • pH and hardness of the water
  • Sodium
  • Complex molecules (sulfate, fluoride and nitrate)
  • And total dissolved solids

Doug Horn, Crop and Soil extension agent based in Augusta County, said the government does not regulate private drinking water.

“There is no regulatory action for looking at the drinking water,” Horn said. “It’s pretty much up to the individual to be comfortable with their water supply and their health.”

Horn said the program is only offered once every two years and the kits have to be examined within a specific window of time.

“Parameters such as bacteria must be analyzed in a very specific time. We can’t hold the samples for later,” Horn said.

The kickoff meeting for the clinic is Jun 2 at 6 p.m. but testing kits can be acquired all through next week. After the water sample is collected, people need to bring their samples on June 14 between 7 and 10 a.m. at the Augusta County Extension Office in the government center.

Samples will be collected and analyzed by the VCE and they will offer a interpretation meeting on July 19 to discuss test results with people and next course of actions if the drinking water is deemed unsafe for consumption.