Aztech Laboratory Inc., is a private water testing company that serves all interested parties. Started in 1997, our primary focus is potability testing as required for real estate transactions,
mortgage refinancing, and personal safety.
A portion of our customer base, such as restaurants, food establishments, campgrounds, convenience stores that serve food to the public are required to check their water on a yearly basis and report the results to the appropriate governmental authorities.
Aztech Laboratory Inc. is qualified to provide this type of testing service as we are accredited with CALA: the Canadian Association for Laboratory Accreditation, for the specific parameters of Total Coliform and E. coli.
You can check out our status and scope of testing at www.cala.ca
Total coliforms and E.coli are used as indicators to measure the degree of pollution and sanitary
quality of well water.
20 Mineral Package
The 20 Mineral Pkg includes a Potability Test and the following minerals/metals: hardness, aluminum, antimony, arsenic, barium, beryllium, bismuth, boron, cadmium, chromium, cobalt, copper, iron, lead, manganese, molybdenum, nickel, selenium, silver, sodium, thallium, tin, uranium, vanadium and zinc
Package description and pricing is subject
to change without notice.
In order to confirm that well water is clear of bacteria and other contaminants, private wells should be tested twice per year (preferably in the spring and fall).
Keep in mind that Coliform Bacteria and E. Coli have no taste, smell or colour. If you are experiencing a change in your water contact us to discuss you water testing options.
The main office and laboratory is located in Quispamsis, NB, with a drop off depot located in the Moncton NB area
that will ship samples to our laboratory in Quispamsis for testing.
Please complete and attach a submission form with your sample.
Well Shock Instructions
Having your own well provides you with a free source of fresh water. However, the well can become contaminated with bacteria.
One effective treatment for this is to add chlorine bleach to the well water, which will kill all the bacteria.
This process is often referred to as Well Shocking.
It is a relatively inexpensive treatment however it does take a few days to complete the process.
Who Should Test Your Water ?
It is important to choose a lab that is at the very least accredited for the testing you require. All accredited members of CALA are subject to independent audits and peer review in order to ensure competency. We also participate in the proficiency testing program. Twice a year we test blind samples and our results are compared for accuracy and precision to labs across the country. Testing of parameters for which Aztech Lab is not accredited is subcontracted to accredited labs to provide reliable results in all situations. We strive to provide to most suitable test in a fast economical manner.
What is Potability Testing ?
Bacteria are everywhere. Some are good, some cause sickness. Before you buy a home on a well, it is diligent to know what you are drinking. But, it’s too costly to check for every known waterborne pathogen such as typhoid, cholera, dysentery, etc. Instead we look for indicator organisms that dwell alongside these nasty organisms. Where you find indicators, there may be a higher risk of contracting one of these particularly nasty diseases.
The coliform bacteria group is a good indicator and it includes the smaller group E.coli. Some strains of E.coli may cause sickness and specific types can cause death. Most are required for normal bodily function. They are naturally occurring form decay plant and animal matter. E.coli is directly associated with human and animal waste. Therefore, it is logical that surface water (rain water) can pick up these bacteria and carry them directly into a well that is not functioning or located properly.
What do coliform counts mean?
Coliform in a well by itself indicates possible contamination with surface water. The water picks up the bacteria and if it has not been filtered adequately by the soil before it reaches your well water through a crack in the casing, a leaky underground cap etc., then contamination will occur. This type of contamination does not guarantee you will get sick, but there is a greater chance. A more serious contamination by E.coli indicates an even greater risk of becoming sick.
How do I fix a contaminated well?
There are numerous ways a well can become contaminated. The quick and inexpensive corrective step is to chlorinate with a bleach solution, like Javex. Typically, wells are chlorinated and retested to see if this corrective step worked. Before or during this procedure, check the well for visible signs of possible contamination sources. For example, a well that is poorly located, a cap that is broken or loose, plants growing into the underside of the cap, insects living under the cap, a buried well cap are all issues that should be corrected. If this is done and the well shocking doesn’t correct the problem, a well driller could scope the well with a camera looking for cracks in the casing, a leaky pitless adapter (connection point between the well casing and line that runs to the house). The driller could also determine if the casing has shifted from a frost heave, leaving it seated in the bedrock inappropriately. A well that is located in a depression or next to a leaky septic field should be relocated. A buried well cap could be brought above ground level. These are not all the issues that affect the quality of your well water, but they are great starting points to cover. A well driller or plumber is a good source of information on the required standards for well construction, location and maintenance.
Contact Aztech Lab if you would like to schedule a well shocking and pricing.
What about conditioning or treating the water?
If all else fails, the water could be treated before consumption. Typically, an ultraviolet light is installed to sterilize any bacteria that may be coming into the house. It is located after the pressure tank and any conditioners as required to ensure 100% sterilization as per the UV manufacturer’s instruction.
When can I retest after shocking a well?
Government literature states seven days after shocking. However, this assumes the water is being used or flushed from the well in these seven days. The flushing and use will expel the chorine. It is extremely important to ensure the chorine is completely gone before retesting. Chlorine kills bacteria and its presence in a sample will produce a “false” negative growth on the test which makes the results unreliable. The goal of shocking and retesting is to determine if the well can deliver potable water under normal operating conditions. Wells are not normally chlorinated on a daily basis. It may take more or less than 7 days to get the chlorine out, depending on the volume of flushing and usage. A pool kit can be used to check for chlorine especially if you are working around it for any length of time as everyone builds up a tolerance to the smell, which makes it undetectable.
My well tested fine (or retested fine). What does this mean?
You should continue to monitor the bacterial quality by testing on a regular basis. The province recommends it be done twice a year, after the spring thaw and late summer/fall. Any test is only a snapshot of the condition at that particular day. Any good result is not a guarantee that the well will continue to function as tested. Only a baseline of data over time can truly instill confidence in a well. After all, it is only a hole in the ground. Wells should be tested after repairs or reconstruction of the well has been done. Testing should be done if you notice a change in the taste, color or odor. If there are known chemical spills in the vicinity, testing should be done.
Hand Dug Wells
Hand dug wells are not recommended as they are usually completely at the mercy of whatever is at ground level. In other words, they can be in direct contact with rain water or surface water. Aztech has observed cases of mice drowning in hand dug wells. Disinfection is only a temporary fix as sooner or later contamination will reoccur. It’s the nature of these types of well construction and the reason new well must be drilled with a minimum depth of casing. If hand dug wells must be used, then we suggest a more permanent treatment such as UV sterilization.
How do I flush my well?
Flushing a well is done to remove all traces of chlorine used to treat a contaminated well. The water is flushed by increased usage. Run the water from your taps, alternating throughout the house. The frequency and duration is subjective. But, it is imperative to remove all trace of chlorine from all taps and lines. In addition, if you have a septic system, then run the water from the outside tap into a ditch or driveway to protect it from the chlorine. I suggest this be done at least for the first day of hard flushing.
Retesting can be done when all trace of chlorine is gone. You may be fooled by your own tolerance to the smell of chlorine so a neighbor’s opinion can help you decide. Test kits may be purchased at a hardware store. Testing too soon may give a good result that’s actually false. If you think the chlorine is gone, I suggest wait longer for more reliable results.
Does Aztech provide sampling service?
Yes. We can collect a sample of well water at your home for an additional fee. Prices start at $50 depending on the location. Aztech can collect retest samples for a minimum of $25.00 charged for time, gas and liability, regardless of the circumstances. If the retest is submitted to the lab, then the first retest is free.
How long can the sample sit between collection and testing?
After the sample is collected, it must be tested within 24 hrs. For example, if you collect it on a Sunday night at your cottage, or you can’t get it to the lab the same day, then refrigerate it overnight and submit the next day. Do not freeze or subject sample to high temperatures for example by leaving it on the car dashboard in on a sunny day.
Can a well be sampled without power to the property?
Yes, a well drilling company uses a portable generator and pump so they can also get a sample if a pump is not installed. Aztech does not provide this service at the moment. If you’re in a time crunch, dropping a bottle on a string into the well is an option. However, the chances of failing are low due to the nature of the sampling method.
My well failed after a second chlorine disinfection. What should I do?
I suggest that the well be inspected for visible signs and causes of contamination. A well driller can scope it with a camera to see down into the well for leaks and cracks. Look at the well to see if the cap is high enough off the ground. Make sure the ground is sloped away from it to avoid rainwater and soil from pooling and leaking through the cap. Remove the cap to see if there is any insect infestation.
If the well is not up to today’s construction codes, then make it right. You are not guaranteed a passing results by doing so, but you could also add an ultra violet sterilizer to the main water line. These units can guarantee bacteriologically safe drinking water.
My well failed twice with heavy E.coli contamination after 2 disinfection procedures. Now what?
A serious, repeated contamination must be addressed on a couple angles. It would be best to contact a well driller and a septic expert (if on septic), to locate and inspect both. They should be located a minimum standard distance away from each other. The well could be physically impaired and the septic could be overflowing and leaking. Both items could be substandard, in disrepair, improperly located or malfunctioning underground out of eye sight. Experts can scope the well and septic with cameras for a better look and thoroughly advise the best corrective procedure.