If you're an owner of a well, you're responsible for maintaining and testing the well water. The Environmental Protection Agency does not regulate the wells, because private property is out of its jurisdiction.

The National Ground Water Association (NGWA) recommends testing your well water every year "for bacteria, nitrates, and any contaminants of local concern."

Contact your local county health department to ask about well water testing. It's ideal to get a local expert, because he will be more aware about regional contaminants in the soil like arsenic or recent activity like a runoff, according to Cliff Treyens, Director of General Public Outreach at NGWA.

You may also call NGWA's Private Well Owner hotline: 855-420-9355.

RELATED: VA residents drink, bathe, brush teeth with bottled water after contamination concerns


Drinking water testing
Service Contact: Water Quality Division
Contact Phone: (202) 535-2600
Contact TTY: 711

DC Well Permits


Contact your local health department to ask for well water testing.
Also, see the list of certified water quality labs by county.


Virginia Master Well Owner Network
Phone: (540) 231-9058
Email: wellwater@vt.edu

Water testing can be done by the Virginia Household Water Quality Program run by the Virginia Cooperative Extension in about 60 counties each year.

"The programs are voluntary and open to anyone with a well or a spring," said Erin Ling, M.S., Senior Associate and Program Coordinator of the Virginia Household Water Quality Program.

"Our program returns confidential results to the participants and provides education about well care and maintenance, understanding results and addressing water problems. We analyze samples through research labs on the Virginia Tech campus and follow all standard methods and protocols but are not a state certified labs."

For official well water testing, you should use one of the certified water testing labs in Virginia.