Between the questions of when should I test my water and why should I test my water one of those questions is easier to answer than the other, so let’s start with the harder question. Why should you test your water. Unfortunately there are many potential toxins and hazards that can be found in tap water and we’ll talk about a few of them below.
There are systems in place to make sure that the worst of hazards and toxins do not find their way into our water, but unfortunately they are not always completely sufficient. The federal, state, and local governments all have standards in place that are used to ensure that our water isn’t outright toxic for us. Unfortunately those requirements aren’t all up to a level that necessarily makes the water healthy for us to drink. Many of the toxins and contaminants in water that aren’t properly filtered out can lead to health issues like kidney stones or urinary tract infections.
Other times it is possible for minerals, toxins, or contaminants to enter our water after the treatment facilities have purified the water leading to the water in our homes being contaminated after it has been purified but before it reaches and is used in our homes. These things aren’t always likely to have occurred, but they are possible. In more rural areas or areas where there has been a lot of new construction or new homes being built water quality can have been changed and treatment facilities might not be properly updated.
Luckily water tests are relatively inexpensive and oftentimes completely free when provided by certain companies. With all this being said the question of why you should have your water tested has a relatively easy answer after all. You never can know for sure what contaminants, toxins, minerals, or hazards might be in the water supply without a professional water test which is in many cases free. If there can be toxins in the water and the test could be free anyway, why not have a test performed?
As for the question of when you should have a water test performed the answer would simply be whenever it is possible or convenient. There are however times when it would be more important than others to have a water test done. For example, if there were noticeable changes in water quality such as different odors, tastes, or appearance it might be a good time to get a water test done. Another time it would be important is when there is a lot of new construction in the area residential or otherwise. Lastly, it is always a good idea to have a water test done if you haven’t in recent history or especially if you are a new home owner. With these tests being free and performed relatively quickly it is almost always a good idea to have a test performed.