Well Water Testing is Critical – You Must Know Your H20

Well Water Safety

If your water comes from a private well, you know that the safety of your drinking water is up to you.  At the federal level and in most states there are no regulations that govern private wells, but the CDC and EPA does recommend that you test your well water at least once a year. You may want to check the quality of your water more often if there are known problems with wells in your area or if you have experienced any flooding or land disturbances near your well.  Indications of a change in water quality include cloudiness, odor, and unusual taste.

You can quickly and easily test your well water for a variety of contaminants with TestAssured’s Well Water Testing Kit.  This kit is a great screening test to help you determine the quality of your water.

This single kit includes all of the following water tests:

  • Chlorine
  • Copper
  • Nitrates & Nitrites
  • Iron
  • Alkalinity
  • pH
  • Hardness
  • Bacteria

Specially designed for people on well water, the Well Water Testing Kit includes 8 tests for a complete water analysis.  You’ll be able to identify the presence of chemicals, metals, and even bacteria like E. coli.

These easy to use tests will give you results within 10 minutes, with the exception of the bacteria test which takes 48 hours for full results.   There’s no need for expensive equipment or to mail samples to a lab.  Each test is calibrated to the EPA standards.  Once you have your results, compare them to the EPA recommendations and guidelines for water quality limits.

Please review and share some of our PSAs on Well Water.
Get our Educational Booklet on Drinking Water Quality for Private Well Owners.
Corrosion Index, LSI, Hardness and Alkalinity – Do you have a problem??

JKLM ENERGY, LLC Surfactant Release Potter County Chemical Spill

Initial Press Release (Partial) – Chemical Spill – Potter County, PA   (Please like and share with others)

JKLM ENERGY, LLC INITIATES RESPONSE TO RELEASE OF SURFACTANT AT REESE HOLLOW DRILLING LOCATION IN SWEDEN TOWNSHIP, POTTER COUNTY WEXFORD, Pa (Sept.24) – JKLM Energy, LLC (JKLM) today released information on the company’s ongoing efforts to respond to an incident in which a surfactant solution used in the drilling and completion of natural gas wells is believed to have migrated into shallow subsurface and ground water during initial drilling activities at the Reese Hollow 118 Pad located off Burrows Road in Sweden Township, Potter County, Pa. Surfactants are also referred to as “foaming agents” or “soap.” The migration was discovered following the use of the surfactant to free a broken drill bit piece in the well at 570 feet below ground on September 18th.

“Local residents with questions may contact Dean Boorum, JKLM’s community liaison, at (814) 598-3960. The company is also establishing a website (www.northhollowresponse.com) to provide regular updates as the groundwater investigation and response process continues.”

Link to Information Portal

Link to Press Release

“JKLM ENERGY, LLC TO PROVIDE DAILY UPDATES TO COMMUNITY ON PROJECT WEBSITE No Isopropanol Present in Five of Six Initial Well Water Samples Closest to Drilling Location WEXFORD, Pa (Sept.25) – JKLM Energy, LLC today announced plans to issue daily updates to the public regarding the release of drilling chemicals at its Sweden Township, Potter County wellpad. These updates, along with previous press releases and related information will be available at www.northhollowresponse.com, beginning at 4:00 PM today. As of September 24, 2015 JKLM Energy, LLC received lab results from six water sources that had potential groundwater contamination. These results included four of the five private water wells with foamy characteristics for the presence of isopropanol, the chemical of principal concern in the incident, which was not detected in those four wells. The material was also not detected in a sample collected from a spring located in the area of the investigation. The private well with foam closest to the drill site contained 15 ppm (parts per million) isopropanol, which is at the Act 2 standard for aquifers serving residential uses, the threshold for state drinking water standards. These sampling results are consistent with the belief that the aquifer would continue to disperse and degrade the isopropanol as it is transported through the aquifer by means of normal water flow.”

Local Bradford County News Report
Another News Report 
Another Report

Total number of water samples (water wells, springs and surface water sources) analyzed to date (93), and those found with the presence of methylene blue activated substances (MBAS), isopropanol (IPA) and acetone, a constituent that is expected to be found as isopropanol breaks down in the environment. In a correction from yesterday’s update, a total of five samples have been returned with levels of MBAS above the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s non-health secondary standard of 0.5 parts per million (ppm).   5 samples above MBAS standard and 1 above isopropanol standard.

Learn More about Foaming Agents in Well Water
Video –Potter County’s water sources contaminated (9/25/2015) – Must Watch – Solid Information.   (53 gallons of chemical used – final concentration or 0.25 % or 2500 mg/L after initial dilution).  (Clarity requested- did it say it moved 8000 feet in 1 day?)

dep-notice-of-violation-jklm-energy (9/30/2015)

Our Comments

Testing Should include general water quality, MBAS, isopropanol, and acetone.  When isopropanol breaks down in the environment, this is a possible daughter.  This would suggest running a full VOC can with TICs to pick up daughters.  Therefore, the equivalent of a Tier II may be advisable.  The breakdown of isopropanol to acetone was based on feedback and expert information from B.F. Environmental Consultants and Quantum Laboratories.

Drinking Water Standard for foaming agents or MBAS – methyl blue activated substances or surfactants is 0.5 mg/L – potential aesthetic problems.
“Methylene blue active substances (MBAS) are anionic surfactants that can be detected by colorometric or color reaction methods. An MBAS assay is a type of analysis that makes use of a substance called methylene blue in order to detect the existence of foaming agents, detergents as well as other anionic substances in water under testing. With the MBAS assay method, undesirable components in water samples can be detected appropriately. This prevents water corrosion or contamination.”

Acetone – Drinking Water Standard – No formal Standard, but there is a clean up standard of 33 mg/L, but New Jersey has a standard of 6 mg/L.    (Also Acetone can be naturally occurring).  If evaluating acetone, it would be advisable to collect preserved and unpreserved samples and analyze samples as soon as possible.  In some cases, the preservation method may create some acetone. 

Another MSDS Sheet (another source)

More MSDS Sheets – F-485 and  Rock Drill Oil 150 (We could not determine the specific one so we are using the “Gulf” as an example)

National Drinking Water Database – Forming Agents

Recommended Baseline Testing – Get The App (FREE)

Informational Course On Fracking and other Energy Courses – The Process


  1. If you have any testing done as part of this action, please consider releasing this data to the Citizen Groundwater and Surface Water Database.  Fill out the attached form and mail the data to the following address:
    Mr. Brian Oram, PG
    Keystone Clean Water Team
    15 Hillcrest Drive
    Dallas, PA 18612
    Please note- if you have baseline testing done already you may have some information on the level of surfactants in the water if you had a MBAS test done.
  2. Informational Screening Testing – Get your water screened for water contamination including isopropanol – Informational Screening Water Kit (Not Certified) Covers about 200 parameters, plus a review of any predrilling data – Only $ 275.00.  Email
  3. Drinking Water Guide for Pennsylvania.