Test Assured Science Fair Water Testing Kits

Science Fair / School Project Test Kit

If you’re looking for a science fair project, TestAssured’s 4 Test Kit Set is perfect for students. This set includes 4 test kits and is appropriate for children in grades three through nine. The easy to use tests encourage students to learn about water quality while testing various samples against each other. The tests allow them to analyze and compare the differences among a number of water sources, including bottled, well, rain, puddle, and lake water.

This comprehensive test set provides quick results delivered on the spot. Using the test kits, students can accurately determine contamination levels in their test samples. Test 4 different samples of water and compare the results from each. The set comes with a detailed instruction guide and results notebook to track and compare test results.

The School 4-Pack Kit Set includes 4 kits that contain tests for:

  • Chlorine (Cl)
  • Copper (Cu)
  • Nitrates
  • Nitrites
  • Alkalinity
  • pH
  • Hardness
  • Iron (Fe)

This is the perfect water experiment kit for classrooms and students of all ages from elementary to middle and high school students.  The test strips can be used to compare the results of a variety of liquids besides water, such as sodas, juices, and other beverages.  Easily compare results of different waters and liquids without buying multiple kits. This 4-pack testing kit for schools and science fairs gives you a total of 32 tests in just one convenient kit.

We would also suggest you reviewing the following:
1. Water Quality Index (WQI) Calculator – Surface Water Quality Data
2. Watershed Monitoring Website 

Pennsylvania Lead Task Force – John Yudichak. Senate Resolution 33

Senate Approves Resolution Creating Task Force to Investigate Threat of Lead Exposure in Pennsylvania

Senator John T. Yudichak recently announced that Senate Resolution 33 — which creates a bipartisan task force to investigate the scope of Pennsylvania’s lead exposure problem — was approved unanimously by the full Senate. The resolution had been approved unanimously by the Environmental Resources and Energy Committee at the end of April.

Senator Yudichak introduced the resolution earlier this session because lead exposure can threaten the health and well-being of every Pennsylvanian—especially senior citizens and children. “The task force report will advance cooperative efforts to arm the General Assembly with better information and best practice recommendations to develop new lead abatement programs that more aggressively mitigate lead exposure in Pennsylvania,” said State Senator John Yudichak.

The resolution calls for the Senate to establish a task force on lead exposure comprised of the chairs of the Environmental Resources and Energy Committee and the Health and Human Services Committee and two members appointed by the Senate President pro tempore and the Minority Leader. An advisory committee of the Joint State Government Commission will conduct a comprehensive review of Pennsylvania law and public policy related to lead exposure and abatement practices and then submit a report to the task force and full Senate within 18-months. The report must assess the age of housing and infrastructure, lead exposure threats, and identify the prevalence of lead in structures where children spend significant time.

A few key points

  1. This is not just a drinking water issue.  Lead is present in many homes and sources include old lead paint, cookware, make-up, and other consumer products.
  2. If on city water, check piping in home for lead pipe and evidence of corrosion.  Remove the aeration devices and clean and flush the water lines to remove any films and coatings.
  3. If on city water – read the Consumer Confident Reports generated by water supplier and look for signs of corrosion.
  4. If on well water – get your water tested.
  5. Use are free phone App – Know Your H20 – Android / Google ;  Apple

Radon occurrence in groundwater from 16 geologic units in Pennsylvania

Evaluation of radon occurrence in groundwater from 16 geologic units in Pennsylvania, 1986–2015, with application to potential radon exposure from groundwater and indoor air
Scientific Investigations Report 2017-5018

“Results from 1,041 groundwater samples collected during 1986‒2015 from 16 geologic units in Pennsylvania, associated with 25 or more groundwater samples with concentrations of radon-222, were evaluated in an effort to identify variations in radon-222 activities or concentrations and to classify potential radon-222 exposure from groundwater and indoor air. Radon-222 is hereafter referred to as “radon.” Radon concentrations in groundwater greater than or equal to the proposed U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) maximum contaminant level (MCL) for public-water supply systems of 300 picocuries per liter (pCi/L) were present in about 87 percent of the water samples, whereas concentrations greater than or equal to the proposed alternative MCL (AMCL) for public water-supply systems of 4,000 pCi/L were present in 14 percent. The highest radon concentrations were measured in groundwater from the schists, gneisses, and quartzites of the Piedmont Physiographic Province.

In this study, conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey in cooperation with the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, groundwater samples were aggregated among 16 geologic units in Pennsylvania to identify units with high median radon concentrations in groundwater. Graphical plots and statistical tests were used to determine variations in radon concentrations in groundwater and indoor air. Median radon concentrations in groundwater samples and median radon concentrations in indoor air samples within the 16 geologic units were classified according to proposed and recommended regulatory limits to explore potential radon exposure from groundwater and indoor air. All of the geologic units, except for the Allegheny (Pa) and Glenshaw (Pcg) Formations in the Appalachian Plateaus Physiographic Province, had median radon concentrations greater than the proposed EPA MCL of 300 pCi/L, and the Peters Creek Schist (Xpc), which is in the Piedmont Physiographic Province, had a median radon concentration greater than the EPA proposed AMCL of 4,000 pCi/L. Median concentrations of radon in groundwater and indoor air were determined to differ significantly among the geologic units (Kruskal-Wallis test, significance probability, p<0.001), and Tukey’s test indicated that radon concentrations in groundwater and indoor air in the Peters Creek Schist (Xpc) were significantly higher than those in the other units. Also, the Peters Creek Schist (Xpc) was determined to be the area with highest potential of radon exposure from groundwater and indoor air and one of two units with the highest percentage of population assumed to be using domestic self-supplied water (81 percent), which puts the population at greater potential of exposure to radon from groundwater.

Potential radon exposure determined from classification of geologic units by median radon concentrations in groundwater and indoor air according to proposed and recommended regulatory limits is useful for drawing general conclusions about the presence, variation, and potential radon exposure in specific geologic units, but the associated data and maps have limitations. The aggregated indoor air radon data have spatial accuracy limitations owing to imprecision of geo-coded test locations. In addition, the associated data describing geologic units and the public water supplier’s service areas have spatial and interpretation accuracy limitations. As a result, data and maps associated with this report are not recommended for use in predicting individual concentrations at specific sites nor for use as a decision-making tool for property owners to decide whether to test for radon concentrations at specific locations. Instead, the data and maps are meant to promote awareness regarding potential radon exposure in Pennsylvania and to point out data gaps that exist throughout the State.”

Link to Study 

Starting Off the New Year Right – Drinking Water Water Resources Sustainability

Starting Off the New Year Right

by Brian Oram

Happy New Year, I would like to propose we make one additional commitment this year.  This commitment is to care about the water we drink as we try to remember how we impact or influence the quality and quantity of the water resources.  Although it is the beginning of a new year (wishing you GOOD Luck in 2017!), for the water cycle the new year started in October.  This is the time of the year when the aquifer begins to recharge. Many people are unaware that the aquifer must recharge, it is not infinite.  In Pennsylvania and the Northeastern United States, we are blessed with having abundant water resources, but something we should not take for granted.   In 2016, we had an interesting election year that brought up many concerns. Also in the news, came a reminder of the limitedness of the water.  A number of regions of Pennsylvania were put on a drought advisory and many small streams, springs, and even a few shallow wells dried up, i.e., no water.  With 2016 in the rear-view mirror, I would like to suggest a few small steps to help move us forward in a positive direction.  These steps are as follows:

  1. Learn about how and where you get your drinking water – Does your water come from a private source or city water supply source?
  2. If the water is from a private well- When did you have the water tested? For parts of Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey, it is not uncommon for about 40 to 50% of private wells to have a problem that may make the user or a guest sick.
  3. If you are on a city water source- Have you ever looked at the Annual Confidence Report about the quality of your drinking water? The most common problem with community water sources is elevated levels of trace metals like lead and chlorine by-products like trihalomethanes, i.e., suspected carcinogens.  For information on water testing, please visit water-research.net.
  4. Are you using your water wisely? There are ways to use our drinking water resources more efficiently.   A website titled, wateruseitwisely.com, offers over 100 tips on how to best use water.  My favorite tip is “Turn off the water while you brush your teeth and save up to 4 gallons a minute. That’s up to 200 gallons a week for a family of four”.  There are over 4 million households in Pennsylvania, this one lifestyle change could save 41.6 billion gallons of water.  This is only one change!
  5. Our surface water and groundwater are connected, and “we all live downstream”. This phrase means that how we use the groundwater resources directly impacts the surface water resources and we all are interconnected.  Therefore, when using cleaning products, chemicals, or managing a waste we all live downstream from someone else.   For example, the biggest source of man influenced global oil pollution is not massive spills or leaks.  Only 8% of man influenced oil pollution comes from pipelines and major releases. The biggest sources are the small leaks from our boats, cars, and other means of transportation and the improper disposal of waste oil by individuals.
  6. Know Your H20? – it is important to know how you can influence the quality of the water resources, but it is also important to know the historic hazards in your community that may be contributing to a problem. With this in mind, it is important to learn about the historic hazards in your community and surrounding your home.  The Keystone Clean Water Team offers neighborhood or community hazard survey reports for communities within the Unities States.  The 501 c3 offers a few free reports each month.  To get more information about this program, please visit – knowyourh20.us.

The best way to start off the New Year is not with a significant lifestyle change, but baby steps.   Make a few basic commitments and make small changes that will help you and your family save and conserve water, check the quality of your drinking water, learn about the hazards in your community, and perhaps implement 1 item each month that will save and conserve water.   It is important to remember that the less water you use, the more money stays in your pocket.

A few short phrases we should try to remember.

We ALL Live Downstream !

Groundwater and Surface water are Connected!

We are Part of the Water Cycle – Not just an Observer!

You can help – Make A Donation !

 

 

Reduce Exposure to Toxic Chemicals and Compounds

“The Tendr coalition includes pediatric neurologists, several minority physician associations, nurses, learning disability advocacy groups, environmental organizations, and the Endocrine Society, which has compiled several scientific statements documenting adverse health effects linked to endocrine-disrupting chemicals that mimic or disrupt the hormones in our own bodies. Dozens of scientists and health providers have signed the statement, as has Linda Birnbaum, director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the National Toxicology Program.”

How to Limit Your Exposure to Toxic Chemicals

A coalition of doctors, scientists and health advocates says you may be able to reduce your overall exposure to toxic chemicals by taking the following steps:

  • Reduce pesticide exposure by choosing organic strawberries, apples, nectarines, green beans, celery and spinach.    (This may be expensive, you may want to consider growing your own or at least washing and rinsing the items or buying from a USA Source).
  • Choose seafood low in mercury like salmon, sardines, and trout.  (Limit the intake of bottom feeders).
  • Breast-feed your baby if you can; if you use formula, make sure the water is lead-free.  (Lead-free water may require the installation of a point of use water treatment system).
  • When buying furniture with padding like a high chair, sofa or mattress, ask for products that are labeled free of toxic flame retardants.
  • Avoid exposing the family to tobacco smoke, wood smoke from fireplaces and wood stoves, idling car exhaust, cooking fumes from stoves and grills.
  • If you’re putting in a new floor, choose either phthalate-free vinyl flooring or wood, bamboo or cork. (Check on the sources of the materials).
  • Avoid plastic toys, backpacks, lunch boxes and school supplies made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) which can be a source of phthalates.  (This may be tough- First Choice Buy Made in the USA).
  • Choose fragrance-free personal care products to avoid phthalates in fragrances .   (Try naturally scent oils)
  • When using stool softeners, laxatives and other time-release capsules, look for phthalates on the list of inactive ingredients so you can avoid them.   (How about eat more fiber).
  • Use nontoxic alternatives to pesticides in your yard and on your pets.   (or use them as directed)
  • Screen your house for lead. If it was built before 1978, lead paint may place your family at risk. If paint is chipping or peeling, it can build up in house dust and stick to children’s hands.   (Lead Paint Testing and Comprehensive Water Testing)
  • Reduce household dust that may contain lead, flame retardants, phthalates and pesticides. Take shoes off before you come into the house and use a doormat to trap dirt outside and inside the doorway. Damp mop, use a HEPA-filtered vacuum cleaner and dust with a microfiber cloth.   (Least us not forget Mold and Radon)

Source:

Know Your H20 – Get a Community Hazard Report

Lead Drinking Water Crisis in Flint Michigan KDF

Lead- Metals- Corrosive Water
Water Quality Association Addresses Drinking Water Crisis in Flint, Michigan

Offers facts and tips about treating for lead contamination

Lisle, Illinois -The Water Quality Association (WQA), an Illinois-based not-for-profit organization, is offering informational resources to help with the drinking water crisis in Flint, Michigan. Flint residents are expected to receive federal aid to help ensure their access to safe drinking water. On January 16, 2016, President Obama signed an Emergency Declaration for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to coordinate all disaster- relief efforts. The declaration states that, “This emergency assistance is to provide water, water filters, water filter cartridges, water test kits, and other necessary related items for a period of no more than 90 days.”

Lead (Pb) has been identified as the waterborne contaminant of primary concern for Flint’s residents. To minimize the presence of contaminants such as lead, which may enter the water after it has left a municipal treatment facility, WQA recommends water treatment equipment that has been certified by an ANSI (American National Standards Institute)-accredited certification body. Such accredited entities include WQA’s Gold Seal Product Certification Program, NSF International and Underwriters Laboratory. Flint residents are encouraged to visit www.wqa.org to search for the names of products certified by WQA for lead reduction. Click here to download a technical fact sheet about Lead (Pb).

It is important consumers follow the manufacturer’s instructions for maintenance. WQA also lists of water treatment professionals across the U.S. on its website at www.wqa.org.
Additional notes
1. Recommend that we concentrate on the following – get kids and adults blood tested.
2. Get first flush testing completed for lead and alternative water source for drinking.
3. Install point of use treatment in the interim.
4. Develop a plan to remove the lead service lines.
5. Develop a plan to install corrosion control.
6. Lawsuits should wait until the problem is addressed.

More on lead in drinking water- Corrosion 

Check out the Know Your H20? App

Water Treatment Systems – Must Likely need a neutralizing filter and a filter that has KDF 85 or KDF 55 media.

 

More – 2/4/2016

Water Quality Association Addresses Frequently Asked Questions about Lead in Water

Lisle, Illinois -The Water Quality Association (WQA), an Illinois-based not-for-profit organization, is offering informational resources to help differentiate fact from fiction regarding the drinking water crisis in Flint, Michigan. The Association has compiled answers to several of the most common questions, while addressing some widespread misconceptions Flint residents may have about lead (Pb) in drinking water.

What are potential health effects from lead?

Lead poisoning often displays no outward symptoms; however, irritability, weight loss, vomiting, constipation, and stomach pain are possible signs to look for. Young children and pregnant women are at the greatest risk, even from short-term exposure. Reduced cognitive development and neurobehavioral deficits are associated with blood levels less than 10 micrograms of lead per deciliter of blood in children.[1] Therefore, there is no safe level for lead to be present in the blood of children.[2] Individuals will adsorb more lead if they have poor nutrition than those with better diets.

Can a Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) meter be used to detect lead in drinking water?

No. There have been some misconceptions around TDS Meters. These meters cannot measure lead specifically; they detect the conductivity directly related to the concentration of combined total dissolved solids such as minerals, salts and metals. The typical sample of tap water in the U.S. contains approximately 350 parts per million (ppm) of TDS[3], which, as a whole does not on its own indicate a health concern and in many cases is used as a means to enhance taste of water.  Lead concentration is found 1000 times lower at the parts per billion (ppb) level, and is too small to be detected without sophisticated instrumentation. Moreover, because TDS meters don’t measure individual ions, lead cannot be detected on its own.

Where can I go to get my water tested?

Water testing should be done be a certified testing laboratory.[4] WQA strongly recommends water testing be conducted at each point of use in accordance with appropriate sampling procedures. The water should be checked after a period of disuse before a specific water treatment product is selected. Water conditions can change, so the water should be tested both before a treatment product has been installed and at regular intervals following installation. Studies have shown the reported levels of lead found in some Flint, MI water results are higher than conditions under which the manufacturer set the replacement recommendations for filters in published manuals.

How do I maintain a filter once it is installed?

Always follow the manufacturer’s installation instructions and contact the manufacturer to confirm usage and capacity. To ensure the manufacturer can provide the most accurate recommendations, have test results for lead and iron on hand for review.

Where do I find a product certified for lead reduction?

American National Standards Institute (ANSI)-accredited entities offering product certification include: WQA’s Product Certification Program, NSF International, International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials, and Underwriters Laboratory. To find products certified by WQA for lead reduction. Contact information for local professionals and manufacturers of certified products can also be found wqa.org.

Flint Authority Falsely Reports Water Quality Testing for Lead in Drinking Water

Not our work – but Great Story

“FLINT, MI – As concerns about Flint’s water quality were mounting earlier this year, the city disregarded federal rules requiring it to seek out homes with lead plumbing for testing, potentially leading the city and state to underestimate for months the extent of toxic lead leaching into Flint’s tap water.

City water officials filed certified documents with state regulators that claimed the city only tested tap water from homes where residents were at the highest risk of lead poisoning, but records obtained by The Flint Journal-MLive show those claims were false and may have delayed efforts to fix the public health emergency.

Water samples sent to state labs for testing in the first six months of this year were all marked as having come from homes with lead service lines, but actually almost always came from homes at less risk of lead leaching – houses with underground plumbing made of copper, galvanized steel or materials that could not be identified, according to the city’s own documents given to The Journal through the Freedom of Information Act.

In response to questioning, Flint Utilities Administrator Mike Glasgow said the city was struggling to collect the number of samples that were required following the city’s switch to the Flint River as its water source in April 2014.”

To read more on this story – go to http://www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2015/11/documents_show_city_filed_fals.html

Learn More about Your Drinking Water

  1. Get the Know Your H20? Phone App (Free) – http://www.knowyourh20.us
  2. Learn more about Corrosive Water and Affordable Water Testing – http://www.water-research.ne

 

Easy Ways to Help Protect Groundwater Quality in Your Community

Here are a few easy ways to help protect Groundwater Quality in Your Community ” Remember We ALL Live Downstream”:

1. Implement Water Conservation Practices and Take the First Step use less and Install a Rain Barrel or Water Garden.

2. Apply fertilizers and other herbicides and pesticides as per the manufacturers specifications or seek out “Green” or Native Alternatives and test the soil before adding fertilizers.

3. Compost  – Do not burn or put leaves or other organic yard waste in plastic bags.

4. Check your Well Water Quality – Get Your Water Tested (Annually) or order a self-screening test.

5. If on a septic system – the septic system should be maintained, cleaned, and inspected approximately once every three years.

6. Run a Community Hazard Report – Know Your H20?

7. Switch to more Eco-Friendly Cleaners.

Use Social Media

1. You do not need to be an advocate – but when you find a good story or information -Like Us,  JUST Share Our Posts, Or Submit a Post – let us know.

2. Like our Facebook Sites

A. Keystone Clean Water Team
B. Know Your H20?
C. Water Research Center

3.  Consider Following Us on Twitter- @KeystoneWater or @KnowYourH2o

3.Share our videos

4. Share Our Educational Booklet

Donation/ Support

1. Send a Donation

2. Recycle Old Cell Phones 

3. Order a “Water Screening Test Kit” as low as $ 1.00 per parameter.

4. Order the “PA Guide to Drinking Water Quality

 

 

Big Bass Lake Presentation on Well Water Poconos Monroe Wayne County Pennsylvania

Not Regulated - Users Need Help

Not Regulated – Users Need Help – Mission of the Keystone Clean Water Team

The Keystone Clean Water Team was invited to Big Bass Lake to discuss groundwater and private well issues with the Association. Great event and a beautiful community in the Poconos in Gouldsboro, Pennsylvania.  The presenter was board member and manager Mr. Brian Oram from B.F. Environmental Consultants, Inc.  During the presentation, we discussed:

a. Need for private well owners to be proactive.
b. The connection between groundwater and surface water.
c. Private well water testing – common problems and basic solutions.
d. The real hazards in a community may include other private wells.
e. Introduced the Know Your H2O?  Program

Very solid Event.  A Private Well Owner Presentation is available for review.

Supportive Links

Our Educational Booklet on Drinking Water
Know Your H2O? Program
OuR PSAs on Water
Why Should I Test My Well Water?
Mail Order Water Testing Program
Get Your Community Hazard Report for Real Estate Properties (USA Search- Custom Reports).

Most Common Questions

1. How to Shock Disinfect a Well?
2. Where do I get sanitizing tablets?  (Follow link or check with local well drilling contractor)

3. Is radon in water an issue?  Maybe – get more information, but first priority is to get the radon level check and run a long-term radon test.  Radon by zip code (PA).
4. Red water – is the only solution a water softener?
5. My water is great but it turns blue and tastes metallic?
6. My water stinks. What is up?

7. I have a bacteria problem – do i need to install a UV system and spend $ 1500.00.  Maybe- but first you should do the following:
a. Inspect the wellhead or top of the well – Is the casing above grade or below.  If below grade, it would be advisable to hirer a well drilling contract to extend the casing at least 18 inches above grade.
b. Does water sit near the wellhead? – if so – divert the water.
c. Do you have a sanitary well cap?  No sure – this is a sanitary well cap.   Do you have one?  If not install one.
d. Shock disinfect well and distribution system – see link above with video.
e. Retest – you may need to shock disinfect twice.  Example – See Case # 3

Sanitary Well Cap

Sanitary Well Cap

 

Interested in a Community Based Educational Water Testing program for Big Bass Lake – Contact us.

We could use your help – Here is How.

Iron, Manganese, Iron Bacteria, Slime Bacteria - Get Water Tested

Iron, Manganese, Iron Bacteria, Slime Bacteria – Get Water Tested !

Big Bass Lake Community Association is not just another Pocono Mountain Resort. We are an award winning and Gold Star Certified premier Community located in the Pocono Mountains.

 

Getting Well Water Tested Carbon County Pennsylvania

The Carbon County Environmental Education Center, in conjunction with the Keystone Clean Water Team, is offering a low-cost well-water testing opportunity for area residents.

Test kits are available now for pick-up at CCEEC. Homeowners may collect water samples, then return them on Sunday, April 19, from 1:00 to 3:00 pm, where Environmental Consultant and Hydrogeologist Brian Oram will perform certain tests immediately. Other results will be mailed confidentially within two weeks.

Two testing options are available: a $50 test includes total coliform, pH, iron, and other parameters, and a more comprehensive test is available for $95.

Homeowners with private wells are encouraged to test their water at least once each year, and area residents whose property might be impacted by any future development should consider testing to establish a baseline of well water quality.

For more information on this program, call CCEEC at (570) 645-8597. The Center is located at the west end of Mauch Chunk Lake Park, just outside Jim Thorpe, at 151 E. White Bear Drive in Summit Hill.

The program is underwritten by the Organizations Sponsors – Your Company or Business Can Sponsor- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sJPOkLpWQo4

or Become an Individual Supporter – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zbOXE7HS7PE