Tackling A Drinking Water Sample in Your Home? You Should Know These 6 Steps

How to take a drinking water sample at home

Tackling A Drinking Water Sample in Your Home? You Should Know These 6 Steps


In this Blog, our Field Technician, Danny O’Leary, will guide you through taking a drinking water sample at your home. This process is quick and easy.


What do you need to take a Drinking Water Sample?

The Standard Drinking Water test kit you’ve received with your order will include everything you need to take a drinking water sample. Notice that it comes with two different bottles. The red cap bottle is for the microbiology test, while the black cap bottle for the chemistry test. To make the process as smooth and efficient as possible, it also includes sampling guidelines and a reception form.


What are the precautions when taking a Drinking Water Sample?

Firstly, it’s important to note that microbiology samples must be tested within 24 hours from sampling if you want to receive an accurate result, so make sure you can get them to the lab on the day of sampling. If you can’t, delay the sampling to a later date.

Collect the sample from a tap or faucet located at or near the well head or pump house and before the water supply is introduced into any storage tanks or treatment units.

Avoid mixer taps and sample from cold water taps only.


What is the process for taking a Drinking Water Sample?

 Step 1: Turn on tap at an even rate for a minimum of 2 minutes to clear standing water from pipes.

Step 2: Turn off the tap and disinfect it by flaming or if it is fitted with a plastic anti-splash device, disinfect it using a 2% available chlorine solution such as Milton Fluid.

Step 3: Turn on the tap at an even rate and let the water run down the drain again for 2 to 3 minutes.

Step 4: Place the sterile red-cap bottle under the tap being careful not to touch the inside of the bottle or cap. Fill the bottle leaving a small air gap and replace cap immediately.

Step 5: Proceed to fill the second black-cap chemistry bottle and follow the same procedure.

Step 6: Deliver the samples to the lab on the day of sampling under chilled conditions. Use a cool box with ice packs if possible. Samples intended for posting should be sampled as close to posting time as possible to ensure receipt of sample by laboratory so microbiological analysis can be performed within 24 hours of sampling.


How do you fill out your Drinking Water Sample Form?

It’s also important to fill out the sample reception form so we can properly receive and manage your sample. If you don’t have a form already, log on here and click on “Sample Forms”. Then, download our submission form for liquids.

First of all, we’ll need your contact details. Please include your name, address, mobile phone number, and email address to send you your results. You can also request to have your results sent to you via post.

Mark the date and time sampled, the sampling point e.g. “kitchen sink”, a sample reference of your choosing, the sample matrix as “DW” and the required analysis as a chemistry and microbiology test.

Finally, add your signature to the bottom of the form.


And you’re done! Once your sample is filled and your reception form is complete, you can reseal the envelope and post it or drop it into this address.

If you’re concerned about the quality of your water or you’re due your yearly check, Southern Scientific offers everything you need with our Standard Drinking Water.

To learn more about Southern Scientific Testing Services, visit check out our -> standard drinking water test.

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