You might be wondering what’s the best way to determine the quality of the water in your environment. Certainly, you deserve a good glass of water, as it offers many health benefits. And with water being the most vital substance for healthy living, it’s imperative to ensure safe consumption. However, in many instances, it is very tough for us to decipher between pure and dirty water. And that’s why we are here to help
This article offers detailed information on the most effective and best water test kits in the market. These are reactants packaged for easy use in your home, office, or when outdoors at a campsite.
Swiss Labs is a well-known brand with international acclaim; thus, there’s no surprise that their product has made its way onto top place. If you ever need an overly accurate test kit for half the price, this should be your first thought. It is a very user-friendly tool that can test for a good number of contaminants as and when you please. There’s no limit with this amazing chemistry kit, we can assure you; it works well in all sources of water.
Another excellent home testing kit on the market today was birthed by another leading manufacturer, Hach. The Hach Total Hardness Test Strips are used to test for all possible contaminants as well as alkalinity and water hardness. This isn’t common in every water test kit; thus, we consider this product very special in the world of test kits. The Hach kit is simple in design and comfortable in implementation, making it a crowd favorite.
The Health Metric Drinking water kit is one fantastic tool and also one of the great test kits available. There’s so much this kit delivers; it’s simply magnificent. Pour this reactant into some water and the results are 100% accurate. Furthermore, it is easy to read, no matter your science background. With the Health Metric Test Kit, the purity of water will no longer prevent you from quenching your thirst.
Water tests are numerous, and they all work in different ways; thus, we are now going to explore the most outstanding, along with their key features, pros and cons.
Water Test Kits – Top 5 Picks
1. All-Around Best Water Test Kit – Swiss Labs Review
We all love refreshing, tasty water, but finding the purest form of water can be tough in today’s day and age. Over the years, a wide range of products meant to make our lives easier and swifter, but none can be compared to their latest product, the Swiss Labs Drinking Water Test Kit.
Swiss Labs respects and concerns themselves with the protection of both man and his environment. They have undergone rigorous experiments and studies to ensure that each product they launch is safe enough to be used internally. For this reason, the Swiss Lab brand is powerful globally and highly recommended to homeowners.
This product was created to help check for pure water from a wide variety of water sources, ranging from taps to wells and bottles. Each kit purchased comes with over 100 different strips to test your water sources whenever and however frequently you deem fit.
Features of Swiss Labs
- 14 in 1 test
- To EPA recommended standards
- Accurate results within 60 seconds
- Enough test strips to test your water 150 times
- Checks 50 different contaminants
Test the cleanliness of your drinking water in the comfort of your home with this product. It is straightforward and easy to use and has been certified by the Environmental Protection Agency as an extremely safe product.
2. Best Inexpensive Test Kit – Hach Total Hardness Test Strips Review
We are sure you will agree with us that the Hach Total Hardness Kit is fantastic. This expertly designed water kit is an award-winning product, with all the elements that allow you to check the water for chemicals, alkalinity, and hardness. Hard water is tough to control, makes washing difficult, and can cause severe skin irritations. To curb these reactions, the Hach test kit has been designed to test for all the harsh chemicals that cause water hardness.
It offers a straightforward testing criteria, which means the test can be conducted in the comfort of your home. Furthermore, the Hach test kit comes in a generous pack of 150 test strips that are perfect for weekly use, to ensure you stay on top of the testing.
Although a few users have commented on its accuracy being on the lower end of the spectrum, it remains one of the most accurate units that money can buy.
Features of Hach Total Hardness Test Strips
- 150 straps
- Easy to use
- All the information is available on the user manual
- Can be carried out at home
- Results are also satisfactory
The Hach is a pretty impressive unit that generously comes in a large pack s for more prolonged usage. Furthermore, it’s an inexpensive unit that does the job efficiently.
3. Best Detailed Tester – Health Metric
If you are after a detailed yet cost-effective unit, here’s another one you will love – the Health Metric Test Kit Review. With such a kit by your side, you’re assured that every sip consumed is pure and safe. The Health Metric Drinking Water is a simple test kit designed to be 100% legitimate and comes with a safety approval certificate from the EPA.
In most cases, however, only a few criteria, particularly those that are decisive for drinking water, are examined. Luckily, these tests are well suited for more precise and complex investigations. Even the most minute contaminant will be identified by this test kit; so you can now say goodbye to the bacterium, viruses, and other dangerous elements.
Features of Health Metric Kit
- Includes bacteria testing powder, strips, and lead testing powder
- Made in the USA
- Approved by EPA
- Extremely simple to implement
- It doesn’t require a lot of scientific knowledge
Rest assured that the Health Metric is one of the best in the market. It’s very detailed, works pretty fast, and there’s almost no contaminant it cannot identify.
4. Best 10-in-1 Kit – Review
Here is another test kit that promises enhanced performance – the Test Assured Drinking Water Kit. It doesn’t matter if you’re at home or on the road, this kit does not discriminate the water source and has been intuitively designed to deeply scrutinize water for various different contaminants; which means you can make use of it for all your home tasks.
It features a set of test strips, that can cleverly detect minerals such as copper, lead, and mercury. It also checks for the presence of harmful chemicals and bacteria, which may lead to dangerous water-borne diseases. And although the Test Assured Drinking Water Test Kit is not the cheapest out there, its price range is good enough for everyone to make a worthy investment.
Features of Test Assured Kit
- 10-in-One testing package
- Made in the USA.
- Certified by EPA standards
- Money-back guarantee
- You can check the results by consulting that user manual.
This 10-in-1 testing package from Test Assured offers the best value for money price in more ways than one. It can cleverly detect harmful elements such as copper, lead, and mercury.
5. Best Product for Well Water – WaterSafe Well
This product has been researched upon, tried, and tested by various individuals all around the world. The Watersafe brand is a well-known one, for its production of trustworthy products. This test kit is no different from all their other products. It is incredibly accurate and also very user-friendly. This product is made in the USA under strict safety conditions. Before it is launched, it goes through a series of tests and experiments, to ensure that each strip is very accurate. The testing process is straightforward and short; thus, you have enough time to deal with water filtration if the need arises. Some people don’t believe in its accuracy levels and have commented that It offered them wrong readings with their water chemical content. That notwithstanding were certain the Watersafe kit is one of the best in the market, and also one of the most accurate.
Features of WaterSafe Well
- Affordable price range
- All strips are made from top-notch materials
- Approved by EPA
- Made in the USA
- Doesn’t require a lot of scientific knowledge
Chemicals and contaminants have no hold on your water, once the Watersafe test kit is in the picture. We recommend this if you are after a safety-certified kit.
6. 14-in-1 Drinking Water Test Kit by Baldwin Meadows
You’ll love this next best kit, designed and manufactured by Baldwin Meadows. This is a family brand that has been in existence for years, coming out with state of the art products, and their latest item is not any different. Make way for the Baldwin Meadows, the only 14-in-2 system that allows you to test all your drinking water sources for impurities. This easy to use unit has been designed by professionals to detect even the lowest level of chemicals and substances such as iron, fluoride, copper, and mercury.
You will also love that it comes in a pack of 100. This means you get to make use of the kit for a very long time, in as many places as you wish. The Baldwin Meadows test kit offers you up to 14 different parameters in a single strip. This includes testing for water hardness, alkalinity, and the presence of bromine, chlorine, and nitrates and included in every package is a color code chart, which makes this unit amazing for school projects.
Features of Baldwin Meadows Test Kit
- Improved sensitivity detects low-level ranges for iron, & mercury
- 14 parameters in 1 strip
- Easy to read color chart included
- No lab testing required
- 100% money-back guarantee
This test kit is straightforward to use and requires only the dipping of your strip in your water source. The results can be read in seconds without visiting any lab or specialized institution.
7. Safe Home STARTER-15 Water Quality Test Kit
You have probably encountered different kits that promise to test for various contaminants, only to provide results on two or three. These products can be a massive waste of money, especially when you have your water coming from a foreign source.
Luckily, you can now say goodbye to such products and hello to this unit from Safe Home.The creation of the Safe Home Water Quality Test Kit began over 150 years ago and has been perfected over the years with help from further studies and experiments. It allows you to check for up to 15 different contaminants present in water, such as bacteria, nitrates, copper, water pH and so much more.
Furthermore, the Safe Home Starter test kit was manufactured in the USA with a patented technology that will go a long way to keep both you and your family safe for the longest time.
Features of Safe Home STARTER-15
- Safe & secure to use
- Made in the USA
- Testing for 15 different contaminants
- Testing mechanisms from patented technologies
- EPA certified product
Here is a fantastic water testing product, often referred to as a starter kit. You can check for up to 15 different water contaminants including bacteria, nitrates, copper, water pH and so much more.
Best Water Test Kits – Buyers’ Guide
What do They Usually Contain?
A testing kit uses a sample of your water to determine how safe or dangerous it is for consumption. However, it’s vital to add that when buying a testing kit, there are many things one must look out for, depending on the contaminant you wish to experiment on. Some of the pollutants that are usually tested for include bacterial viruses, cryptosporidium, cysts, and much more. These chemicals and substances are hazardous and can lead to the contraction of various water-borne diseases. The use of a kit will go a long way to allow you to identify the best filtration methods you can employ, as well as how best your water can be utilized.
Additionally, it’s also worth noting that a typical test kit comes with strips which have been designed to contain reactants that change color when exposed to specific contaminants in your water. Others include a color wheel, which is then compared to your water sample after it reacted with the test kit’s reactant substance. Different colors represent the various contaminants available.
What are the Different Types of Test Kits?
There are three significant kinds of test strips available in today’s market, with each one of them owning special features that set them apart from the other. The three types include test strips, color disk kits, and the digital test strips. In the following sections, we discuss each type into detail and teach users which ones are more effective, less expensive, and more durable.
- Test strips
The easiest to use, most common and affordable type of water test kit is the test strip. These test kits don’t have a 100% accuracy, but they do offer a good idea of the quality of your water. What’s more, they are easy to use and require that you simply dip the strip into a small sample of water, and gently shake the tube. The color change that happens shortly after can then be compared to the included color chart to find which contaminant is present in the water.
- Color Disk Kits
When compared to the other available methods, the color disk testing kits offer the most accurate results when used. These kits come with a tube that holds your test powder which is where a few drops of your water sample will be placed for the experiment to proceed. Another means of experimenting is to pour the powder into your water sample. This should be followed by mild shaking, to ensure that all contents mix very well. Your tube is now ready to be placed in a plastic viewing box, and the color will then be compared to those available on the color disk included in the kit which helps to determine the concentration of any chemical present.
- Digital Test Strips
The digital test strip is the most recommended and trustworthy water test strip in the market today. It is considered the most accurate and comes in a small hand meter, photometer, and colorimeter design. The accuracy of this testing kit comes at a considerable cost, however. The digital test kit is seen as the most expensive on the market. Furthermore, operating this unit is simple and requires a couple of calibrated batteries. These kits are lightweight, compact, reusable, portable, and also very reliable.
How do I Determine Which Product is Most Suitable for Me?
Having a clear picture of what you want means you’re aware of all the features and design factors that come together to make this testing kit a reality. In finding the perfect package for your household, there are significant considerations to be made before making a purchase.
This relates to the price of the kit, as well as your budget. In many cases, expensive features are associated with high quality, while cheap ideas are considered items of low quality. This is the case in some instances, but it doesn’t always happen. As much as possible, you’re advised to create a budget and stick to it, no matter what. Be sure to compare and contrast all available products within your budget, to find one that works well for your home. Going in for a product based on price might leave you with something that isn’t very effective in operations.
- Additional Uses
As stated, there are different kinds of testing kits. Some kits are simply made up of a bunch of different kits. The number of different testing kits within a single package determines how many contaminants that can be tested for. You will get a more transparent result if you go in for a test kit that can check ammonia, calcium, lead, magnesium, and many other chemical levels in your water. Choosing a product with options offers you more value for your money by allowing you to test for many different chemicals at the same time.
The effectiveness, ease of use, and reliability of your water testing kit determine how awesome it’ll be in operation. There are kits with the ability to read all kinds of contaminants present in your water, even if they’re over 150. Most of these kits are also very user-friendly as they don’t require any particular scientific background. The efficiency of every testing kit is also determined by time. Some kits may require a laboratory setup, while others can produce test results within a couple of hours.
What are Some Advantages of Having a Water Test Kit?
It is highly beneficial for many reasons, some of which include;
- The presence and concentration of the various contaminants in your water are displayed through the undertaking of a water test kit. Having such information can go a long way to help you decide whether or not you need a water filter, as well as which filter type to invest in.
- Another benefit that comes with these kits is that they show you if there are any heavy metals in your water, including their concentration. Using them for this allows you to change the water within your pool or aquarium as and when you find it necessary.
- Drinking pure water is a necessity if you wish to avoid contracting water-borne diseases like cholera and dysentery. When you test the water with these kits, you get to make sure that every drop you consume is very pure. This offers you peace of mind, knowing that the water you’re drinking has no hazardous effects.
- The final benefit derived from using it is the ability to check for the hardness and softness of water. Hard water can damage your appliances, clothes, and even your body; thus knowing the state of your water will help prevent harm from coming your way. These are but a few of the benefits we derive from making use of kits.
What do They Normally Test for?
There are different types of tests; no matter how complicated or straightforward their design is, they are all created with one main goal – to detect all the different contaminants in your water, such that you can take the appropriate measures to remain safe.
Some of the contaminants test kits typically recognize include alkalinity, iron, nitrite, nitrate, bacteria, and hardness of the water. There are many others that these tests also identify, and each one increases the number of benefits offered by water test kits.
Water Test Kits – FAQs
Why do I Need to Test my Water?
We all consume water daily for its numerous benefits. Water helps us with many things besides quenching our thirst. It is used for cooking, laundry, cleaning, and many other activities that help make life easier. A more significant percentage of the earth’s water is contaminated, and this poses a lot of health issues for all humans. To ensure that the liquid you’re ingesting is free from dirt and debris, you need to be aware of its chemical composition.
The best way to know this is via the use of water testing kits. These kits help you to find out if there is a contaminant in your water or not. They help prevent the occurrence of water-borne disease within your household, which keeps you healthier for longer.
How do I Accurately Determine if my Water is Contaminated or Dangerous?
The level of contamination or danger in your water is determined whenever you use a water testing kit. The kit you choose will determine the chemical composition of your pool. There are some models that require a laboratory setting, while others can be used within the comfort of your home. The home tests are available in many different types, too; thus, you can use any of them to find out precisely what is in your water in record time.
How Often Should I Test My Water?
Testing your water and the frequency of testing will depend on the source of water. For example, many wells in the USA are tested immediately after they’re constructed. Subsequent testing sessions are handed over to the owner of the property. The EPA then conducts a test annually, to ensure that all microorganisms living in your water are duly removed.
The presence of harmful chemicals and elemental contaminants should be tested every two to three years. The final time where a test will be essential is after any natural disaster such as an earthquake or flooding. In order not to forget the next testing session, homeowners are advised to keep a calendar or test schedule, available at all times.
Are Test Strips Reliable?
The reliability of a product is primarily determined by how it’s manufactured. This stays true for water testing kits around the world. Currently, there are thousands of test kits available in the world, with only a handful of them being very accurate. According to scientists and users themselves, the reliability of a water test kit is mostly dependent on how it was created, and the type of equipment it is. There are three major test kit types in today’s market, and each model is designed differently.
The first water test kit type is the strip, which some may refer to as the most common. Even though it is cheaper than the other two, we can hardly call it inaccurate. The water test strips, when compared to the different types of testing kits, offer a less accurate testing scale, which will provide you with something more precise than a ballpark figure.
The second type of water testing kits is the liquid test kit. This is the second type and a slightly more accurate option for all households. It is also very cost-efficient; thus, we believe it is worth the buck.
The final and most accurate test kit in the market today is the scientific meters or kits. These are guided electronically; thus, they offer you an exact output. This, however, comes at a high cost. If absolute quality is what you seek, no matter the price, we will recommend that you opt for the accurate meters.
Do Test Kits Expire or Go Bad?
Like every other product, your kit can and will go wrong, even when it’s not been used. Many of these kits are designed to expire; thus, the manufacturers often place the expiry date somewhere on the packaging. The expiration date sticker is very easy to see, and it must be adhered to if you wish to have the best, authentic results at all times.
Once it has passed its expiration date, it is advised that you invest in a newer one, to reap all the benefits of using a test kit. Expired test kits can give off wrong readings which may affect your health or that of your family.
What Are Some Signs that could Mean that I Should get my Water Tested?
In some instances, it can be effortless for you to identify that it’s time for a water test. There are numerous signs your water can show you physically, to help you know when and what to test for. In this section of our article, we pay direct attention to the signs or traits visible in the water, and how they determine whether or not a test is required.
The significant ways through which we know that water needs analysis is via a change in color, taste, or odor. Other traits include the water staining your clothes or plumbing fixtures. All these are signs of a problem; thus, the need for a test.
In other cases, you may not come across any physical signs. Instead, you will focus on the location of your water sources and its proximity to other elements such as septic tanks, highways, industrial areas, and many more. The composition of your home’s plumbing materials can also go a long way to determine your need for water testing.
How Should I Store my Test Kit/Test Strips?
Storage is vital for the longevity of all products, whether it is edible or not. Several products have their shelf life determined by how they’re stored; thus, extra care must be taken to avoid their destruction. Depending on the item being stored, you may be required to keep them in airy, fresh, well lit, or dark spaces. All instructions will be provided by manufacturers to make storage easier for you and your household.
Additionally, the shelf life of water testing kits is limited, depending on whether they’ve been opened or not. These test kits or strips need to be stored in cold and dark spaces since they thrive in such environments. As much as possible, keep these strips away from bags of treatment chemicals such as bromine and chlorine. Natural elements such as temperature extremes, direct sunlight, and exposure to volatile treatment products can reduce the shelf life of your treatment kits.
What are the Recommended Levels of Some Common Minerals found in water?
The essential dietary minerals required in water are very relative; thus, they vary from mineral to mineral. Potable drinking water or clean water for other activates needs to have calcium, sodium, Potassium, Zinc, Copper, Iron, and magnesium, among others, to be considered dietary standard for human consumption. Iron is essential because it aids in the transport of oxygen around your body, and also encourages normal body functions. Calcium, fluoride, and other minerals are present in water to assist in the growth and maintenance of healthy bones and teeth, which ultimately keeps you active and more youthful. These minerals are available in their right proportions to allow for better growth of all human organs and their maintenance.
My Test Kit Shows that my water has Zero Chlorine, but I Know It’s There. What could be causing this?
Chlorine is used by many companies and municipal areas to purify water. It is even used in commercial and household pools to keep the water clean for a more extended period. Chlorine, in recent times, has been found to have some adverse effects on the human system, but it still does a fantastic job of keeping your water free from contaminants.
Occasionally, it is advised that you test the levels of chlorine in your water to decipher as and when it will be ideal for increasing the dosage. The test may come out with your chlorine level reaching zero, even though you have some amount within. This is usually caused when the chlorine used is ineffective.
The ineffective nature of the mineral doesn’t allow your test kit reactant to have a vivid reading, thus the zero result. The only solution for this is to make use of a new chlorine brand in your pool. Increase the dosage used and then take another reading, to be sure that the chlorine used is taking effect.
1What Chemicals and Minerals Should I Test Well Water for?
The best place to start all your testing is by undertaking a general mineral analysis. This will include a combination of nitrate and coliform bacteria and may even include other elements such as iron, bacteria, manganese, copper, sulfate, ph, hardness, and many more. You may want to test for other substances such as herbicides, heavy metals, organic compounds, and pesticides, especially if you live near a gas station, highway, agricultural areas, or an industrial area. There are different types of tests, and each one is explained below.
- General Minerals Test
This kind of test will usually contain metals such as manganese, and iron, along with calcium, chloride, potassium, magnesium, and sodium. General mineral tests are generally used to check for the presence of sediments and stains. These tests tell you what the problem is, and can also help you identify where the odd odor or taste in your water is coming from. An additional criterion for tannin is recommended you’re having problems with color in your pool or any brown staining.
- Coliform Bacteria
Many might wonder what Coliform Bacteria is. This is a form of bacteria often found in surface water, within the soil, and on vegetation. It can also be found in the feces of warm-blooded animals, in which instance it is referred to as e-coli. E-coli is a bacterium with a long lifespan. It can survive for long periods in your water, and can also be transferred to other places via insects.
- Lead & Copper
The first draw of water is the best sample to use when testing for lead and copper. Also, the source of this first draw needs to have been stagnant for up to six hours prior to your experiment. There are some instances where the copper and lead levels are increased due to the plumbing system. In such cases, you will have to flush the faucet for a minute or two before collecting your sample.
When nitrogen from animal wastes, fertilizers, municipal sewage, septic systems, and decaying plants are combined naturally with oxygenated water, nitrate is formed. The presence or exposure of children below six months to nitrates can cause the blue-baby syndrome, also referred to as methemoglobinemia. This is a severe condition that can lead to somas and death.
- Pesticides & Herbicides
These substances are used to control both insects and weeds and are used in many farms and homes to curb the spread of pests on farms and around homes. Pesticides and chemicals such as herbicides enter your groundwater when used on farm fields. Drinking water with pesticides may not affect you initially, but with regular consumption, the development of cancer or any other serious health problems is a risk.
When detecting the level of contaminants in your water, the usage of testing kits is the best way to do it. These kits are considered a very worthy investment for every home and we have established some of their numerous benefits, which include their ability to offer countless operational options, their ability to test and detect multiple types of contaminants, and many more. There are varying types of water testing kits in the market today, and each one offers a different set of features as well as a diverse price range.
The home kits are, by default, very cheap. This enables you to purchase one or more for the safety of your family without spending a fortune. In our article, we also looked at some of the vital features to be on the lookout for before making a purchase. You are advised to read through the product descriptions properly to remain well-informed about the testing kits’ abilities. The main factors to consider include the kit’s features, the types available on the market, and then price ranges on demand.
We came across our top choice product, the Swiss Labs Kit. Out of all options we mentioned, we believe this is the most accurate, cost-effective, and impressive in performance. We all hate lousy tasting, hard water, and we’ll love to know whether our water is in such a state or not. With this test kit, you can identify all the dangerous chemicals living in your water. It is very inexpensive and can be used at any time. There is so much to gain from quality water; thus, you shouldn’t settle for anything less.