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A positive total coliform result can be an indication of surface water infiltration or seepage from a septic system.

Generally coliforms are bacteria that are not harmful and are naturally present in the environment. They are used as an indicator that other, potentially harmful, fecal bacteria could be present. 


The presence of total coliform bacteria indicates the relative risk that pathogens have also entered your well water. 

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Understand that the sample you just collected is just only a “snapshot” of your well’s water quality, and the result only tells you the risk at the time the sample was taken. This means the results can’t be relied on to predict the future microbial safety of your well water. The more samples you have tested, the more confident you can be.

In addition, a negative result from a screening kit like this only provides limited comfort level. The screening is not fail safe, and if you have any doubts, or would like additional level of comfort consistent with a professional test, you should have the water professionally tested. 

* Information from Viqua's Water Test Book. View Resources Here.

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