Water sampling kits for testing private wells are available. For chemical tests of private water, or for information regarding safety of private water please contact the Moniteau County Health Center at (573) 796-3412.
Water Testing FAQs
I have a private well, how often should the water be tested?
Property owners with private wells should submit a water sample from the well at least once every year and certainly whenever any changes are noticed in the water such as taste, cloudy, odor etc. The water should also be tested after repairs have been made to the water supply system.
What are the recommended tests?
Start with a bacteria test. This is a test for Total Coliform Bacteria and E. Coli Bacteria. The test results are recorded as either ABSENT or PRESENT.
Who does the water tests and how much will it cost?
Property owners may collect their own water samples for bacterial testing (Total Coliform and E-coli). The laboratory requires you to collect and submit the water sample in the collection kits provided by the State Public Health Laboratory. These kits with sampling instructions are available at the Moniteau County Health Center. There is a $10.00 fee payable to the laboratory upon completion of the test.
The water sample should reach the laboratory within 30 hours of collection. If the water sample is submitted to the Moniteau County Health Center during normal business hours (Monday-Friday) before arrival of the Courier Service, the sample will be shipped at no cost. The state public health lab will be able to test the sample the next morning.
In certain instances an official water sample may be required. Official water samples must be submitted by an Environmental Public Health Specialist at the Moniteau County Health Center. If an official sample is required for a real estate transaction, contact a Licensed On-Site Inspector/Evaluator.
How do I test for bacteria?
- Pick up a test kit from the Moniteau County Health Center office in California. The kit will contain: small plastic bottle, instructions for pulling the water sample, form, white shipping label and a white shipping box.
- Obtain the water sample according to directions in the kit.
- Bring the water sample and completed form to the office before 2:30 p.m., Monday – Friday. The DHSS Laboratory Courier will take the sample to the laboratory in Jefferson City, free of charge. The water sample must reach the laboratory within 30 hours of collection, so it is best to take the water sample in the morning and bring it to the office by 2:30 p.m. that same day.
- Test results will be mailed to you within one week. The test results are recorded as either ABSENT or PRESENT. If bacteria are present, instructions for disinfecting your well will be included in your report. There is a $10.00 fee payable to the laboratory upon completion of each test.
How long will it take to get results?
Bacterial samples are sent to the State Public Health Laboratory in Jefferson City, MO. A paper result should be back within one week.
What other tests are available?
Talk to the Environmental Public Health Specialist (EPHS) at the Moniteau County Health Center about the specific problem you may be having with your water supply. Water tests other than bacterial must be obtained and submitted by the EPHS. Some water tests require prior approval from the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. In most circumstances water samples will be collected by the Moniteau County Health Center at no cost to the well owner.
Official Water Samples
In certain instances, an official water sample may be required. Official water samples must be submitted to the MDHSS by the Moniteau County Health Center (EPHS). If an official sample is required for a real estate transaction, contact a Licensed On-Site Inspector/Evaluator.