Free Well Water Testing for Pojoaque Basin Private Well Owners

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August 15, 2017 4:00 PM
Santa Fe County Satellite Office located at 5 Gutierrez, Suite 9 in the Pojoaque Pueblo Plaza

Free Well Water Testing for Pojoaque Basin Private Well Owners

Did you miss the free water testing for Pojoaque Basin well owners on July 7 and 8, 2017? If so, you now have another opportunity to have your well water tested at no cost. Santa Fe County, in conjunction with the New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) and the New Mexico Department of Health (DOH), are providing free water testing for residents in the Pojoaque Basin with private wells serving homes not connected to a public water utility.

To participate, bring a sample of your well water to the Santa Fe County Satellite Office located at 5 Gutierrez, Suite 9 in the Pojoaque Pueblo Plaza on any of the following dates:

  • Tuesday, August 1 from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, August 15 from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, August 22 from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

These free well water tests will be offered on a first‐come, first‐served basis. Funding is available for 70 wells within the Pojoaque Basin. The analysis will include iron, nitrate, arsenic, manganese, fluoride, uranium, electrical conductivity and pH. If your well is not located in the Pojoaque Basin you have the option for lab testing for a charge of $91.38 (Checks only. No cash accepted). Map of Pojoaque Basin

To have your water tested; residents need to bring a sample of their water to the above referenced office at the specified date and times.

• Fill a clean glass or plastic container, without any strong odors, with at least a quart or liter of your well water.
• Collect the water before it runs through any water treatment or filters such as a reverse osmosis, a carbon filter, or a water softener. If the home has a whole house filtration system, collect the water at the well head.
• Let the water run for a couple of minutes before collecting the sample.
• Fill the container with the water as close to the time of testing as possible.

Well water constituents may be naturally occurring or may result from other sources such as fertilizers, animal waste, and septic tanks which can contain nitrates. Drinking water with high levels of nitrate can be dangerous to pregnant women and infants, while other contaminants may lead to aesthetic nuisances and other health problems. Arsenic is naturally occurring and has been measured in water from private wells throughout the state at concentrations that exceed recommended safe drinking water quality standards. Naturally occurring uranium has been measured as well in the Pojoaque Basin at levels exceeding safe drinking water standards.

Along with the water sample, residents are asked to bring the following voluntary information about their well: well depth, depth to water, well casing material (i.e., steel, pvc), distance from well to the nearest septic tank/leachfield system, OSE permit number and well coordinates (which can be obtained using Google Maps). A sample form for gathering this useful information is available at
https://nmtracking.org/view/pdf/environment/water/private_wells/water_fairs/WF_form.pdf.

If well owners are unable to drop off their sample and would like to have their water tested, they may have their sample brought to the Satellite Office on the days listed above by a family member or neighbor as long as the bottle is clearly labeled with their name, phone number, and address and information about the well is attached. We will only test water that comes from homes that are supplied by private wells for drinking water. Water from households that are connected to city/community/public water system is periodically tested by those systems and those results are available at https://dww.water.net.env.nm.gov/DWW/

For further information about this water testing opportunity, please contact Santa Fe County Utilities at 505-986-2426.

To support well owners, more information about wells, water quality and safety is available at https://nmtracking.org/water

For more information please visit the County’s Aamodt page at: http://www.santafecountynm.gov/public_works/utilities/aamodt