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How Do I Test My Water for PFAS?

If you’re concerned about per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in your drinking water or you live near a contamination site, there are several different methods you can use to find out if your water has been tainted by PFAS “forever chemicals.”
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C.L. Mike Schmidt Published by C.L. Mike Schmidt
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EPA Method 537 for PFAS in Drinking Water

Although there are numerous ways to test for PFAS in drinking water, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has stated that Method 537 is the most reliable way to test for the chemicals.

EPA Method 537 is a solid phase extraction (SPE) liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS/MS) method for the analysis of 18 selected PFAS, including PFOS and PFOA, in drinking water supplies. Multiple Reaction Monitoring (MRM) is used to enhance selectivity, and quantification relies on internal standard correction.

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At-Home PFAS Water Testing

Several private companies and at least one major university have developed test kits for analyzing your drinking water for PFAS at home. Not only can these tests detect PFAS in your drinking water, but they can also establish a baseline level for normal levels and help you monitor whether your water is becoming safer or more toxic over time.

1. Tap Score - SimpleLab is a health services firm that provides a home water test called Tap Score. The company offers a water health analysis with each Tap Score report. This report includes an evaluation of the health risks that your drinking water poses to your family’s health.

2. Water Test Kit Pro - Cyclopure is a Global leader in the science of targeted micropollutant removal that pioneered a way to safely remove PFAS from drinking water using cyclodextrin-based polymer adsorbents. The company developed the Water Test Kit Pro which tests for 17 fluorinated compounds for only $79, and they analyze for the most compounds – 17 compared to 3 or 14 for the others.

3. WaterCheck - National Testing Laboratories offers the WaterCheck sample kit that tests for PFAS compounds in your drinking water. This screening level test analyzes your water for 3 PFAS molecules – PFOS, PFOA, and PFBS. Although the test is limited to just 3 compounds, these are the worst of the worst in terms of health risks.

The $189 kit includes everything you need – sampling gloves, water vial, sampling instructions, and a pre-paid shipping label. The lab provides a complete report within 10 days of receiving your sample.

4. Freshwater Future - Provided by the University of Michigan Biological Station’s laboratory, the Freshwater Future Kit sells for $75, and tests for 14 PFAS compounds using EPA Method 537.1.

The Benefits of PFAS Testing

The most obvious benefit of testing your water for PFAS is that, in some cases, testing is required by law and you will fulfill that requirement.

However, even for people who are not required to test for PFAS in their drinking water, there are many benefits. Peace of mind is a big one if you believe your water may be contaminated or have other health concerns for your family.

Even if your tests come back showing elevated levels of PFAS, there are many options available for eliminating the problem and obtaining clean water for drinking, cooking and cleaning.

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If you or a loved one was injured by PFAS contamination, you should contact our law firm immediately for a free case evaluation. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a suit and we can help.

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