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Laboratory Tests

Alkalinity Analysis:
Measures the ability of water to neutralize acids; important in forming floc It is also an aid in evaluating whether an unknown sample is processed water.

pH Analysis:
Measures the acidity of water. This is an important factor in disinfection, coagulation and corrosion control. It is used in calculation of the Langelier Index as well as helping to identify unknown samples. A drastic rise of fall of the pH of a water supply may indicate the introduction of a contaminate. It is also an aid in evaluating whether an unknown sample is processed water.

Turbidity Analysis:
Measures the clarity of the water. Is important in aesthetic quality of water. A high turbidity water can harbor contaminants, and may inhibit effective disinfection treatment.

Calcium Hardness Analysis:
Measures the amount of calcium ions in a sample, expressed as the amount of calcium carbonate in milligrams per liter. It is also an aid in identifying an unknown sample and is used in the calculation of the Langelier Index

Conductivity Analysis:
Measures the ability of water to carry an electric current. It estimates the amount of total dissolved solids in a water sample. It also helps maintain proper regulations regarding our deionized, lab-grade water.

Orthophosphate Analysis:
Measures the amount of corrosion control we have added to the water, and aids in identifying processed water.

Free and Total Chlorine Residuals Analysis - Chlorine Demand:
Checks the disinfectant level in city water to be certain that it is free of disease causing bacteria, and maintains a certain level of aesthetic qualities, such as taste, clarity and odor. Makes certain the chlorine is at a level most effective for public health and welfare. The difference between the "total " and "free" chlorine analysis is known as "chlorine demand". A drastic increase in chlorine demand may indicate a severe contamination of a water supply.

Fluoride Analysis:
The laboratory checks fluoride levels in city water to make sure it’s effective for dental health but not harmful to drink. It is also an aid in evaluating whether an unknown sample is processed water.

Total Solids Analysis:
Measures the amount of matter, both suspended and dissolved, in water. This is important especially when inspecting water throughout the filtration and coagulation processes.

Total Dissolved Solids Analysis:
Measures the amount of solids that are so small that they pass through a filter. This is important especially when inspecting water from throughout the filtration and coagulation processes. The amount of total dissolved solids in a water is directly related to its' conductivity and is used in the calculation of the Langelier Index

Total Suspended Solids Analysis:
Measures the amount of solids that are retained by a filter. This is important especially when inspecting water from throughout the filtration and coagulation processes.

Heterotrophic Plate Count (formerly called Standard Plate Count):
Is a procedure for measuring the number of bacteria in water. This test can help determine whether areas within our distribution system are subject to recontamination due to biofilm growth. It also indicates whether our water treatment processes is effectively eliminating bacteria and whether our disinfection is adequate.

Membrane Filter Test (Total Coliform):
Checks for coliform growth within our water system. Coliform is known as an "Indicator" organism. When coliform is present in a water supply it indicates that harmful pathogens are also present.

m-coliblue Test
This test checks for both coliform and E.Coli in city water, source water and other water throughout the treatment process. Helps maintain high standards in accordance with the health code. Aids in EPA correlation studies for cryptosporidium and E. coli.

Algae Count:
Counts and identifies certain taste and odor causing algae found in the source water, as well as filter clogging organisms. Helps follow trends of algae growth in Lake Erie, aiding in decisions on prechlorination, for taste and odor control, as well as addition of coagulants to aid in filtration.