Are you searching for the best water test kit?
I take the quality of my family’s drinking water seriously and testing for contaminants and other impurities is easy by running a quick test. I’ve reviewed the top kits available and after reading this article you will know my recommendations.
Check out the quick list below for links to customer reviews and prices for my picks, or read on for the full review:
- Safe Home PREMIUM Drinking Water Test Kit for CITY & WELL WATER
- ‘Bang-for-the-Buck’ Essential Indicators City Water Test
- HM Digital TDS-EZ Water Quality TDS Tester
- Safe Home LEAD in Drinking Water Test Kit
- Total Hardness Water Test Strips Kit
Selecting the Best Water Test Kit
When you are looking for a water test kit, then you first need to decide if you want to send your water off for testing or if you want to complete the test yourself. There are pros and cons to both types of testing.
When you send your water off to a lab, then you can rest assured that there won’t be any user error that will affect the answers that you get about your water quality. On the other hand, sending it off means that you won’t get results right away.
If you think that you can handle completing the test as advised and want immediate answers about your water quality, then you may want to select a test that allows you to complete it at home.
You also need to think about what you want to test for, as different kits will have different parameters and things that they will test for. If you are only worried about rust or the hardness of your water, then these tests are going to be generally less expensive.
However, I recommend testing for the full range of contaminants in your water, as you never know what could be in your water, possibly making you and your family sick. This is especially important if you have anyone in your home who may be pregnant, have a compromised immune system, or if you have a baby, as you want to make sure that they are not exposed to anything dangerous.
Benefits of Testing Your Water
A great water test kit will, at the very least, put your mind at ease about the condition and quality of your home’s water. No matter whether you have just moved, live in an area that is prone to flooding, or are simply interested in yearly testing, a water test kit will tell you the condition and safety of your water.
In the worst case scenario, a water test kit will tell you that something is wrong with your water and that you need to make an adjustment. While this isn’t the best news for any homeowner, it’s much better to know that you have a water problem than to ignore it and hope for the best.
What to Look For
One attribute that you may want to consider when shopping for a water test kit is whether it can be reused. There are some kits that can be used over and over, which means that you can easily test the water in and around your home multiple times without having to pay a company to do the test for you.
This is great if you have multiple sources of water or if you simply want to stay on top of your testing for safety reasons. I love having a water test kit that I can use without sending it off, as it puts the power in my hands and allows me to test at will.
How to Use Your New Water Test Kit
Depending on the type of water test kit that you buy, you will have to follow varying directions.
Most water test kits have you run the water from your tap for a few minutes before collecting water to be tested and sending it off to the company. It’s important that you follow the directions exactly so that you can enjoy the best results.
Home test kits are often much easier to use, and if you opt for one that can be used over and over, then you don’t need to worry as much about the instructions, as you can simply repeat the test if you feel like you make a mistake.
I do recommend writing down the results of your tests so that you always have them on hand to compare to new results. This is a great way to track any changes that may occur with your water quality and will help you make any changes necessary since you will have information that proves problems in your water.
While water test kits aren’t dangerous, it is important that you make sure that you buy your kit from a reputable company. You do not want to work with a company that doesn’t have a great reputation of providing accurate results. Not only could this give you a false positive, which can be scary, but it can also mean that you don’t have all of the information about the safety of your water.
Best Water Test Kits
Protecting your family’s water is incredibly important. These professional quality water test kits are appropriate for home, city, and well water. Test for lead, heavy metals, hard water, and bacteria that can harm your family’s health.
Safe Home PREMIUM Drinking Water Test Kit CITY & WELL WATER
This is an incredibly comprehensive water test kit, which is why it is such a popular choice for many people. Not only does it make it easy for you to test your water, but the lab results are confidential and sent directly to you so that you can be sure that you are only drinking healthy and clean water. Thanks to the on-time results warranty, you never have to worry about late results.
- Tests for 50 contaminants
- Lab report emailed in 7-10 days after sample receipt
- No additional lab fee required
- Instructions are clear and the test is very easy
- Offers comprehensive report on water quality
- Not always clear what kind of bacteria is present in the water
- Turnaround time is longer than other kits
‘Bang-for-the-Buck’ Essential Indicators City Water Test
Even though you get to send your water off to be tested and wait for results, this kit includes a test for pathogenic bacteria that you do at home, as it is very sensitive to temperature. This is great for homeowners who are worried about having bacteria in their drinking water and allows for a fast response, as it isn’t possible to send the water through the mail for bacterial testing.
- Tests for more than 170 contaminants
- Includes a test for 85 volatile organic compounds
- Well water tested specifically for iron-related bacteria
- Tests are completed with EPA testing methodology
- Report is detailed and very easy to read
- Turnaround time is longer than some homeowners want to wait
HM Digital TDS-EZ Water Quality TDS Tester
Rather than waiting a long time to get the results of your water test in the mail, when you opt for this powerful tester, you will enjoy instant results right away. This is great if you are worried about the condition of your water and want answers right away or if you need to test multiple sources and need instant results.
- Saves measurements for repeat readings
- Offers around 1000 hours of usage
- Auto-off functional after 10 minutes of non-use
- Large LCD screen is easy to read
- Measure from 0-999 ppm
- Meters can easily be recalibrated with a small screwdriver
- Water temperature makes a huge difference in the readings
- It’s possible to get different readings back to back
- Calibration can be difficult to get exact
Safe Home LEAD in Drinking Water Test Kit
Homeowners who are worried about the presence of lead in their drinking water will appreciate this kit and the fast results that you get regarding any lead in your water. You can enjoy 2 tests for the price of one, which means that you can easily check 2 water sources at your home so that you don’t need to worry about your water quality.
- Tests for lead from water and plumbing fixtures
- Tests for both dissolved and solid lead
- Results are sent via mail
- No cost to send the kit into the lab for testing
- Instructions are very easy to follow
- Perfect for testing before buying a home or making renovations
- Not state certified
- Has a minimum detection limit of 0.006
- Only tests for lead
Total Hardness Water Test Strips Kit
You’ll never have to guess how hard your water is when you invest in these 100 strips. They make it easy for you to determine the hardness of your water without much delay, as the strips change color almost instantly, which allows you to test multiple times without waiting a long period for test results. Keep the bottle capped completely to decrease the chance of water affecting the strips.
- Determine water hardness in just seconds
- It’s easy to dip the strips for fast results
- Instant results
- Includes 100 test strips
- Incredibly accurate way to determine hard or soft water
- Doesn’t test for contaminants
- Can be difficult to determine the color of the strip
- Colors skip over large areas without a lot of in-between shades
For more water guides and tips check out these articles:
- Best Propane Tankless Water Heater
- Best Electric Tankless Water Heater
- Best Whole House Water Filter
- Best Refrigerator Water Filter
- Best Water Distiller
- Best Shower Water Filter
- Water Storage Containers
- Best RV Water Filter
- Best Under Sink Water Filter
- Best Portable Water Filter
While I think that sending off your water test kit is a great way to get exact results, I really like the HM Digital TDS-EZ tester. This test kit does a great job checking your overall water quality and can be used over and over again. It tests for total dissolved solids and quickly tells you your water purity level, displayed in ppm. As long as you don’t notice any changes or problems with your water, then you won’t need more advanced testing, but if your water quality changes or there are a lot of dissolved solids in the water, then it is a good idea to use another kit that allows a company to test for certain contaminants in your water.
Fred is the Ready Zeal owner and editor. He has been passionately pursuing all things emergency preparation since working alongside his grandfather as a boy growing up in the Midwest. When not working on the family homestead he can be found brewing coffee and reading a good book or backpacking in the wilderness. Contact Fred at [email protected]