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Re: water utility home page

On Wed, 29 Nov 2000, Brain wrote:

> Thanks for the link.  I checked my local water supply report and it said
> nitrate is at 0.05 ppm.  However, my test kit (Tetra brand) reads it at
> about 10 ppm.  I have long suspected that this test kit is not very
> accurate.  Is this confirmation?  I hope the test kit is wrong, it would
> make me feel better, because I'm always battling NO3 in my tanks, maybe it
> is not really as high as I thought?  Can someone recommend a better NO3 test
> kit?

Your kit isn't necessarily wrong.  Your water supply is probably citing
nitrate as nitrate nitrogen.  You multiply that value by 4.4 to convert it
to nitrate.  That would be 0.22 ppm in your case.  Also, I recall that the
low comparison on the Tetra kit is 12 ppm.  I used the Tetra kit for years
and it seems like the kit will show positive results at nitrate
concentrations well below 12 ppm so it isn't really safe to guestimate
values below the lowest color comparison. Finally be sure that your
comparing the right values.  The water utilities value could be for raw
water, while treated, delivered water has a different value; also, nitrate
and other concentrations can vary over time and place-to-place within the
utility's system, so you need to be sure you account for variations.

My city's water utility doesn't show up on the AWWA links (mmm, and now
that I think about it, I don't see a lot of city personnel when I attend
local AWWA meetings).  However, they do have an excellent web site (
http://www.cabq.gov/waterquality ) that gives full and detailed
information for the city - all 18 or 19 zones.  The quality of water in a
public supply is public information and most larger water systems provide
it's users with any information they want - in fact they are required to
by law.  In short, if you can't find your water supply linked through the
AWWA list then probably you can find it on line through their main web
site (assuming they have one) or just by calling them and asking for it.

> - ------------------------------
>  Roger, sorry about the (almost) duplicate post.  I get the list as digest,
> so I didn't see your message until it arrived with mine right behind it.

No problem.  It just confirmed what we both had to say.  If you still feel
it's a problem then you can always check the end of the current month's
listing in the APD online archives before you post to see what has already
been submitted for the upcoming digest.

Roger Miller