Inorganic Water Tests

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Test Description


Major anion in water (salty taste). High concentration may harm metallic pipes, structures, and growing plants.


Used to destroy disease-producing microorganisms. Improves water quality with regards to ammonia, iron, manganese, sulfide, and organic substances. Too high of concentrations affect taste and odor.


Both naturally occurring and added at controlled amounts.
WI State Standard for Drinking Water: 4 mg/L.


Excessive amounts in drinking water can lead to methemoglobinemia in infants.
WI State Standard for Drinking Water: 10 µg/L prevents methemoglobinemia from occurring.


Intermediate oxidation state of nitrogen and reduces to nitrate.
WI State Standard for Drinking Water: 1 mg/L.


Widely distributed in nature. In the presence of organic material, certain bacteria will become active.

Total Phosphorus

Essential in organism growth.


Coarsely crystalline (quartz, rock crystal, amethyst) and micro-crystalline (flint, chert, jasper) can form scale deposits in boilers.

**Information obtained from the Standard Method for the Examination of Water and Wastewater 22nd Edition. (2012). Washington : American Public Health Association