Environmental Health Division Laboratory Safeguards Wells and Septic Systems

Environmental Health Division Laboratory Safeguards Wells and Septic Systems

Testing Water Quality Protects Public Health

The Environmental Laboratory safeguards the quality of private wells and septic systems. Testing water quality is crucial to maintaining public health in Will County.

We are here to help you find answers to your water quality questions. We want you to know about the quality of your water so you can make informed decisions about its impact on you and the environment in which we live. Why do we test water? A large number of human diseases, particularly those of the gastrointestinal tract are spread through contaminated water.

The EH Laboratory supports the work of the division by testing potable water for bacteria, hardness, nitrates and fluoride. The EH Laboratory is certified by the Illinois Department of Public Health and NELAC for drinking water analysis.

All samples must be brought in on ice in one of our sterile bottles which can be picked up at any health department location. Samples may be placed in a sandwich bag or container with ice cubes. Please alert staff if you have a hydrogen peroxide system or a chlorinator when picking up sterile bottles. All water from private wells should be analyzed for bacteria at least once a year.

If laboratory analysis of your well water indicates that it is unsatisfactory for drinking or cooking it will need to be disinfected. A useful description of the procedures to be followed in the disinfection of your well is contained in our Well Chlorination Instructions. This document can be downloaded and viewed below.

Testing Fees   
Routine Bacterial Screens 
$20.00
Bacterial Screen with Count  
$25.00
Chlorine Check $  5.00
Nitrate Analysis $18.00
Fluoride Analysis $24.00
Hardness Analysis $18.00

Nitrite Analysis                     $25.00 which includes process and handling fees




 

Environmental Health Laboratory Location

Laboratory Location

Environmental Health Laboratory
501 Ella Avenue
Joliet, IL 60433
(815)727-8517

Environmental Health Laboratory Hours

Schedule for Dropping off Samples

Laboratory Hours: 

Monday-Friday:  8:30 am to 4:00 pm
(815)-727-8517

Fridays and the day before a holiday, samples are accepted until noon. Branch hours may differ.  

Contact individual branches for hours of operation.

Testing Water for Coliforms

Screening for Total Coliform and E. coli as an Indicator of Water Safety

Why should my water be tested for Coliforms and E.coli? Most Coliforms are not harmful but serve as indicators of the general microbial quality of water.

Testing for the Presence of Nitrate

High levels of Nitrate in Drinking Water can be Dangerous to Health

Nitrate is naturally found in many types of food. However, high levels of nitrate in drinking water can make people sick. Exposure to excessive concentrations of nitrate can cause blue baby syndrome as a result of asphyxiation since the blood loses the ability to transport oxygen. 

Hardness Testing

Hard Water forms Deposits that Clog Plumbing

Excessive hard water forms deposits that clog plumbing and requires more soap and detergents for cleaning and laundering clothing.

Fluoride Testing

Proper Amounts of Fluoride Helps Prevent Tooth Decay

Fluoride exists naturally in water sources and is derived from the element fluorine. It is important in the prevention of tooth decay. If you use a well, fluoride levels should be checked by a laboratory. The optimal level of fluoride in the water supply are 0.9-1.2 ppm (parts per million).   

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Environmental Health News

Food Handler Training Now Available Through WCHD

Illinois Food Handling Regulation Enforcement Act

Health Department Offers Safe Food Handling Tips

JOLIET – Did you know that Americans will account for nearly 76 million cases of foodborne illness (FBI), during 2014?  Worse yet, FBIs will hospitalize more than 325,000 by year’s end, and claim 5,000 American lives.

Health Department Warns Of Health Risks Posed By Mexican-Style Cheese From An Unlicensed Source

Statewide Investigation Ongoing

JOLIET – The Will County Health Department is teaming with the Illinois Department of Public Health, and local health jurisdictions across the state to warn consumers of health risks posed by Mexican-style cheese produced from an unlicensed dairy source.

Remember Food Safety During Holiday Meal Planning

Food Safety Tips

JOLIET --  Family dinners take on special significance during the holiday season, and food safety is especially important during those festive holiday gatherings.  The Will County Health Department reminds area residents that simple precautions can help to ensure that foodborne illnesses don’t ruin your holiday feasts. The following food safety tips should help to ensure that your holiday meals are a smashing success.

Health Department Expresses Growing West Nile Virus Concern

Many More Mosquito Samples Test WNV-Positive

More than 20 WNV mosquito samples have been harvested since early September. Personal protection against mosquito bites is strongly advised until first hard frost.
Avoid Possible Exposure to Rabies by Avoiding Bats and Wild Animals

Avoid Possible Exposure to Rabies by Avoiding Bats and Wild Animals

Eight bats test positive for rabies so far this year
West Nile Virus Precaution Makes the News

West Nile Virus Precaution Makes the News

WCHD Staff on CBS2 Monday

Our own Katie Nelson from the Will County Health Department Environmental Health Division explains trapping and collection to Mike Parker of CBS Chicago News during a news segment Monday night. Click to watch the video clip of the news segment.

Debris Management Means Safety

Debris Management Means Safety

Debris Can Cause Serious Pollution Problems

Even after floodwaters recede and the storms have passed debris remains that can cause serious pollution problems and potentially result in ill health effects. The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (Illinois EPA) has developed this fact sheet to outline what you can do to ensure that the waste and debris are disposed of in a safe and environmentally sound manner. Please follow these guidelines to dispose of the debris.

HEALTH DEPARTMENT URGES RADON TESTING

RADON KITS AVAILABLE AT THREE HEALTH DEPARTMENT LOCATIONS

The Will County Health Department urges area homeowners to be aware of radon dangers and test their homes for the presence of an odorless gas with potentially dangerous consequences.
Protect Yourself and Your Family from Potentially Dangerous Mosquito Bites

Protect Yourself and Your Family from Potentially Dangerous Mosquito Bites

Ways in which you can Avoid Being Bitten by Mosquitoes

Here are several ways in which you can avoid being bitten by mosquitos that could carry the West Nile Virus. 

  • When mosquitos are biting, stay indoors during dawn and dusk or in the evening since they are most active during those times.
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