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Safe Water

Private Citizen Drinking Water Sampling

Your well water can affect the health of everyone who drinks it. In this section you can learn how you can take a private citizen drinking water sample and how to understanding your results. You can also find ways to improve your water quality.

To ensure the safety of your drinking water, you should test your private well water at least three times per year for bacteria. Water sample bottles can be picked up and dropped off (within 24 hours) at many of our offices or at the Public Health Ontario Laboratory in Orillia. Please check with your local office or view our sample drop-off locations and times page.

Public Health Ontario Laboratories test for indicators of bacterial contamination (E. coli and coliforms). They do not test for other contaminants such as chemicals. If you'd like to test your water for other contaminants, please contact a commercial licensed laboratory. A lift of commercial licensed laboratories is available here.


  • Private Citizen Drinking Water samples are NEVER ACCEPTED ON FRIDAYS at any office.
  • The health unit's Orillia and 80 Bradford Street, Barrie offices DO NOT accept water bottle drop-offs.
  • Drop-off times may vary for holiday closures, so if in doubt, call Health Connection at 705-721-7520 or 1-877-721-7520.
  • Small Drinking Water System Operators (businesses) can go here for more information on how to sample.


The health unit also monitors beach water quality at some of our public beaches throughout the summer months. During the summer months we will list active beach posting and closures.

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If you have any questions or concerns that require a response, please contact Health Connection directly.

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