Coliform

Dave Boone boone at ese.ogi.edu
Mon Jun 19 14:05:00 EST 1995


In article <Pine.SOL.3.90.950615135357.9260A-100000 at ug> redwood at UG.CS.DAL.CA (Ira Redwood) writes:

>Are there any simple, do-at-home type tests that someone could do to 
>merely test for the presence of coliform? 

Mark,
Colilert tests are about as simple as can be.  You simply fill the vial to
the mark (100 ml), incubate, and look for a color change to yellow.  The
kits cost about $5US.  You should check standard methods for sample
collection methods.  (Most importantly, remove the aerator, let the water
run for several minutes to flush the house's lines, and collect the sample
while it is running.)  The only problem is that the incubation should be
in a constant temperature incubator.  For a rough indication though (that
won't hold up in court or satisfy laws requiring testing before property
sales), you may be able simply to use a lower temperature (room temp) and
a longer incubation time (for a temperature lower by 15 deg C, the
incubation should be about 5 times longer).  


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David R. Boone                  | "Many scientists classify bacteria.  Which
Prof. of Environ. Microbiology  | means that it is only for them to know, and
Oregon Graduate Institute       | they won't tell other people about it."
503-690-1146, fax 503-690-1273  |        --from a 4th-grade science project
boone at ese.ogi.edu; http://www.ese.ogi.edu/ese_docs/boone.html
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