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Coliform Testing in Water

Coliforms are pathogenic bacteria that can be found in the aquatic environment, in soil and vegetation, and in the feces of a large number of warm blooded animals, including man. They are a commonly used indicator of sanitary quality of foods and water. Their presence is used to indicate that other pathogenic organisms of fecal origin may be present. The presence of fecal coliform bacteria in drinking water may indicate a possible presence of harmful, disease-causing organisms, or pathogens. Waterborne pathogens can cause diseases such as hepatitis, giardiasis, and dysentery.  

Eagle Laboratories is capable of detecting coliforms and Escherichia coli in drinking water, waste water, ground water, and surface water using the E*Colite Test Method; rinse water and reclaimed water may also be tested. This method is an accepted analytical method by the EPA for drinking water and surface water testing. E*Colite is a qualitative method, using color changes and fluorescence to indicate coliform and E. coli presence. Non-coliform bacteria, such as Pseudomonas, will be suppressed by the enzymes contained in the E*Colite test kit; thus, resulting in an absence (negative) result. E*Colite can detect coliforms and E. coli within 28 hours.

For sampling drinking water: Obtain a sterile bottle from the laboratory. Go to a tap where you draw your drinking water and remove aerators, screens, or other devices. Turn the water on to a moderate flow and let run for a minimum of 3 minutes. Without altering the flow, collect your sample. Do not rinse bottle. Leave a ½ inch air space at the top of the bottle. Cap the bottle and return it to the laboratory as soon as possible. Bottle must be kept with ice packs while in transport.

E*Colite results are available within 48 hours. Eagle Laboratory is licensed by the Commonwealth of PA for Coliform Testing, license number 46-00564. We offer competitive pricing so call Eagle IH for details.

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