JACKSON, Wyo. — If you live in Teton County, Wyo., there’s a good chance your drinking water comes from a groundwater well.

In fact, 99% of people in Teton County use groundwater for their drinking water. In 2012, one in eight wells in Teton County tested positive for bacteria.

This week is Groundwater Awareness Week and March 13 is Know Your Well Day. Want to get to know your well? Teton Conservation District, Teton County Health Department and Wyoming Association of Rural Water are answering some common questions about drinking water wells.

How do I test my well water?

  • The Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality encourages annual spring testing for nitrate and bacteria.
  • Chemical and bacteria drinking water well test kits are available for $50 at Teton Conservation District.
  • Bacteria tests are available for $20 at Teton County Health Department.

When should I test my water?

  • When a new well is installed, when there is no record of testing or if you are purchasing a home with a well.
  • Test annually for bacteria and nitrate – spring is a good time to test.
  • If you experience unexplained illnesses in your household.
  • Sudden changes in the taste, color or odor of your water.
  • After a septic system failure, a flood or a fire.
  • If your neighbors are having problems with their water.
  • If someone in your household is pregnant or nursing.

How can I protect my well?

  • Do not store vehicles or chemicals within 100 feet of your well.
  • Do not keep livestock near your well.
  • Maintain your septic system.
  • Make sure your wellhead is visible to snowplows.

Additional Resources: