Water

Huron Perth Public Health (HPPH) provides free bacterial well water testing (E. Coli and total coliforms) and monitors private well water test results. We also conduct inspections on small drinking water systems and recreational water (pools, spas) and report on beach water quality.

Drinking water

Many local municipalities provide water to their residents. Municipal water is treated, monitored and tested to make sure it complies with the Safe Drinking Water Act 2002 and provincial regulations. Contact your local municipality if you have concerns about the quality of municipal drinking water.

Well Water

If you get your drinking water from a private well, you can have your well water tested for bacteria for free. Learn more about managing your well water.

Lead

Lead in drinking water can have health effects, especially for children under 6 or pregnant women. Learn about the health effects and how to reduce your risk.

If you live in Huron or Perth County and your home has lead service pipes and is serviced by a municipal drinking water system, contact your municipality to discuss your options for testing.

If your source of water comes from a private well, or if you would like to have your water tested for lead, please contact one of Ontario's licensed laboratories.

Residents are advised to discuss specific health concerns with their physician.

Fluoride in Perth and Huron county water

Fluoride is a mineral that protects teeth against tooth decay. Many communities in Canada, including Goderich, add fluoride to the local water supply to help prevent teeth from developing cavities.

In Perth County and some wells in Huron County, fluoride is found naturally in the groundwater. This means levels of fluoride in drinking water vary across the region. If the fluoride level in water is more than 1.5 milligram/litre, there is a risk of dental fluorosis.

With the exception of dental fluorosis, scientific studies have not found any credible link between fluoride in water and adverse health effects at the levels that people in Perth and Huron counties experience.

Checking municipal fluoride levels

Residents can check with your municipality or water operator to find out the fluoride level of your drinking water. Some communities in Perth County that have fluoride levels higher than ideal (greater than 1.5 milligram/litre) are:

  • Stratford
  • Mitchell
  • St. Pauls
  • Black Creek Estates (Sebringville)

If the fluoride level in your water is more than 1.5 milligram/litre and you have young children and are worried about fluorosis:

  • consider using water with a lower fluoride level from another source for drinking and cooking

Examples of other sources of water:

  • Non-fluoridated bottled water
  • Use a water treatment device, such as reverse osmosis, to remove fluoride

Pitcher filters, such as Brita, do not remove fluoride from water.

Testing well water for fluoride

If you live on a well, you can test your water for fluoride through a licensed private laboratory.

Dental fluorosis

The level of fluoride in your drinking water is only a concern if you have a family with young children, as dental fluorosis develops in early childhood.

Dental fluorosis can change the appearance of teeth, from small white flecks to larger white areas, and in severe cases, to pitting or brown areas. However, most cases are mild. Mild fluorosis is not a health problem, but it can be avoided.