Penn State Extension Develops New Water Quality App

Posted: May 19, 2014

Penn State Extension has recently completed work on a new mobile device App called “H2OSolutions” to help private water system owners and professionals evaluate wells, springs and cisterns.

The overall objective of the App is to help users diagnose the causes of observed water quality problems and guide water testing decisions. The App includes four categories of information:

  1. Identify problems with my water - This section describes the causes of common water symptoms (stains, tastes, odors, etc.) in water and provides links to the water test parameters that may cause those symptoms. Once a water test parameter is selected, the county-based water test data can be accessed as described below.
  2. Water test results by county - Users can select a Pennsylvania county and see a summary of water quality for private water supplies tested from that county between 2007 and the present by the Penn State Agricultural Analytical Laboratory. Once a county is selected, a page is displayed with the drinking water standards and the percentage of samples that failed the standard for 25 inorganic and microbiological parameters. By selecting an individual test parameter, users can also view detailed statistics including the number of samples, median, minimum, and maximum concentrations for that county.
  3. Find local Penn State Extension Contacts - The App uses the location of the phone to provide a listing (organized from closest to furthest away in distance) of Penn State Extension educators and water specialists who specialize in private water system management. Information for the Penn State water testing laboratory is also provided. By selecting a person on the contact list, information including their phone number and email address are displayed.
  4. About this App - This icon provides information about Penn State Extension and the funding sources used to develop the App.

The Apple version of the App (for use on iPhones and iPads) is available on the App Store for free download. An android version of the App is currently under development and should be available in May or June of 2014.

This project was funded by Pennsylvania Sea Grant, a partnership of Penn State Behrend, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.