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Frequently Asked Questions

Choosing The Right Test

What makes Tap Score special?

Tap Score gives you unbiased testing, certified labs, world-class support, professional scientific advice, personalized filtration recommendations and a sophisticated experience from beginning to end. It's why Tap Score is consistently ranked the #1 water testing service for homes and business.

I want to test my water for everything

There are literally millions of analytes to test for and it’s impossible to test them all. We present the largest collection of useful water quality tests on the Tap Score website. Build the test panel of your dreams by adding multiple test kits to your cart, or reach out and ask us for advice.

How do I choose the best test for my needs?

You have 4 superb ways to find the best test kit for your needs. Shop Core Test Kits or Specialized Tests, go to the Contaminant Glossary or Customize a Test Kit. Each test panel has been named and curated by water quality experts to target the most relevant concerns.

How many samples can I take with one kit?

One. Each testing package is designed for a single sample at one location (even if it comes with 4 bottles!) If you want to test your water at multiple locations, you'd need multiple testing packages.

What does it cost to test my water?

We show all test kit prices with ALL costs included (sampling materials, testing, results report-back, sample disposal and shipping both ways). The cost of water testing depends on what you’re testing for and other specifications you may have. There are basic testing packages and there are also very advanced ones.

Water Sample Collection

Which sampling method should I use?

Choosing a sampling method is all about knowing what information you are most interested in. A first draw sample emphasizes impacts from your plumbing. A fully flushed sample emphasizes the "raw" water quality as it comes from the source. 

Should I test before or after my installed filtration device?

There is no right or wrong answer, different sampling locations will tell you different things. Before gives you information on the untreated/raw water quality, while after provides information on the water quality post-filtration.

Where should I take my sample?

Choosing a sampling location is all about what information you are most interested in learning. If you ordered only one test kit, then we recommend collecting your sample from the location where you drink the most water. Your ingestion of water is normally your greatest exposure to water-borne health concerns.

Do you come and test my water?

No. Our testing kits are designed for you to easily take your own samples and return them to a certified lab facility using the pre-paid shipping label(s) in your kit. 

Tracking Your Test Status

How do I check my report status?

Track your sample(s) status on your SimpleLab Account

When will I receive my results?

Most testing is completed in 3-5 lab business days. Some panels require additional analytical time either because they are inherently more intensive or because Quality Control requires steps to be repeated. You can check each kit’s product page for a time estimate (TAT) of how many business days the lab will need to analyze your samples after they arrive.

Why are my results later than expected?

Testing instruments are extremely sensitive and some analytes can require extra time on the instruments to ensure the accuracy of your results. 

My Report is not showing up on my Account. Where is it?

99% of the time, if you don't see your Report in your Account it is because you've logged in with a different email address than you used for you purchase. Make sure to log in with the same email address you used during test kit checkout.

Where is my test kit?

Make sure you have checked your shipment tracking information (SimpleLab account). If a package is marked as delivered but you don't have it, then check with neighbors to see it was misdelivered. If you still can’t locate the kit, reach out to us via email or live chat.

Understanding Your Report

Is the report easy to understand?

Your report(s) will include detailed analysis plus visual representation of your water’s health. Each report also shows useful information about the analytes tested and their potential impacts. More help is also available phone call, via live chat and email should you have any questions about your results. See an example report here.

How do I receive my results?

Once your results are ready, you will be notified by email. You can then sign into your SimpleLab account to review the HTML and PDF versions of your results with lab attachments included. 

What do my results include?

Your results include detailed, quantified levels (PPM, PPB, PPT etc) for all tested analytes as well as information on how they related to tastes, plumbing and health impacts. Reports will also include a dedicated treatment section tailored to your results. 

What if I have questions about my results?

You can call or email our team at or you can chat with us live! We are here to help.

What is the HGL?

In addition to MCLs, and MCLG's Tap Score Reports include a Health Guidance Level (HGL). The HGL is the concentration of a contaminant at which there is no known health impact. HGL represents the MOST conservative evaluation of water quality. It reflects a combination of recommendations from State, Federal and other health department research guidelines. HGL is not an enforceable standard for water systems. When there is no HGL, that means there is insufficient research on the contaminant’s health risks. (SLR -> HGL)

Filtration & Treatment

Are Tap Score filtration recommendations unbiased?

Yes we are 100% unbiased and 100% private. We do NOT make money selling filters and we do NOT collect any commission making your recommendations. 

Does Tap Score recommend filtration solutions?

Each report comes with a dedicated treatment and filtration section that is tailored to help you reduce the specific contaminants found in your water sample. 

How are filters recommended?

We provide you with unbiased treatment recommendations based on the contaminants found in your sample, your home preferences, budget and our own ongoing research into treatment technologies and customer satisfaction with filtration brands and solutions.

Does Tap Score sell filtration?

No, we do not sell any filtration products or systems ourselves. Nor do we take any sales commission. We simply want to point you in the right direction.

Is my filtration system working

The only way to truly know whether or not your filter is working is to test your water. Consider ordering two test kits, so that you can analyze your water before AND after your filter. 

Your SimpleLab Account

How do I set up my free SimpleLab Account?

Creating a SimpleLab account is free and easy to set up. Click here to set yours up in just a few clicks.

What benefits do I get from SimpleLab?

Beyond acting as your online results dashboard, where you can track test status and review your reports, the SimpleLab Account is where you'll go to get support on Tap Score questions. Additionally, you have access to advanced privacy and sharing settings, as well as 100+ other testing labs for any future needs.

What is SimpleLab?

SimpleLab is an award-winning science and health services company founded at the University of California in Berkeley. SimpleLab powers a vast number of home, commercial, industrial and municipal engineering test kit programs.

Why is my test not showing up on my account?

In order for your test to automatically appear on your SimpleLab account, our system requires that the email used to purchase the test kit and the one used to create the account match. The kits and accounts are linked via that email. 

What if I want custom test kits for my business?

If you’re a business looking to set up a routine water testing program, or you're interested in customizing a test kit program for your team or your customers then you should contact SimpleLab support directly ( or visit the SimpleLab website.

Laboratory Services

Why are there so many laboratories?

Various water testing laboratories specialize in different ways. There are many types of analytical instruments, methods for using them, and many analytes to test. NO single facility can specialize in everything.

How accurate are my results?

Analytical instrumentation is extremely accurate when reporting concentration data. Most variability in sample testing comes from changes in the sample itself (time of day, year, sampling method).

When can I contact the lab facility directly?

Tap Score enables lab technicians to focus on what they do best, testing water. Meanwhile, we deliver on the promise of great customer service, expert treatment advice and timely support. If you need to speak with a technician, contact us first.

Which lab will my samples go to?

Depending on your sampling time, location and testing panel requested, your samples will be shipped to the optimal laboratory that meets your needs (turnaround time, instrumentation, methods).

What about laboratory QA/QC?

Every Tap Score testing facility is certified and must follow certain QA/QC procedures specified by regulatory and accreditation bodies plus SimpleLab.

Laboratory Certifications

Is your laboratory certified?

All Tap Score testing is performed in the SimpleLab network of certified North American laboratories. This includes more than 200 certified facilities, and 1,000 EPA testing methods. Each facility is accredited by various accreditation bodies. Facility certifications and accreditations include those from ISO to NELAC/ELAP, Direct State, DoD, DoE, DoH and beyond. Need a specific certification? Let us know in advance of your order so that we can meet your needs accordingly. 

Which facility will analyze my samples?

Your testing is assigned to the optimal laboratory based upon several factors: (1) your proximity to facility, (2) test analysis needed, and (3) how busy each specific lab is at the time of your purchase and sample collection. These measures ensure you get the fastest turnaround and best pricing.

Are you an EPA certified laboratory?

All Tap Score testing laboratories are certified in various ways (ISO, NELAC, State, DoD, etc). The Federal EPA itself validates many analytical methods, but does not certify individual laboratories. It gives that power to various other accrediting agencies and directly to the US States.

What is an ISO certified laboratory?

ISO is an international standard for testing laboratories created to ensure laboratories are producing precise and accurate test data. In additional to baseline ISO certifications, most Tap Score labs will also maintain NELAC, State, Federal EPA, DoD and other important program accreditaions.

Are my results private?

Yes. Results can only be viewed by yourself, but you can seamlessly share your results with anyone right from your report. 

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