Specific conductance (also called specific conductivity or just conductivity) is a measure of the ability of water to conduct an electrical current. Specific conductance is an important water-quality measurement because it gives a good idea of the amount of dissolved material in the water. High specific conductance indicates high dissolved-solids concentration; dissolved solids can affect the suitability of water for domestic, industrial, and agricultural uses.
A normal conductivity value is roughly twice the total hardness in unsoftened water samples. If the conductivity is much greater than two times the hardness, it may indicate the presence of other ions such as chloride, nitrate, or sulfate which may be human-influenced or naturally occurring.
At higher levels, drinking water may have an unpleasant taste or odor or may even cause gastrointestinal distress.
High dissolved-solids concentration can cause deterioration of plumbing fixtures and appliances. For new water well construction, high Specific Conductivity ranges can effect bentonite grout at around 1000 micro siemens per centimeter. Water can be unpalatable. Specific Conductivity correlate with TDS by dividing the Specific Conductivity reading by 1.5 to get approximate TDS. Specific Conductivity readings of 2000 micro siemens per centimeter on new wells requires action to seal the salty formation or seal the entire well.
ACTION IS OPTIONAL
There is no enforceable health-based standard for Specific Conductivity. Specific conductivity levels detected in your water sample were above the typical range in Ohio.
- Ohio Department of Health - Private Water Systems - Water Quality