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PFAS Drinking Water Rules

Man testing for PFAS in lab
Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy

PFAS Drinking Water Rules

In October 2019, the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) submitted draft PFAS drinking water rules to Governor Whitmer. The final rules took effect of August 3, 2020. These rules amend current drinking water rules by establishing maximum contaminant levels (MCLs) and sampling requirements for seven PFAS compounds. The purpose of the rules is to increase public health protection through testing and reducing exposure to PFAS in drinking water. All community water supplies and nontransient noncommunity water supplies are subject to the PFAS rules.

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PFAS Sampling Guidance

PFAS sampling is different from other types of sampling because PFAS are present in many things we use in our everyday life, such as water-resistant and stain-resistant products. PFAS can also be present in:

  • Personal care products such as cosmetics and lotions.
  • Insect repellants and sunscreens.
  • Pizza boxes and fast food wrappers.
  • Recycled paper products such as paper towels and notebook paper.
  • Sampling equipment - in the material of the equipment itself or due to PFAS being used in the manufacturing process.
  • Ordinary latex gloves. (Because PFAS is in latex gloves, samplers must use powderless nitrile gloves.)

Since PFAS are analyzed in such small quantities - parts per trillion - even the smallest cross-contamination could contribute to a false positive sample.

To learn more about which products contain PFAS and which do not, review the General PFAS Sampling Guidance document. Then use the media-specific guidance document for the specific type of sampling you are interested in.

This document is intended for water supplies to use when collecting PFAS samples. Most laboratories will provide their own sample collection instructions. This guidance document may be used in conjunction with any sample collection instructions provided by the laboratory. This document does not supersede the laboratory’s sampling instructions.