Kitsap PUD Water System Flushing
Frequently Asked Questions
What is water system flushing?
Water system flushing is the process by which we "clean" the insides of the water distribution system. High velocity water is flushed through the system to remove minerals that have built up inside the pipes. Periodic flushing helps maintain water quality and keeps the system operating as engineered.
How do minerals get into the water system?
All of Kitsap PUD's water systems are served by groundwater. Groundwater is, typically, high in mineral content; especially iron and manganese. These minerals build up inside the distribution mains.
When does KPUD flush?
We usually flush our larger systems, and those with commercial establishments, at night to minimize impacts to our customers. Smaller, strictly residential systems are often flushed during the day when a majority of residents are at work.
How often does KPUD flush my water system?
Most systems are flushed annually or biannually. Some systems, or portions of systems, require more frequent flushing.
What should I expect when my system is being flushed?
Prior to flushing, we notify the community via roadside sandwich boards and posts on our website. During flushing, customers might experience lower pressure and/or discolored water. This discolored water is caused by minerals that have been flushed from inside the water mains.
What should I do if I experience discolored water?
Customers who experience discolored water are advised to flush off their service line by running a cold water tap until the water clears. If the water does not clear after several minutes, please call our office to report the matter. Note: Our Operations Department recommends customers utilize flushing events to conduct a "Spring cleaning" of their service line. When customers see that a system flush has wrapped up, they should make a point of conducting a mini-flush of their individual line. In this, the customer should make it routine to run the outside hosebib closest to their service line, fully open, until the water runs clear. In this way, the entire water system, including service line, receives the same maintenance.
Is this discolored water hazardous?
As mentioned, the minerals that build up in our water mains are naturally occurring in our groundwater. These are, primarily, iron and manganese. While these minerals pose aesthetic concerns (discolored water, stained fixtures) they are not recognized as posing health risks.
Are there any precautions I should take when a flush is scheduled for my water system?
Because flushing can result in discolored water at customers' homes, people should refrain from doing laundry when flushing is taking place. Customers with water filters might want to bypass the filter during flushing to prevent it being fouled. Further, any customer on dialysis should not use discolored water resulting from flushing. These customers should contact Kitsap PUD so that we are aware of their situation and can notify them in advance of any flushing.
Board Meetings are held every 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month at 9:30am. The meetings are held at our offices and are open to the public. For Minutes and Agendas from previous Board Meetings, visit our Archives
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