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The District prepares an annual Operating Budget based on our proposed operation and maintenance expenses, scheduled capital projects, and anticipated water and sewer revenues for the year. Rate increases are proposed when anticipated costs exceed revenues. The proposed budget is presented to the District Commissioners in Number ember and a Public Hearing is held at that time to obtain customer feedback. The scheduled date, time, and location for the Public Hearing is published in local newspapers and all customers are encouraged to attend.
Traditionally, following the receipt of public comments and implementation of changes directed by the Board, the budget and water or sewer rates are set for the following year. The budgets and rates are formally adopted in December.
A link between your drinking water system and a source of contamination, a way for "bad stuff" to get into your good clean drinking water.
The term cross connection means any actual or potential connection (piping/hose) between a public water system and a source of contamination.
Did you know that water can flow two directions in a hose or pipe? When water is flowing in the opposite direction from its normal flow that is backflow and it can put our drinking water in danger.
Note: Toilets and sinks have an air gap for backflow protection.
All it takes for backflow conditions to occur is a drop in line pressure in the water main, which can happen due to use of hydrants for fire fighting, water main break, high usage or backpressure. In America, we all assume when we turn the tap on that we have safe drinking water. This is a luxury we enjoy, but not without very strong regulations and considerable expense. Our drinking water is among the safest in the world. Water protection and conservation requires the effort and cooperation of everyone.
The Safe Drinking Water Act of 1986, and Washington State Administrative Code (WAC 246-290-490) requires the Water District to administer a Cross Connection Control Program that will protect the drinking water supply, and to coordinate with the Local Authorities that protect the drinking water supply from possible backflow hazards within the plumbing system of buildings.
If you have questions pertaining to your home or building contact the Woodinville Water District’s Water Quality Specialist at 425-487-4125 or by email.
Legally, the "purveyor" of the water supply is responsible for the water quality and for implementing and maintaining a cross connection control program in order to prevent the contamination of the public water system. The water purveyor is the public water department, up to and including the service connection from the water main. From the outlet of the water meter or service connection including all piping down downstream inside the owner’s premise, the legal purveyor of the water supply is actually the property owner.
Backflow assemblies must be tested at the time of installation, annually after installation, after a backflow incident, and after any repairs have been made. If an assembly is relocated and/or reinstalled it must be retested. Anytime a backflow assembly is tested a test report needs to be submitted to Woodinville Water District.
To test backflow assemblies in the State of Washington a person must have a Washington State Department of Health Certification as a Backflow Assembly Tester (BAT).
If your backflow assembly fails it annual test; it needs to be cleaned, repaired or in some cases it may need to be completely replaced. After cleaning, repair or replacement a successful re-test performed.
ESA stands for Extended Service Agreement. Years ago, the District’s permanent water main system was not nearly as widespread through the District as it is today. As a convenience to certain property owners, the District allowed them to enter into Extended Service Agreements with the District, whereby they would be allowed to connect to a permanent water main some distance from their property-sometimes hundreds and in some cases, thousands of feet.
The Extended Service Agreement is recorded against the title of the property, and runs with the property. Extended Service Agreements provide temporary water service until permanent service is available. When permanent service becomes available, the District terminates ESAs.
In the mid-1980s King County government recognized that spaghetti lines running within the right-of-way presented a problem with maintenance. When the District updated its Comprehensive Water Plan in the late 1980s, the District was required to adopt a policy prohibiting the issuance of new ESAs. Since June 1987, the District has not been able to allow new ESAs. Spaghetti lines are the responsibility of individual property owners. When these lines break, property owners often find it very difficult to locate and repair these lines. In addition, the lack of permanent water mains to properties usually means that fire protection is not available to those properties.
The District’s present policy requiring the extension of permanent water mains allows the permanent water system to be extended in a logical and reasonable fashion. Finally, there is the issue of equity. Property owners who have ESAs have not paid their fair share for the District’s water system. In other words, properties, which have permanent water mains, which were constructed through ULIDs, have paid their share for the construction of the water system through assessments, and properties that have permanent water mains, which were constructed through Developer Extension Agreements, have paid their share for the water main construction at the time they purchased the property.
Your spaghetti line is a temporary service. In accordance with the ESA agreement, which is recorded against your property, the District will terminate your temporary service when a permanent main is installed to your property.
Number necessarily. There will not be an "assessment" for water service on your property taxes.
The ESA Connection Charge has been established to pay for your fair share of the cost of the new water main, which provides service to your property.
The Board of Commissioners sets the fee. This fee represents your fair share of the cost of the new permanent water main. The current ESA Connection Charge is $2,625. In addition, you will be required to pay a one-time charge to the District for the relocation of your water meter to the new permanent location.
No. This project is construction through a Developer Extension Agreement or a District Capital project. The District no longer uses the ULID process to construct water mains, especially if ESAs are located in the vicinity.
Number This is a one-time charge, payable at the time of connection to the permanent water main. This charge will not show up on your property tax bill.
If you choose not to pay, the District will terminate your temporary service in accordance with our Extended Service Agreement. At such time, you may seek another source of water. Should you wish to reconnect to the permanent main at some future time, you would need to pay the connection charge, in addition to any other connection charges in effect at the time.
You will need to contact the King County Health Department to determine whether you will be permitted to drill a well. The District will advise the Health Department that public water service is available when the permanent main has been installed.
The ESA Connection Charge and the meter relocation charges are due within 60 days from the time the District notifies you that your ESA is being terminated. This notification is given after the permanent water main has been placed in service and accepted by the District.
No. The District will allow you to pay the connection charge over a 10-year period, in annual payments, at an interest rate equal to the Municipal Bond Index Rate plus 1%. However, if you wish, you may pay the charge in a lump sum.
The District can no longer allow spaghetti lines to be installed.
The District requires permanent water mains be installed either within the City or County right-of-way, or within an easement dedicated to the District. If you live on a private road, and the developer’s property is also on that private road, the water main may be constructed on that private road and the District will require an easement for the water main.
In any event, the actual location of the water main can only be determined during the project design. Water mains may be located under paved or gravel roads and shoulders or outside of roads. Number permanent structures may be constructed over the water main, although, you may have a fence crossing the main.
The District’s standard for water main construction is Class 52 ductile iron pipe. We require 8-inch minimum diameter water mains for all water mains which serve fire hydrants. This size is required in order to carry sufficient water to the hydrant to fight potential fires. Only in the case of a dead-end water main where there is no hydrant, will the District allow the installation of a smaller water main. In this case, the District would require a 6-inch diameter water main.
Not necessarily. Water pressure is determined by the elevation of your property and the pressure in the District’s water system. If your spaghetti line is under 300 feet or so, you may not notice any difference. However, if you have a very long spaghetti line, or a very small diameter (under 1-inch) spaghetti line, you may notice better flow into your home.
The District’s standards call for fire hydrants to be located every 600 feet in residential areas and 300 feet in commercial and industrial areas. These requirements are slightly more stringent than the requirements under King County Code 17.07. The County requires hydrants to be located not more than 700 feet on center and hydrants shall be located so that no single-family lot is more than 350 feet from a hydrant.
If the Fire Marshall determines that more stringent requirements than the District’s apply in any given case, the more stringent requirements will govern. Fire hydrants are provided for your protection. You may wish to check with your insurance carrier to find out if a closer fire hydrant has any affect on your insurance premiums.
When a developer disturbs an existing road, driveway, landscaping, rockery, fence, mailbox or other such improvements during the installation of a water main, the District requires those improvements to be restored at least to the condition they were in prior to construction. If the improvements are in an easement, the District requires the developer to obtain an easement release from the property owner stating that the restoration work has been completed to the property owner’s satisfaction.
Our water is safe to drink. Woodinville Water District’s drinking water sources do not contain lead. Unlike Flint, Michigan, Seattle or Tacoma, none of our water mains or service lines contain lead and we have no lead gooseneck connections on our service lines.
Seattle Public Utilities works hard to make the water in our system less corrosive to lead plumbing:
Woodinville Water District (WWD) samples for lead and copper every three years to meet Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and DOH requirements and report those findings in our annual Water Quality Report, published each June.
If you have an older home or business built prior to 1985, there is a possibility you could have pipes with lead solder. Lead in tap water usually comes from the corrosion of older fixtures or from the solder that connects pipes.Plumbing from the water meter to and through your home, apartment, or business is considered the customer’s private line and we do not have knowledge regarding what kind of pipes or solder your builder used. King County banned lead based plumbing materials in 1985.
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You are responsible for locating and repairing the leak. If the leak is in your water line between the meter and the house you may be eligible for a one-time adjustment on your bill. If the leak is due to a maintenance issue inside the home, you’re responsible for the entire water bill. You may need to call a plumber to help you repair the leak.
The Woodinville Water District strictly prohibits interconnection of other water supplies with the District’s distribution system. Auxiliary water supplies (private wells, piped irrigation sources, etc.) are a major cross-connection hazard and must be effectively isolated from the domestic water supply.
The Woodinville Water District’s cross-connection policies and requirements for customers with private wells are:
Visual inspection of the piping is required for premises retaining active well systems. All backflow prevention devices are subject to annual inspection and testing. The cost of an annual performance test and any required maintenance is the responsibility of the device owner.
ESA stands for Extended Service Agreement. Years ago, the District’s permanent water main system was not nearly as widespread through the District as it is today. As a convenience to certain property owners, the District allowed them to enter into Extended Service Agreements with the District, whereby they would be allowed to connect to a permanent water main some distance from their property—sometimes hundreds and in some cases, thousands of feet. The Extended Service Agreement is recorded against the title of the property, and runs with the property. Extended Service Agreements provide temporary water service until permanent service is available. When permanent service becomes available, the District terminates ESAs.
The Woodinville Water District covers approximately 18,660 acres (29.2 square miles).
As of October 2015 there were approximately 14,256 service connections or water meters in the district (approximately 36,000 population).
Most water meters are in the right-of-way, close to the edge of the road near the property line. A plastic or concrete box covers the meter.
First of all, make sure you have the correct meter by checking the number on the lid of the meter. This number should match the meter number on your bill. You read the meter by looking at the face of the meter and recording all of digits on the meter except for the last 2. For example, your register will show a number with either 5 or 6 digits (0597.89) and you would read this as (597).
If you have an automatically read ¾-inch meter, each unit of water that is used equals 10 gallons of water. To determine your consumption in gallons, add a zero. Larger meters measure in units of 100 gallons.
The main reason for replacing water meters is to ensure accuracy. If the meter has reached the end of its battery’s life or it doesn’t communicate the reads anymore, it will be replaced.
No, the customer does not receive an invoice for the new meter that is installed. This service is part of our annual operating budget and is funded through rates.
A PRV is an adjustable mechanical device designed to keep water pressure between 25 and 75 pounds per square inch (psi).
The Universal Plumbing Code (UPC) recommends to use a PRV if your water pressure is 80 pounds per square inch (psi) or higher.
The Universal Plumbing Code (UPC) minimum is 20 pounds per square inch (psi).
The district has lots of hills and valleys if you are at the top of a hill you might have lower water pressure, if you are in a valley you could have higher pressure. These areas are referred to as pressure zones.
Is there a garden hose attached to your outside faucet? If the water is turned "on" but suspended from flowing by a hose nozzle, this may allow the water to back up into your house system and the strange taste may be coming from the garden hose at the outside faucet. If the hose is not the problem, the District can send someone out to flush the water main and help you troubleshoot the problem.
This may be a result of high chlorine in the water. The District can send someone out to help you troubleshoot the smell. They will flush the main line if necessary.
Yes. There is one part of fluoride per million parts of water.
This water is soft, 1.40 grains per gallon.
Each year, a few Woodinville Water District customers call to ask about a slimy black substance that sometimes forms in moist areas around their homes. They most frequently observe it in toilet bowls, on the surfaces in shower stalls and bathtub enclosures, in sinks, and in pet water dishes.
A black fungus or mold is thought to be the cause of the black slime. These types of fungi are common inhabitants of our environment and can be found in many places, including human and animal feces, dust, soil, and in surface water. The mold will grow in any moist location where phosphorous containing materials or fatty substances accumulate. Sources of these substances include soap residues in bathing areas, feces in toilets, soap and food residues in pet water dishes. The fungus can also grow in tap water in locations such as toilets in guest bathrooms where the water is left standing long enough for the chlorine residual disinfectant to dissipate.
Certain types of normal environmental bacteria may also grow with it. The fungus is not known to cause any waterborne diseases.
Once established, the growth usually cannot be eliminated entirely. However, periodic and thorough cleaning of the surfaces where the slime occurs, followed by disinfection with chlorine bleach appear to be the best way to control it. First, scrub the surfaces where the mold grows or where phosphorus and fatty substances accumulate with a brush and a household cleanser. Then disinfect the surfaces where the slime grew with a strong chlorine bleach solution. Leave the disinfectant solution on the affected surface(s) for 10 to 20 minutes before thoroughly rinsing it away with clean water.
To control black mold in toilets, clean the bowl thoroughly and spray chlorine bleach into the bowl and under the bowl rim. Also add ¼ cup of bleach to the toilet tank. Let the bleach stand for 15 to 20 minutes. After 15 to 20 minutes, flush the toilet a couple of times to rinse the disinfectant out of the tank and the bowl. Number e: Bleach should not be left in the toilet tank for prolonged periods; it will damage the rubber valves and seals inside. Whenever the black slime starts to reappear, repeat the cleaning and disinfection process.
If you have any questions contact Tim Cantwell our Water Quality/Cross-Connection Specialist at 425-487-4125 or by email.
Each year, a few Woodinville Water District customers call to ask about a slimy pink substance that sometimes forms in moist areas around their homes. They most frequently observe it in toilet bowls, on the surfaces in shower stalls and bathtub enclosures, in sinks, and in pet water dishes.
A red or pink pigmented bacteria known as Serratia marcescens is thought to be the cause of pink stuff. Serratia bacteria are common inhabitants of our environment and can be found in many places, including human and animal feces, dust, soil, and in surface water. The bacteria will grow in any moist location where phosphorous containing materials or fatty substances accumulate. Sources of these substances include soap residues in bathing areas, feces in toilets, soap and food residues in pet water dishes. Serratia can also grow in tap water in locations such as toilets in guest bathrooms where the water is left standing long enough for the chlorine residual disinfectant to dissipate. Serratia marsescens is not known to cause any waterborne diseases.
Once established, the organism usually cannot be eliminated entirely. However, periodic and thorough cleaning of the surfaces where the pink slime occurs, followed by disinfection with chlorine bleach appear to be the best way to control it. Scrub the surfaces where phosphorus and fatty substances, or the bacteria accumulate with a brush and a household cleanser. Then disinfect the surfaces where the slime has formed with a strong chlorine bleach solution. Leave the disinfectant solution on the affected surface(s) for 10 to 20 minutes before thoroughly rinsing it away with clean water.
To control pink "stuff" in toilets, clean the bowl thoroughly and spray chlorine bleach into the bowl and under the bowl rim. Also add ¼ cup of bleach to the toilet tank. Let the bleach stand for 15 to 20 minutes. After 15 to 20 minutes, flush the toilet a couple of times to rinse the disinfectant out of the tank and the bowl. Note: Bleach should not be left in the toilet tank for prolonged periods; it will damage the rubber valves and seals inside. Whenever a pink film starts to reappear, repeat the cleaning and disinfection process.
You may have a defective hot water tank "Dip Tube".
The dip tube is a plastic tube that carries cold water from the cold water inlet at the top of your hot water tank to the bottom area of the tank where the heating elements and controls are located. Each time you draw hot water from your tap, hot water flows out of the top of your hot water tank and cold water flows via the dip tube into the bottom.
Between late 1992 and spring 1996, the plastics manufacturer that supplied 90% of the dip tubes used by most of the major hot water tank manufacturers in the United States used a defective plastic to make the tubes. It is estimated nearly 21 million hot water tanks made in this time period may have been built with these defective dip tubes. After a period of use, the defective tube breaks down inside the tank and disintegrates into thousands of tiny grains or flakes of white or bluish -white plastic. These tiny chips of plastic float. When hot water is drawn from the tank, they flow with the water into the plumbing, where they often clog up the fixtures and appliances attached to the system.
The signs and symptoms that this has occurred in your hot water tank are:
If you are not sure if you have this problem, you can call the District and ask them to come look at the particles and help identify them.
If you have confirmed you have a failed dip tube, your dip tube or possibly your hot water tank will have to be replaced. If you know how, you can do this work yourself, or if not, you may want to hire a plumber to do it for you. Regardless of whether just the dip tube or the entire tank is replaced, your plumbing will have to be flushed to remove the plastic particles caught in it. All of the screens, strainers, aerators showerheads and appliances connected to your hot water plumbing should be disconnected and cleaned. At the same time, all of the hot water lines should be flushed. If you only replace the dip tube, the hot water tank will also have to be drained and thoroughly flushed prior to cleaning the piping and appliance and fixture screens.
No. The homeowner must cover the cost of repair and replacement. Because many of the dip tubes failed in the first two or three years of use, settlement of a nationwide class action lawsuit only required the manufacturers to pay for repair or replacement of dip tubes that failed prior to December 31st, 2000. Tanks that fail now are typically 5 to 8 years old and are outside normal warranties for defects in workmanship and materials. Since most hot water tanks only last 8 to 10 years, you may want to consider replacing yours if the dip tube fails and your tank is already 7 or 8 years old.