How do I know if there is lead in my drinking water?
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.
How do Seattle Public Utilities and Woodinville Water District reduce lead exposure in our drinking water?
Seattle Public Utilities works hard to make the water in our system less corrosive to lead plumbing:
They developed a corrosion optimization program in 2003.
They continuously monitor water chemistry at their treatment facilities and collect routine samples throughout the distribution system to ensure it maintains water pH at a less-corrosive level.
They monitor water quality indicators at 10 distribution system locations and report results monthly to the Washington Department of Health.
Woodinville Water District (WWD) samples for lead and copper every three years to meet EPA and DOH requirements and report those findings in our annual Water Quality Report, published each June.
What if I have an older home?
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.
Simple Ways to Protect Your Drinking Water
If you have older plumbing with lead components, lead can leech into your plumbing. There are steps you can take to protect your water.
If you haven’t used your water for over 6 hours, run the tap for two minutes to flush it before drinking or cooking with it. (You can use this water for watering plants or doing the dishes.) Ideally this should be done at the fixture farthest away from the meter. WWD recommends capturing the water and using it to water plants inside and outside of your home.
Always use cold water for drinking and cooking – lead dissolves more quickly in hot water. Never make baby formula or other drinks or food for children from the hot water tap.
Be sure to select low-lead or no-lead plumbing fixtures. Since January 2014, manufacturers can have only 0.25% lead in a fixture, reduced from 8% previously.
If you are concerned with lead in your drinking water, you can contact a local lab to have the water tested at your faucet for a fee. Listed below are local Department of Ecology approved testing labs:
- AM Test, Inc., Kirkland, WA 425-885-1664
- OnSite Environmental, Inc., Redmond WA 425-883-3881
- Accu Laboratory, LLC, Bellevue WA 425-214-5858
- Woodinville Water District Water Quality Office 425-487-4125
- Public Health Seattle and King County 206-296-4600
- Washington Department of Health webpage: http://www.doh.wa.gov/CommunityandEnvironment/DrinkingWater/Contaminants/Lead
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention webpage: http://www.cdc.gov/nceh/lead/