Lead Contamination of Water
Lead is a metal that is harmful to health, especially for children. If there is lead in pipes, fixtures, or the solder that connects the pipes, drinking water may become contaminated. Older homes are more likely to have lead in the plumbing. New homes may also be at risk: even legally “lead-free” plumbing may contain up to eight percent lead.
EPA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention believe there is no safe level of lead exposure. Lead is harmful to health, especially for children. While paint, dust, and soil are the most common sources of lead, drinking water can contribute 40 to 60 percent of an infant’s lead exposure.
The goal is to remove as much lead from your drinking water as possible.
BCWA customers concerned about lead in their drinking water have a number of options to help reduce the amount of lead in their drinking water.
- Have your water tested. Many public water systems will test drinking water for residents upon request.
- Be aware of any work that could disturb your lead service line, such as water main replacement, lead service line repair, or replacement of part of the service line.
- Run water before use if it has not been used for several hours. The amount of time to run the water will depend on whether the home has a lead service line or not.
- Use only cold water for drinking, cooking, and preparing baby formula.
- Purchase a water filter that is certified to remove “total lead.”
- On a regular basis clean and remove any debris from faucet aerators to clear out any particles of lead that may become trapped in the aerator.
- Purchase lead-free faucets and plumbing components.
- Remove the entire lead service line.
- Frequently asked questions about lead.
- Click here to view an informative YouTube video about lead titled ‘Together, Let’s Get the Lead Out’.
- What You Should Know About Lead
- Letter to the Editor: Lead in Drinking Water by Pam Marchand, P.E.
- Click here to learn how to Identify Lead Service Lines
- Click here to view an interactive map to look up and view information about your water service.
BCWA Lead and Copper sampling results