December 23, 2005

Taking Care of You & Your Water

To ensure the continued safety of our drinking water supply, the Water Department is temporarily changing the way we disinfect our water system. From December 22, 2005 – January 19, 2006, we will change our disinfectant at the City’s treatment plants from chloramines to chlorine. Chloramines, a combination of chlorine and ammonia, are generally used to disinfect water. It is a common practice for water systems using chloramines to periodically switch to chlorine, as a way to maintain water quality.

During this change to chlorine, San Diegans may notice a slight difference in the taste or smell of their tap water. While the taste and smell of chlorine may be more noticeable, it remains safe to drink and continues to meet State and Federal standards. To minimize the taste and smell, keep an open pitcher of water in the refrigerator for drinking. Cold water tastes better and the chlorine taste and odor will naturally dissipate as it sits in the pitcher.

As with all drinking water, people with special medical needs may want to consult their health provider to determine if any precautions need to be taken. Dialysis patients, fish owners (with fish aquariums or ponds), and local pet and aquarium supply stores, may need to make adjustments during this period to remove chlorine. In addition to this public notice, the Water Department has issued notices to local dialysis treatment centers to advise them of this change in disinfection.

For more information, please visit If you have any questions regarding the quality of water we deliver, please contact the Water Quality Lab at (619) 668-3232.

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