Let's Get The Lead Out!
The City of Oxford Water Treatment Plant actively manages and monitors our water to keep us safe. The water leaving the treatment plant and traveling through water mains is free of lead. However, lead is sometimes present in water service lines, fixtures, and home plumbing.
We routinely monitor a random sample of houses in Oxford each year. If more than 10% of the homes tested have elevated lead levels (defined as more than 15 parts per billion), we are required to notify all consumers. The City of Oxford tests for a wide range of contaminants including lead every year and we are proud of our water quality. Please check out our most recent Water Quality Report.
Our water treatment facility produces drinking water of a very consistent quality to minimize the possibility of lead dissolving into the water, but there are additional steps you can take at home.
Sources Of Lead In Drinking Water
- Lead Service Lines
- Copper Pipes with Lead Soldering
- Galvanized pipes
Steps You Can Take
Have Your Water Tested
If you are concerned about lead in your water, you may contact the Butler County Ohio Health Department to request a water test. As of August 2019, the price for a water test is $75 for homes connected to city water facilities and $90 for homes with wells.
Have Your Plumbing Inspected
A licensed plumber can inspect both your service line and other materials in contact with your drinking water. Lead solder, pipe fittings, and brass fixtures can be potential problems.
Service lines typically enter the home in the basement or crawl space. If the pipe is lead, it will have a dull finish that shines brightly when scratched with a key or coin. Using a magnet can also help you identify a lead pipe, because even a strong magnet will not cling to lead.
Protect Your Household
There are steps you can take right away to reduce the possibility of lead in your drinking water.
Run The Tap Before Use
Lead levels are likely at their highest when water has been sitting motionless in the pipe for several hours. Clear this water from your pipes by running the cold water for several minutes which will allow you to draw fresh water from the main.
Aerators are small attachments at the tips of faucets which regulate the flow of water. They can accumulate small particles in their screen. It’s a good idea to remove and clean your aerators on a monthly basis.
Use Cold Water
Use cold water for drinking, cooking, and for preparing baby formula because hot water dissolves lead more quickly and there may be aluminum or magnesium in your water heater.
Use A Point Of Use Water Filter
Many home water filters are effective at removing lead. If you use a filter make sure it is certified for lead removal by the NSF and that you maintain it properly. Look for these certification symbols:
City of Oxford Water Treatment Plant (513) 523-1753
Content courtesy of American Water Works Association 4528 2016