Flushing of the water mains is conducted by opening the fire hydrants. The purpose of flushing is to remove sediment and mineral deposits that settle on the bottom of the water mains. The Village flushes water mains year-round. This allows the removal of sediments in the mains, but also to verify the proper operation of hydrants and maintain firefighting capabilities.
Although this flushing is essential to provide high water quality and prevent long-term sedimentation and discoloration issues, it can cause short-term discoloration as the sediment is disturbed due to the higher water flows.
When sediment gets stirred up in the water system, the resulting discoloration will typically last approximately 2-4 hours or less. After this time, the sediment will settle back out and the water will become clear. You can speed up the process by turning on the cold water tap at full pressure nearest where the water enters your home, such as a first-floor sink, and allow the water to run until it is clear. During these periods, it’s important to avoid using hot water, as the sediment can be drawn into your hot water heater’s water tank, which could require you to have to flush the tank later.
If you were in the process of washing laundry during a discoloration event, rewash the laundry once the water has cleared. Be sure to not dry them in the clothes dryer before treating the stains or rewashing, as the heat may cause the stains to set and make them difficult or impossible to remove. When washing, use a rust stain remover or regular detergent, but never use chlorine bleach which can react with iron to form a permanent stain.
If you have concerns or special needs that would be affected by water main flushing, please contact us for the specific schedule for your neighborhood, or to discuss your situation. Schedules are approximate and can be affected by weather, crew size, and/or mechanical breakdowns, so changes may occur.
Last modified: November 6, 2023