Annual Water Disinfecting Change

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Annual Change in Disinfectant

Each year, the Town of Cary implements a temporary change in the drinking water treatment process. The Cary/Apex Water Treatment Facility, which provides drinking water to Cary, Apex, Morrisville, Raleigh-Durham International Airport and the Wake County portion of Research Triangle Park, normally uses chloramines, a combination of chlorine and ammonia, for the disinfection process. The use of chloramines reduces the level of disinfection byproducts in the water. The State of North Carolina encourages all water systems that add ammonia to cleanse their system annually by switching to chlorine only and flush the system by opening fire hydrants.

Beginning Friday, March 1, 2019, and ending Friday, April 19, 2019, the Town will use only chlorine for disinfection of the water. This year the amount of time without the ammonia addition has been extended. That is because the annual change in disinfectant in 2018 was skipped to conserve water because of potential drought conditions. Customers who use water for kidney dialysis machines, fish aquariums or other chlorine sensitive uses should be aware water may contain chlorine, chloramines or a mixture of the two at the beginning of March and for up to several days after April 19. 

Chlorine Odor

Some may notice a chlorine odor during this time. However, the water remains safe throughout this process. If you would like to reduce the amount of chlorine in the drinking water to improve its taste and odor, you may do so through several methods, including filtering the water using an activated carbon filter, letting the water sit out for a day or so, boiling the water for one minute or adding a few lemon slices to a pitcher of water. The lemon has ascorbic acid which will naturally dechlorinate the drinking water. 

Discolored Water

Temporary discoloration of the drinking water may occur due to hydrant flushing. Customers are encouraged to check their water before washing white clothes. If the water appears discolored, run all household faucets for a few minutes. 

Customers who have questions or who have water that fails to clear should call the Town of Cary at (919) 469-4090.