Show All Answers
A boil order is a public notification to customers notifying them to boil tap water before consuming it. Boil orders are issued when:
The quickest way to be notified of a boil order is to sign up on "CodeRed." Notification will be posted on the electronic message board located at the corner of Route 3 and Sand Bank Road, and two portable electronic messages boards will be placed in high-traffic areas. Depending on the time of day, notification will also be listed on the home page of this website and the City’s Facebook page.
Do not drink the water without boiling it first. Bring water to a rolling boil, let it boil for five minutes, and cool before using; or use bottled water for drinking, making ice, washing dishes, brushing teeth and preparing food until you are notified that the boil order has been lifted
According to the Illinois EPA guidelines, water samples must be collected to test for bacteria in the distribution system. Water Quality samples are taken on the day when the issue (main break, etc.) has been corrected and then incubated 18 to 24 hours, as required by the EPA. Only after this period of time can test results be read. From beginning to end, this process to lift a boil order can take a couple of days to complete.
Once lifted, flush household pipes, ice makers, water fountains, etc. prior to using for drinking or cooking. Follow these guidelines for flushing:
Our water is safe to drink and meets the standards set by both the federal and state Environmental Protection Agencies.
Many taste and odor calls are due to the chlorine which is added to the water to kill or prevent the growth of microorganisms. Others are due to tastes and odors in the river which are not removed by the plant and which only a few people can detect.
Certain times of the year when there is less rainfall, the hardness in the water is higher because there has been no rainfall to dilute the minerals in the river. This hardness can settle out in the plumbing in the form of a white or tan residue. Hardness is calcium carbonate and is a substance that is beneficial to the human body. Deposits can be removed with vinegar or a water softener can be installed to remove the calcium carbonate. A high hardness content can sometimes form an oily appearing film on the top of the water.
If the white clears from the bottom up, it is due to excess air in the water. When the cold water comes into a warm room, the air in the water rises to the top. Sometimes it can actually look like milk. This occurs frequently in the winter months.
Humidity loving molds or fungi in the air may grow on shower heads, in shower stalls or in the back of toilets. The growth is typically seen at the interface of moisture and air.
Sometimes rubber gaskets or other plumbing parts in appliances or toilets can break down and need replaced.
There is an airborne bacteria that grows in humid conditions that are pink color. Cleaning with a chlorine solution would help.
Red residue or color in the water is usually caused by the corrosion of galvanized lines in the house, the service line or the distribution system.
This can occur when small particles, which have settled out of the water into the main over a period of time, have been stirred up after a hydrant flushing or a fire.
This is a personal choice as there are pros and cons to using hard or soft water. Home softened water is higher in sodium, more likely to corrode pipes, is additional expense, required periodic equipment maintenance and lacks natural calcium and minerals. However, it can save soap and will not result in hardness deposits. Hard water can dry the skin, can build up a residue in the pipes over time, and requires more detergent, but it contains calcium and magnesium minerals.
Sometimes sulfur bacteria can grow in hot water heaters. If this happens, flush the system well with chlorinated water.
This may be an indication that your copper piping is corroding. This is more likely to occur if your water is softened or if there is improper electrical grounding.