In coming months, customers who are part of Denver Water’s ongoing Lead Reduction Program will begin receiving pitchers and filters certified to remove lead. The distribution of these filters, which will continue through the summer, is part of our Lead Reduction Program and has nothing to do with COVID-19. Denver Water follows drinking water regulations that have been established to prevent waterborne pathogens, such as a virus like COVID-19, from contaminating drinking water.
The primary source of lead in drinking water comes from customer-owned lead service lines, the pipe that brings water from the water main in the street to the plumbing in your home. Denver Water estimates there are 64,000-84,000 properties that may have lead service lines in its service area. It will take 15 years to replace all of them.
Denver Water is providing a free water pitcher, filter and replacement filters certified to remove lead to all customers who may have a lead service line to use until six months after their lead service line has been replaced. Filters will arrive in the mail beginning in Spring 2020.
How does the filter program work?
We are providing all customers with a known, possible or suspected lead service line a water pitcher, filter and replacement filters at no direct charge until those customers’ service lines can be replaced. Customers will receive their filter and replacement filters in the mail beginning spring 2020.
How long will I need to use a water pitcher and filter?
Please use the water pitcher and filter and maintain it according to the manufacturer’s instructions until six months after we replace your lead service line. Denver Water expects it will take 15 years to replace the estimated 64,000-84,000 lead service lines owned by its customers.
Denver Water will work through our service area, replacing service lines on a neighborhood-by-neighborhood basis, prioritizing those communities who are most vulnerable and at-risk from lead exposure, particularly infants and children. Once we have identified your property for a service line replacement, we will include you in the Lead Service Line Replacement Program.
When do I need to use the water pitcher and filter?
Filtered water should be used for drinking (including making tea and coffee), cooking food where water is a base ingredient or absorbed into the food (such as rice, beans and soup) and preparing infant formula. It is fine to use non-filtered water for all other uses (such as showering, bathing, laundry, irrigation, dishwashing, etc.).
Is my water safe to use for a shower or bath?
Yes. Bathing and showering are safe for you and your children. Human skin does not absorb lead in water at levels that cause a health concern.
Is my water safe for pets?
In general, pets are more likely to obtain lead as a result of eating an object containing much higher lead levels (such as lead paint chips, improperly glazed ceramic food or water bowl).
When will I receive replacement filters for the water pitcher?
Your water pitcher needs a replacement filter every six months to maintain effectiveness. We will regularly mail you free replacement filters to use until six months after your lead service line has been replaced.
What other steps can I take to reduce the risk of lead exposure?
In addition to using your water pitcher and filter, Denver Water recommends that if water has not been used in the home for a few hours, such as first thing in the morning or when getting home from work, then run cold water from the kitchen or any bathroom faucet for five minutes (you can capture the water and reuse it for gardening, washing your car, etc.). You can also run the dishwasher, take a shower or do a load of laundry to help flush out water in your internal plumbing before drinking, cooking or preparing infant formula.