From Monday, Feb. 27, 2017 through early April, residents in and around Clayton may notice the scent of chlorine coming from their tap water.
This is normal.
Your water will still be safe to drink and use for cooking, bathing and all other household purposes.
So what’s going on?
Once a year, state and federal law requires that water systems change up their water-treatment mixture – from the usual blend of chlorine and ammonia – to a chlorine-only treatment. The annual switch is followed by a system flush, and it ensures our drinking water is safe from bacteria that may have adapted to the presence of ammonia.
Johnston County, which provides Clayton’s water, will conduct this year’s chlorine treatment from Feb. 27 until around April 3. (The actual end date may vary.) That applies to residents who buy their water from the Town of Clayton, as well as Aqua & Carolina Water Service customers.
Does this apply to the Riverwood area in the satellite area of our Town limits?
Town of Clayton residents in the Riverwood area may ignore this notice because your water receives a chlorine-only treatment all year round. You see, most everyone who lives in Johnston County and is not on well water, is served by Johnston County's water system, but that county system is actually divided into two seperate systems...both treated differently. Johnston West serves the majority of Clayton residents, but the Riverwood area is served by Johnston West (the tan area of the map shown here. Again, the Riverwood area is treated with chlorine-only all year and does not go through this annual disinfection. Only Johnston West (the area in white) is affected by this change in annual treatment.
Does this mean my water will smell like a swimming pool?
Probably not. In fact, most customers won’t notice any difference at all. A few customers may detect some change in the taste, scent and/or color of their water. Again, this is normal, and the water is still safe – We’ll be running regular tests to make sure.
What if I’m on dialysis?
Kidney dialysis patients should know that chlorine would be toxic in dialysis water since during the dialysis process, water comes in contact with the blood across a permeable membrane. Medical centers that perform dialysis are responsible for purifying water used in dialysis machines. Customers with home dialysis equipment should contact their doctor and continue the usual precautions they take before using tap water. Again, Town of Clayton residents (with the exclusion of Riverwood area Clayton customers (with the who use kidney dialysis machines should be aware that the water will contain more chlorine for about five weeks and will return to a chlorine and ammonia mixture on or about April 3rd.
What will the water do to my tropical fish tank?
Fish also take chloramines and chlorine directly into their bloodstream. That's why they should be removed from water used in fish tanks, ponds and aquariums. Individuals and businesses who keep fish or other aquatic animals should ask their pet supply company about removing excess chlorine. There are many common water-treatment products readily available to handle this.
What can I do about the smell, taste or color?
Here’s a few home remedies:
- Run your water through a charcoal filter. Water-filtering pitchers are available at most major retailers.
- Boil your water for one minute to evaporate the chlorine.
- Pour water into an open container and let it sit in the refrigerator for a few days. This will allow the chlorine to bubble out of the water.
- Add a few lemon slices to a pitcher of water. The ascorbic acid in the lemons will neutralize the chlorine.
If your water is discolored, try flushing your water lines. You’ll especially want to check before washing whites. To flush your system, start by turning on all the taps outside your house – such as the spigot for your garden hose. It should only take a minute or so for the water to run clear, and then you can turn off the spout. Next go inside, remove any filters from your faucets, and then turn each of them on one by one. Since you already flushed your outside lines, it should only take a few seconds for the inside lines to run clear. Replace any filters when you’re done.