What can I do to reduce or eliminate lead from my drinking water?

The best way to remove risks of lead in water is to completely replace all sources of lead. But there are also steps you can take right away to reduce lead levels in your water:

  • Run the Tap Before Use – Lead levels are likely at their highest when water has been sitting in the pipe for several hours. Clear this water from your pipes by running the cold water for several minutes. This allows you to draw fresh water from the main. The utilities department’s quality assurance coordinator, who can be reached at 804-748-1310 option 2, or a certified plumber can help you assess the right length of time. You can use this water on house plants or to flush toilets.
  • Clean Aerators – Aerators are small attachments at the tips of faucets which regulate the flow of water. They can accumulate small particles of lead in their screens. It’s a good idea to remove your aerators at least monthly and clean them out.
  • Use Cold Water for Cooking and Drinking – Always cook and prepare baby formula with cold water, because hot water dissolves lead more quickly, resulting in higher levels of lead.
  • Filter the Water – Many home water filters are effective at removing lead. If you purchase a filter, make sure it is certified for lead removal and that you maintain it properly.

Show All Answers

1. What is lead?
2. What is its history in water plumbing?
3. Do the mains and service lines in Chesterfield County contain lead?
4. Why is lead a health risk?
5. How do I know whether my drinking water contains lead?
6. How does lead get into drinking water?
7. How much lead in water is too much?
8. What can I do to reduce or eliminate lead from my drinking water?
9. Are there special steps I should take to protect my developing baby, infant or young children?
10. Is it safe to shower in water that contains lead?
11. What does Chesterfield County Utilities do to protect my household from lead?
12. I’m in a new house, am I at risk?
13. Do all home filters and other water treatment devices remove lead?
14. Can my pets drink water with lead?
15. Is water the only source of lead in homes and businesses?