Hydrant Flushing and Waterline Maintenance

Commencing June 19, 2023

You may notice Public Works crews working at fire hydrants and see water running down the street. Normally in the spring, we flush water lines through the use of fire hydrants, which is an important preventive maintenance activity. Although it may appear to waste water, the process is part of a routine maintenance program necessary to maintain the integrity of the water system and allowing us to ensure the hydrants are in proper working order. Hydrants that are found to not be in working order are tagged and submitted for repair.

As a result of the line flushing process, residents in the immediate vicinity of the work may experience temporary discoloration of their water. This discoloration consists primarily of harmless silt and air and does not affect the safety of the water. If you experience discoloration in your water after crews have been flushing in your neighbourhood, clear the pipes in your home by running all water faucets for a few minutes.

The same philosophy of water line and hydrant preventive maintenance is one that you should use in your own home to ensure the quality of water inside your home. Your home’s water heater should be drained and flushed on a regular basis, according to manufacturers’ recommendations, to keep it working effectively and efficiently.

Why does the water system need to be routinely flushed?

When does flushing normal occur?

What should I do when I see Public Works crews flushing hydrants in my area?

What should I do after the flushing?

What should I do if my water pressure or volume seems low after flushing?

Why does the water look funny after hydrant flushing?

Is it OK to drink sediment-laden or discoloured water during temporary disturbance events?

What is the silt in the water system after flushing?