Get the lead out: Lead service lines being removed citywide
Published on April 16, 2021
Five years ago, Fort Worth decided to locate and then remove all city-owned lead service lines. The reason is to protect the health of customers.
The in-house inventory project is 86% complete. So far, the utility has found 1,182 lead services lines on the city side of the meter, and 10 on the customer side of the meter. It also found another 649 lead service lines though field maintenance work.
As of March 31, the utility had replaced 1,444 of the city-owned lead service lines. The goal is to replace all the city-owned lead service lines by the end of 2021.
The service line is the piping that connects the home or business to the water main. The city and the property owner share ownership of the service line.
The city owns the portion from the main to the water meter, including the water meter. The property owner is responsible for the portion from the meter to the point it enters the home or business, as well as all the plumbing in the home or building.
Eliminating lead service lines may not eliminate lead in drinking water. The plumbing materials used in the home or business could contain lead, such as solder, pipes, faucets (brass) and fittings.
Lead dissolves into water over time through corrosion – a dissolving or wearing of metal caused by a chemical reaction between water and plumbing materials. Fort Worth adjusts the water’s pH to control this reaction.
When your water has been sitting for several hours, run your faucet for 30 seconds to two minutes before using the water for drinking or cooking.
If you are concerned about lead in your water, you can have it tested. The test is free for Fort Worth customers with known lead service lines. If you do not have a known lead service line, the cost is $15 per water sample. Email the utility or call 817-392-4477 to make arrangements.
View tips for reducing your exposure to lead in drinking water.
Photo: The city and the property owner share ownership of the service line.
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