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Tap Water is Discolored

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3. My water appears discolored from the tap

​The City of Ann Arbo​r performs annual fire hydrant inspection and system maintenance by flushing water through selected area hydrants during the spring and early summer. During this process, you may observe a fire hydrant with water coming out of the side opening.

On occasion, the water in the areas of flushing may temporarily have an reddish/orange rusty appearance. The hydrant flushing can disturb iron sediment in the water pipes and cause the discoloration. The water is safe to drink. If this occurs, please run your cold water at the tap closest to your water meter for several minutes to clear your lines. You should also flush your toilets once or twice. The water should run clear within a few minutes but may last until the evening when hydrant flushing stops and more people are home to move the rusty water out of the system. 

Please don't run warm water, as t his forces the discolored water into the water heater, mixing it with clear stored water. If you do get rusty water in your hot water heater, drain the hot water heater per the manufacturer's instructions. If your laundry becomes discolored from the use of rusty water, products like “Rover" can help remove temporary laundry coloration. 

If you have any questions or concerns regarding hydrant flushing, please call the City at 734.794.6320.

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