Many residents in the District’s Ward 8 will have better water pressure starting Aug. 27 because of the city’s first new water tower in 70 years, but about 1,000 homes with lead or galvanized-iron service pipes will need to filter their drinking water for six months, D.C. Water officials said Tuesday.
About 1,700 households also will need new valves to reduce their new water pressure below standard plumbing limits, D.C. Water spokesman John Lisle said.
Residents in both groups have been notified via letters, Lisle said. D.C. Water has begun dropping off water filter kits at the front doors of residents who will need them and is offering free valves and installation to residents whose pressure will get too high under the change. About 6,100 homes are affected by the pressure increase, Lisle said.
The water filtration kits are necessary for homes with lead or galvanized-iron service pipes because the change in pressure will temporarily increase the possibility of lead particles getting released into the water, Lisle said. Those residents should begin using the water filtration kits right away, both for drinking and cooking water, he said.
The pressure increase will begin Aug. 27 and continue gradually over two weeks, Lisle said. Customers in higher-elevation areas of Ward 8 have complained for years about low-pressure showers and long waits for washing machines to fill, he said. The increase also is necessary to keep fire hydrants working well, he said.
D.C. Water customers who have not been notified about the pressure increase will not be affected by it, he said.