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If you know lead is present in your drinking water (from a water test), if you have pipes or plumbing fixtures that contain lead, or if you don’t know the material type, you can take steps to minimize potential lead exposure until all sources of lead have been removed.
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Most residential water service lines are small diameter, underground pipes that carry water from a large diameter water main in the street to your private residence. Concord Public Works is generally responsible for maintaining the section of your service between the water main and your private property. The homeowner is generally responsible for maintaining the section of the service within the private property.
Most faucets purchased prior to 1997 were constructed of brass or chrome-plated brass, which contain up to 8 percent lead (the main metals in brass are copper and zinc). Water sitting for several hours or overnight in a brass faucet can leach lead from the brass faucet interior which may produce high lead levels in the first draw of drinking water. Later regulations mandated that most faucets purchased after 1997 contain less lead than previously used thereby reducing the possible leaching of lead. However, the most recent legislation, called “Get the Lead Out,” mandates that after January 4, 2014, all faucets purchased will contain no more than a weighted average of 0.25 percent lead in relation to wetted surface.
Some faucet manufactures produce plastic faucets that have virtually zero lead. Other manufactures are substituting other metals for the lead in the brass, inserting copper tubes inside the brass faucets, or applying special coatings on the inside of the faucets in order to minimize or eliminate lead leaching. With the recent legislation, more and more faucet manufacturers are advertising faucets that adhere to the new “lead-free” definition allowing a maximum of 0.25 percent lead.
In extreme cases, older faucets can contribute up to one-third of the lead in water that has been sitting in the pipes for several hours, with the remainder coming from other plumbing such as pre-1988 lead solder joints in copper pipes or a lead service line. Residents who let the water run at the tap in the morning for one minute and use cold water for cooking should have little concern with respect to lead in the drinking water. If residents are still concerned, they can have their water tested.
Federal and State lead regulations do not cover any pipes, pipe fittings, plumbing fittings, or fixtures, that are used exclusively for nonpotable services like manufacturing, industrial processing, irrigation, outdoor watering (hoses), or other uses where the water is not anticipated to be used for human consumption. This includes toilets, bidets, urinals, fill valves, flushometer valves, tub fillers, shower valves, service saddles, or water distribution main gate valves that are two inches in diameter or larger.
Be sure that only valves and filters intended for drinking water supply are used in any home plumbing project.
Service line material information is based upon historical permit or service installation records, water main installation/replacement records, meter records, and/or misc. maintenance, repair and replacement work. If existing records are incomplete or unclear, a visible inspection of the water service entering your home can provide valuable information. As the effort to investigate this information can take appreciable time, Concord staff have already begun While much effort Division staff have begun If this information is inconclusive, it may be necessary to expose the service using conventional excavation/digging equipment.
Concord water is willing to share any information we have regarding this service. Yes, just give us a call at 978-318-3250. If you are leaving a message please make sure to leave your name, number and the location of interest so we can respond (and log the inquiry) accordingly.
Yes, just give us a call at 978-318-3250 and we will walk you through all the details on sample collection, trusted labs and available programs.
You can use any Massachusetts Certified Drinking Water Laboratory http://www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/massdep/water/drinking/certified-laboratories.html
We recommend you use a certified lab that processes water samples from both private (homeowners/commercial) and municipal customers as we have found some that take only private customers provide misleading information and upsell testing.
The composition of water service lines are generally related to the age of the service. Prior to the mid 1930’s, typical residential water service lines were made of lead or galvanized iron pipe. In the mid 1930’s the industry began changing over to using copper service lines. Beginning in the 1990’s, the industry began to use plastic or high density polyethylene.
Read Concord’s Water's most recent annual water quality report at www.concordma.gov.wqreport.pdf, which provides an general overview of drinking water quality in Concord, from the source to your tap.
Lead is not present in measurable quantities at the Town’s source of supplies. Lead that is detected is introduced into your tap water through corrosion of a lead service lines or building plumbing materials. In Concord prior to the 1930’s, lead was used for exterior plumbing connections and can be found in older buildings. If the service line at your property is made of lead, you are encouraged to replace it or take steps to reduce the risk from lead in drinking water.
The National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) advises that filters certified as NSF-053 effectively reduce lead in water. The NSF certification logo should be visible on the packaging. These filters can remove up to 99 per cent of the lead.
In response to recent regulatory changes, faucet manufacturers have decreased or eliminated the use of lead in residential kitchen faucets, bathroom faucets, bar faucets, drinking fountains, and icemakers. Since January 4, 2014, all faucets must be produced with no more than a weighted average of 0.25 percent lead with respect to the wetted surface. The national standard for certifying plumbing fixtures "lead free" status is determined by the National Sanitary Foundation (NSF) - the standard is International Standard 61-Section 9. New faucets meeting the NSF 61 standard will have NSF 61/9 stamped on the new faucet’s cardboard box. For more information on lead-free fixtures including catalogs and website directories, contact NSF at 1-800-NSF-MARK or www.nsf.org.