Newtown Artesian Water Company
201 North Lincoln Avenue
P.O. Box 217
Newtown, PA  18940-0217
Phone: 215-968-6781    Fax: 215-968-8966



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Hydrant Flushing


What is hydrant flushing?

Water mains are sized to allow adequate and safe flows for fire protection. Water usually moves through the underground pipes at less than two miles per hour which allows mineral deposits to build up and accumulate in pipes over time. The buildup can restrict water flow in pipes and contributes to corrosion and water color problems. Hydrant flushing is a process by which water is moved through a water pipe at high velocity which is then discharged through a hydrant, removing any material buildup from the pipe.

Why is hydrant flushing necessary?

Hydrant flushing is performed to ensure the water system maintains good water quality. Hydrant flushing also enhances system operations by flushing sediment from the mains, checking for closed valves and weak flows in the mains, verifying proper operation of hydrants and valves and maintaining firefighting capability.

What should the customer do when NAWC is flushing hydrants in their area?

If you see a crew flushing hydrant on your street, avoid running tap water and using the washing machine or dishwasher until the flushing is complete. Please drive carefully and treat the hydrant flushing crew as any other road construction crew.

What should I do after flushing is complete?

If tap water is used during flushing, it could come out discolored. If you notice discolored water, shut the water off and wait several minutes. After waiting, check the clarity by running cold water for a few minutes, allowing new water to work its way into your pipes. If the water is clear, it's OK to use. If not, wait a few more minutes and check again. In some cases, there may be slight discoloration for a few hours. This discoloration only affects the appearance of the water. It does not affect the taste or water quality.

Why does my water look funny after hydrant flushing?

When a hydrant is opened, there will be temporary incidences of discolored water while fine sediment particles are flushed out. There is no health hazard associated with the discolored water.

Is flushing a waste of water?

No! The amount and cost of water used in flushing is considerably small compared to the benefits of assuring good water quality and maintaining the infrastructure.

How will I be affected?

You probably will not even be aware that flushing is taking place in your neighborhood. Flushing is generally conducted in the spring and fall between 10pm and 6am, Monday through Friday. While the hydrants are open, the customers on that block may experience discolored water or a small drop in water pressure however your water service should not be interrupted.