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Hydrant Flushing

Hydrant Flushing

Conventional Flushing

Each year in April, the Lake County Department of Utilities begins its hydrant flushing preventative maintenance program. This program is vital for hydrant maintenance and for public safety.

Flushing the water system on a routine basis removes sediment from the lines, allows us to collect data on hydrant flows and pressures, and keeps the entire system fresh.

Because of the flushing procedure, residents in the immediate vicinity of the work may experience temporary discoloration of their water. This discoloration primarily consists of harmless silt and precipitates. If you experience discoloration in your water, clear the pipes in your home by running the cold water through your utility tub for 10-15 minutes.

Unidirectional Flushing

This process is a refined version of conventional flushing and is designed to bring water through the system in a controlled fashion and a velocities sufficient to provide a scrubbing action within the distribution piping.  This is necessary to clean the water mains, ensure proper operation of valves and hydrants, and improve water quality.

The process begins by dividing the distribution system into separate flushing sections using the Lake County Geographic Information System.  Those sections are then sub-divided by streets. Various valves are operated to isolate the water mains and flush water through hydrants and blow off devices in one direction. The use of blow off devices ensures erosion and landscape disturbances are minimal when flushing is required. While this flushing is occurring, discolored water may occur along with lower than normal water pressure. If you experience discoloration in your water after crews have been flushing in your neighborhood, clear the pipes in your home by running cold water through your utility tub faucets for 10-15 minutes.

Safety Tips

  • This same philosophy of waterline preventative maintenance is one that you should use in your own home. Your water heater should be drained and flushed at least once a year to keep it working efficiently and to protect the quality of water inside your home.
  • If you go out of town and there is no water use in your home for a week or more, when you return it is always a good idea to run all your faucets for a few minutes before using the water. This ensures that you do not use any stagnant water that may have developed in your home’s pipes while you were away.

Flushing Map:

Click here for Flushing maps