2. Test your toilet
Toilets are the most common source of water leakage. To test your toilet to determine if it has a leak:
- Put a toilet testing tablet or food colouring in the tank. If, without flushing, colour seeps into the bowl, the toilet has a leak.
- Lift the tank cover and look for water running into the overflow tube. To test the overflow tube, carefully remove the lid from the toilet tank and the water level should be approximately one inch below the top of the overflow. If the water level in the toilet tank is at the top of the overflow tube, that is where a leak may be occurring, and the float which controls the water level should be adjusted.
A toilet leak of any type should be repaired immediately.
If you have completed your leak investigation but your results are inconclusive or unclear, call Halifax Water’s Customer Care Centre at 902.420.9287. We will arrange an appointment with a Field Service Technician to help find possible causes of leakage.
Low water pressure
If you are experiencing lower than normal water pressure, call Halifax Water’s Customer Care Centre at 902.420.9287.
Low water pressure can be caused by a number of different things:
- debris and buildup in pipes
- plumbing leaks
- municipal water supply maintenance
It is a rare event when discolored water appears at your home or work, but it does happen. There are several possible situations that can cause discolored water. Read more about discolored water and what you can do about it.
Lead in drinking water
Lead in drinking water is currently an issue that is a broad public concern. To that end, Halifax Water maintains a comprehensive program to reduce exposure to lead in tap water with significant efforts being placed on getting the lead out of the distribution system. Read more about lead in drinking water and learn what Halifax Water is doing to minimize lead in tap water.
Geosmin is a naturally occurring compound produced by bacteria in soil and algae in surface water (lakes, rivers, streams, and dams).
Geosmin produces the odour of rich overturned soils, or an earthy smell. The human nose is extremely sensitive to geosmin. If you poured a teaspoon of geosmin into the equivalent of 200 Olympic-sized swimming pools, you would still be able to smell it. You will smell geosmin more when you are in the shower as heating the water increases the volatility of its compounds.
While the taste and odour can be unpleasant, geosmin is not toxic or harmful. The water remains safe to drink. On-going testing continues to show an absence of harmful bacteria and other pathogens in the water.
Since the first indication of geosmin in the Pockwock water supply in fall 2012, Halifax Water has taken a number of steps to better understand geosmin, including:
- on-going research with Dalhousie University to evaluate treatment strategies to reduce geosmin and other taste and odour compounds in drinking water
- Halifax Water hired an environmental consulting firm who completed a study to better understand the occurrence and cause of geosmin in Pockwock Lake.
- Halifax Water hired an engineering consulting firm to review treatment options and associated costs to reduce geosmin. The options brought forward by this consulting firm are currently being evaluated
- continuous testing of geosmin levels at various strategic locations throughout the Pockwock watershed
- on-going consultation with water utility experts throughout North America.
Geosmin testing and results
Testing of geosmin at the Pockwock Water Supply Plant began in October of 2012 and has been on-going ever since. Testing takes place twice per month . The general threshold for human detection is about 15 ng/l (15 nanograms per litre = 15 parts per trillion). However, some people with sensitive palates can detect these compounds in drinking water when the concentration is as low as 5 ng/l.