National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week
Lead in Drinking Water
- The most common sources of lead in drinking water are lead pipes, faucets and fixtures.
- Lead pipes are more likely to be found in older cities and homes built before 1986.
- You can’t smell or taste lead in drinking water.
- The only way to know for certain if you have lead in your drinking water is to have your water tested.
- Remember that older homes with a private well can also have lead in drinking water.
Steps You Can Take to Reduce Lead in Drinking Water
- Use only cold water for drinking, cooking and making baby formula. Remember, boiling water does not remove lead from water.
- Before drinking, flush your home’s pipes by running the tap, taking a shower, doing laundry, or doing a load of dishes.
- Regularly clean your faucet’s screen (also known as an aerator).
- If you use a filter certified to remove lead, don’t forget to read the directions to learn when to change the cartridge. Using a filter after it has expired can make it less effective at removing lead.
- Contact your water company to determine if the pipe that connects your home to the water main (called a service line) is made from lead. Your area’s water company can also provide information about the lead levels in your system’s drinking water.
- Call your local health department or water company to find out about testing your water, or visit epa.gov/safewater for EPA’s lead in drinking water information. Some states or utilities offer programs to pay for water testing for residents. Contact your state or local water company to learn more.
Spread the Word!
Download materials and find out how you can participate in National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week