Why does my water have a stronger chlorine smell in the Spring?

During this period of time, normally March through May, a slight change is made in the water treatment process in an effort to facilitate an effective flushing program. Throughout the year, chloramine (ammonia and chlorine) is added to the water as the primary disinfectant. During the Annual Water Main Flushing program in the Spring, chlorine is added in an uncombined state, commonly referred to as free chlorine. Free chlorine is a more aggressive disinfectant, and this temporary change in the water treatment process helps prevent bacteria from becoming overly resistant. Depending on your location within the distribution system and usage patterns, it could take up to a week for your drinking water to transition from combined to free chlorine at the beginning of March, or from free chlorine to combined chlorine at the beginning of June.  

You may notice a chlorine taste and odor in your drinking water while free chlorine is utilized.  If you are especially sensitive to the taste and odor of chlorine, try keeping an open container of drinking water in your refrigerator.  This will enable the chlorine to dissipate, thus reducing the chlorine taste.

To learn more, visit the Annual Water Main Flushing Program page.

Show All Answers

1. Where can I find Spotsylvania County Utilities' Water Quality Reports?
2. Who makes the rules and regulations for drinking water?
3. What is the source of my drinking water?
4. How is bacteria that cause disease kept out of drinking water?
5. How "hard" is Spotsylvania County Utilities water?
6. Is it safe to drink water from a garden hose?
7. Can water straight from the tap be used in home kidney dialysis machines?
8. Is it okay to use water from the hot water tap for drinking, cooking or making baby formula?
9. Can I store drinking water indefinitely and continue to be safe to drink?
10. Do I need to treat the tap water in any way before I place fish in an aquarium?
11. Why does tap water sometimes look milky or opaque?
12. Why do my ice cubes have white particles in them?
13. What is the white residue that sometimes builds up on coffee pots, irons, shower doors, glassware and cookware?
14. What is the pink stuff in my toilet, shower or pet's dish?
15. Why does my water have a stronger chlorine smell in the Spring?
16. Who controls my water quality?
17. What is the rotten egg or sulfur smell?