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Homeowners should review Consumer Confident Reports regularly
The Water Quality Assn. (WQA) recommended that homeowners review their community’s annual Consumer Confidence Report (CCR), which informs residents about the quality of their drinking water. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requires community water systems (those serving more than 25 people or 15 households) to issue a CCR every year by July 1.
“WQA urges all consumers on municipal or community water supplies to look at their Consumer Confidence Report and to understand how important that information is,” said WQA Executive Director Pauli Undesser. “The report not only informs residents about the source of their drinking water, but it also provides recent test results about what contaminants may be in the water.”
According to a recent national study, 62% of households across the U.S. either didn’t receive or don’t know if they received their community’s CCR. That’s up from 56% in a 2015 survey. “That’s concerning to WQA because that’s huge piece of information for consumers as a starting point to know about their water quality,” Undesser said.
EPA’s Safe Drinking Water Act requires municipalities to test water supplies from once to several times per year, depending on the potential contaminants and size of the population served. However, most of these tests are not designed to monitor the water quality in the pipes that transport water to residents’ homes.
“If your CCR states the water in your community is safe, but it still tastes or smells bad, you might want to do further testing or treatment,” Undesser said.
Residents should have their drinking water tested through a certified water-testing laboratory. Homeowners can check with the Water Quality Assn. to find a water quality professional or connect with a certified testing lab through the EPA.
Many Consumer Confidence Reports are available on each municipality’s website. Residents can also check the EPA’s site to find the water quality report for their community.