Satursday, January 28th 2023


Colored water
Water hardness
Bottled water
White water (milky water)
Tastes and odors
Pink or black spots
in the bath or identifies pink in the toilet
Good habits

1.    Colored water

This occurrence is usually due to an increase in water velocity inside the pipes where drinking water flows. The sediments are then suspended resulting in yellowish/brownish coloured water.

The main causes:  Flushing the water system, opening a fire hydrant, a broken water main, outdated pipelines, etc.

What to do?

If you notice that the color of your tap water is unusual, open a cold water tap for several minutes until the water becomes clear once again (less than 30 minutes). It may be necessary to clean the aerators (unscrew the end of the faucet). Should the situation persist, do not hesitate to contact us. We recommend that you refrain from drinking the water or doing laundry.  Although it presents no health risk for you, it is possible that the coloured water will stain your clothes. However, should you notice stains on your clothes as a result, please contact us as we offer a product which will effectively remove these unsightly stains.

2.    Water hardness

The water hardness is a parameter which can influence domestic use (laundry, dishwasher, shower, etc.). If your water is considered “hard”, more soap will be needed to produce lather. However, “soft” water requires less soap which will use a minimum amount of rinse water. The hardness of water depends on its source of origin and type of minerals found in soil. At Pointe-Claire, total hardness of water, on average, is between 60-70 mg/L CaCO3éq. (approx. 4.2-4.9 grains per gallon). Some dishwasher or washing machine manufacturers recommend an adjustment of the amount of soap depending on the hardness of water. The water supplied by the water production plant of Pointe-Claire is “soft”, therefore please consult the manufacturer's recommendations for the amount of soap needed.

3.    Bottled Water

The water produced by the water production plant of Pointe-Claire is very good and complies with the Regulation on the quality of drinking water in Quebec and even beyond.  By subscribing to the «Partnership for safe water program» on its own, the water production plant of Pointe-Claire meets quality standards more stringent than those of the actual Regulation. The quality control of bottled water is much less regulated and less guarded than your tap water. In addition, bottled water is facing an environmental dispute about pollution from the production of bottles, transport and what is done with these bottles after usage (recycling and crowding landfills). Moreover, a majority of bottled water comes from the tap water from certain Canadian or American cities.

4.    White water (milky water)

This phenomenon occurs especially in winter when the water  is cold. When you open the tap water, the gas naturally dissolved in the water returns to its original state forming air bubbles which rises to the surface of the water giving the milky appearance. The water quality is not affected by this phenomenon.

5.    Tastes and odors

The taste and odour of the water are very subjective parameters and perception varies from one individual to another. Activated carbon powder is added in the processing chain to minimize the progression of these characteristics.  This process is known to neutralize odours and tastes.

Sulphur odours:

Sulphur odours most likely occur when there is an accumulation of food residue or other tangible items in the drain of the sink concerned causing decomposition and emitting nauseating gases. These gases are evacuated as the water descends in the drain which releases these gases when the drain is partially blocked.

What to do?

We recommend that the gooseneck drain is cleaned by a plumber. Avoid using commercial products (Drano, etc.) as these are very corrosive to plumbing materials and very bad for the environment.

Chlorine odours and taste:

Chlorine is a very important additive added to water to neutralize bacteria, viruses and others pathogens.  Its dosage is calculated to eliminate these organisms and it is analyzed and monitored 24 hours over 24 by continuous analyzers as well as staff. Some people are bothered by the smell and /or taste of chlorine. A very easy way to eliminate this concern is to keep a container of fresh water in the refrigerator so the chlorine evaporates.

6.    Pink or black spots in the bath or identifies pink in the toilet

These spots are caused by several bacteria including Methylobacterium, Serratia Marcescens, etc.  Methylobacterium is a very common bacterium that can come from the hot water tank. its presence is found both in the air and in the dust of our homes. Its proliferation is reflected by the gradual appearance of a pink or black biofilm on the wet areas (shower, toilet bowl, shower curtains, bath contour, etc.). This bacteria is harmless to healthy people but can be problematic for immunocompromised individuals, the elderly and children or people with chronic respiratory disorders. The rooms of the house most affected are the bathrooms, shower stalls and bathroom which has poor air evacuation. The bacteria can also attach itself to the shower curtain or plastic fabrics and carpets. Because this type of bacteria can proliferates in the hot water tank, we remind you that it is strongly advised not to consume hot tap water for food. The temperature of the heater, unless advised by a professional, should not be varied. The normal setting should be located at 60 ° C to avoid burns and the proliferation of the Legionella pneumophila bacterium responsible for Legionnaires' disease.

What to do?

Wash affected areas by rubbing with a soft scoured product, rinse, sanitize with a dilute solution of bleach, let stand a few minutes, scrub if necessary, rinse and dry. To avoid excess moisture, operate the exhaust air before the shower or bath and run until the humidity is back to normal. If you do not exhaust air, dry as soon as possible the walls of the shower and tub.  Repeat these tips depending on the frequency of recurrence of the pink or black ring.

7.    Good habits

Before you consume water, it is recommended to rinse the piping of the house by flushing the toilet or by running cold water until it becomes fresh. At night, your water is stagnant inside your plumbing and warm water increases the dissolution of some metals contained in your pipe. Do not see this as waste but as a necessity or a good habit to develop. However, it is also advised to store fresh water in a container and keep refrigerated for your consumption. Moreover, this last suggestion allows the chlorine, which is very volatile to evaporate and improve the taste of your water.