Naturally occurring organisms can cause taste and odor problems.  Although they are unpleasant to our noses, they are harmless.  If the water you draw from the tap smells, but does not smell when you fill a glass and walk away from the faucet, the problem may be the sink.  Often times odors related to garbage disposals or "u traps" are the culprit.  Food particles caught in the disposal will rot and give off odors.  Also dishwashers maybe be a cause of odor since they are plumbed in line with a sink and could be depositing food particles.  If you suspect either to be the cause, an easy and efficient way to cleaning the disposal is to pour a 1/2 cup of bleach (residents with septic tanks should not used bleach), vinegar or baking soda with a couple ice cubes in the drain.  Run cold water and the disposal.  This will dislodge and flush away any food particles.

If you suspect the dishwasher as the problem check by keeping the door to the dishwasher closed, smell the sink drain then open the dishwasher and smell inside of it.  If the dishwasher is the source try doing a rinse cycle without dishes.  Also, be sure to scrap and/or rinse dishes before loading the dishwasher or run more frequently to minimize the chance of food particles rotting.

Manganese will cause black staining and is often accompanied by iron staining and hydrogen sulfide (rotten egg) odor.  In combination with iron, manganese staining will sometimes be chocolate colored or brown.  Evidence of manganese staining is usually most prominent in the dishwasher.  Detergents raise the pH of the water high enough (>8) to allow the manganese to precipitate easily.

Brown water is usually an indication of the presence of iron.  Iron is naturally occurring in the ground and thereby is in our well water supply.  Our water filtration plant crew does their best to eliminate all iron but due to solubility and different water sources some iron will get into the distribution system.  Due to changes in distribution flow or water main breaks, customers may experience higher than normal iron staining.  Generally, these episodes will clear if a cold water tap is run for a few minutes.  When experiencing brown water refrain from using bleach in your laundry since it will interact with the rust and cause staining.  if you must do laundry with discolored water an additive called Iron Out may be used and is commercially available at Home Depot.

Check your clothes washer manual. Are you using the appropriate amount of detergent? Check for suds.  If you do not have suds add more detergent.  Are you properly rinsing out all the soap? Try doing an extra rinse cycle.  Since most newer machines are more energy efficient they use less water as well.  Sometimes an excess of soap makes matters worse since some air born bacteria loves soap scum.

You could have a problem with drainage or your trap.  Try running a bleach load in an empty machine to see if the smell disappears.

Hydrogen sulfide gas is a natural gas that is found in the ground as a result of decaying matter.  There are certain sulfur bacteria that are commonly found in ground water because of the abundance of iron levels which they feed on.  Sulfur bacteria may be seen as a white, gray, black or reddish brown slime which is unfavorable but it is NOT HARMFUL.  We do our best to eliminate these products and bacteria with a pretreatment chemical.

If so, you may be sensitive to the bleach we add to the water to keep it safe.  As a preventative action bleach is added to our finished water (a tiny amount, less than 2 parts per million), but this nearly de minimus amount does ensure bacteria does not grown in the water as it travels to you through the pipes.

Generally Georgetown water is moderately hard at ~90 mg/L.  Hardness is caused by compounds of calcium and magnesium, and by a variety of other metals.  This means that more soap is needed to do thins like washing our hair, cleaning our clothes and running our dishwashers.  Without enough soap a mild film may remain making glasses look spotted.

Consult your dishwasher manuals to be sure just how much detergent is necessary to wash your dishes.  You will be pleased to find you will probably need to use half of the detergent that will fit in the reservoir since dishwashers are made universally for all types of water.  You may be wasting money and etching glasses by using too much detergent.

Often times banging occurs when the flow of air and water are not appropriately mixed.  This may indicate the need for a plumber.

Frequently, iron and manganese which is found in almost all water distribution systems maybe cause staining in toilets and sinks.  Often times the bleach products we use to clean out toilet bowls will cause the small amount of iron and manganese that is dissolved in the water to "fall out" of solution or become deposited on the surface of the bowl.  As more water flushes by, the deposit builds until it becomes a stain.

The best method of minimizing stains is by scrubbing it away, however, be careful to not scratch the surface. Scratches make for the perfect environment for particles to embed and further exasperate the problem.  For heavy duty scaling, try a Lime-Away type product or a non bleach cleanser.  Pink staining is a form of biofilm which can be a nuisance as well.  These stains generally show up when water lies in the presence of soap.  The tiny bacteria that causes the stain, feeds on soap scum.  The best preventative action to take, if you experience this type of staining, is to rinse and wipe down walls of the showers and/or sinks after use.

Cloudiness or white water is indicative of air dissolved in the water.  To Test this theory fill a glass with water from affected tap and watch to see if the cloudiness dissipates.  Generally when break occur, water mains must be shut off.  During the opening and closing of valves, air can be introduced into the distribution system which causes the water to appear cloudy.  This air will make its way out of the water in time.  It the cloudiness persists there may be a plumbing issues within the household.

There are 7.48 gallons in each cubic foot.

Therefore, since we bill per 100cf, when breaking down the usage on your water bill remember there are 748 gallons in each 100 cubic feet.

All metering is done by the cubic foot.

Usage is billed quarterly in 100cf increments.

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