Our new water services regulator, Taumata Arowai is currently consulting on new Drinking Water Standards, Drinking Water Quality Assurance Rules, Drinking Water Acceptable Solutions and Aesthetic Values. Submissions are open from 17 January to 28 March 2022, visit Taumata Arowai - Citizen Space to have your say.
How do we treat your water?
Our treatment plants take raw untreated water, sourced from the district’s bores, springs, streams and the Waikato River and remove contaminants including suspended solids, bacteria, algae, minerals and pollutants. The end result is treated (potable) drinking water, which is safe to drink. Waikato district's water comes from a variety of sources and so a range of water treatment processes are used at individual plants. Each treatment plant is designed to deal with the characteristics of the source of supply.
We ensure compliance with the Drinking Water Standards of New Zealand (DWSNZ 2005) revised (2018).
Flushing your water pipes
The drinking water standards require all councils to advise on flushing water pipes which haven't been used for more than half a day. This is because water settles in household and other buildings' pipes overnight or during long gaps between tap use, along with any metal particles from the pipes themselves plumbosolvency.
That's why it's a good habit to get into to run the tap for a few seconds first before filling a cup, glass or other container with water for drinking or cooking food.
Plumbosolvent water is water that can dissolve metals in fixtures and fittings. If left undisturbed for several hours in a pipe or on a metal surface, the water will absorb small amounts of dissolved metals which can then be delivered via the tap to your glass, cup or kettle. The amount of metal which will dissolve from a fitting depends on how 'plumbosolvent' the water is; temperature; the composition of fittings used for the plumbing set up; and the length of contact time between the static water within the pipe.
In New Zealand, the heavy metals that dissolve in drinking water from plumbing fittings are lead, nickel, cadmium, copper and antimony.
All water is plumbosolvent to some extent, but soft, slightly acidic water dissolves metals most readily.
Fluoride is added to council water supplies in Ngaruawahia, Huntly, Te Kauwhata, Southern Districts, Pokeno and Tuakau. No fluoride is added to water supplies at Raglan, Te Akau, Onewhero and Port Waikato.
Fluoridating Raglan Drinking Water Supply
The Ministry of Health and Taumata Arowai (as the new economic regulator) are implementing the fluoridation of drinking water for water supplies that service over 500 people under the (Fluoridation of Drinking Water) Amendment Act 2021.
Across the Waikato District, our larger schemes already provide fluoridated drinking water, and we have received notification from the Ministry of Health that the Raglan supply will be issued directions for fluoridation in the near future.
Fluoridating water greatly reduces rates of preventable tooth decay and is a proven public health measure to improve overall oral health.
The below letter outlines the next steps from the Ministry of Health Director General for Waikato District Council and other Territorial Authorities who will be required to implement fluoridation.
Many in our district will have a flow restrictor placed within their meter, this limits the amount of water that passes through the trickle feed system to 1.8m3 a day, 1.3 liters a minute.
Customers can request to have the flow restrictors removed from their water supply for up to four months. The flow restrictor is removed to supply full flow water while a storage tank and pump equipment is installed on the property, usually during a building project.