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Dartmouth & Area Water Supply Changes/Upgrades

These phase 1 upgrades are now complete

We are making our customers aware in the communities of Dartmouth, Cole Harbour, Eastern Passage, North Preston, Westphal and Burnside that we have now completed phase 1 of critical infrastructure upgrade work at the Lake Major Water Supply Plant that supplies drinking water to these areas.

This work began on October 29th and is now complete.

This project is part of Halifax Water’s 10-year plan to upgrade our water supply plants to adapt to a changing climate, and will help ensure that our customers in Dartmouth, Cole Harbour, Eastern Passage, North Preston, Westphal and Burnside continue to have high-quality drinking water.

Potentially Impacted Area

Check the map below to find out if you are within the potentially impacted area:

Service Area Map Lake Major

Possible Changes in Water Service/Quality

Customers in the communities of Dartmouth, Cole Harbour, Eastern Passage, North Preston, Westphal and Burnside should see normal water service return over the next few days. There will still be some limited potential for discoloured water and different tastes or odours remaining in the system for a short time. If discoloured water continues in your area, please report it here.

 

My Water has a Different Taste/Smell

As water from Halifax will supplement the supply from Lake Major, customers may notice a change in the smell/taste of their tap water. If this occurs, it is due to the seasonal occurrence of an earthy odour/taste caused by a natural compound called geosmin. This is a naturally occurring organic compound and is not harmful to human health. Learn more about geosmin here

Frequently Asked Questions

This work will begin on October 29 and continue for approximately five weeks.

As part of our 10-year water supply plant upgrade plan, Halifax Water will be replacing clarifier components at the Lake Major Water Supply Plant.

The clarifier is a key component of the water purification process at Lake Major. It is designed to remove most of the unwanted material from our source water. Clarified water then proceeds through several more treatment steps before being sent for storage and use.

There are currently two water clarifiers at the Lake Major facility. We are replacing one now and expect to replace the other in 2022. With the new clarifier installed, further work next year will have a lesser impact on those customers served by Lake Major.

These clarifier components are nearing the end of their lifecycle and must be replaced. Typically, November is when we have the lowest consumption of water across the Halifax Water system, so we specifically targeted this time period to do the work.

As a result, Halifax Water customers across the entire Dartmouth system could experience temporary changes during this period, including lower or higher water pressure, potential discolouration, or a change in taste/odour due to a different water supply.

As water from Halifax will supplement the supply from Lake Major, customers may notice a change in the smell/taste of their tap water. If this occurs, it is due to the seasonal occurrence of an earthy odour/taste called geosmin. This is a naturally occurring organic compound and is not harmful to human health. To learn more, please visit halifaxwater.ca/my-water-has-taste-odour.

This impacts approximately 100,000 customers in Dartmouth, Cole Harbour, Eastern Passage, North Preston, Westphal and Burnside.

We are encouraging all our customers to conserve their water use to maximize the available supply in the system.

If customers experience discoloured water, we ask that they report it online and follow the following steps:

  • Run the COLD water at one faucet for about 10 minutes. You should see the water clear.
  • Do not use the hot water faucet since this will draw discoloured water into your hot water heater/tank, which could make the problem worse.
  • If the water fails to clear after 10 minutes, wait for a few hours and again try running only the cold water. If the water is still discoloured, fill out our discoloured drinking water survey at halifaxwater.ca/discoloured-water.

We expect this work to take approximately five weeks to complete.

We recommend waiting for the water to clear before washing clothes. Discoloured water may stain clothes. More information is available at halifaxwater.ca/discoloured-water.