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No. There is no detectable lead in the drinking water leaving Durham's two treatment plants. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requires triennial sampling, and in the City’s most recent sampling cycle (conducted July-September 2019), all of the tested properties were below the EPA’s maximum level allowed of 0.015 milligrams of lead per liter of water (mg/L), or 15 parts per billion (ppb).
You can find more information about Durham’s most recent water quality testing results in the Annual Water Quality Report.
Never cook with or drink water from the hot water tap. Hot water dissolves lead faster than cold water. If you need hot water, draw cold water from the tap and heat it on the stove or in the microwave. Never use hot tap water to make baby formula or cereal. Periodically remove loose debris from plumbing materials by removing faucet strainers/aerators from all taps and running the water for three to five minutes.
If you are a City of Durham water customer, your home was built before 1986, and you are concerned there may be lead in your home's plumbing, you can request to have your water tested for lead. To request a free sample kit, contact Durham One Call at 919-560-1200.
After completing the necessary request form, you may then pick up your sample kit (available three business days after completing the form) at one of two locations: our Compliance Services Building at 6605 Farrington Road, or our Mist Lake Facility at 1600 Mist Lake Drive. Kits will be available for pick-up Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Customers should complete a request form and provide the required information so that appropriate labels and associated paperwork can be prepared and made ready. After collecting samples, customers should return them to either WRF as soon as possible for analysis.
For more information on lead in drinking water, visit the EPA’s Ground Water and Drinking Water website.