Frequently Asked Questions:

Is the water safe to drink?
Yes! Poughkeepsies Water Treatment Facility produces drinking water that meets all the federal and state drinking water standards. In homes that have lead services and lead plumbing fixtures your plumbing may cause your tap water to exceed the drinking water standard. We have installed an additional chemical treatment at the treatment facility to reduce this potential and anticipate this problem will be eliminated.

Where does my water come from?
All water produced at the Poughkeepsies’ Water Treatment Facility is taken from the Hudson River 1,000 feet from shore and 42 feet below the mean surface elevation.

What do you do to treat the water before I receive it?
The Poughkeepsies’ Water Treatment Facility is a conventional filtration plant.  Water taken from the Hudson River is treated with polyaluminum chloride combined with organic polymer and settled solids.  The chemicals and recycled solids cause the fine particles in the river water to combine thereby increasing their ability to settle.  After sedimentation the water is filtered.  Chlorine is added prior to the sedimentation basins and adjusted after filtration to insure organisms in the water that can cause illness are killed and chlorine residual is maintained in the distribution systems.  Orthophosphate is added to reduce the lead and copper corrosion in customers lead pipes and plumbing fixtures.

Why does the water look dirty sometimes?
Parts of the distribution system are old. Rust or sediments may have accumulated over the years and any changes in flow may disturb this material and cause discolored water. Entrained air may also cause the water to be “milky”. Typical events that may cause temporary discoloration of the water include:

  • Fire in the area
  • Breaks and repairs in the water main
  • Construction of water mains
  • Hydrant flushing and other maintenance work

Do not drink discolored water. Should this occur, run your cold water faucet for a period to clear the water. If the water remains discolored run the cold water in the bathtub at full rate for 5-10 minutes. If discoloration remains City of Poughkeepsie customers should call the Department of Public Works at 451-4111, Town of Poughkeepsie customers should call 462-6535.