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Water Quality

The Tampa Water Department is required by Federal law to provide potable water that meets established Federal water quality standards. In addition, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection stipulates that the Water Department submit to monthly reviews on its finished water product to ensure compliance with all State and Federal parameters. The Tampa Water Department goes beyond this requirement by conducting more than 1000 analyses per month on its finished water product. The quality of water provided by the Tampa Water Department continues to meet or surpass all state and federal drinking water standards.

Federal and State Regulations

The Future of Our Water Quality

The Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) was passed by Congress in 1974 to protect public health by regulating the nation's public drinking water supply. The law was amended in 1986 and 1996 and requires many actions to protect drinking water and its sources.  The SDWA authorizes the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to set national health-based standards for drinking water to protect against both naturally occurring and man-made contaminants that may be found in drinking water. The EPA, states, and water systems then work together to make sure that these standards are met. SDWA applies to every public water system in the United States. Under the Safe Drinking Water Act, the EPA is responsible for updating and implementing rules and regulations. Each updated rule is designed to further improve the existing high drinking water quality standards already in place in the United States.
 

Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) Source Water Assessment and Protection Plan

The Source Water Assessment and Protection Program (SWAPP) is meant to ensure that your drinking water is safe, not just at the tap but at its source. The water that surrounds us-lakes, rivers, streams, and aquifers-makes up our drinking water sources. These source waters can be threatened by potential contaminants such as hazardous chemicals, stormwater runoff, waste disposal sites and underground storage tanks.  It is a national priority to protect these sources and ensure safe drinking water for citizens. SWAPP was created to protect these vital resources and was authorized by one of eight amendments made to the SDWA in 1996. View Tampa's SWAPP to see how your source water is impacted.
 

Drinking Water Standards

All public drinking water quality and standards are determined and enforced by Federal and State regulatory agencies. These standards are divided into two levels: primary standards and secondary standards.

  • Primary standards protect public health and safety in drinking water through regulations that include maximum constituent levels (MCLs) for elements and substances that are known-or suspected-to adversely affect human health.

  • Secondary standards are regulations on contaminant levels that may adversely affect the aesthetic quality of drinking water. At very high concentrations, these constituents may also pose health problems as well as aesthetic degradation. While secondary standards are not Federally enforceable, they serve as guidelines for State regulatory agencies.

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Drinking Water pH

The City of Tampa maintains drinking water pH values between 7.5 and 8.5 to minimize the corrosion of our customers' water pipes.

The pH value is an measure of measuring the corrosiveness of drinking water.

Drinking water standards require water utilities to maintain pH value within the range of 6.5 and 8.5. When the pH value is below 7.0, water tends to be corrosive and can damage metal pipes carrying the water. When pH is between 7.0 and 8.5, water is much less corrosive.

Specific questions about the pH value of Tampa's drinking water may be referred to Tampa Water Quality Assurance Officer or Water Quality Laboratory Supervisor at (813) 231- 5253 or (813) 231-5233.

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Water Quality Report

The Tampa Water Department Water Quality Report is an annual requirement of the Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments of 1996. This comprehensive report contains important water quality data and information collected during calendar year. The Water Department tests for hundreds of compounds in both raw (untreated) water and finished (treated) water throughout the year. In every case, all compounds detected in Tampa's finished water were below allowed levels of the state and federal drinking water quality standards.

The report also addresses some of the more frequently asked questions regarding water quality and provides important telephone numbers for additional information about water quality and water awareness programs. Water quality continues to be a primary concern of consumers across the nation and the purpose of this report is to give our customers as much information as possible about the quality of Tampa's drinking water.

Every Tampa Water Department customer is directly delivered the Water Quality Report. Customers who do not receive utility bills, such as those living in most apartments, condominiums and mobile homes, should contact their appropriate property manager. You can also request a printed copy of the most recent report be mailed to you by calling (813) 274-5657. Customers are urged to read the report to learn more about Tampa's drinking water. Below are the most recent Water Quality Reports in PDF format.
 

 

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(page last reviewed: 11/22/13)