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In January of 2019, the City did raise “water rates only” by 15%. However, if you comparing last month’s bill to this month’s bill here are some things to consider:
Remember that your water usage is billed after it is used each month, so look closely at your service dates to determine the period that your bill represents. Next, consider the time of the year.
During summer months, it is not uncommon for your water usage to go up, increasing the amount of your water bill. Sometimes, an increase in usage in summer is because of all the things we do in the summer vs. winter, such as washing cars, filling and refilling kiddie pools, running through water sprinklers or using water slides. Watering occurs in the summer that does not happen in the winter such as people watering flowers or gardens or even your yard. Some people take more showers in the summer than the winter. Washing clothes in the washer may be more prevalent in the summer as well.
Regardless of the time of year, there are many causes (more than can be listed here). Some common causes found in our area have been:
A leaking toilet that runs constantly or a toilet that continues to run after being flushed. (Sometimes the leak can be so small that you can’t even hear it.)
A dripping faucet — a faucet drip can waste 20 gallons of water a day or more.
Filling or topping off a swimming pool.
A leaking hose bib, or one that was left open.
Kids home for summer vacations or school holidays or long-term guests.
Water heater leaks.
A broken water pipe underground between the water meter and the house.
If you have a basement check the pipes in the basement or crawlspace as well as the water heater.
Water softener problems – example: if your water softener cycles more often than it should.
If you suspect you have a leak, but can’t find it, the water department can assist by checking your water meters usage history. The City uses an E-Coder meter, which stores consumption in hourly intervals for a rolling total of 96 days. This is equal to 2,304 hourly intervals of consumption. This data can be extracted using what we call a “data-logger” and a graph along with all the meter readings is created. Though it cannot tell you where the problem is, if it happened in the last 96 days, it can tell you things like, what date the usage began going up, or when the usage returned to normal. It can tell you if the meter is running the majority of the time or if it is only leaking intermittently. These things can help you or your plumber in deciding where to search for the problem. If you would like to have this checked, please call the water department ask for an appointment to have our service technician run a “data-logger” for you.
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The project is now underway! Construction began in July, 2019.
How long will construction take now that it has started?
It is estimated that actual construction will take approximately 15 months.
When will my water bill go up and by how much?
Water Rates already increased in January 2019 by 15% of the water charges only. The rates are again scheduled to increase in January 2020 by 15% of the water charges only. These increases include the cost of the water-softening project as well as the water pressure project.
What is the hardness level now and what will it be after the plant is complete?
Currently the total hardness of the water ranges from 307 to 422 mg/l or 18 to 25 grains per gallon. When the softening project is complete total hardness will range from 120 to 130 mg/l or 7 to 8 grains per gallon. Though on the scale of hardness, this will still be considered moderately hard, it will be a great improvement from what we have now. Our level of softening will be slightly softer than other cities in the area, such as the City of Dayton. The City’s water will not be softened more than this because the water would be very acidic and could cause plumbing corrosion or leaching of lead from soldered plumbing joints.
Will I still need a water softener?
This is a personal choice. Some people will feel that the water is not soft enough and want to keep their water softeners and others will choose to eliminate them.
Why is my water look does my water look rusty? What should I do?
Discolored water could have several causes. Throughout thedistribution system you can occasionally experience reddish yellow or browncolor to your water. This is usually caused by increased flow through watermains, or through your own plumbing which dislodges iron deposits. This can becaused by any of the following reasons:
1. A hydrant in your neighborhood recently being used forconstruction or to fight a house fire or to flush hydrants in your area forroutine maintenance or fire flow testing by the fire department.
2. A water main break in the vicinity.
3. It could also be caused by just an overall increase indemand of the water supply throughout the system.
4. If water is only looking rusty coming from certainfaucets in your home and not others, or it is only present when you use hotwater, it can be an issue inside your homes plumbing. In that instance you mayneed to consult a plumber to resolve the issue.
Though rusty water may look and taste unpleasant, it is notgenerally a health concern. Iron in water is not a sign of harmful bacteria orlead, which are hazards. The limits set by the Environmental Protection Agency(EPA) for iron in drinking water are based on aesthetics (taste, odor, color),not safety concerns. The City of Huber Heights meets all drinking waterstandards including those set for iron.
If you notice your water is discolored do not do laundryuntil the water runs clear, if you have already started doing laundry do notdry any clothing until the disturbance is over. When the water runs clear,re-wash the items before drying. Your local grocery carries “Iron Out” andother similar products that will remove discoloration from clothing if it isstained.
Most importantly, if you experience a rust color in yourwater, first make sure your hot water faucet is off and run the cold water forat least 5 minutes to see if it runs clear, if not please call the waterdepartment, giving your location, so someone can respond and help you determineif you need a plumber or if flushing a hydrant near your home can help etc. Theemergency # for the water department after hours is the same as the day timenumber which is 937-233-3292.
The same number is used regardless of the time of day 937-233-3292. After office hours an answering service will answer and they will forward your concern to the technician that is ON CALL. If needed, the technician will return your call from a work mobile phone. The phone number the technician calls from will show up as "restricted" on your caller ID. Please be sure to answer the phone if you are expecting a return call. After hours, this number is only meant to report immediate issues/emergencies such as a suspected water main break.
Chlorine is added during water treatment as a disinfectant to kill bacteria and eradicate waterborne germs like e.coli and the norovirus. It is actually required by the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) in order to disinfect water before it is distributed to homes and offices.
The EPA recommends levels below 4mg/L. Chlorine can be smelled at levels of 1 mg/L.
The very low concentrations of chlorine used to disinfect water is entirely harmless and regularly monitored. Water leaving our treatment works will have less than 1.4 parts per million of chlorine and this will reduce further before reaching your home. This is to ensure the quality of the drinking water is maintained through the pipe network to the point when it reaches your tap.
Some people are more sensitive than others are, to the smell or taste of chlorine and may become aware of occasional changes in chlorine levels in their tap water.
For example, the taste or odor of chlorine may be more noticeable at times of day when water use is high. This is because the water is reaching you quicker and contains more chlorine than when it has been standing in the pipes.
Levels of chlorine may also become more noticeable if we’ve been working on the water mains or if we have to supply you with water from our other water treatment facility.
The strength of this chlorine scent can also be affected by the temperature of the water. Hot water generally has a stronger smell yet it contains no more chlorine than cold water.
If you find the taste of chlorine unacceptable, a good solution is to fill a jug of tap water and cover it. Keep it in the fridge. Not only will the chilled water taste better, it will lose that chlorine smell.
If your water pressure suddenly drops there could be several reasons why. Here are a few ways troubleshoot the problem:
Water Softener Issue - To check this check your owner's manual to see how to bypass your water softener. Generally there is a switch on the unit. If your pressure returns to normal when it is bypassed, consult with a plumber to correct the problem with the unit.
Construction crews or the water department - could be working on a repair to a water main in the area. If the water department is working in your area they do their best to notify all those affected, however this is not always possible in emergency situations. When the work is complete your water pressure should return to normal. If it does not contact the water department at 937-233-3292 to further investigate.
Faucets/Fixtures - Check various locations throughout the home. If the low pressure is only affecting one or two locations, the source of the low water pressure is likely a clogged facuet or screen/aerator. If this is the case remove the screen from the faucet and clean or replace it.
Hot Water Heater issue - Run both hot and cold water through all faucets. If you water pressure is low only when hot water is running, the issue could be your water heater. In this case consult with a plumber to troubleshoot further.
Galvanized piping - In older homes not built by Huber Homes, and (in excess of 50 years old) you could have galvanized piping. If so over time corrosion of the piping can occur. This is not a common problem in Huber Heights as most service lines are made of copper or PVC. If you do have galvanized piping you will need to consult with a plumber to resolve the issue.
Every home is equipped with a shut off valve that allows you to turn the water off inside your home. It is wise to locate that valve in case of an emergency. In most "Huber Homes," the main valve is located in the utility room, next to the water heater. It is the valve closest to the floor. (If you need assistance locating the valve, call SUEZ and schedule an appointment with a service representative to help locate the valve. There is no charge for this service.) Turning the valve clockwise should completely turn off the water inside your home. If there is no valve in this location of your home, please check with a plumber or a previous owner to find out the location of the shut off valve in your home. If you need an emergency shutoff, call SUEZ at 937-233-3292, 24 hours a day.
Call SUEZ immediately at 937-233-3292. Each home is also equipped with a sewer clean out that can be used as a relief valve. It is usually located somewhere close to the front of the house. In the event that the main sewer line would back up into your sewer lateral, removing the lid from this clean-out can relieve much of the pressure in the line and may keep it from backing up inside your home. To determine whether it is a sewer main line backing up or your sewer lateral line, see "What do I do if my drains won't drain"
When putting in a water softener, you will need to know the total hardness of the water. In Huber Heights the total hardness is 348 milligram or 20.4 grains per gallon.
Check to see if the drain problem you are having is isolated to one sink, bathtub or other single fixture. If so, the problem is in the drain line to that fixture and you are responsible for taking care of the problem. If the problem seems to be throughout the home, call SUEZ first. We will check the main lines to see if there is a back up in the sewer main system. If the problem is in the City's sanitary sewer main line, SUEZ will clear the stoppage as quickly as possible. There is no charge for this service. If there is no stoppage in the sewer main lines, we will notify you that the problem is in your sewer lateral and you can then call a plumber or other person capable of clearing your sanitary sewer lateral.
Cloudy, milky or foamy looking water is usually caused by the release of dissolved air from water. This is quite common and harmless. When watched closely, the dissolved air slowly travels upward, out of solution. This can also be caused when natural minerals in water come out of solution.
Water pressure can have something to do with it. The water in the pipe is pressurized. Water under pressure holds more air than water that is not pressurized. Once the water comes out of your tap, the water is no longer under pressure and the air comes out of solution as bubbles (similar to a carbonated soft drink).