Due to construction, we will not be conducting a rain barrel sales event in 2024. Please check back in 2025. 


How should tap water be boiled properly?

Water should be placed in a heat-resistant container and brought to a rolling boil for 1 minute to kill all disease-causing organisms.

I have a water treatment device; do I still need to boil my drinking water?

If the device is designed to improve the taste and odor or chemical quality of the water, such as activated carbon filters, it is still necessary to boil the water. Check with the manufacturer if you are not certain.

Can I use bottled water?

Buying bottled water may be a feasible alternative to boiling water. 

What can I do with my tap water?

Drinking                                  No
Ice Cubes                               No  See below for information.
Brushing Teeth                      No
Baby's Formula                      No
Washing Fruit/Vegetables   No


What are the symptoms of water-borne illness?

Disease symptoms may include diarrhea, cramps, nausea and possible jaundice and associated headaches and fatigue. Symptoms may appear as early as a few hours to several days after infection and may last more than two weeks. These symptoms, however, are not just associated with disease-causing organisms in drinking water; they may also be caused by a number of other factors. If you are ill with these symptoms, contact your health care provider.

What if I drank the water already?

There is nothing you can do about possible exposure you have already received. Most people who drink this water will not get sick. If you become ill, contact your health care provider. Follow the above recommendations about using your water until you are told the water is safe again.

How long will the boil order remain in effect?

Each boil order situation is different, making it impossible to predict how long the boil order will remain in effect. It will not be lifted until testing shows that the water meets public health standards. Boil water advisories or boil water orders are lifted when the water is considered safe and no longer poses a threat to public health.

What should I do when the boil water advisory or order has been lifted?

Consumers should flush water pipes within the home. Some types of water treatment devices may need to be disinfected and flushed to remove any contaminated water before being used. Depending on the type of water treatment device, the device may need to be replaced. Check with the manufacturer for details.

Drinking Water Lines Flushing Fact Sheet

Where can I find more information?

In the case of any emergency water advisory, updates will be provided at and on our Facebook page and through frequent media contact.

This winter and spring I have noticed a stronger chlorine taste to my water, is Portland Water District adding more chlorine?

During the winter and spring months, PWD adds less disinfectant to the water. That’s right, less! During colder months, the water temperature is also colder, so chloramine (chlorine compound) lasts longer as water travels through the water distribution system. So, depending on where you live, you may experience a slight chlorine taste in winter and spring compared to summer and fall.

Samples are taken weekly throughout the distribution system to ensure disinfection levels remain within the target range to provide safe water, between 0.5 mg/L and < 4.0 mg/L.