Why does my water taste or smell different?

While the levels of chlorine in the water during the temporary disinfectant change are consistent with levels found in the water throughout the year, the temporary suspension of ammonia can make the chlorine more noticeable. Outdoor temperatures and overall water use also influence the reaction of chlorine to other materials in the water supply. This may cause smell and taste to fluctuate year to year. The intensity of the chlorine taste and smell can depend on the distance you are from the water treatment plant. North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD) does not increase the amount of chlorine in the water during its four-week change in disinfectant; its taste and smell are more pronounced due to the absence of the ammonia (PDF).

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1. What is the temporary change in water disinfection?
2. Why is this change necessary?
3. When does the change occur?
4. Is the chlorine level tested during this period?
5. Why does my water taste or smell different?
6. What can I do to reduce the chlorine taste or smell?
7. Why are fire hydrants flushed during this process?