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What is the temporary change in water disinfection?

North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD) first disinfects water using ozone and chlorine as part of the treatment process to eliminate bacteria and viruses. Then, for most of the year, NTMWD also adds chloramine (chlorine plus ammonia) as a secondary disinfectant to keep drinking water clean as it travels from the treatment plants through miles of pipes to homes and businesses. Each spring for one month, NTMWD temporarily suspends the use of ammonia and uses free chlorine as the secondary disinfectant to maintain water quality year-round. This process is also commonly referred to as annual chlorine maintenance. Check out this ’Protecting Water Quality’ fact sheet (PDF) from NTMWD for detail information.

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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?
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