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Lead and Drinking water

If present, elevated levels of lead can cause serious health problems, especially for pregnant women and young children. The City of Elyria drinking water does not have high levels of naturally occurring lead. However, lead can get into your water when older plumbing breaks down. Lead in drinking water is primarily from materials and components associated with service lines and home plumbing. The City of Elyria Water is responsible for providing high quality drinking water but, cannot control the variety of materials used in plumbing components. When your water has been sitting for several hours, you can minimize the potential for lead exposure by flushing your tap for 30 seconds to 2 minutes before using water for drinking or cooking.

Lead Service Lines

The pipe that connects your household plumbing to the water main in the street is called a service line. In the City of Elyria, some of the service lines that connect older homes {e.g., before 1940} to the utility water main are made from lead.  The City of Elyria created a general map identifying areas where lead service lines may be present.  The following map shows those areas:

For a larger map click here

The following figures show three potential scenarios where lead may be present on the water service lines.

























* Images from United States Environmental Protection Agency

The City of Elyria is working to replace lead service lines as part of water main replacement projects across the city. When found, lead service lines will be removed and replaced on the City-owned portion of the service line.  The City can provide assistance to residents to replace the consumer-owned portion of the service line if it is determined to be led.


The City of Elyria continues to add orthophosphate at the end of the drinking water treatment process. Orthophosphate forms a protective coating inside metal service lines and water pipes that prevents water from coming in direct contact with the pipe material, reducing the likelihood of lead being dissolved into the water.

Consumer Concerns

If you are concerned about lead in your water, you may wish to have your water tested. Information on lead in drinking water, testing methods, and steps you can take to minimize exposure is available from the links indicated below and from calling the following phone numbers:

Contact Information:

  • National Lead Information Center: 1-800-424-LEAD
  • EPA’s Safe Drinking Water Hotline: 1-800-426-4791

Simple Steps to Reduce Lead in Drinking Water

Whether the home has a lead service line or not, plumbing fixtures like faucets, valves and solder can contain small amounts of lead. To reduce the amount of lead or any particulate in a home’s water system, homeowners can:

  • Run cold water from the faucets used for drinking water after long periods of non-use.
  • Purchase tested and certified ‘lead-free’ replacement plumbing parts. Fixtures that are NSF certified and meet the NSF/ANSI 61 and/or 372 standard will be free of lead.
  • If you use a home treatment device such as water filters to reduce your exposure to lead, make sure it is independently certified for that use and properly maintained. Any device should meet the NSF/ANSI-53 standard.
  • Be aware of any work that could disturb your lead service line, such as water main replacement, lead service line repair or replacement of part of the service line.
  • Run water before use if it has not been used for several hours.
  • Use only cold water for drinking, cooking, and preparing baby formula.
  • Purchase a water filter that is certified to remove “total lead.”
  • On a regular basis clean and remove any debris from faucet aerators to clear out any particles of lead that may become trapped in the aerator.
  • Purchase lead-free faucets and plumbing components.
  • Remove the entire lead service line.

Links to Additional Lead Education Materials:


Water Pumping Department
Samuel F. Jacob, Superintendent

3628 West Erie Ave
Lorain, Ohio 44053
440-324-7669, ext 6201