District flushes water lines

Annual maintenance keeps lines in good shape

District of Houston’s water line system was flushed last week. (File photo/Houston Today)

District of Houston’s water line system was flushed last week. (File photo/Houston Today)

District of Houston crews spent last week flushing the community’s water line system, an annual ritual to make sure there’s nothing untoward in the lines.

“Municipalities flush both their water and sewers annually,” said Martin Taylor, the District of Houston’s interim chief administrative officer.

“[Crews will] flush away either rust or calcium deposits in the water line. That’s why sometimes residents will have brown water during the flushing,” he said.

If water does then appear discoloured, or contain small amounts of sediment, residents are then asked to run their taps until the water runs clear.

“In the sewers it’s mainly done to ensure that there are not blockages,” said Taylor.

“This is usually done in the fall before freeze up.”

The work began Sept. 13 and continued to the end of last week.

By flushing lines using pressurized water, which clears out deposits and sediments, the District also safeguards the life of the line system.

In areas where there is sediment build up, meaning water then has to force itself through a smaller space, the result is pressure increasing on pipes.

That pressure, over time, can begin to wear down the pipe walls, resulting in leaks.