Water Safety

Fraser Health monitors the City’s water to ensure the drinking water is being treated by an acceptable secondary disinfection, as a condition of our operating permit, and is safe to use. Review frequently asked questions about water in White Rock through Fraser Health.

Arsenic in Drinking Water

Arsenic is a naturally occurring metal found in mineral deposits or rocks throughout the Earth’s crust. Arsenic may enter the underground water sources when rocks containing arsenic dissolve.

For more information about arsenic in drinking water, please visit Health Canada's website. or view Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality: Guideline Technical (PDF).

Common Household Water Quality Problems

Cloudy water from only one faucet? It may be the plumbing. If water is cloudy when you only run the hot water, it may be the water heater. Contact the manufacturer for more information. Hot and cold water could indicate corrosion in the plumbing or water supply. To clear the lines, try running cold water for a few minutes. Always use cold water so you don’t draw dirty or rusty water into the hot water tank. If the water does not clear, contact the Engineering and Municipal Operations Department at 604-541-2181 or email water@whiterockcity.ca.

  • Black particles in your water? This may mean that the City is flushing the water mains in your area. Learn about water main flushing.
  • Gray or white particles floating in your water? Floating gray and white particles in your water may be a disintegrating dip tube in your water heater. A dip tube is a tube inside a water heater that distributes the cold water into the lower area of the water heater.
  • Gray or white sinking particles sinking in your water? It may be calcium carbonate in your water heater. You should refer to your water heater manual or contact the manufacturer for more information.

If the City is not flushing in your area that may indicate an issue with the faucets in your home. The problem could be corrosion in the pipes, or the screens may need to be cleaned. If black particles are only coming from the cold water, it may be the main line and it needs to be flushed.

Household Water Tips

  • Hot Water: Do not drink or cook with hot water from the faucet. Hot water systems (heaters, boilers) contain metallic parts that can corrode over time. The metals (lead and copper) could dissolve in hot water and leach through water lines and faucets.
  • Pink Growth: If you spot a pink growth or stain on your bathroom fixtures, it is usually a mold or bacterium. Try regular cleanings with bleach or mildew removers.

Minimizing Exposure to Lead from Drinking Water Distribution Systems

There have been some concerns about lead in the drinking water distribution systems. Read Health Canada's Water Talk: Minimizing Exposure to Lead from Drinking Water Distribution Systems (PDF). (PDF): 

  • Anytime the water in a particular faucet has not been used for six hours or longer, "flush" your cold-water pipes by running the water until you notice a change in temperature. (This could take as little as five to thirty seconds if there has been recent heavy water use such as showering or toilet flushing. Otherwise, it could take two minutes or longer.) The more time water has been sitting in your home's pipes, the more lead it may contain.
  • Use only water from the cold-tap for drinking, cooking, and especially making baby formula. Hot water is likely to contain higher levels of lead.

The two actions recommended are very important to the health of your family. They will probably be effective in reducing lead levels because most of the lead in household water usually comes from the plumbing in your house, not from the local water supply. Conserving water is still important. Rather than just running the water down the drain you could use the water for things such as watering your plants.

Questions & Concerns

If you have any further concerns relating to White Rock's water distribution system, contact the Engineering and Municipal Operation Department at 604-541-2181 or email water@whiterockcity.ca.