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Water in the distribution system is under pressure. Any air trapped in the pressurized pipes will dissolve while under pressure. At the faucet, the air is released and gives water a "cloudy" or "milky" appearance. A small amount of air may be normal; in fact many faucets have aeration features built in. The quality of the water is not affected by the entrapped air.
If the air entered the distribution system after the repair of a pipe in the distribution system, you may experience more air than usual in your household plumbing for a short time. You can help purge the excess air from your plumbing by opening faucets throughout the house and at outside hose bibs until the water runs clear. If you let us know of the problem, we may be able to flush a hydrant in your area to reduce the amount of flushing needed at your home.
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During business hours (Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.) you may call City Hall at 530-841-2386. After hours call the Yreka Police Department at 530-841-2300. For water emergencies there may be a call-out fee for the City to turn off your water. Alternatively, you may have your plumber turn it off for you. You may also want to think about installing a hand valve on your line. This will enable you to turn your water off yourself, without charge, for future emergencies. Property owners are responsible for maintaining all water laterals and water pipes on their side of the meter.
A Request for Water Meter Downsize Form (PDF) is available online or at:City Hall701 Fourth StreetYreka, CA 96097
Our water source is Fall Creek, which is located approximately 25 miles northeast of Yreka. This is an abundant supply of high quality water, and does not vary appreciably from season to season. The City also has an emergency water source referred to as the North Well. The well is on emergency standby, and is capable of producing approximately 1 million gallons per day. This source meets drinking water standards as set by the California Department of Public, but is not as desirable as Fall Creek.
The California Department of Health Services, Klamath District, completed an assessment of the drinking water source for Fall Creek in January of 2003. The assessment states that there have been no contaminants detected in this water supply. A complete copy of the assessment for Fall Creek and the North Well is available online.
Water from Fall Creek is filtered and chlorinated before it is delivered to the customers. All water systems using surface water are required to routinely measure the turbidity or "clarity" of the filtered water. Stringent turbidity measurements are needed in order to monitor the effectiveness of the filtration process at removing microbiological contaminants that may be found in surface water.
Before calling, do a quick check around the house and yard to look for obvious problems that may be affecting your water pressure. Look to see if there is anything else running in the house or outside, check the strainer on the faucet to see if it might be plugged, and check to see if water is coming up in the yard or curb box.
The most common problem that we find when investigating a low pressure complaint is a failed pressure regulator. The City of Yreka has many pressure zones so many homes install a pressure regulator to lower the water pressure to an acceptable level. Since too high of a pressure may cause leaks or breaks in household plumbing, pressure regulators are designed to close when they fail resulting in lower than normal pressure.
Although pressure regulators are part of the household plumbing system and therefore the homeowners responsibility, we are available to help investigate the problem or to shut off the water at the meter so that the regulator can be replaced. Call City Hall at 530-841-2386 for information about main breaks or hydrant flushing that may affect your water pressure. The Public Works Department will send someone out to check the low pressure if a reason cannot be determined over the telephone.
There is no shortage of news stories these days on the merits of tap water and bottled water from a variety of different perspectives. The truth is, while tap water and bottled water are regulated differently, both are generally safe, healthy choices. But only tap water delivers public health protection, fire protection, support for the economy and the overall quality of life we enjoy. That's why it's important to remember that whatever you choose to drink, the water system that previous generations handed down to us needs constant attention to keep safe water flowing through our communities every day.