Lead & Copper

Lead and copper in drinking water is mainly due to the corrosion of customer service laterals and household plumbing that contain these metals. Some homes built prior to 1989 may have pipes or plumbing fixtures that contain lead or used lead solder, after which it was banned in residential construction.

Lead and Copper Rule

The Environmental Protection Agency’s Lead and Copper Rule requires public water providers to monitor the concentrations of these metals at customer taps, to ensure they are below prescribed limits.

West Kern Water District conducts a lead and copper testing program every three years on tap water samples collected from participating residences that meet the sampling criteria, The results of lead and copper testing have remained below the limits set by the EPA since the District began its testing program.

The next lead and copper sampling and testing period will take place in the summer of 2021. If you received a letter asking you to enroll in the District’s Lead and Copper Sampling program click here to download Sampling Volunteer Form. Please send as an email attachment to wendy@wkwd.org.

How Lead Could Get into Drinking Water

West Kern Water District’s system does not have pipes made with lead. There are a small percentage of homes built prior to 1989 that may contain lead solder in the private water service lateral that connects the public system to the home, or in the home’s plumbing fixtures. 

In cases where private pipes, plumbing materials or plumbing fixtures contain lead, it may be possible for the metal to be leached out of the plumbing and into the drinking water due to the corrosive action of the water. Use of lead solder was banned from residential construction in 1989.

How to Have Your Home’s Water Tested

Residents concerned there may be lead in their home’s water can contact a laboratory to order a sample bottle and purchase a lead analysis for around $40. The lab will provide instructions on how to collect a sample for lead and copper testing. A current list of accredited laboratories can be viewed on the State Water Resources Control Board’s interactive map.

West Kern Water District does not test for lead in a home’s water supply unless the residence is enrolled in the Lead and Copper Sampling program.

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