What should I do during a Boil Water Advisory or Notice?
You should boil tap water vigorously for at least 1 full minute prior to using it for drinking or cooking (the minute starts when the water begins to bubble). This includes water used for brushing teeth, making ice, washing raw foods, preparation of drinks, and water for pets. Wait for the water to cool before using it, or store it in the refrigerator in a clean container. Boiling removes harmful bacteria in the water that may cause illness. You should throw away ice made during the time the advisory or notice was issued, as freezing does not kill bacteria.

After an advisory or notice has been lifted (if contamination of the water system did occur), you should flush household pipes, ice makers, water fountains, etc. prior to using for drinking or cooking. Flushing simply means letting the water run to ensure that no contaminated water remains in your pipes. Follow the these guidelines for flushing:

  • Run all cold water faucets in your home for one minute
  • To flush automatic ice makers, make three batches of ice and discard
  • Run water softeners through a regeneration cycle
  • Run drinking water fountains for one minute
  • Run water coolers with direct water connections for five minutes.

Show All Answers

1. Do I still need to boil my water if I have a filter system on my faucet or refrigerator?
2. How long must a Boil Water Advisory or Notice be in effect?
3. How will I be notified if my home / business is affected by an advisory or notice?
4. How will I know when the advisory or notice has been lifted?
5. Is the water safe for washing dishes, laundry, and bathing?
6. Since an advisory is a precautionary measure, will I get sick if I drink the water or if I drank some water before I found out about the advisory?
7. Under what circumstances will Charleston Water System issue a Boil Water Advisory or Notice?
8. What are a Do Not Drink Notice and a Do Not Use Notice?
9. What are total coliform bacteria?
10. What is a Boil Water Advisory and is it the same as a Boil Water Notice?
11. What should I do during a Boil Water Advisory or Notice?
12. Where can I find more information?
13. Will DHEC issue a Boil Water Advisory in preparation for a hurricane?