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Flushing Guidance

Steps to take when restoring water service

Header Flushing Guidance

On March 16, 2020 the City and County of San Francisco issued a Public Health Order requiring that residents stay home, with the only exception being for essential needs. The shelter-in-place order has been extended and remains in place until May 31, 2020. This order resulted in the mandatory closure of many buildings and businesses in the City.

The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) would like to remind you that after any extended period of closure there may be water-quality issues that emerge when you return, reopen your business and begin using water again.

The closure of a building may result in significant reduction in water use throughout the building, that in turn may result in degradation in water quality. Water-borne bacteria may have grown in the stagnant water in your internal plumbing system.

It is important to take steps in advance to mitigate the impacts of the reduction in water use.

The SFPUC has provided start-up flushing guidance and a checklist to assist you in preparing your water system to ensure that high-quality, safe and reliable water service can be restored.

It is recommended that you consult with a plumbing contractor or other health and safety contractor as you implement these measures.

Please contact the SFPUC Water Quality Division at (650) 652-3100 M-F 8:00am-5:00pm if you have any questions or need any additional information.

If, after completing the steps outlined, you experience any issues with your water, such as discoloration, odor or taste concerns, contact 3-1-1 for assistance.

From within San Francisco: 

3-1-1 (for TTY, press 7) or (415) 701-2311

From outside San Francisco:
(415) 701-2311 (for TTY, press 7)
TTY direct: (415) 701-2323


Last updated: 10/6/2020 4:55:00 PM