ROSENBERG, Texas (KTRK) -- The City of Rosenberg announced its public water system would be temporarily converting the disinfectant used in the distribution system from chloramine to free chlorine from June 6 through June 26.
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According to a news release, the city said residents might experience taste and odor changes associated with the temporary disinfectant conversion.
Chloramine, free chlorine combined with ammonia, is widely used as a disinfectant because it persists for long periods while also limiting the formation of disinfection byproduct contaminants, the news release said.
Officials said prolonged use of chloramine in combination with other factors like high temperatures or stagnation of water might result in the growth and persistence of organic matter within the pipes of the distribution system, which may hinder the ability to maintain an adequate disinfectant residual. A temporary conversion to free chlorine, partnered with flushing activities, helps rid distribution pipes of this organic matter and improve overall water quality.
Even though customers may notice a slight chlorine taste or odor in the tap water, Rosenberg officials said it is safe to drink and use for cooking, bathing, and other everyday uses.
During this period, Rosenberg officials will sample and test the water to monitor the effectiveness of the temporary change. Once the free chlorine disinfection process is complete, city officials said they would return to the chloramine disinfection.
The news release said that the temporary change in the treatment process is performed following state and federal drinking water regulations.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, which regulates water quality, has approved this method for routine maintenance of potable water distribution systems.
City officials said users of home kidney dialysis machines, owners of tropical fish aquariums, and managers of stores and restaurants with fish and shellfish holding tanks are advised that testing and removing free chlorine residuals differ from those used for chloramine residuals.
If not appropriately handled, Rosenberg officials said both types of residuals might affect users of kidney dialysis machines and fish and other aquatic animals.