Water – frequently asked questions
Where does our water come from?
You can’t really see how water is delivered into your home. Most of us just turn on the tap and never think about pipes
running into and out of our houses, offices or schools.
Water flows through the catchment into creeks and rivers and is contained in lakes by major holding dams. These dams
control the release of water downstream. Water is then piped from the dam to a treatment station where impurities are
allowed to settle and chemical treatment is carried out to improve the quality and health of the water. It then travels through
a system of pipes that runs into your house.
Does Council allow greywater reuse in premises located in a sewered area?
Greywater reuse in sewer benefit areas is now permitted under State government legislation subject to certain conditions.
For instance an approval (compliance permit) is required before greywater from laundry tubs, baths, basins and showers
can be discharged on the premise.
No Council approval is required to discharge greywater from a washing machine pump hose on the premise. Greywater
from kitchen sinks is not permitted to be discharged on the premise.
Where is our drinking water treated?
Maroochy Shire has three water treatment plants to supply treated water to the Shire:
• Kenilworth Water Treatment Plant
• Image Flat Water Treatment Plant
Lander's Shute Water Treatment Plant (Caloundra Maroochy Water Supply Board).
Is fluoride added to my water?
No, Maroochy Shire Council does not add fluoride to the drinking water, however, fluoride may occur naturally in the water.
Fluoride tablets may be purchased from a pharmacy.
Is my drinking water safe with chlorine added?
Chlorine is added to the water supply to kill germs, a chlorine residual is maintained in the water to stop any re-
contamination of the supply within the distribution system. The residuals required to effectively maintain the system are
minimal and quite safe
Is aluminium added to the shire's drinking water?
Aluminium Sulphate (alum) is added to the raw water to remove fine particles of clay and bacteria. The alum attracts these
fine particles and forms an alum floc which is taken out of the water during the sedimentation and filtration stage of the
treatment process. The final water leaving the treatment plants has no or minimal aluminium residual.
My ice cubes are cloudy. Are they okay to use?
As the ice forms, air becomes entrapped resulting in a cloudy appearance within the ice cube. This is completely harmless.
Commercially produced ice is stirred during the freezing process, this eliminates the cloudy appearance
What causes the stains on my glassware and shower door?
Minerals dissolved in water, as well as any soap residual remain behind after the water has evaporated. These deposits
are harmless. The whitish layer on your pot plants is caused in a similar manner when minerals are left behind on the leaf
or soil surface as the water evaporates
Why is my water sometimes discoloured? Is discoloured water safe to use?
Discolouration may be caused by a number of different reasons:
• Yellow to redish brown water: Iron in the water. Usually caused from old iron pipes corroding. The water may
cause brown stains on laundry items. Scouring of the water mains, this is caused by an increase in water velocity.
Water velocity may have increased due higher demand, fire fighting, broken mains or routine maintenance.
• Blue or blue stains: This may be due to copper corrosion of your internal plumbing, especially if your hot water
cylinder is made from copper.
• White, cloudy or milky water: This may be caused by air in the water, which is harmless. However, if the water
remains milky after it has stood for a minute you should contact Council.
• Dark brown to black water: Presence of manganese in the water supply may cause water to discolour. Manganese
occurs naturally. Also, as for the yellow to reddish brown water above.
What causes tap water to taste and smell odd?
The main causes of taste or odour in water are:
• Chlorine - chlorine is added to the water to kill harmful germs, and may give the water a slight taste and odour.
Algae are found in Council's raw water storages, certain types of algae impart taste and odour to water. Council's water
treatment plants dose the water with powdered activated carbon to adsorb the taste and odour causing substances.