City and Borough of Juneau
155 S. Seward Street
Juneau, Alaska 99801
tel. 907-586-5240
fax 907-586-5385

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Water Utility

Frequently Asked Questions


Is the water safe to drink?
Yes! Juneau’s drinking water meets all the federal and state drinking water standards.

Does my drinking water come from ground water or surface water?
We comes from both and it depends on where you live. For example most of the water for downtown, in the hospital area, and on Douglas Island comes from Last Chance Basin aquifer (ground water). All areas north of the hospital primarily receive surface water out of Salmon Creek Water Filtration Plant.

How does water get from the source to my house?
The water lines are a closed, pressurized system. Pumps and gravity help to push the water to homes and businesses. In other areas where the pressure may be too high, pressure reducing valves decrease the pressure to the taps.

What do you do to treat the water before I receive it?
Juneau has a very high quality water. Chlorine is added to the water for disinfection purposes, and soda ash is added to Salmon Creek water to reduce its corrosiveness.

Why does the water look dirty sometimes?
Parts of the system are old. Rust or sediments may have accumulated over the years and any changes in flow may disturb this material causing discolored water. Entrained air may also cause the water to look "milky".

Typical events that may cause temporary coloration of the water include:

  • Fires in your area
  • Breaks and/or repairs in the water main
  • Construction of new water mains
  • Hydrant flushing or other maintenance work

The water remains safe to drink.

What should I do when the water is discolored?
Let the water run for 5 or 10 minutes. If the problem does not go away after an hour, call the Water Utility.

What is a cross-connection?
A cross connection is a physical interconnection between the drinking water and possible sources of contaminated water. In the home, typical cross-connections may be from garden hoses, dishwashers, or heating systems.

Water meter questions:

Why is my water bill is so high?

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