The City of Des Plaines Public Works and Engineering Department has been working on a major infrastructure improvement project to replace lead or galvanized water lines across the city to reduce exposure to lead in drinking water, which can be harmful to human health. (Prior to the 1980’s, water systems, including the City’s water mains and water lines (or pipe) that runs from the main to the home’s internal plumbing commonly used lead material.)
The next step in this project is to know if the pipes in your home or business have lead, and we need your help.
What Do I Need to Do?
Test and identify the material of your water pipes.
Step 1: Locate the Water Service Line & Test Area
The water service line is typically found in the basement. Identify a test area on the pipe between the point where it comes into the building and the inlet valve. If the pipe is covered or wrapped, expose a small area of metal.
Note: If your pipes don't look like this example, please still try to test the pipe material. If you have questions, contact Public Works.
Step 2: Test the Pipe Material
You can find out your type of pipe by doing the scratch, magnet and tapping tests. Take note of the reaction.
Step 3: Report your Results
Once the City collects this information, we will develop a plan to replace the lead service line and will coordinate directly with impacted property owners.
Not sure what kind of pipes you have? Call Public Works at 847-391-5464 to schedule an inspection. Have questions? Email us at PublicWorks@desplaines.org.
Thank you for your help in this project so that we can take the necessary steps to ensure all of our water customers have safe water to drink.