Lead and Copper Rule (LCR) Program
In accordance with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Lead and Copper Rule (LCR), Concord Public Works tests for lead and copper on a three-year schedule. The last round of lead and copper sampling was performed in the summer of 2020 and will be collected next during the summer of 2023. A total of 30 homes throughout town are sampled on this schedule to confirm the effectiveness of our corrosion control efforts. If an individual home exceeds EPA’s action level for these parameters, we notify the residents directly and inform them of ways to reduce exposure to lead and copper in their drinking water.
In 2020, Concord’s 90th percentile was 6 parts per billion (PPB) for lead and 0.28 parts per million (PPM) for copper. The regulations require that 90% of samples taken have lead levels below 15 PPB and copper levels below 1.3 PPM. If samples collected exceeded these action levels, public notification would happen in a timely manner and corrective actions would be taken immediately to remedy the situation.
- Lead and copper testing has been conducted intermittently within Concord ’s public drinking water system since 1996 in accordance with EPA guidelines.
- At no time during this monitoring period has the reporting action level for lead or copper ever been exceeded.
- The major sources of elevated lead levels in drinking water are lead-based solder used to join copper pipes, faucets and other fixtures made of brass and chrome-plated brass, and in some cases, pipes made of lead within a home or that connect a home to the water main (service lines).
- In 1986, pipe solder containing greater than 0.2% lead was banned for residential plumbing purposes. At the same time, Congress put restrictions on the lead content of faucets, pipes, and other plumbing materials.
- If you suspect elevated lead levels from your drinking water, testing can be conducted to determine if lead levels are safe. Please call 978-318-3250 for more information.
- The following actions can help reduce possible exposure to lead from your drinking water:
- Flush your cold water tap for several minutes, or until the water is noticeably colder, prior to drinking or cooking with your tap water. This brings in fresh water from the distribution system that has not been exposed to your internal plumbing for an extended period of time (this is important, as -most sources of lead are typically found in your home plumbing system). Better yet, collect a gallon of water once you’ve flushed your pipes and store it in your refrigerator for future use.
- Replace older fixtures in your home that may contain elevated levels of lead. Do not use your hot water tap to collect water for drinking or cooking with. This is because metals, like lead and copper, dissolve into hot water faster than cold water from your household plumbing.
- Replace lead service lines if present. For help determining if your service line contains lead and for additional information on our Lead Service Line Replacement Program, please call the Water & Sewer Division at 978-318-3250.