We have updated our Privacy Policy. Our policy describes how we may collect, use, process and share your personal information. We use cookies which vary by type and jurisdiction. 
Visit the Your Privacy Choices link at the bottom of our website, which describes cookies we use and how to manage them.

Fluoridation Information

San Jose Water is committed to supporting public health policy as formulated by the County Health Officer. Water fluoridation is simply a process in which naturally occurring fluoride levels in drinking water are adjusted to an optimal level recommended by the California Water Resources Control Board Division of Drinking Water. The optimal fluoride concentration for the prevention of tooth decay level is currently set at 0.7 mg/L (parts per million). SJW’s own sources of supply from its wells and surface water from the Santa Cruz Mountains contain low levels of naturally occurring fluoride.

Valley Water (Santa Clara County wholesaler) began delivering fluoridated water to SJW in 2016. Some customers throughout our service area are already receiving fluoridated water. We are continuing to evaluate water samples to determine fluoride levels and will provide updated information as it becomes available.

Years of research studies, along with the endorsement of organizations such as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the American Dental Association (ADA), the American Medical Association, the American Cancer Society, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the National Institutes of Health, the National Parents-Teachers Association, and the World Health Organization, support and have shown that fluoridating public drinking water is not only safe and effective, but also the best method of improving oral health in a community.

To express fluoride related comments or concern, please call the Valley Water fluoride information line at (408) 630-2020. For questions on drinking water safety, members of the public are encouraged to contact Dr. Howard Pollick, Professor at the UCSF School of Dentistry, at (415) 476-9872 or howard.pollick@ucsf.edu.

Fluoride FAQs

What is fluoride?

Fluoride is a naturally-occurring element found abundantly in rocks, soil, and fresh and ocean water. When fluoride is present in drinking water at optimal levels, it has been shown to promote oral health by preventing tooth decay. Fluoride is a mineral that is commonly found in the environment. Fluoride reaches water sources by leaching from soil and rocks.

How much fluoride is in my drinking water?  

Since beginning fluoridation of northeast Santa Clara County in 2016, Valley Water has supplemented the naturally-occurring fluoride in your drinking water to a target of 0.7 parts per million (ppm). This is the optimal level recommended by the California State Water Resources Control Board’s Division of Drinking Water (DDW), with a control range of 0.6 ppm to 1.2 ppm. 

When added to drinking water at the optimal level, the effectiveness of fluoride in reducing tooth decay has been documented in scientific literature for more than 75 years.

If I use fluoridated toothpaste, am I already getting enough fluoride to protect against decay?

According to the ADA, “Even in an era with widespread availability of fluoride from other sources, studies show that community water fluoridation prevents at least 25% of tooth decay in children and adults throughout the life span.” 

What chemical is Valley Water using to fluoridate its supplies?

Fluorosilicic acid is the most commonly used fluoride additive by large water systems and is approved for use by the Division of Drinking Water, who regulates our water. The selected fluorosilicic acid is certified for compliance with the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) Standard 60. ANSI/NSF Standard 60 ensures that chemicals used to treat drinking water do not contribute contaminants to the water.

Should pregnant women consume fluoridated water?

For fluoride-related medical or dental concerns, including consumption of fluoridated drinking water by women during pregnancy, customers are encouraged to consult with their physicians, pediatricians, or dentists.

Should I mix infant formula with fluoridated water?

The ADA states that: “It is safe to use fluoridated water to mix infant formula. If your baby is primarily fed infant formula, using fluoridated water might increase the chance for mild enamel fluorosis, but enamel fluorosis does not affect the health of your child or the health of your child’s teeth.” However, if you prefer not to use fluoridated water for infant formula, you may choose to breastfeed, use ready-to-feed formula, and/or use low-fluoride bottled water to mix your formula. Parents and caregivers are encouraged to talk to their dentists and pediatricians about what’s best for their child.

I would rather not drink water that has fluoride added to it. What choices do I have?

You have several choices. Many brands of bottled water contain some levels of fluoride. You can call the consumer information number on the bottle's label and ask about the level of fluoride and whether this level is naturally low. Other brands of bottled water take tap water and then further treat it. The additional treatment, if by reverse osmosis or distillation, may remove a significant amount of both naturally occurring fluoride and any fluoride added through fluoridation.  

You can also use home treatment devices that utilize reverse osmosis systems or distillation. You can browse a list of state-certified devices here.

NSF International, a not-for-profit testing organization, also certifies certain reverse osmosis home treatment devices and distillation units for the reduction of fluoride. You can search online for NSF-certified products here. Home treatment devices must be maintained according to the manufacturer's instructions to ensure their effectiveness.

Will fluoridated water harm my pets?

No. “Fluoride in levels administered for drinking water is safe for humans and all animals. Over 50 years of research and experience have shown fluoridation at optimal levels does not harm people or the environment.” 

Where can I get more information about fluoride?

In addition to Santa Clara County's website, the ADA and CDC links below provide extensive information about fluoride and fluoridation.

See Fluoride Concentration for Your Location

When you enter your location into the tool below, you will receive a water fluoridation number that is calculated based on a six-month running average of the fluoride concentration levels collected at the sample station nearest you. Average concentrations are updated monthly, but are expected to stay relatively consistent from month to month. Fluoride samples are collected at over 100 locations throughout the distribution system on a regular basis.

US Public Health Service recommends water has fluoride concentration levels of 0.7 milligrams per liter. In areas with fluoride concentration levels below 0.6 milligrams per liter, the AAP and the ADA recommend that children between the ages of 6 months and 16, who are at risk for tooth decay, be prescribed a daily fluoride supplement.

Fluoride Concentration

Map of location


The referenced recommendations on this page regarding fluoride concentration levels are not recommendations, opinions, or positions of San Jose Water (SJW). Nothing on this page or referenced herein constitutes any representation or warranty made, given, or implied by SJW regarding the effects, quality, safety, or benefit of fluoride. SJW disclaims any liability allegedly resulting from any reliance on the content of this page, any referenced information, or any referenced recommendation herein.