Safety and Overall Quality

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Is the water safe to drink?

Yes. The water delivered by SJWC must meet stringent drinking water standards established by the California Department of Public Health and the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA). Every year, SJWC prepares and distributes an Annual Water Quality Report describing the water's compliance with these standards. For most standards, there are no detectable contaminants at all - the water is so pure that the required laboratory test methods cannot measure any contaminant present in the sample. SJWC and the Santa Clara Valley Water District are members of a unique pro-active partnership that is leading by example in protecting our water.

Some people are on a salt-free diet and must be aware of sodium. How much sodium is in tap water?

Nearly all the sodium people consume every day comes from food, not water. Our Water Quality Report provides an analysis of San Jose Water Company drinking water including the sodium content. You may request a copy of the report by phoning (408)279-7900 or e-mail us at If you are on a sodium restricted diet, consult your physician regarding your special requirements and call us for the range of sodium content in the water your area.

Can accurate tests of my water be made at my home?

No. There are cases where sales people have added a liquid chemical to tap water samples turning it cloudy or changing its color. Consumers are told that these tests can detect solvents, metals, pesticides, and toxic chemicals. They cannot. Highly accurate analytical instruments used in state-certified laboratories provide the only dependable test results. You may obtain the name and phone numbers of these laboratories by calling our Customer Service department at 279-7900.

Do I need to take special precautions if I need water for an aquarium or a kidney dialysis machine?

Yes. In order to comply with USEPA and California Department of Health Services regulations, SJWC uses disinfectants such as chlorine or chloramine. These disinfectants must be removed before the water can be used in aquariums or kidney dialysis machines. Please consult your doctor or tropical fish store for guidance.

Should I buy bottled water?

Drinking bottled water should be a matter of taste, not concern for your safety since public water agencies must comply with very stringent regulations. Each of San Jose Water Company's supplies meets all state and federal drinking water standards. Bottled water is not as stringently regulated, and very expensive at more than $1 per gallon when compared to less than a penny per gallon for your tap water. Reverse osmosis and activated carbon drinking water filtration systems offer an alternative to bottled water.

If you are on a sodium-restricted diet, you may want to discuss bottled water with your doctor. Certain brands of bottled water may contain less sodium than your tap water. If you are in doubt of the specific sodium levels in your particular area, please feel free to call our Customer Service Representatives at 279-7900.