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Cloudy water is just air

Photo via Massachusetts Water Resources Authority.

WALLA WALLA, Washington – Some residents of Walla Walla have noticed water is coming out of the taps cloudy. The city’s public works department says not to worry.

“This is a harmless result of air in our water system,” the city of Walla Walla said in a post on Facebook and Twitter.

The city is working to eliminate the problem and added in the post “Our water continues to meet all state drinking water standards.”

The U.S. Geological Survey agrees. Cloudy water usually happens when it’s cold outside, because cold water holds more air than warm water.

“In the winter, water travels from the reservoir, which is very cold, and warms up during its travel to your tap,” according to USGS Water Questions and Answers. “Some of the air that is present is no longer soluble and comes out of solution.”

USGS says that water pressure can also create cloudy water, since water that’s under pressure holds more air than water that is not pressurized.

Don’t like cloudy water? The experts say just let it sit in an open container until the bubbles naturally disappear.


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