Water Quality

BWG’s drinking water is continually monitored and tested for compliance with the Ontario Drinking Water Quality Standards. BWG’s water must meet over 100 strict health-based standards for microbiological, chemical and radiological parameters to ensure safe drinking water to its residents.

Our water quality sampling program ensures your water is safe.


Yellow water or brown scaling in water in BWG is a result of naturally occurring levels of iron found within the Town's groundwater supply.

The majority of yellow water inquiries are hot water related. When the treated water is heated in a hot water tank, the iron falls out of solution and builds up in the bottom of the tank. This is noticed more frequently in tanks with high water temperatures and relatively low water usage. Draining and flushing the hot water tank regularly may keep iron deposits from accumulating.

Taste and Odour

Sometimes the smell and taste of chlorine in the water can be a result of water sitting in household pipes for a prolonged period of time. This can be corrected by turning on some taps for a few minutes allowing fresh water into the household plumbing system and flushing any built-up organic matter (e.g. hair, soap, and food waste) which may have accumulated in drains. If a smell is noticed from the hot water supply, the hot water tank may require draining and flushing.

Cloudy Water

Cloudy water is a result of air captured (also known as entrained air) in the water, which creates tiny bubbles. These bubbles are harmless and will disappear if you let the water sit for a few minutes.

Sodium Levels in Treated Water

Sodium is often found naturally in drinking water and has no smell or colour, however, it can make the water taste salty at certain levels. Sodium in drinking water is not a health concern for most people, but it may be an issue for people with specific underlying health concerns or those on a sodium-restricted diet.

According to the provincial standards for drinking water quality, the aesthetic objective for sodium is 200 mg/L. The Town of BWG is required to advise the local Medical Officer of Health (MOH) of any test results for sodium exceeding 20 mg/L.

The following table summarizes sodium concentrations in the Town of BWG’s water supplies:


Location Average Sodium (mg/L)
​​​​Groundwater - Zone 1 ​62
​​​​Surface Water - Zone 2 ​​26.2

Water Hardness

The concept of water "hardness" is used to refer to the ability of the water to make lather from soap. Water is said to be "hard" if it is difficult to make soap suds. The two minerals that are most responsible for hardness are calcium and magnesium carbonate. Water hardness can also result in scaling on pipes and appliances (e.g. hot water tanks, dishwashers).​

The following table illustrates terms used to refer to relative water hardness and the corresponding range in chemical tests:

​​​Relative Hardness
​ ​​Hardness Range
mg/L CaCo3 Grains/Imperial gallon​
​​​​Soft 0-60​ ​​0 - 4.2
​​​​Moderately Hard ​61-120 ​​​4.2 - 8.4
​Hard ​121-180 ​8.4 - 12.6
​Very Hard ​More than 180 ​More than 12.6


The average hardness in the water supplies in BWG is summarized in the following table:​

​​​Location​ ​Average Hardness (mg/L)** ​​Grains/Imperial gallon*
​​​​Groundwater - Zone 1 ​110 ​​7.7
​​​​Surface Water - Zone 2 ​130 ​​​9.1

*Conversion factor from Hardness (mg/L) to Grains/Imp gallon: 0.07016​


The w​ater in the Town of BWG is typically moderately hard to hard in terms of the relative scale provided above.

The hardness of water is not known to have any specific health-related effects. Many people choose to install a water softener in their home to reduce the formation of scale in their water system and make washing easier.


Fluoride naturally occurs within the Town of BWG’s groundwater and is not manually added.

The average concentrations of fluoride found in BWG’s water supplies are listed below:

Location Fluoride (mg/L)
​​​​Groundwater - Zone 1 ​0.29
​​​​Surface Water - Zone 2 ​​0.1


According to the provincial standards for drinking water quality, the objective for fluoride is 1.5 mg/L. The Town of BWG is required to advise the local MOHand Spills Action Center (SAC) of any test results for fluoride exceeding 1.5 mg/L.



Home Treatment Devices

Some people use point-of-use treatment devices to filter their tap water prior to consumption. The intent of these systems is typically to remove some of the odours associated with disinfection that is used by the Town of BWG to ensure that the water is safe to drink. Improper usage or maintenance of a home treatment device can result in an impact of water quality.

The treated water supply in the Town of BWG is tested continually, both at the source and throughout the distribution system. It consistently meets and exceeds all guidelines and provincial standards for drinking water quality.

Please beware of vendors of water systems​ who may misrepresent themselves by suggesting they are hired by or affiliated with the Town, or make false claims about Town water quality.​

Customer Protection Ontario

Address: Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury, 100 Dissette St., Unit 7&8, Bradford, ON, L3Z 2A7

Phone: 905-775-5366, Send an Email

By GHD Digital