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Water Treatment Process

The treatment process begins with aeration, which causes the metals to begin oxidizing (rusting) naturally. Aeration also removes most of the hydrogen sulfide in the water. After some detention time, an oxidizing chemical is added to ensure that oxidation is complete before filtering. Any metals not fully oxidized will simply pass through the filters. The filters also remove any remaining hydrogen sulfide.

Water Plant Filters and Softeners 

Water is then softened to remove calcium and magnesium. The softeners remove all hardness, so it is necessary to bypass a fraction of the water in order to reach the desired hardness level. Softening is by far the most expensive aspect of this treatment system. The salt used to regenerate the softeners accounts for a third of the Water Treatment Plant's operational costs, including electricity. Extremely soft water also has a corrosive effect in the distribution system, resulting in increased wear and maintenance of pumps, valves, and metallic pipe/fittings. Our finished water hardness level is the result of research, testing and consultation with surrounding systems utilizing similar source water and treatment techniques.

Water Plant Chemical Feed System 

Chlorine and ammonia are then added for disinfection and prevention of microbial growth in the distribution system. Orthophosphate, a corrosion inhibitor, is also added to further prevent the finished water from reacting with metallic parts (i.e. iron, lead, copper) for the City's distribution and home plumbing systems. Waters from the Cove City storage tank and the Water Treatment Plant storage tank are then blended before entering the distribution system, at which point the water is ready for consumption.

The City of New Bern's distribution system consists of a four million gallon ground storage tank, six elevated storage tanks, and three booster pump stations.

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Water Booster Pump Station  4 Million Gallon Storage Tank