600 South Fourth Street, Stoughton WI (608) 873-3379 [email protected]
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2024 Summer Hydrant Flushing Program
Posted: Wednesday, May 01, 2024
Fire hydrant flushing.
Stoughton Utilities will be conducting its annual summer flushing program of water mains and fire hydrants. Flushing operations will start Monday, May 13 and will be conducted weekdays between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Flushing operations will conclude approximately the first week in July.
Flushing of the water mains is conducted by opening the fire hydrants. The purpose of flushing is to remove sediment and mineral deposits that settle on the bottom of the water mains. Stoughton Utilities flushes our 75 miles of water mains at least once per year, which allows us to not only remove any sediment that has accumulated in the mains, but to also verify the proper operation of hydrants and valves and maintain firefighting capabilities.
Water Discoloration
Although this flushing is essential to provide high water quality and prevent long-term sedimentation and discoloration issues, it can cause short-term discoloration as the sediment is disturbed due to the higher water flows.

When sediment gets stirred up in the water system, the resulting discoloration will typically last approximately 2-4 hours or less. After this time, the sediment will settle back out and the water will become clear. You can speed up the process by turning on the cold water tap at full pressure nearest where the water enters your home, such as a basement laundry tub, or a first-floor sink, and allowing the water to run until it is clear. During these periods, it's important to try to avoid using hot water, as the sediment can be drawn into your hot water heater's water tank, which could require you to have to flush the tank later.
Laundry Tips
If you were in the process of washing laundry during a discoloration event, rewash the laundry once the water has cleared. Be sure to not dry them in the clothes dryer before treating the stains or rewashing, as the heat may cause the stains to set, and make them difficult or impossible to remove. When washing, use a rust stain remover or regular detergent, but never use chlorine bleach which can react with iron to form a permanent stain.
Contact Us
If you have concerns or special needs that would be affected by water main flushing, please contact us for the specific schedule for your neighborhood, or to discuss your situation. Schedules are approximate and can be affected by weather, crew size, and/or mechanical breakdowns, so changes may occur.