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does your water taste terrible?

Original post made by kevin heller, Civic Square, on Oct 10, 2010

For the past few weeks, my water has tasted terrible! The apartment folks tell me that this is a common problem throughout Pleasanton right now, but I am curious: are there others out there whose water has started to taste dirty or moldy? Thanks!

Comments (28)

Posted by dublinmike
a resident of Dublin
on Oct 11, 2010 at 10:21 am

dublinmike is a registered user.

Happens any time during August through October. I do not recall exactly the source but I believe it's either a change to well water or to Delta.

I believe it was last year that the water services district for Dublin was to install new filters but that appears not to be the case.

We have a built-in filtered water dispenser in the frig but the bathrooms are not, and there is a big difference. The taste quality is far superior through the charcoal filtered water.

Posted by Bill
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Oct 11, 2010 at 1:01 pm

We distill our drinking water. The distilled water is stored in a stainless steel holding tank. As the water is drawn from the holding tank, it is passed through a charcol filter. If the water is kept in the refrigerator, it has the same taste has snowmelt water from the high Sierra. This is the upside.

The downside is that I have to descale the boiling tank every month. This takes about 1/2 cup of concentrated hydrochloric acid in order to dissolve the mineral and organic desposits that precipatate out in the boiling process. Some months this precipatate looks and feels like concrete.

Posted by Tim
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2010 at 8:40 am

I have always had the understanding that you shouldn't make distilled water your standard drinking water. It has none of the minerals in it that make the water good for you. The "snowmelt water from the high Sierra" is not distilled, it has natural minerals in it. Maybe you shoul get a reverse osmosis filter for your water rather than distill it.

Posted by Lee
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2010 at 8:45 am

Off and on our tap water looks cloudy, whitish, and smells bad. I don't know what it is, but we installed a water filter for our whole house. It also protects the pipes from corrosion.

For those without a filter, put a Brita filter on your kitchen sink. At least for drinking and cooking it will be good quality.

Posted by j
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Oct 12, 2010 at 9:52 am

Yes, our water has had a dirty odor or fertilizer smell to it for over a month.

Posted by Jane
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2010 at 10:11 am

It could be that Obama's Science Czar, John Holdren, has implemented his mandatory sterilization program here...whereby a sterilant is added to our drinking water.

Sound preposterous?

Web Link

Posted by Meghan
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 12, 2010 at 12:54 pm

For those with kids, don't forget that our tap water is flouridated, which is important protection for growing teeth. By filtering, distilling, using an RO filter, or anything of that sort, you are removing that beneficial floride as well as other beneficial minerals. Despite sometimes tasting a bit strange, Pleasanton's water (from Zone 7) is actually well treated and will not hurt you. Check out the wealth of information at Zone 7's website:, especially the Consumer Confidence Report

Also, remember that if you use bottled water, not only are you paying a small fortune for your water and greatly increasing your carbon footprint, but you are also purchasing water that is subject to far fewer standards or regulations than "city" water...

Web Link

Web Link

Web Link

Posted by Downtowner
a resident of Downtown
on Oct 12, 2010 at 1:56 pm

Downtowner is a registered user.

The water in Pleasanton has had a musty odor and taste for many years (I moved here in the 1980s).

Posted by WhatIf...
a resident of Downtown
on Oct 12, 2010 at 2:31 pm

Always tastes bad at the end of summer; more well water in the mix than usual? Better after the rains start.

Posted by Salty Sally
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2010 at 4:23 pm

I believe the less pleasant taste comes from water from the Delta which gets pretty foul this time of the year -- less water flowing into the Delta, algae blooms, fertilizer and pesticide runoff at its peak,etc. Then, of course, there's the number one source of pollution in the Delta -- effluent from Sacramento's sewage treatment plant. If you've ever gone meandering by boat in the Delta this time of year you know just how foul the water is. The treatment plant may get the organisms out but they fix the taste problem. San Francisco has a reason for transporting their water from the Sierra through a pipeline.

Posted by Bill
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Oct 12, 2010 at 6:18 pm

Tim - didn't want to get into distilled water vs other kinds of water purification methods. But it is a known fact that, at most, you only get 5% of minerals through water, and it is even questionable whether the body can even assimulate the minerals that are in hard water. Plants can and that is why you need to eat a varied diet of foods. Distilling also removes bacteria, viruses, heavy metals, and organic pollutants. Cost to distill a gallon of water is around 18 cents. Cheap insurance.

You would be amazed at the stuff that remains after 50 gallons of Pleasanton water evaporates.

Posted by Mike Cheney
a resident of Downtown
on Oct 13, 2010 at 4:16 pm

You have a lot of options to help with the taste and odor of your water with different types of filter systems. When it comes to minerals and /or the removal of them, an R.O. system is the best way to do that. Softeners are good as a whole house system but not good to drink. Pleasantons water issues are ongoing and only going to get worse before they get better. We can help you with your water treatment needs. Give us a call or come by our showroom.
Mike Cheney
Valley Plumbing Home Center, Inc.

Posted by Downtowner
a resident of Downtown
on Oct 14, 2010 at 10:25 am

Downtowner is a registered user.

Very odd forum editing choices by the PW staff. For some reason, "Jane" is permitted to post a fringe theory about the Obama administration putting a "sterilant" [sic] in the water, but my remarks pointing out that as a fringe conspiracy theory were redacted. I don't object to editing by the staff, but at least make it consistent. If my remarks were removed as non-relevant, hers should have been as well.

(For the record, as a matter of science, even if so-called "sterilants" were added to the water, they would not have any effect on the taste or odor of the water, which has obviously been this way long before Obama took office.)

Posted by Lynn
a resident of Dublin
on Oct 14, 2010 at 11:40 am

I love the bad tasting water comments! Welcome to Dublin, where our residential water tastes bad 24/7!! The water in Dublin is so atrocious that even the dog refuses to drink it. It is absolutely the worst water ever, so we buy bottled water for our 75-pound dog, and feel horribly guilty that we're adding to an eco-disaster by burdeoning the landfills with plastic!!

Perhaps we should have bagged the BART Expansion and built a new and improved water treatment facility. I hear the Dublin SR Water District is on the brink of bankruptcy, so they're probably bagging the much needed improvements to the system, just to stay afloat. Each one of their board members should be forced to live and drink Dublin's water for a month, and then report back....Thank the GODS above for Aquafina Baby!!

Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 14, 2010 at 12:04 pm

We only drink bottled water, so I do not know about the taste of tap water.

But our water has too much calcium, you can see that when the dishes do not get clean if you use the new phosphate free detergent (they came out stained from the dishwasher and had to use vinegar to remove the stains).

I called the City of Pleasanton. They said that one of the plants is going through repairs, so we are getting water from wells (and not the delta), and according to them, the water should improve towards the end of october/beginning of november, when we will again get water from the delta (combination)

We'll see if it actually happens. I was told that many people had called the city to complain.

Posted by Aquaman
a resident of Civic Square
on Mar 1, 2012 at 5:35 pm

The water is still terrible here. Cloudy even with a filter. Happens at home and at the office here in Pleasanton. This is what city money should be used for. Fix it. Maybe allow Prop 215 storefront dispensaries for a nice source of revenue to go towards this awful water situation. Peace.

Posted by aw
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Oct 16, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Don't forget the cancer rate in pleasanton. Especially for those here since the 80s. In all honesty unless we get an erin brochovich around here. The city will continue to claim clean water. So for the water, taste bad, smells bad, is very murky and might kill you. Aren't we happy to pay so much for a area with filthy water. San ramons water taste great no funny color or odor. Too bad for us.

Posted by Troy
a resident of Hacienda Gardens
on Apr 23, 2015 at 6:42 pm

My water smells like plastic, tastes terrible ... I''m going to try boiling it and letting it cool before I drink it, it's REALLY bad .... I've noticed this at my workplace as well. At first I thought it was an issue with my apartment community but it's larger than that.

Posted by Map
a resident of Del Prado
on Apr 23, 2015 at 8:25 pm

Pleasan tons water has never been good, been here over 40 years, has never tasted or looked good right out of the tap!!! Filters people, FILTERS!!!!

Posted by Damon
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Apr 24, 2015 at 7:31 am

I've never noticed any problems with the taste of Pleasanton tap water. We have a 5-stage, reverse osmosis filter system that filters down to less than 1 nanometer which we got because of my wife's concern about chemicals in the water, but as far as the taste goes I've never noticed any difference between this ultra-filtered water and plain Pleasanton tap water.

Posted by manju
a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Jan 18, 2016 at 12:28 pm


We recently moved to pleasanton.Brought a townhome on black avenue.Moved here in june.we didnt see any difference in water in the beginning.But later in november we observed that there are lot of small black particles in our water.we use brita water filter for drinking.slowly i observed that the white filter became so black because of all the black particles its filtering.and still we saw our water is so dirty when we pour them in glass to drink.I thought it was the problem with my pipelines.But after reading all this Iam terrified.Now we r getting water in a can from outside and its costing 40 cents per gallon.Where as in other areas my friends say that they buy water for 20 cents per gallon.I dont know why Pleasanton is so costly.could some one please suggest me any solution. Iam so scared to use this water even for cooking, At the same time how much water can I get from outside for drinking and cooking.


Posted by Michael Austin
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Jan 18, 2016 at 2:28 pm

Michael Austin is a registered user.

You can purchase and install your own reverse osmosis system.
A top of the line that provides 1200 gallons day will fun just under 3K installed.

There are cheaper reverse osmoses systems. I recommend top of the line.

Posted by Tim
a resident of Birdland
on Jan 23, 2016 at 9:35 am

RO water is not optimal for drinking. Because it is totally pure it can leach minerals out of your body. Commercial RO waters add minerals back to the finished product.

Posted by Sam
a resident of Oak Hill
on Jan 23, 2016 at 10:01 am


Not true. Check out the answer below:

Q: Will I lose valuable trace minerals by drinking reverse osmosis water?

A: NO! Water is a poor source for obtaining necessary trace minerals. Lets take a moment to review why this is so:

1) Review the question immediately above—inorganic minerals are poorly utilized by the body.

2) The amount and quality of the minerals in tap water varies greatly from location to location.

3) Even in cities where the tap water contains very, very large qualities of dissolved minerals, you would have to consume huge quantities of water to obtain enough minerals to meet any established minimum daily requirements.

— As an example, the city of Lubbock, TX has what is considered very, very hard water with a high amount of dissolved minerals. With an average of 60 milligrams/liter of calcium, one would have to consume over 5 gallons of Lubbock tap water to meet the minimum daily requirement for calcium. Obviously then, the most frequent recommendation of 8 glasses per day (which is a low recommendation in our opinion) has no chance of providing a meaningful contribution to your daily calcium intake.

Web Link


Posted by Pete
a resident of Downtown
on Jan 23, 2016 at 10:50 am

If you call the city and they come out they will tell you your water is safe and meets the standards. That said the water has a funny smell during different times of the year and is fill with solids and minerals. You should put in an RO system or water softener if for no other reason than to protect your facets, sinks, piping and hot water heater. You will also lose water pressure to your washer and dishwasher because of the collection of solids.

Posted by Local
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 23, 2016 at 12:10 pm

For weeks my water has been gray, and I cannot see through it! I wonder if the highly paid water personnel drink clear water?

Posted by waterguy
a resident of California Somerset
on Jan 23, 2016 at 12:43 pm

My understanding is the city of Pleasanton actually gets it's water from Zone 7.

The Delta is a large source of water Pleasanton uses. The same water that 25M other people drink. Minerals and man made chemicals traveling through water is a real thing. Any amount of cleaning or system put in place will be better than no purification.

^ This has nothing to do with how much "clean water" the Pleasanton water staff drink Local.

Posted by Pete
a resident of Downtown
on Jan 23, 2016 at 7:34 pm

Pretty easy to send to a lobo ratify for testing.

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