What To Do After A Boil Water Advisory Has Ended

What To Do After A Boil Water
Advisory Has Ended
Food Establishments – Checklist
When a food service establishment is notified that the boil water advisory has ended and the drinking water
supply is safe, the following actions need to be taken before you consume the water.
 Unscrew and remove the faucet aerator (screen)
 Turn on each cold water faucet/tap slowly
 Run cold water for five minutes
 Clean and reinstall aerator
Faucet aerator
To clear hot water pipes and water heater of untreated water:
 Run hot water only at all faucets and flush until water runs cool or typically for a minimum of:
o 15 minutes for a typical household 40 gallon hot water tank
o 30 minutes for a hot water tank greater than 40 gallons
o Consult water system professionals regarding the draining, flushing, or treatment
for large capacity hot water tanks/boilers designed to deliver hot water.
 Hot water is then safe to use for washing of dishes, pots and pans, etc. by hand.
Always read and follow the owner’s manual for directions to clean and flush all appliances that use
 Flush, clean, and sanitize appliances that use tap water (such as spray misters, coffee and tea
urns, ice machines, glass washers, dishwashers) according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
 Run water softeners through a regeneration (flush) cycle.
 After flushing hot water piping, run empty dishwasher one time.
Beverage Dispensers
 Flush, clean, and sanitize beverage dispensers according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
 Consult service representative for further information on procedures for your specific unit.
Drinking Fountains / Water Coolers
 Run drinking fountains continuously for 5 minutes to flush the system.
 Replace filter if applicable.
Water Filters
Water filters that are commonly used in refrigerators, faucets, and under the sink, etc. are not designed to
remove the specific bacteria commonly present during boil water advisory. If you ran water through your
filter during the boil water advisory, the filter could be contaminated.
 Remove and discard water filters
 Replace with a new filter following flushing
Note: If you cannot flush or run water when filter is removed, replace with new filter after
flushing. Always follow manufacturer’s directions for filter replacement.
Portable Humidifiers
 Discard any water used in the device.
 Rinse the device with clean water and sanitize.
 If your humidifier has a filter, sanitize the humidifier and replace the filter.
o Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when you use bleach or any other
cleaning product.
o Use distilled or demineralized water in humidifiers.
Furnace Humidifiers
There is potential for bacteria to grow on humidifier pads and in humidifier reservoirs after a boil water
 Follow manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning and flushing
Ice Machines
 Discard ice from ice machines.
 Clean and sanitize per manufacturer’s instructions.
 Flush ice machines by following the manufacturer’s instructions, including:
o Flush the water line to the machine inlet.
o Close the valve on the water line behind the machine.
o Disconnect the water line from the machine inlet.
o Open the valve and run 5 gallons of water through the valve. Dispose of this water.
o Close the valve.
o Reconnect the water line to the machine inlet.
o Open the valve.
o Replace any filters and sanitize filter holders.
o Flush the water lines in the machine.
o Turn on the machine.
o Make ice for 1 hour and dispose of this ice.
o Clean and sanitize all parts and surfaces that come in contact with water and ice per the
manufacturer’s instructions.
All food service establishments in the areas of the lifted boil water advisory should immediately implement
Recovery Protocols from the Emergency Action Plan for Retail Food Establishments available at
For more information, contact Environmental Health Services at 248-858-1312.
The Oakland County Health Division will not deny participation in its programs based on race, sex, religion, national origin,
age or disability. State and federal eligibility requirements apply for certain programs.
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