'Flush the pipes': Tips for businesses getting ready to open in Phase One

Posted at 1:43 PM, May 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-13 07:30:54-04

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. - Phase One for many businesses across the state will happen this Friday, according to Governor Ralph Northam.

That includes restaurants with outdoor seating (with limitations), some daycares as well as some retail shops.

"You're getting back to your normal operations and this may not be your first thought, but it's an easy couple of steps," said Whitney Katchmark, Principal Water Resources Engineer with the Hampton Roads Planning District Commission.

Katchmark says now is the time businesses need to flush the pipes.

"A lot of people, if they haven’t been using their building, there is water sitting in pipes or in their water heater and it's stagnant," Katchmark.

The commission says to:

  • First run cold water for at least 30 minutes.
  • Clean all filters on faucets, sprayers and flush all toliets several times.
  • If your business is multi storied, start with the lowest floor and work your way up.
  • For hot water, run for at least 45 minutes.
  • Make sure your water heater is set to 120 degrees.
  • Discard any ice in your machine, and make several batches to ensure water is clean.

"All of this is important because a change in disinfection can allow scale inside the pipes, and that is a protective coating that can allow metal to dissolve in water," said Katchmark.

For more information on opening business procedures, click here.

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