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The original item was published from 2/7/2023 1:00:38 PM to 3/15/2023 8:17:04 AM.

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Posted on: February 7, 2023

[ARCHIVED] Important Notice to Water Customers: Chlorine Conversion Notice

2023 Chlorine Conversion Notice graphic

Important Notice to Water Customers: Chlorine Conversion Notice

As part of a regular maintenance program Cocoa Utilities Department will conduct a free chlorine conversion starting March 3, 2023 through March 23, 2023.

During this process, the water will be completely safe for consumption and use. However, some customers will notice the difference in odor and taste from free chlorine.

Why change disinfection method?

Nitrification and biofilm growth within distribution systems is an issue for drinking water treatment plants utilizing chloramine disinfection. Many chloraminated plants periodically switch to chlorine disinfection for several weeks to mitigate these issues.

What is a free chlorine conversion or temporary change in disinfection?

A free chlorine conversion occurs when a water system that typically uses chloramine removes ammonia (needed to form chloramine) from the treatment process, and disinfects the water with only chlorine. Chlorine is more effective than chloramine at inactivating certain types of bacteria. Excess ammonia, which can accumulate in a chloramine-treated distribution system over time, is a source of food for specific types of bacteria that are harmless to people. These bacteria can make it difficult for public water systems to maintain a disinfectant residual, which means that microorganisms that are harmful to people can grow.

Changing the disinfection method periodically is a common practice by many public water systems throughout the country to reduce the number of the bacteria so that a satisfactory disinfectant residual can be maintained throughout the distribution system. Chlorine conversions can be used as a preventative strategy or to stop nitrification (the microbial process that converts ammonia and similar nitrogen compounds into nitrite and nitrate), which can diminish water quality. According to a 2016 EPA survey, 25 to 40 percent of the utilities that use chloramine reported using this method to control nitrification.

Public water systems notify their customers prior to a chlorine conversion, because changes in taste and odor may briefly occur. Cocoa Utilities Dept. is currently sending out notifications with the latest water bills. For more information call Don Downs at 321-433-8705 or email

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