Measuring water quality

Measuring the quality of water is very important to ensure the water is of the highest quality and safe to drink 100% of the time.

The water quality is tested in Melbourne’s catchment storages (such as Thomson reservoir), through the treatment processes and throughout the transfer and reticulation system. South East Water has over 1000 sample taps throughout our system - at storages and tanks, on transfer mains and at customers taps, to ensure every customer receives water of the highest quality. Over 8,000 samples are collected each year from South East Water’s reticulation system, with many parameters analysed from each sample.

There are many parameters that are measured to ensure the water is of a high quality. Some of these parameters are measured for aesthetic purposes, such as colour and hardness, others are measured for health purposes, such as E. coli.

Drinking water quality is heavily regulated in Victoria and Melbourne has some of the best supplies of water. A large proportion of Melbourne’s water is from closed catchments, which means no one is permitted into these areas. The water from these areas is of such a quality that it does not require filtration. Other supplies into South East Water’s area which are not supplied by protected catchments, are supplied through filtration processes.