We’re lucky in Victoria to have some of the best drinking water in the world – quite literally – running on tap.

Do I need a water filter?

You don’t need to filter your water as we’ve already done all the hard work in ensuring your water is of the highest quality.

Some customers with special needs however, such as those with allergies and/or special health requirements, may want to install a water filter. 

To make sure your water stays safe and clean, it’s really important to maintain your filter properly (see manufacturer's instructions). Otherwise, bacteriological contaminants can build up in your filter and end up in your water.

Choosing the right filter for your needs

​Filter type


​Element Type Filter or Sediment Filter

Suitable for removing colour or sediment by trapping fine suspended materials in the filter element material.
​Activated Charcoal Filter or Carbon Filter

​Designed to remove and/or to absorb taste and odours such as chlorine or organics in the water.

​Ion Exchange

​Removes iron, flouride and heavy metals, but not organic chemicals.

​Reverse Osmosis/Distiller Filter

​Designed to remove all chemicals, both natural and added.

Before you buy a filter

If you decide to buy a water filter, make sure to think about the following:

  • South East Water believes filters aren’t necessary.

  • Boiling water for five minutes is enough to kill all harmful bacteria with no ongoing maintenance costs.

  • Standing water at room temperature, or in a fridge, for two hours will remove chlorine-related taste and smell.

  • Read the filter manufacturer’s instructions very carefully to understand the changing, cleaning of elements or filter cartridges, flow rates and water service connections.

  • Do you know the level of backup service provided by the manufacturer or supplier?

  • What are the ongoing maintenance costs?

  • It’s essential to maintain your filter regularly in line with the manufacturer's instructions. Otherwise, a concentrated dose of the materials you’re trying to filter out may end up in your water.

  • Flush your filter before using it, especially if it has been standing for long periods, such as overnight.

  • Low levels of natural sediment exist in the water network. Sometimes, this sediment can build up and clog or cause issues with your filter. We can't offer you compensation if this happens.

Water filters only treat symptoms of discoloured or poor-tasting/smelling water, not the causes.

If your water seems different to normal, find out what to do next. 

Is fluoride added to the water?

Fluoride is a naturally occurring compound found in plants and rocks.

Melbourne Water adds fluoride to the water supply at the initial treatment stage in line with recommendations from the Department of Health. Fluoridation doesn’t alter the taste or smell of water and it helps protect people of all ages from tooth decay.

Caring for your household appliances and aquariums

The water supplied to your property can affect how you care for your household appliances, such as dishwashers, washing machines, kettles, irons, hot water services and aquariums. 

Instruction manuals for your household appliances usually mention water hardness or total dissolved solids (TDS) because these values can affect the operation and maintenance of the appliances.

Find out more about caring for your household appliances and aquariums in this fact sheet.

What is water hardness?

When your drinking water seeps through rock, it collects traces of natural minerals like calcium, magnesium, iron and manganese.

Hardness is a measure of the concentration of these minerals in milligrams per litre (mg/L).

High water hardness makes it difficult to make a lather using soap and can cause scaling in hot water pipes, fittings and appliances.

Is my water hard?

The typical hardness level of water delivered in South East Water's area is between 12 – 45 mg/L which is considered ’soft’ by international standards.