Replacing Lead Water Services with Copper

Toronto, June 20, 2008—How to replace lead water services. Water works fittings incorporating lead-free alloys. Why partial replacement of a lead service is wrong. These subjects, and more, are covered in a new publication issued by the Canadian Copper & Brass Development, Underground Copper Water Services. (No. 44E)

"Today there are many important and exciting things happening in this market which are of interest to all Canadians," says Stephen Knapp, Executive Director of the Association.

New lead-free alloys are being used for components in contact with potable water. ECO BRASS®, Federalloy® and EnviroBrass™are covered in the new publication, illustrating the range of alloys now available for casting, machining and forging.

Regular copper tube or plastic coated? The latter can be considered for certain installation conditions. Plus a number of the latest installation methods are covered, such as open-trench, impact moling and vacuum excavation. These techniques are being used for the installation of new copper water services, and the replacement of old lead services.

Programs are underway across Canada to replace lead services. Municipal service replacement programs generally involve replacing the portion of the service from the main to the property line. The owners of the house or building are required to cover the cost of the section from the property line to the building. As a result, partial replacement of only the municipal portion often occurs.

"When it comes to programs to replace lead services, complete replacement should be mandatory," according to Knapp. Partial replacement procedures are being criticized by a number of experts, because of evidence that lead levels can increase in the short term. Some municipalities have introduced financial assistance programs for homeowners.

The Canadian Copper & Brass Development Association is Canada's central source for authoritative technical information on applications for copper, brass and bronze. CCBDA Publications No. 44E (English) and 44F (French) are now available free of charge. Contact the CCBDA toll free at 1-877-640-0946, e-mail at, or fax at (416) 391-3823.

Contact: Canadian Copper & Brass Development Association
Toll Free 1-877-640-0946
Stephen Knapp