Table of Contents
Can You Drink Tap Water in New Bern?
Yes, New Bern's tap water is generally considered safe to drink as New Bern has no active health based violations of the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) that we are aware of. Other factors such as lead piping in a home, or low levels of pollutants on immunocompromised individuals, should also be considered, however. To find more recent info we might have, you can check out our boil water notice page or the city's water provider website.
According the EPA’s ECHO database, from April 30, 2019 to June 30, 2022, New Bern's water utility, City of New Bern, had 0 violations of the Safe Drinking Water Act. For more details on the violations, please see our violation history section below. This assessment is based on the City of New Bern water system, other water systems in the city may have different results.
While tap water that meets the EPA health guidelines generally won’t make you sick to your stomach, it can still contain regulated and unregulated contaminants present in trace amounts that could potentially cause health issues over the long-run. These trace contaminants may also impact immunocompromised and vulnerable individuals.
New Bern Tap Water Safe Drinking Water Act Violation History - Prior 10 Years
Below is a ten year history of violations for the water system named City of New Bern for New Bern in North Carolina. For more details please see the "What do these Violations Mean?" section below.
Is there Lead in New Bern Water?
Based on the EPA’s ECHO Database, 90% of the samples taken from the New Bern water system, City of New Bern, between sample start date and sample end date, were at or below, 0.0 mg/L of lead in New Bern water. This is 0% of the 0.015 mg/L action level. This means 10% of the samples taken from New Bern contained more lead.
While New Bern water testing may have found 0.0 mg/L of lead in its water, that does not mean your water source has the same amount. The amount of lead in water in a city can vary greatly from neighborhood to neighborhood, or even building to building. Many buildings, particularly older ones, have lead pipes or service lines which can be a source of contamination. To find out if your home has lead, we recommend getting you water tested.
No amount of lead in water is healthy, only less dangerous. As lead accumulates in our bodies over time, even exposure to relatively small amounts can have negative health effects. For more information, please check out our Lead FAQ page.
Are there PFAS in New Bern Tap Water?
Currently, testing tap water for PFAS isn’t mandated on a national level. We do have a list of military bases where there have been suspected or confirmed leaks. There appears to be at least one military base - Cherry Point Marine Corps Air Station - near New Bern with suspected leaks.
With many potential sources of PFAS in tap water across the US, the best information we currently have about which cities have PFAS in their water is this ewg map, which you can check to see if New Bern has been evaluated for yet.
Our stance is better safe than sorry, and that it makes sense to try to purify the tap water just in case.
What do these Violations Mean?
Safe Drinking Water Act Violations categories split into two groups, health based, and non-health based. Generally, health based violations are more serious, though non-health based violations can also be cause for concern.
Health Based Violations
- Maximum contaminant levels (MCLs) - maximum allowed contaminant level was exceeded.
- Maximum residual disinfectant levels (MRDLs) - maximum allowed disinfectant level was exceeded.
- Other violations (Other) - the exact required process to reduce the amounts of contaminants in drinking water was not followed.
Non-Health Based Violations
- Monitoring and reporting violations (MR, MON) - failure to conduct the required regular monitoring of drinking water quality, and/or to submit monitoring results on time.
- Public notice violations (Other) - failure to immediately alert consumers if there is a serious problem with their drinking water that may pose a risk to public health.
- Other violations (Other) - miscellaneous violations, such as failure to issue annual consumer confidence reports or maintain required records.
SDWA Table Key
|Compliance Period||Dates of the compliance period.|
Current status of the violation.
|Health-Based?||Whether the violation is health based.|
The category of violation that is reported.
|Code||A full description of violation codes can be accessed in the SDWA_REF_CODE_VALUES (CSV) table.|
|Contaminant Code||A code value that represents a contaminant for which a public water system has incurred a violation of a primary drinking water regulation.|
Code for a National Drinking Water rule.
|Rule Group Code||
Code that uniquely identifies a rule group.
|Rule Family Code||
Code for rule family.
For more clarification please visit the EPA's data dictionary.
New Bern Water - Frequently Asked Questions
|By Mail:||PO BOX 1129
NEW BERN, NC, 28563
Existing customers can login to their City of New Bern account to pay their New Bern water bill by clicking here.
If you want to pay your City of New Bern bill online and haven't made an account yet, you can create an account online. Please click here to create your account to pay your New Bern water bill.
If you don't want to make an account, or can't remember your account, you can make a one-time payment towards your New Bern water bill without creating an account using a one time payment portal with your account number and credit or debit card. Click here to make a one time payment.
Moving to a new house or apartment in New Bern means you will often need to put the water in your name with City of New Bern. In order to put the water in your name, please click the link to the start service form below. Start service requests for water bills typically take two business days.
Leaving your house or apartment in New Bern means you will likely need to take your name off of the water bill with City of New Bern. In order to take your name off the water bill, please click the link to the stop service form below. Stop service for water bills requests typically take two business days.
The estimated price of bottled water
$1.67 in USD (1.5-liter)
USER SUBMITTED RATINGS
- Drinking Water Pollution and Inaccessibility 25% Low
- Water Pollution 50% Moderate
- Drinking Water Quality and Accessibility 75% High
- Water Quality 50% Moderate
The above data is comprised of subjective, user submitted opinions about the water quality and pollution in New Bern, measured on a scale from 0% (lowest) to 100% (highest).
City of New Bern
EWG's drinking water quality report shows results of tests conducted by the water utility and provided to the Environmental Working Group by the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources, as well as information from the U.S. EPA Enforcement and Compliance History database (ECHO). For the latest quarter assessed by the U.S. EPA (January 2019 - March 2019), tap water provided by this water utility was in compliance with federal health-based drinking water standards.
- Serves: 35052
- Data available: 2012-2017
- Data Source: Groundwater
- Total: 19
Contaminants That Exceed Guidelines
- Dichloroacetic acid
- Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)
- Trichloroacetic acid
Other Detected Contaminants
- Chromium (total)
- Dibromoacetic acid
- Haloacetic acids (HAA5)
- Monobromoacetic acid
- Monochloroacetic acid
Always take extra precautions, the water may be safe to drink when it leaves the sewage treatment plant but it may pick up pollutants during its way to your tap. We advise that you ask locals or hotel staff about the water quality. Also, note that different cities have different water mineral contents.
Sources and Resources
New Bern Water Quality
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) expects community water systems to produce an annual Consumer Confidence Report (CCR), also identified as an annual drinking water quality report, to their clients each year by July 1st. Here, we are pleased to present you with the City of New Bern’s annual Water Quality Report for 2020. These reports give our citizens and customers information regarding their local drinking water quality. Your CCR can help you make informed choices about the water you drink. The City is bound to meeting the difficulties of new water quality regulations while encouraging customers to practice conservation. We are also committed to producing the highest quality drinking water possible. Thank you for allowing us the opportunity to serve you and your family.
New Bern’s Water Supply
New Bern, NC, provides drinking water for over 35,000 consumers in New Bern and surrounding areas, including Carolina Colours, Clarks, Cove City, the Craven County Industrial Park, Taberna, and Trent Woods. Total water usage for 2020 was 1.36 billion gallons, a daily average of 3.71 million gallons. The City’s Water Treatment Division employs 20 wells, a filter/softener water treatment facility, 3 ground storage tanks, 5 booster pump stations, and 6 elevated storage tanks to provide 8.65 million gallons of daily water production and 9.7 million gallons of finished water storage.