Hydrants & Hydrant Flushing

You can report issues to or 301-600-6300.

The Town is responsible for the maintenance of hydrants across our service area in order to keep the quality of our water at a high standard and ensure preparation for fire hazards. 

Fire Hydrant Flushing
Fire hydrant flushing is necessary to makes sure that proper flow and pressure is available in our water distribution system. Flushing also removes sediment from the system in order to maintain water quality.  Emmitsburg  hydrants are flushed twice a year.

How Hydrant Flushing Works
Flushing hydrants increases water flow through the system. This increase in flow stirs up minerals and deposits in the pipes and clears them out

Potential Impacts to Water Service
Flushing will not typically cause a water outage. However, it is common to see a drop in water pressure while crews are flushing a hydrant in your area. If pressure seems low after flushing is complete, check your faucet for trapped particles.

Water Discoloration
Water can become discolored after flushing and may linger for a few hours.  It is not harmful to drink. If this happens, run your cold water tap for a few minutes until the water is clear. If it is not clear the after the first try, wait a few minutes and repeat this process. Customers are advised to avoid washing clothes until the water clears. If your laundry does become stained, do not put it in the dryer. Rewash the clothes. 

Hydrant Safety Tips
Fire hydrants are an important safety feature of any neighborhood. They should be used responsibly and remain unobstructed. Vehicles cannot be parked any closer than 15-feet from a hydrant in any direction. Residents must also ensure there is three feet of clearance directly around a hydrant at all times to ensure accessibility for firefighters in case of an emergency.

Summer Tips
We would like to remind residents that opening fire hydrants is not only illegal, but very dangerous. During extreme heat, residents may be tempted to pry open fire hydrants in an attempt to cool off. An open hydrant exposes water with extreme force that could easily cause injury. This volume of water is dangerous for both motorists and pedestrians.

Winter Tips
It is important to be careful when shoveling snow so that you do not bury a fire hydrant. Hydrants should remain visible and not blocked by cars or shrubs, as this might delay fire fighters trying to extinguish a fire.