Water Outages

There are two types of water outages: planned and emergency. Both are shown on the map on this page.

Emergency outages can happen when breaks, leaks, or other damage occurs within the system. Customers who are impacted by an emergency water outage will receive notifications by text message about the status of the outage. If you prefer not to receive these types of text notifications from Seattle Public Utilities, you can opt out by signing into your SPU account or calling (206) 684-3000 to speak with a representative.

Planned outages are scheduled in advance and allow crews to perform maintenance and make repairs to the water system. (Learn more about preparing for planned outages.)

After a water outage: When the water comes back on after an outage, some customers in or near the outage area may experience temporary discolored water. If this happens, the water should clear on its own. If it doesn't clear, call SPU's 24/7 Operations Response Center at (206) 386-1800.

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Discolored water after an outage

Water outages can sometimes disturb the direction or flow of water in the City's drinking water system. When this happens, customers in or near the outage area may experience temporary discolored water. Discolored water comes from internal pipe rust and sediment getting stirred up when the water is turned on after an outage.

The water should clear on its own. Try running the cold water for a few minutes to see if it is clearing or still discolored. If the water does not clear, let the water sit for 1 to 2 hours. Then, run cold water for a few minutes in your bathtub or shower. If your home is located on a dead-end line, it may take longer to clear up. If the water remains discolored, please contact the Operations Response Center at (206) 386-1800.

Avoid running hot water if the cold water is discolored. This will minimize filling the hot water tank with turbid water. If you are washing clothes at the time, it is better to stop the cycle while it is full and wait until clean water is available to finish. If you allow the water to empty from the washing machine and go into the spin cycle it is more likely to cause permanent staining to the laundry items.


Public Utilities

Andrew Lee, General Manager and CEO
Address: 700 5th Avenue, Suite 4900, Seattle, WA, 98104
Mailing Address: PO Box 34018, Seattle, WA, 98124-5177
Phone: (206) 684-3000

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Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) is comprised of three major direct-service providing utilities: the Water Utility, the Drainage and Wastewater Utility, and the Solid Waste Utility.