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Protecting Public Health is Our Top Priority

Orange County Utilities is dedicated to delivering safe and reliable drinking water that meets or exceeds state and federal drinking water regulations.

In 2022, Orange County Utilities’ nationally certified lab performed more than 300,000 analyses while monitoring for more than 150 substances in the drinking water supply, far above the required testing.

Since PFAS, also referred to as forever chemicals, continue to make headlines and are a concern for all communities, we want to help residents understand what it means to them and how they are being addressed by Orange County Utilities.


PFAS, or Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances are a group of man-made chemicals used in a wide range of products due to their water and grease resistance properties. PFAS can be found in products like non-stick cookware, water-resistant clothing, food packaging, and more. They can also enter the air, water, and soil through commercial production processes.

Products that contain PFAS - Shampoo, Candy Wrappers, Fast Food Packaging and Wrappers, Pesticides, Stain Resistant Products, Firefighting Foams, Microwave Popcorn Bags, Eye Makeup, Pizza Boxes, Paints, Sealants, Varnishes, Cleaning Products, Nail Polish, Dental Floss, Non-stick Cookware, Water Resistant Clothing
Source: Water Research Foundation

PFAS are persistent because they last a long time and survive transferring from source to source. You can find out more information about PFAS from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the American Water Works Association (AWWA).

PFAS Cycle - PFOA and PFOS are two of the most well-known and studied PFAS. Though production stopped in 2000, they are still found in our environment. Newer PFAS, like GenX, are now used in their place. We swallow, inhale, or rub PFAS into our skin by using certain products, eating or drinking impacted food and water, and breathing in the dust in our homes. PFAS are slow to break down in the environment and can move far from their original use areas. The manufacturing, use and discarding of these products put PFAS into the environment, where, over time, they may end up in untreated drinking water sources. Waste and Wastewater to Drinking Water, Food, and Air - PFAS can enter the environment as we throw away products that have PFAS, and through our own bodily waste. Resources we use from the environment, such as drinking water, food, and air, are more likely to have higher levels of PFAS over time. PFAS build up in the human body over time. Scientists are still studying the health effects of PFAS. PFAS do not break down naturally and build up in the environment over time.
Source: Water Research Foundation


Drinking water is regulated at both the federal and state levels. On the federal side, the EPA administers the Safe Drinking Water Act that sets national standards for drinking water quality. States are given the authority to enforce federal standards, and may have their own additional regulations that can be more stringent. In Florida, the agency responsible for enforcing drinking water standards is the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP). This agency works closely with public water systems, providing guidance, conducting inspections, and monitoring compliance to ensure that drinking water is safe for the public.

To ensure safe drinking water standards, every five years the EPA issues a list of unregulated contaminants of concern to be monitored by public water systems. The current Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR 5) requires testing for 29 different PFAS contaminants and lithium. Additionally, the EPA recently drafted a new rule that will regulate six PFAS compounds, with the rule anticipated to go into effect in 2024.


Legal Measures to Hold PFAS Producers Accountable

Orange County is participating in a lawsuit against PFAS manufacturers, distributors, and sellers who might have impacted our source water. The purpose of this litigation is to protect residents from the potential costs of removing PFAS from the drinking water. We believe it is important to hold polluters and not the residents of Orange County accountable for any damages.

Ensuring Safe and Reliable Water through UCMR

Orange County Utilities is participating in the EPA’s Fifth Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR 5) and will test the drinking water for 29 PFAS compounds at its water supply facilities in 2023 and 2024. This study will use the EPA’s approved analytical methods that can detect PFAS in drinking water. As part of our commitment to improve water quality, we are also evaluating various treatment options and are committed to complying with any forthcoming PFAS regulations.

Transparent Water Quality Reports for the Community

Our regional water facilities are tested at different periods in accordance with the EPA-mandated testing cycle. We are dedicated to transparency, and our test results will be published on this page as they become available. See the EPA’s UCMR Occurrence Data webpage for detailed quarterly test results.

ND – Not detected
PFAS Compound Collection Site and Sampling Schedule
Eastern Regional Southern Regional Orangewood Hunters Creek Vistana Cypress Walk Western Regional Hidden Springs Oak Meadows Lake John Shores Malcolm Road CR 535
PFDA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
NFDHA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFPeS ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFHpA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFHpS ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFTA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFTrDA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFUnA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
9Cl-PF3ONS ND ND ND ND ND ND            
11Cl-PF3OUdS ND ND ND ND ND ND            
NEtFOSAA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFOA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFNA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
HFPO-DA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFHxS ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFOS ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFEESA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
4:2 FTS ND ND ND ND ND ND            
8:2 FTS ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFMPA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFPeA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFMBA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFDoA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFHxA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFBS ND ND ND ND ND ND            
NMeFOSAA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
6:2 FTS ND ND ND ND ND ND            
PFBA ND ND ND ND ND ND            
ADONA ND ND ND ND ND ND            


Are PFAS harmful to health?

Some PFAS have been associated with potential health risks. Studies suggest links to certain health issues, immune system changes, and an increased risk of certain types of cancer, but more research is needed to fully understand these effects.

More information can also be found on the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.

How can I be exposed to PFAS?

Research by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that most people in the United States have been exposed to some PFAS by:

  • Working in occupations such as firefighting or chemicals manufacturing and processing
  • Drinking water contaminated with PFAS
  • Eating certain foods that may contain PFAS, including fish
  • Swallowing contaminated soil or dust
  • Breathing air containing PFAS
  • Using products made with PFAS or that are packaged in materials containing PFAS
If I get my water from a private well, how can I find out if PFAS are in my water?

Private wells are under the jurisdiction of the Florida Department of Health (FDOH). Please contact your local FDOH representative who can advise on PFAS testing. The Orange County FDOH representative’s information is listed below:

David Overfield

What can I do to reduce my overall exposure to PFAS?

PFAS can be found in many consumer products. One way to reduce exposure is to think about what products you are buying and using.

  • Buy products from companies committed to removing PFAS from their manufacturing.
  • Be aware. Many companies are working to remove PFAS from their products; however, until the removal is complete, products including nonstick cookware (e.g., Teflon™), stain repellants (e.g., Scotchgard™), and water proofing (e.g., GORE-TEX™) may have PFAS. PFAS are also found in certain types of dental floss, nail polish, facial moisturizers, eye make-up, and more.
  • Avoid non-stick cookware that has PFAS. Consider using stainless steel or cast-iron pots and pans. When the coating on existing non-stick cookware shows signs of wear-and-tear, replace them with stainless steel or cast-iron cookware.
Can I still drink my tap water and use it to cook and bathe?

Yes, Orange County Utilities drinking water is safe. Additionally, the EPA is not recommending bottled water for communities based solely on concentrations of PFAS chemicals in drinking water that exceed the health advisory levels. Per the EPA, studies have shown that only a small amount of PFAS can get into your body through skin. They also highlight that PFAS cannot be removed by heating or boiling water.

More information is available on the EPA's Drinking Water Health Advisories Q&A webpage.


Orange County Utilities is committed to continuing to deliver safe and reliable drinking water that meets or exceeds state and federal drinking water regulations.

Water Division
9150 Curry Ford Road, 3rd Floor
Orlando, FL 32825

Phone: (407) 254-9850

All e-mail sent to this address becomes part of Orange County public record. Comments received by our e-mail subsystem can be read by anyone who requests that privilege. In compliance with "Government in the Sunshine" laws, Orange County Government must make available, at request, any and all information not deemed a threat to the security of law enforcement agencies and personnel.