Problems We Found In Oakland, California Drinking Water


Analies Dyjak, M.A.  |  Hydroviv Research Analyst
**Updated May 17, 2021 to include current data

For Hydroviv’s assessment of Oakland, California drinking water, our Water Nerds aggregate data from various sources. In this report, we've assessed the most recent available data provided by the East Bay Municipal Utility District, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as well as from samples that we collect and analyze. Our team then cross reference these data with toxicity studies in scientific and medical literature. The water filters that we build and sell at Hydroviv are optimized to removed contaminants in Oakland tap water.

Source Of Oakland Drinking Water

The city of Oakland gets its water from the Mokelumne River Watershed, which is at the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. The remaining water is supplied by the East Bay Watershed.

Lead In Oakland Drinking Water

Lead enters tap water through older lead service pipes and lead-containing plumbing. When corrosion control measures put in place by the municipality fail (like what happened in Flint), lead drains into the drinking water, and can reach dangerous levels. Though Oakland's water quality is within compliance with federal regulations, the EPACDC, and The American Academy of Pediatrics all acknowledged that there is no safe level of lead, and federal regulations do not take into account levels measured at an individual tap.

Chromium 6 In Oakland Drinking Water

Chromium 6 is an extremely toxic metal that is not currently regulated by the EPA. In recent years, Oakland's tap water quality averaged 50 parts per trillion. For the sake of perspective, these levels are nearly 3 times higher than the concentration determined to have negligible impact on cancer risk.

Disinfection Byproducts (DBPs) In Oakland Drinking Water

DBPs are a category of emerging contaminants that form when chlorine-based disinfectants react with naturally-occurring organic matter. Although these chemicals are not currently regulated very well, the EPA has admitted that they are associated with an increased risk of bladder cancer, as well as kidney, liver, and central nervous system problems.

Still Have Questions About Oakland Drinking Water?

Hydroviv is a water filtration company that uses water quality data to optimize water filters for each customer's water. The contaminants that we list above are what we consider to be major “points of emphasis” that we use to build water filters that are built specifically for Oakland, but all of our our filters provide broad protection against a wide range of contaminants (including lead).

If you’re interested in learning more about water filters that have been optimized for Oakland tap water, or just have questions about water quality in general, feel free to visit, reach out by email ( or through our live chat. We also frequently post water-related news on Twitter or Facebook. We pride ourselves in being a reputable source of information on water quality, and your questions will be answered by scientists, not salespeople (we don't have any salespeople).

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