Water Treatment Department

In service since October of 2002 and located on Portland Lake Road just outside of the city limits, Portland's water treatment facility is a Grade 4 facility equipped to process 3 million gallons of water per day. Our main source for water is the West Fork of Drakes creek, with City Lake being our alternate source during dry months or drought conditions. The water treatment plant is a conventional filtration facility, which utilizes the following processes:

  • Rapid chemical mixing
  • Flocculation
  • Coagulation
  • Sedimentation
  • Filtration

Currently, the 6 Water Treatment 4 (WT4) certified operators on staff produce an average of 2.1 million gallons of potable water every day.


The 6 certified operators perform a battery of tests including, but not limited to; turbidity, chlorine and pH levels, every 2 hours to ensure our water customers receive a safe, reliable, and consistent product. Water treatment staff are also required to collect a sample from points within our water system for daily (Monday through Friday) chemistry testing. This testing consists of:

  • Hardness
  • Alkalinity
  • Iron
  • Manganese
  • Fluoride
  • Chlorine residual
  • Phosphate levels

The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation also requires Portland water treatment plant staff to collect 20 samples per month for bacteriological testing from pre-selected dedicated sampling points.


One of the most unique processes the Portland water treatment plant has in place is the ability to produce our own disinfectant. This is achieved by using a Microclor on-site hypochlorite generator (OSHG), which was installed and put into service in 2013. The Portland water treatment facility was on the leading edge of implementing this new process, as we were the first water system in the State of Tennessee to install a Microclor OSHG at our water treatment plant. Several other water systems, such as LaGuardo Utility District, Bowling Green Municipal Utilities, and Nashville Metro Water, have since visited the Portland water treatment plant to seek our input as to the operation and maintenance of the Microclor OSHG.

Best Tasting Water in Tennessee Competition

Every year since 2005 the Tennessee Association of Utility Districts hosts the Best Tasting Water in Tennessee competition. Three times (2007, 2010, 2012) the Portland Water System has won the competition for Region 5, which includes Sumner, Robertson, Davidson and Wilson Counties. We strive to bring a safe, quality product to our customers, and hope to win more of these awards in the future.