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Get Ahead of Lead

Get a lead-reducing water filter for your home. It’s safe, easy to install, and can give you peace of mind. 

Learn more to see if you’re eligible for a free filter from the Kent County Health Department and their partners.

In Partnership With

Get a free lead-reducing water filter

Lead may enter drinking water due to corrosion of older water service lines and pipes, faucets, and fittings inside the home.

Officials recommend that Kent County residents use a certified lead-reducing drinking water filter if their home has or if they are uncertain if it has one of the following.

  • Lead or galvanized plumbing or lead plumbing solder.
  • A lead service line carrying water from the street to their residence.
  • Old faucets and fittings that were sold before 2014.

Give yourself peace of mind by installing a lead-safe water filter on your kitchen faucet or use a lead-safe filter pitcher.

Households are eligible for a free filter if the residence has a lead service line or any lead plumbing and meets the following qualifications:

  • A child under 18 or a pregnant woman lives in the home, and
  • a member of the household is enrolled in Medicaid or WIC, and
  • the household is unable to afford a filter.

Pickup Locations

Kent County Health Department

Fuller Clinic (Main)

700 Fuller Ave. NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
[Map]

Cherry Health

Heart of the City Health Center
100 Cherry St SE,
Grand Rapids, MI 49503 

[Map]

Event Pickup

Free water filters will be distributed through Kent County Health Department and MDHHS programs, at community events, and via mail for those who have transportation barriers.
If you would like assistance in applying, please call (616) 632-7145.

Latest Past Events

If you live in the city of Grand Rapids, check this map to see if your home has lead water lines.

Video Tutorial

How to find out if you have a lead water service line.

It’s important to know if you have a potential for lead exposure. The KCHD has a quick video to help guide you to determine if you might have lead water lines in your home.

Lead Reduction Water Tips to Get Ahead of Lead!

There are small steps that everyone can take to reduce potential lead exposure in their homes, even without a filter. Small things like letting the water run and cleaning your aerators take only a little time, but can help protect your family. Other bigger things like replacing older plumbing, pipes, and faucets in your home are also important, but you should talk with a plumber (and watch the video above) to determine if you have lead water lines in your home.

Be sure to use cold water when filtering your tap water. Using hot water can damage your filter.

Use cold, filtered water for:

  • Drinking.
  • Cooking.
  • Making baby formula.
  • Brushing children’s teeth.
  • Pets’ water bowls.


Use water that is not filtered for:

  • Washing your hands.
  • Washing dishes, and clothes.
  • Cleaning floors, and countertops.
  • Showering or bathing.
  • Adults and children should avoid swallowing the water.
  • Brushing adults’ teeth.

There are screens on faucets called aerators. Aerators help keep pieces of lead and other particles from getting into your water.

Clean your drinking water faucet aerator at least every six months.

If there is construction or repairs to the public water systems or pipes near your home, clean your drinking water faucet aerator every month until the work is done.

Here is a quick guide to help you clean your aerator.

You know that feeling of when the water in your faucet goes from room temperature to cold-cold? That’s the feeling of new freshwater hitting your fingers, and it means you’ve gotten rid of the old sitting water.

Running your water like this is a quick, easy way to bring in new water into the home’s pipes before using it for drinking, cooking, and making baby formula. Before using the water from any faucet for drinking or cooking, run the water again for at least several seconds or until it goes from room temperature to cold.

Lead enters drinking water from corroding lead-based plumbing materials (EPA), often lead service lines, pipes, faucets, and fixtures, especially in homes built before 1986. Older faucets and fittings sold before 2014 might have up to 8% lead, even if labeled “lead-free.”
To reduce lead in drinking water, look for replacement faucets after 2014, NSF 61 certified or marked 0.25% lead or less. You might need to contract a plumber to ensure proper replacement.

Are you looking for instructions on installing your Pur Faucet Water Filter?

Didn’t qualify for a free water filter? Check out these options!

The exact brand or style of filter is less important than the certification of the filter. Look for water filter packaging marked with the following certifications:

If you’re buying a filter, read the packaging to be sure it says the filter is certified to NSF/ANSI Standard 53 for lead reduction. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency also recommends that the filter be certified for NSF/ANSI Standard 42 for particulate reduction (Class I).

PUR (Maxion) Faucet Attachment Water Filtration System

Prices Around $30

Brita Longlast+ Pitcher Style Water Filter

Prices Around $70

*Prices estimates listed were pulled June 20, 2023; prices are subject to change. The partners on this project do not endorse any specific filter.

Help Your Friends Get Ahead of Lead

We want to make sure we get these lead-reducing filters into the hands of those who need them! The more our community knows how to take action to protect their families the better! 

Frequently Asked Questions

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