Water Quality Testing on Campus

The University initially tested water in all Pittsburgh campus buildings for lead in 2017. Two locations exceeded the U.S. standard of 15 parts per billion (ppb) and action was taken to replace interior fixtures in those locations. Since then, all sampled locations have been below federal standards.

Testing for Lead

  • All Housing facilities and buildings with elementary-age children (including Falk School and the University Child Development Center) are tested annually for lead.
  • Other University buildings are tested for lead on a three-year cycle.
  • Additional testing is conducted if there is an area or issue of concern.
  • Most sampled locations are below 5 ppb; none exceed the U.S. standard of 15 ppb.

Testing for Legionella

  • Pitt has proactively installed systems that effectively control legionella bacteria in more than 20 residence halls. These systems continuously monitor water quality.  
  • Pitt performs additional testing for legionella on an annual basis.


  • The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority supplies water to the University’s Pittsburgh campus. Information on Pittsburgh’s water quality can be found on PWSA’s water quality reports and community lead response information pages.
  • Water service lines can be a source of lead exposure in off-campus residences. Pitt’s Center for Social & Urban Research has developed Leaducated, a crowdsourced tool to help Pittsburgh-area residents identify whether a residential service line is made of lead.