Water Treatment

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About Water Treatment

The Water Treatment Division operates the Wiggins Mill Water Treatment Plant and the Toisnot Water Treatment Plant to provide a safe and adequate supply of water to citizens, businesses, and industries. The City of Wilson owns and operates four reservoirs which serve as our raw water supply source: Buckhorn Lake, Toisnot Lake, Lake Wilson, and Wiggins Mill Lake. They have a combined storage capacity of over 7.5 billion gallons. Raw water can be pumped from the lakes to our water treatment facilities (pictured below). After treatment, the finish water can be pumped directly to the taps in homes and businesses or to our elevated water storage tanks. We treat over 9 million gallons of water a day for use in our City!

Educational tours of the Wiggins Mill facility may be arranged by calling the Water Treatment Manager at 252-399-2376.

Wiggins Mill
In 1963, Wiggins Mill WTP opened on Lovers Lane (now Forest Hills Road) with a treating capacity of 4 million gallons per day (MGD). The cost of the new plant was $800,000. Wiggins Mill WTP has been expanded twice in 1987 and again in 1993 to its current treatment capacity of 12 MGD. Improvements were also made to the waste system in 1980 and to the chemical feed system and building in 2001.
Toisnot Plant

Toisnot WTP was the first water plant constructed in Wilson. It was built in 1917 at the Wilson Power Plant site on Pine Street with a treatment capacity of 3 MGD. The plant was built for $204,500. Toisnot WTP has been expanded twice in 1952 and again in 1974 to reach its current treatment capacity of 10 MGD. Improvements to the chemical feed system, pumps, and a back-up generator were made in 2001. The Wilson Power Plant was torn down in 1991, leaving only the Toisnot WTP structure.

Treatment Process

Raw water is pumped from either Toisnot Lake or Wiggins Mill Reservoir to the treatment facilities. When raw water enters the facility, ferric sulfate reacts with natural alkalinity, or added lime, or sodium hydroxide to cause small particles to cling to one another after strong mixing. Powder activated carbon is added to control taste and odor causing substances that occur naturally in the raw water. The Wiggins Mill Plant has a system to remove solids from the basins called a trac vac system. Tube settlers are also utilized to improve settling efficiency. The water is then mixed slowly and polymer is added. The particles are then much larger. The water then enters settling basins where the heavy particles settle.Chlorine and sodium hydroxide (pH adjustment) are added to improve mineral removal in the filters. The water is then filtered through sand and anthracite to remove remaining fine particles. Chlorine is added to kill harmful bacteria, protozoans and viruses. Lime or sodium hydroxide and a corrosion inhibitor are added to maintain pH and minimize potential for corrosion in City distribution lines and household plumbing. Fluoride is then added to aid in the prevention of tooth decay.In order to ensure that tap water is safe to drink, the EPA prescribes regulations which limit the amount of certain contaminants in water provided by public water systems. Over 300,000 routine tests are performed on the water each year. The City of Wilson’s drinking water supply meets all federal and state water quality requirements.

Elevated Water Tanks

As you drive around Wilson, you may have noticed seven elevated storage tanks. Only five of these are for storing potable (drinking) water. Two of the City’s storage tanks hold reclaimed (or re-use) water. For more information on reclaimed water, you can visit our Water Reclamation page.

  • Which of Wilson’s elevated water tanks was the first?
  • Which carries the famous symbol for a local college?
  • Which do not hold drinking water?

Read about our tanks and learn the answers:

Pine Street

Pine Street Elevated Tank

The Pine Street Tank can hold one-million gallons of drinking water. The mascot of Barton College, the bulldog, is painted on the side of the tank. Lights surrounding the bowl of the tank show off the artwork at night.

Fike Tank

Fike Tank

More elevated water storage was added in 1962 with the construction of the one-million gallon tank behind Ralph L. Fike High School. The Fike Tank is a pedisphere tank, which means that it stands on a single large leg. The antenna structure on the top are for cell phone companies and for the city’s SCADA network.

Firestone Tank

Firestone Tank

The Firestone Tank was completed in 1974, adding another million gallons of water storage for the City. This pedisphere tank is located west of the (now) Bridgestone Plant.

Lamm Road Tank

Lamm Road

The fourth elevated storage tank was built in 1997. The Lamm Road Tank (also called the Industrial Park Tank) can be seen from I-95 and is located near the new Becton Dickinson Facility currently being built. The one-million gallon tank proudly displays the “Wilson Corporate Park” logo.

Horne’s Church Road

Hornes Church Road

The last elevated storage tank for drinking water was placed into service in 2004. The one-million gallon tank is located on Hornes Church Road.

Wedgewood Reclaimed Water Tank

Wedgewood Reclaimed Water Tank

Operations Center Reclaimed Water Tank

Operations Center Reclaimed Water Tank

The Wedgewood Tank and the Operations Center Tank are reclaimed water storage tanks. The tank at Wedgewood can hold 0.25 million gallons of reclaimed water while the Operations Center Tank has the capacity for one-million gallons of reclaimed water. The water they store is non-potable, but it can be used for many things:

  • Irrigation of lawns, golf courses, parks, school grounds, etc
  • Industrial and manufacturing processes
  • Fire protection in sprinkler systems located in commercial or industrial facilities
  • Street sweeping and vehicle washing
  • Decorative ponds and fountains

Reclaimed water is available to industrial and commercial customers within certain service areas. Currently the reclaimed water system produces irrigation water for Wedgewood Public Golf Course, the Wilson Rose Garden, for the Bridgestone Plant, for the Burt Gillette soccer complex, baseball complex and park areas, and for the Hominy Creek Water Reclamation Facility.


Current Projects

Dewatering Bldg.

The dewatering building being erected at the Toisnot Plant.

Rotary Vacuum Drum

The Alar Rotary Vacuum Drum at Toisnot is used for dewatering water plant solids.

Progressive Cavity Pump

This Progressive Cavity Pump is used to pump thickened waste removed from the settling basins.

Completed Projects

tube settlers

These tube settlers at the Wiggins Mill Plant are used in settling basins to improve the efficiency of particulate removal from raw water.

Click here for the Water Resources FAQ.
Water/Wastewater Rates

Water and Wastewater Rates can be found on the Water and Wastewater Rates page or in the Schedule of Fees under the “Rate Schedules” section.

Is there water and sewer service available to a particular property? You may call 252.399.2468 to verify availability or come by the Operations Center at 1800 Herring Avenue.

In order to establish utility service with the City of Wilson, please call Customer Service at 252.399.2200 or visit their offices at 208 NE Nash St.