Why are hydrants painted different colors?

Yes, the colors painted on fire hydrants actually mean something! Colors are a quick way for firefighters to determine how much water is available from that hydrant. There are standardized color codes for the amount of water gallons per minute the hydrant can support.

Hydrant colors and gallons per minute (GPM)

Hydrant ColorGPMComment
Blue1,500 +Great
Green1,000 - 1,499Good
Orange500 - 999Marginally adequate
Black< 500Inadequate

Based on National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 291. Recommended Practice for Fire Flow Testing and marking of Hydrants, 2016. <500 GPM does not conform to NFPA standard.

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1. How can I report a water or sewer leak?
2. Why does the City flush certain hydrants?
3. Why are hydrants painted different colors?