If you start to notice a slight taste difference or smell in your drinking water, there's a reason for it.

Mesa Water District officials said their system has temporarily converted from a chloramine disinfection process to chlorine disinfection. The chlorine, according to the district, will help maintain the health and safety of the water distribution system, which services Costa Mesa, portions of Newport Beach and some unincorporated county areas.

The short-term change, described by officials as routine and standard practice for the industry, began Tuesday. It will last about a month.

The process is approved by the state Department of Public Health and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, district officials said.

The district last used chlorine as a disinfectant about 15 years ago.

For more information, contact (949) 631-1200 or visit http://www.mesawater.org.

—Bradley Zint

Twitter: @bradleyzint