Discolored Water & Other Concerns
You might notice your water change in color, taste, and smell from time to time. The following can help to explain some of those changes but please don’t hesitate to call the office if there is ever a concern with your water quality.
Is your water…
Yellow and or Metallic Tasting?
This can be an increase of certain minerals in the water that might give it a yellow tint as well as have an unpleasant taste. Yellow water is not a health concern and is safe to drink.
Brown water is often related to a disturbance in the water main that has stirred up sediment from the bottom of the main. If there has been a recent flushing of the lines in your area or an incident where a nearby fire hydrant was opened up, the pressure change could result in sediment stirring. Avoid using any water for one to two hours. If water does not clear, please call the office.
Water that has trapped tiny air bubbles could appear to look white or cloudy in color and have a slight metallic taste and/or odor. This is harmless, temporary, and should clear after water flows from the tap. A good test to check if it is air in the water, is to leave a glass of water out for a few minutes. After a few minutes the water should turn clear without any color or sediment appearing.
Orange or Rust Colored?
Galvanized steel plumbing, typically found in older homes, can corrode and break off particles when a water main is shut down for repair. Much like the Brown water above, this is normally temporary and should clear up within an hour or two but could take several days. If you notice rust colored water, run the cold water for a few minutes to see if that helps flush out the color. If you are concerned, please give us a call.
Sandy and Gritty?
Sand and grit like particles found in the water can be rust and minerals sloughing off of a galvanized steel pipe. Grit can prematurely wear out your fixtures so it’s a good idea to clean out the faucet aerators and filters in the washing machine.
Hard water contains a higher content of calcium and magnesium and can cause water spots in showers, sinks, and cars, after washing. It also interferes with the sudsy action of soap. The water we provide is considered soft. The white spotting caused by the water in our service area is due to a salt-based additive (Sodium Hydroxide) to increase the pH of the water to prevent corrosion of lead solder and copper water pipes.
When water sits in a copper pipe the copper dissolves a bit into the water. This usually occurs in new copper pipes and fixtures. Running the water for a minute should help flush out any copper. To prevent stains, keep the fixtures dry and drip free. A little baking soda and white vinegar used as a paste may help to eliminate those stains.
Much like the blue stain, keeping the fixture as dry as possible will help from staining your fixtures. Pink stains appear when oxygen and dissolved rust from pipes interact. Running the water for about a minute should help flush this out.
Chlorine Taste and Odor?
Chlorine is added to your water in small amounts to kill harmful bacteria and is normally not noticeable.
Earthy Taste and Odor?
This could be due to algae growth within a storage tank or reservoir. Run the cold water for a few minutes to see if the odor clears up.