If your water is supplied from your own well, you can experience strange colors. The affected water can cause stains on your plumbing fixtures and water using appliances. The results of laundry can be affected, the stains can be hard to clean away, and they often return because the root cause of the problem has not been addressed. In this article, we will look at four common well water stain colors and explain what they mean.
- Pink Stains
A pink stain will often appear in and around the toilet, and it’s a sure sign that the well water is low in chlorine. This staining can appear in city supplied and well water, but the source of the problem is not related to the water itself. The pink colors that you can see are caused by airborne bacteria in and around the toilet. The best way to deal with this issue is to clean the toilet more often using a little bleach, and the pink staining should stop.
- Red Stains
These red or sometimes rusty colored stains are a sure sign that there is iron in the water. Iron is one of the most common elements in the world, it often appears in nature, and it’s present in groundwater in many areas. The EPA has a Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) of 0.3 parts per million or 0.3mg in a liter of water. If the iron concentration rises above this level, you may start to notice the appearance of red stains. The drinking water will have a bitter or metallic taste, and stains will appear on plumbing fixtures and laundered clothing. Ferrous iron can be oxidized by exposure to bleach, chlorine or hydrogen peroxide and this will make the well water more pleasant to drink and easier to use. A local water treatment specialist can carry out an iron analysis and recommend some treatment options to deal with this problem.
- Blue Stains
Blue staining often appears in your tub or on plumbing fixtures. First, your drinking water may develop a bitter taste and laundry may be covered with light blue spots. This is a sure sign that the copper pipes in your home are corroded. Eventually, this will lead to pinhole leaks and water damage. The usual cause of copper corrosion is water that has a low pH level, the water will dissolve solid materials, and this includes the internal surfaces of your plumbing pipes. An analysis needs to be carried out to discover the characteristics of the water, such as alkalinity, acidity, pH level, hardness and total dissolved solids (TDS). With the results, a Langelier Saturation Index (LSI) calculation can be made that will determine if you have a corrosive water problem. This may seem daunting, but there are water treatments available that will restore pH balance to your well water.
- Black Stains
A black stain is sometimes a sign that iron in the water has combined with sulfates to create an iron sulfide in your well water. Another possible cause could be the presence of manganese or manganese sulfides, and there may be a strong sulfur odor. An analysis will be required to determine the presence of iron, iron sulfates, manganese and manganese sulfides.
By EcoWater Systems.
EcoWater Systems of Nebraska is the largest water treatment company in the state and is a member of Water Quality Association.