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Is Your Water Really Supposed to Look That Way?

Discolored Water: Causes, Fixes & Prevention


Discolored WaterDiscolored water coming your faucets can be unsightly and unpleasant. What causes discolored water? How can you remedy the situation? What can you do to prevent discolored water from appearing in your home? Maybe it is time to call a professional plumber!

There are several reasons why your water may be discolored. The most common reason is that rust from inside an iron pipe is washed away and mixes with the water flowing to your faucets. As the rust mixes with the water, the water becomes discolored and turns a shade of brown instead of being clear. Water can also be discolored a shade of red, yellow and orange depending on the oxidation state of the pipe and the amount of rust that is mixed in with the water. Rusty pipes can be located in your home or they can be in your municipality’s water main line. Another reason your water may be discolored is that sediment entered your water system when work was done on your water lines. Lastly an old water heater could be rusting and causing the discoloration in your home.

Remedying discolored water is simple. If your discolored water is caused by rusty pipes you will first need to locate the rusty pipes that are causing the water to become discolored. If you only have one faucet in your home that has discolored water, then you will know that those pipes that channel water to that faucet are rusting and need to be replaced. After the rusting pipes are located in your home they will need to be replaced with new pipes.
If your water is discolored because of sediment that has entered your water system during a water main break, or flushing of sediments done by the water company the discolored water should flush out by itself. Simply turn on the tap for a few minutes and let the sediment flush out of your system until clear water flows once again. If your discolored water is caused by a rusting water heater it will need to be flushed. Flushing a water heater involves clearing it of rust and sediment that has accumulated over time. Just like with rusty pipes and sediment entering your water system your water heater may have the same problem. Keep in mind that water heaters usually have an average lifespan of 10-15 years. If flushing your water heater does not solve the problem of water discoloration you may need to get a new water heater.

There are several things you can do to prevent water discoloration in your home. If you have any rusting pipes replace them as soon as possible. Flushing your water heater once a year can prevent water discoloration and will keep the heater operating efficiently. All metals rust over time. Using plastic pipes and tubing can reduce water discoloration that results from rusting metal pipes.

Bring in a plumber into your San Mateo home to look over your plumbing system and make the necessary corrections. Call James Caccia Plumbing Inc at (650) 376-6800 today!

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