Rust in the Water – What It Means For Your Plumbing System

Has the water in your home gone from clear and clean to brown and dirty? You may have noticed the tap water leaving red, brown, or yellow stains on your toilet bowl and plumbing fixtures. The water’s rusty.

This can be a common experience for families that have been away for a week or two and left an empty home behind them. Most of the time, this clears up quickly as the dry pipes expel all the rust buildup.

However, at times, the discoloration doesn’t go away. This signals a deeper issue with your plumbing. Here’s what it means:

Rust is oxidized iron. Tap water gets rusty when iron particles from sediment inside corroded pipes break free. These tiny metallic deposits can get into the water from anywhere—water main to your own plumbing system. Apart from the reddish-brown color of the water, you will be able to recognize rusty water from its distinct metallic taste.

Is the Problem in Your Home or in the Water Main?

So, how do you tell if you have to call a professional residential plumbing service to your home in Fort Worth or call the municipal authorities?

A surefire way of knowing where the problem lies is by checking both the hot and cold water in your home. If the rust only appears in the hot water supply, then the problem lies in the pipes in your house or apartment complex.

Additionally, if the rusty water only comes from certain faucets, you probably have corroded pipes that need to be addressed.

On the other hand, if there is a sudden appearance of rust in the water, the cause may lie outside your home. This can happen if a water main breaks or a fire hydrant is activated.

Is Rusty Water Dangerous?

While it may look dirty, smell weird, and taste metallic, rusty water is not a health hazard. However, those suffering from a rare condition called hemochromatosis are at risk. Hemochromatosis causes excess iron accumulation in body organs. Rusty water, on its own, does not contain harmful bacteria or lead.

What You Should Do To Fix It

If you are able to determine that the issue is originating from outside your home or building’s plumbing, you should contact the relevant municipal authorities for repairs. There are home water treatment systems that you can invest in if you wish to limit iron contents in the water.

If, however, the rust is coming from the plumbing in your house or apartment building, you should have a professional plumbing service replace the rusty pipes.

Pro Serve Plumbing has been serving the plumbing needs of Fort Worth for the past 15 years. Get in touch with us for affordable, reliable, and high-quality residential and commercial plumbing solutions. Call 817-244-0614.