What Causes Rusty Water and How do I Get Rid of It?

May 30, 2019

Have you ever washed your hands or taken a shower and the water just didn’t seem right? You noticed that the water was a dirty brown color instead of clear and it had a foul smell to it.  Red flags go up in your head and you know this is something that needs to be addressed right away. Rusty water may be caused by a number of reasons and the most common ones are outlined below:

 1. Sediment Build-Up

Galvanized pipes deteriorate over time and the rust combines with  accumulated dirt in the pipes. The sediment remains at the bottom of the pipe until it builds up or increased pressure agitates the pipe, leading to the discharge of rusty water.

2. Rusty Pipes

The water systems in many homes in the Houston area were installed decades ago; at a time when galvanized steel pipes were very popular. These pipes have a lifespan of about 50 years and are currently nearing expiration. Rusty water is the first sign that your pipes are breaking down, and with galvanized pipes, lead contamination is another concern.

How to Get Rid of Rusty Water

The first thing to do is to locate the source of the rust. Is it from the main supply or the plumbing in your home? Once this is done, you have 2 options:

 1. Flush the pipes

If the main supply is the source, attach a hose and release the water for 20/30 minutes. If the plumbing in your home is the source, run all cold water taps throughout your house at top pressure to flush out the dirt and rust.  This will take about 20 minutes.

2. Replace rusty pipes

Flushing only works if there is minimal rust. If the pipes are deteriorating due to age, the only solution is to repipe your home.

To locate the source of the rust and determine its extent, you need the help of a professional plumber. If it turns out your home needs re-piping, then you want only the best handling such a big project. For professional plumbing services in Houston and the surrounding areas contact Show Plumbing at 281-860-2000.