The presence of rust can impact the appearance, taste, and smell of the water coming out of your shower and other household fixtures. Indicated by a distinct brown color and metallic odor, it’s a common problem that’s the result of various factors.

Ignoring this problem can have serious consequences and it’s important to address this issue as soon as you notice it. Let’s go over the main causes of rusty water.

The main causes of rusty water in a home

Here are some possible reasons for why your water is coming out rusty.

Corroded pipes and fixtures

The most common cause of rusty water is the corrosion of pipes and household fixtures. Usually, this occurs as they degrade over time due to excessive exposure to air and moisture. Small particles of rust can flake off and make their way into your water supply, giving it a brown or reddish tint.

This is prevalent in all parts of your plumbing system, but may be most noticeable in your bathroom, from your sink taps to your bathtub fixtures.

Sediment buildup

Water heating systems that use storage tanks are particularly susceptible to rust and sediment buildup. Particles can accumulate in the bottom of the tank over time, causing issues with water flow and quality. If you find that your hot water has a brown color while your cold water remains clear, it’s highly probable that the culprit is your water heater.

Regular maintenance and flushing of your hot water tank can prevent sediment buildup and the resulting rusty water. It’s recommended to drain and flush your hot water tank at least twice a year to keep it functioning properly and avoid potential leaks.

Water main break

Water main breaks or repairs in your area can also be a possible cause. Sediment and debris from recent construction or maintenance work on your local water supply or fire hydrant can enter your water supply.

Since most municipal water lines are interconnected, even a minor disturbance in one part of the system can affect the entire network. This occurrence is relatively common and usually not a major cause for concern.

The impact of rust in water

Rusty water can impact homeowners in various ways, affecting the appearance and taste of their water supply. The presence of iron in rusted water can give it a metallic or slightly bitter taste, making it unpleasant to drink or use for cooking.

Aside from its effects on taste, it can also pose potential health risks. When metals like iron and other impurities are present at high levels, they can be harmful to our bodies if consumed regularly. These contaminants can cause digestive issues and affect the body’s ability to absorb essential minerals from water, leading to potential mineral deficiencies.

Furthermore, rust particles in water can also clog pipes, reducing water flow and causing expensive plumbing repairs.

It’s essential for homeowners to address rusty water as soon as possible to avoid these negative impacts.

When to call a plumber

If you’re experiencing rusty water at home, it’s important to assess the severity of the issue before reaching out to a professional plumber. Here are some indicators that may require their assistance:

  • Consistently discolored water: If your water consistently comes out with a brown or reddish tint, despite trying to flush your pipes or identifying other possible causes, it’s time to call a plumber.
  • Low water pressure: As mentioned earlier, particles can build up and clog pipes, resulting in reduced water flow. If you notice a significant decrease in your home’s water pressure, it could be due to rusty pipes that need immediate attention from a plumber.
  • Continuous leaks: Rust can cause corrosion and weaken pipes, leading to frequent leaks. If you notice any signs of water leakage, it’s best to call a plumber before the issue gets worse.
  • Persistent odor: If your water has a metallic or sulfur-like smell, it could be an indication of rusty pipes. This can also be accompanied by changes in taste and discoloration of water.

When these indicators become persistent and show no signs of improvement, it’s important to call a professional plumber.

It’s crucial to seek expert advice and assistance to ensure proper diagnosis and resolution. A plumber has the necessary expertise, tools, and problem solving skills to identify the root cause. A professional will also be able to perform regular maintenance on your system and help with water purification.

Experiencing rusty water? Reach out to J. Blanton

If you’re finding that the water coming out of your fixtures is consistently rusty, you’ll want to get in contact with a professional plumber as soon as possible. Homeowners in the Chicagoland area and surrounding locations have come to rely on J. Blanton for reliable plumbing services for over 30 years.

To request assistance, give us a telephone call or fill out our contact form!