Have you ever noticed a rusty look to your water coming out of the faucet? Water can have a rusty appearance for several reasons. At ER Plumbing Services, it is our mission to educate our customers on do it yourself plumbing basics and tips to help keep things running smoothly. We will look at some aspects of your water and water system and answer the question: Why does my water look rusty?

What Happens to Cause My Water to Look Rusty?

Water appears rusty because of iron compounds in the water. The reasons that iron can appear in your water can vary. There are several things to consider if your water appears rusty. Some people experience rusty water whether they run the faucet cold or hot. This usually indicates that the problem is happening outside of your home. The following are some examples that can cause your water to be rusty:

  1. Water main breaks
  2. Water hydrant flushing
  3. Construction work or damage from construction
  4. Depressurizations of the system
  5. Routine system maintenance
  6. Corrosion on iron pipes
  7. Fire-fighting operations nearby
  8. Street sweeping

All of these can cause excess iron to be present in your tap water when you run it hot or cold. If you find that your water contains rust only when you run hot water, it could mean you have a different problem going on.

My Hot Water Looks Rusty

If you are only experiencing rusty water when you run the tap with hot water, the problem could be in your own water heater. This can be caused from:

  1. Sediment built up in the hot water heater tank
  2. Compromised tank
    1. The glass jacket that shields the tank has broken causing water to come in contact with the metal wall of the tank, causing it to rust.
  3. Compromised plumbing pipes
    1. Older homes may have some rust and it may leak out of your faucet with use, especially with hot water.

How to Fix it so Your Water No Longer Looks Rusty

Most times, if the problem is not located in your home, it will be a short term problem that will solve itself. If the problem is in your water heater or plumbing system, you may want to call professionals, like ER Plumbing Services to come take a look. We can help you replace or repair your water heater as well if that is the source of the issue. Contact us today with more questions and we can help you answer the question: Why does my water look rusty?

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