Taste, Odor, Discoloration



Solutions #1: Iron Filter

Gold Series Iron Filter

Oxidizer Iron Filter

Iron Filters & Oxidizer Filters

Hydro-Pure recommends using an Iron Filter  in situations where the iron level exceeds 3 ppm or there is an excessive amount of colloidal iron.  An iron filter may be necessary in addition to a water softener or other type of filter.

The tank contains an iron removal media which filters out the iron as the water passes through it.   Different types of media are used depending upon the condition of the water, which vary in the need to be replaced every one to five years. We recommend that this type of system be serviced once a year for optimal performance.

Advantages of Iron/Manganese-Free Water

  • Protects Pipes
  • Protects Appliances (Washing Machines, Dishwashers, Water Heaters, etc.)
  • Eliminates Stains
  • Cleaner Laundry
  • Saves Money on Hot Water and Energy
  • Better Tasting Water


Solution #2: Water Softener

Gold Series Water Softener

Water Softeners

A Water Softener will remove the minerals that cause hard water, such as calcium and magnesium, to eliminate the hard water problem. The water is filtered through a filter tank containing a softening medium called resin. The resin is cleaned and recharged with a brine solution in a process called “regeneration”, which involves in a second tank, or brine tank.

Problem: Iron and Manganese

Iron and manganese are common, generally non-hazardous contaminants. There are different methods of removing them, depending on the amount of the element in the water. Iron and manganese are measured in milligrams per liter (mg/l) or parts per million (ppm). The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Secondary Maximum Contaminant Level (SMCL) standard for iron in drinking water is 0.3 ppm and 0.050 ppm for manganese In the state of Connecticut, the manganese level must not exceed 0.30 mg/L for potability standards. The tap water may appear clear, but when exposed to air iron and manganese are oxidized and change from colorless, dissolved forms to colored, solid forms.

Iron causes orange, yellow, or brown staining in sinks, tubs, and toilets. Manganese will stain a brown or black color, particularly in the dishwasher. due to the hot temperature of the water. These minerals will also adversely affect the taste and smell of the water, the quality of laundry, and even hair color. Iron and/or manganese can cause a metallic taste and/or odor, orange or brown spots on laundry, and orange hair.

Iron or manganese bacteria which form red-brown (iron) or black-brown (manganese) slime in toilet tanks and can clog water systems. These bacteria are not health threatening, they just feed on iron and manganese in the water.

Thiobacillus ferrooxidans and Leptospirillum ferrooxidans are the two most common types of bacteria that feed on iron. In well systems that have moderate to high amounts of iron, iron bacteria can infest the plumbing, especially when the system has had standing water for extended periods of time.

Symptoms: Taste, Odor, Discoloration

Orange/brown stains
Orange or brown stains found in sinks, tubs, and toilets are caused by the presence of iron and/or manganese in the water.  The pictures below illustrate what can happen to fixtures exposed to moderate to high levels of iron.

Stained clothes
Orange or brown stains found on laundry are often a result of iron and/or manganese in the water.  The use of bleach on a load of whites will make the problem worse by oxidizing the iron and turning whole load of laundry brown.  Hard water will make clothes look dingy and faded.

Altered hair color
Altered hair color is an indication of either iron or manganese in the water, or a low ph.  The most common complaint is for blonde hair to turn orange from iron or take on a blue or green tinge due to a low ph.  Hair can also look dull and lifeless due to hard water and the build-up of hair products that are unable to rinse out with hard water.

Poor tasting water
A metallic taste is associated with the presence of minerals such as iron and manganese.  Water with a low ph can have a bitter taste.  Other factors, such as hydrogen sulfide and iron bacteria, will adversely affect taste.

Noticeable film residue
Noticeable films on bathtubs, showers, and even on skin. The film results in the need for additional scrubbing and scouring of fixtures, causes hair to be dull and limp, and can also cause dry skin.

Sulfur-like or “rotten egg” odor is the most offensive and objectionable type of odor and is typically a result of iron bacteria or hydrogen sulfide (sulfur) present in the water.  The presence of iron can cause a metallic odor, whereas manganese can be detected as a “rotten egg” or foul odor.  Odor can also appear as a “swampy” or “musty” smell, most often caused by iron bacteria.

Clogged pipes and/or appliances
Clogged pipes and appliances reduce water flow and efficiency, and oftentimes lead to an increase in repair service calls.  Iron, colloidal iron, and iron bacteria can also clog pipes.  The picture below illustrates how iron can solidify within the pipe, dramatically impeding the water flow.  The solution in this case is to replace the affected plumbing and install a water treatment system to prevent a re-occurrence of this type of damage.

Iron Bacteria
Iron and iron bacteria sludge can also clog the well line entering the house.  Well pumps operating in these types of conditions have to work harder to pump and have a lower life expectancy.

Toilet reservoir residue
The presence of iron or iron bacteria will cause an orange or black slime on the interior walls of the toilet reservoir.  Iron bacteria will also cause  an oil slick found on the surface of the water.

Contact us for all Your Water System Needs

Hydro-Pure Water Treatment, LLC has been a full-service water treatment company since 1997. Our office is located at 244 Upton Road, Suite #4 in Colchester, CT (across the street from John Gagnon’s Pet Resort). We service residential and commercial customers from all around eastern and shoreline Connecticut and specialize in our local service areas of Colchester, East Hampton, East Haddam, Marlborough, Glastonbury, Hebron, Columbia, Andover, Bolton, Manchester, Lebanon, Salem, Bozrah, Windham, Mansfield, Coventry, East Lyme, Lyme, Old Lyme, Old Saybrook, and Stonington.

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