Diagnosing Discolored Water in the Home

Water is supposed to be clear, so seeing any dirty, discolored water coming out of your faucets or shower can be alarming. Fortunately, the problem is rarely dangerous; discolored water is usually more of an aesthetic problem rather than a health problem. Still, it’s perfectly understandable if you want to address the problem as quickly as possible. With that being said, here are some common causes for discolored water in your home and what you can do about it.

Brown Water

In most cases, brown water is caused by rust either in your own pipes or your city’s main municipal water line. Rust dissolves in water, causing it to take on the color of weak coffee. The amount of rust in your water will affect how dark the color has become. Yellowish water indicates a minor rust problem, while a darker color may be caused by a bigger issue.

If you see brown water in your home, contact your city’s water department and report the issue. If the problem is on their end, it should be fixed within a couple of hours. If it turns out that the problem is in your home, you will need to contact a plumber to replace the offending plumbing.

In some cases, brown water may be caused by something other than rust. If you rely on municipal water and there was a main break recently, sediment may have mixed in with the water and caused the discoloration. This may also happen if the city flushes their fire hydrants, something that is typically done once or twice a year.

Whether it is caused by rust or sediment, brown water is usually safe to drink. You may not want to drink it, but it won’t hurt you. You should however abstain from doing your laundry in your home when you have brown water since it can stain your clothing.

Dirty Water and Your Sewer Line

Most of the time, dirty water is not caused by a problem in a sewer line, but it has been known to happen. Sewer-related problems your home usually come with other warning signs such as backed up drains, flooding in your basement and foul smells, so you’re better off looking for these symptoms instead of some brown water.

If you notice that the water backing up in your drains has a foul smell along with a brown color, you probably have a problem in your sewer line. Contact a licensed plumber or a sewer line technician as soon as possible to diagnose the problem. As with any plumbing issues, it’s best to take care of these problems before they become too large and costly to fix.

If you notice any discoloration of the water in your home, don’t hesitate to call the sewer line experts at Mister Sewer. Our team of Pittsburgh Plumbers will work with you to quickly solve the problem, coming up with an effective and affordable solution to leave your home’s water and sewer system in tiptop shape. For honest, courteous Pittsburgh plumbing or sewer line services that you can trust, contact Mister Sewer today!

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