When you live in a house that relies on well water, you need to work with a plumber to develop a solid testing schedule to monitor the mineral levels in the water. For example, one common problem for well water is the level of iron. Naturally present in most water, iron is only problematic if it's in high concentration. Here are a few of the reasons why you and your plumber should monitor the iron levels in your water.
It can alter the taste of the water. When your water has a lot of iron in it, you'll find that it has a bit of a metallic flavor. Depending on how much iron is in the water, this can be significant. In fact, it may even alter the flavor of the things you cook and lead to insufficient water intake out of avoidance.
Excess iron can cause health concerns. The human body requires a small amount of iron on a regular basis for general health; otherwise, you risk conditions like anemia. However, if you consume too much iron, you may experience things like fatigue, weight loss, vomiting and persistent nausea. If that excess consumption persists, you may experience chronic pain and the risk of organ failure due to iron toxicity.
Iron can stain your fixtures and dishes. The clear brownish hue and rusty color of iron is tough to overlook. When your water is high in iron, it can lead to discoloration around your fixtures and the sink around your drains. You may start to see reddish or brown circles develop. Sometimes you'll even find discoloration inside the washing machine and dishwasher. When high iron persists, you may discover discoloration and staining on your dishes and clothing. Iron deposits will also develop on your flatware, glasses and the insides of your pipes. It may cause corrosion inside those pipes, which can lead to plumbing disasters.
Understanding these potential issues can help you to appreciate why iron is a concern in well water. As you can see, the concern of high iron levels in the water shouldn't be taken lightly. Make sure you have the water tested on a regular basis to determine the current iron levels and ask your plumber about how to protect your pipes and fixtures from any potential problems. If your well water does show high levels of iron, ask your plumber about the best ways to treat the system.