Anne Hensel's Blog
Sometimes our dream home comes with not-so-dreamy features. One of those can be well water with a higher than desired rust content.
Of course, this isn’t necessarily a reason to pass up a home you are otherwise in love with. There are several solutions to keep in mind when making your decision.
The first thing you will want to do is have a water test done to test the levels and type of iron in the home's water. Knowing just how high the concentration of iron content is and the type will be a determining factor into which solution will be the best for your lifestyle and new home.
While you are having tests done you will also want to confirm that rust levels are indeed from the well and not the pipes themselves. Rusty pipes are a different topic altogether and require a different protocol and budget if taken on.
If rust concentrations are fairly low concentration you will just need a water softener installed. This will help to protect plumbing and appliances from effects of rust. It will also mean cleaner, and softer, clothes, less soap usage, and less scrubbing when it comes to cleaning surfaces like the bathroom tub. It’s important to note that you will need to use less soap with softened water since it creates more lather. Too much lather can damage your appliances and even lead to water leakage.
If iron levels are falling in the medium range you will want to opt for a filter specifically for iron. Greensand and oxidizing filters are the two most common. Be sure to have your filters custom sized to fit your homes water usage and the requirements it will call for to have the system function properly.
When iron levels are high a chlorination filtration system is the way to go. This system treats water before entering your lines, which saves your plumbing from potential damage over the years. You may also want to investigate what damage, if any, has been done to plumbing and if you will need to replace to ensure safe drinking water and a clean home.
What you need to know about high rust content if left untreated:
If you use bleach on laundry your whites will yellow due to a reaction with the rust.
You will need to regularly use a specialty cleaning product to remove rust stains from places like sinks, toilets and showers.
Build up of rust over time will not only damage plumbing and appliances but also affect your water pressure as a result.
You will need to invest in Iron-Out and use it regularly to flush your plumbing
You will want to do “backflushes” to clean out rust accumulation