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Blogs from September, 2018


Have you ever turned on the tap to see the water coming out a peculiar or unsettling color? This is one way your plumbing can tell you that something has gone wrong and needs repaired. Some colors point to serious issues that need immediate attention while others are more so a sign that something merely needs to work itself out. However, before you know what your water is trying to say, you absolutely should avoid using it for any purpose whatsoever.

Here are some uncommon water colors and what they mean.

Reddish Brown

Reddish brown is usually an indication that your water has been contaminated by rust. The darker the color, the more rust you have. Rust is not good to ingest in any amount, so you shouldn’t consume or use this water for any reason and reach out to a professional Bartlett plumber for repairs as soon as possible.

How does the rust get into your plumbing? There are several reasons. The first reason is that a pipe hasn’t been used in such a long time that the interior lining of the pipe has rusted and contaminated the water. This is common in properties that have been left dormant for months or even years at a time, especially if the pipe is constructed of galvanized steel. It’s also possible for rust to get in from other sources, but identifying it can be tricky so it’s best to leave it to a professional.


A gray or white color isn’t necessarily a bad thing: if your water used to come out crystal clear but you have since installed an aerator and now the water is coming out grey, what you’re seeing in your water isn’t contamination: it’s a very fine concentration of air bubbles. This can also happen without having an aerator on your faucet if air is allowed to build up in your pipes. This creates an effect sort of like how bubbles are put into soda. However, if you pour water into a cup and the water remains grey and kind of murky, then you could have one of several other problems.

The most common reason your water may be a murky grey and have particulate matter floating around in it, then this is the result of scale infiltrating your water. Scale is what makes your water hard—extremely tiny particles of calcium, magnesium, or other minerals which create that nasty white residue that can build up on your fixtures that’s difficult to remove. The best way to get rid of it is with a water purification system installed in your home.


Blue colors or a green/blue tint is a sign that you have elevated levels of copper in your water. When copper is exposed to oxygen, it changes from its typical golden red color to the blue-ish green that we typically associate with the Statue of Liberty. It’s that same color that you’re seeing in your water. Essentially this means you have a small amount of copper residue in your water, which means copper pipes in your water system have started to degrade and dissolve into your water. You may need to have these pipes replaced before you can continue using your water again.

Call the Bartlett plumbers at Smith’s Plumbing Services at (901) 290-1110 if you’re having issues with the quality of the water in your home and let a professional from our team provide you with reliable repairs!
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