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Thread: light red sediment

  1. #1
    HonestKirb is offline Junior Member
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    Unhappy light red sediment

    I have just moved into a brand new house that has city water leading to it. The toilets and showers are not used much but over a very short time (1 month) I am finding a light red sediment in the bowl and on the floor of the shower. It cakes up and requires a bit of vigor to remove without solvents. Do you know what this? I have seen recommendations on this website for water tests kits for well water will this work the same for city water. The big questions are is it harmful to consume? and how do I get rid of it in the first place? I am hoping that it will go away and that it was just some dirt in the pipes.

  2. #2
    Andy CWS is offline Moderator
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    It soounds like IRON (Fe) to me. Now, what kind of irom is the real question.

    Ferrous, ferric, colloidal, bacterial.....? Ferrous iron (Fe++) omes out of the faucet clear but turns red after a period of time and mixed with air (O2) primarily. Ferric iron (Fe+++) has already been oxidized and comes out reddish and settles quickly to the bottom of a vessel. Colloidal iron will have a reddish tint but won't settle out as it carries about the same specific gravity of water and remains in suspension. Bacterial is organic and has numerous way to solve or treat.

    Find out through testing which iron you have. What water equipment do you have?

    Andy Christensen, CWS

  3. #3
    HonestKirb is offline Junior Member
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    Default Ferrous iron testing

    The sediment is as you have described Ferrous iron. What type of testing can I perform to find Ferrous iron ion specifically? I currently do not have any testing or filtration in my system. What systems do you recomend?

  4. #4
    Andy CWS is offline Moderator
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    Perhaps I misuderstood. You say it is sedimentary iron and that it was called ferrous (Fe++).

    Well, if it is a sediment then it is no longer ferrous but ferric (Fe+++). This type of iron can generally be removed by a filtration process rather than an ionic exchange process.

    Depending on water quality tests and the flow demands of your plumbing, a 5-micron filter MAY be enough to remove ferric iron to a great degree. More info on your water quality, expectations and needs would be required to determine the best course of action and selection of equipment.

    Andy Christensen, CWS

  5. #5
    HonestKirb is offline Junior Member
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    The sediment, or film, I find is either at the water line where the water once was and has slowly moved down or from small puddles that have evaporated in the shower.
    The water color is clear to the naked eye. I assume that from your post that there is Iron ions in the water that are oxidizing and falling out of the solution once it hits air. I also notice that a clear film texture, like sticky grease, on glassware that I reuse for tap water only without using detergents.
    I have found that if you add a titration of Ammonia or Sodium Hydroxide you can determine what type of Ion is present. Are there other over-the-counter tests I can perform?
    You have mentioned that a 5 micron filter is needed for ferric. Is there another type of filter needed for ferrous?

  6. #6
    katie is offline Junior Member
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    hi,
    you can quickly figure out how much iron is in your water, if any. here is a link to an inexpensive but accurate detector. http://www.filtersfast.com/SenSafe-i...lters-fast.asp

  7. #7
    Andy CWS is offline Moderator
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    Normally, ferrous iron is removed by an ion exchange process rather than filtration. A nano-filter or reverse osmosis CAN remove iron but not recommended as the life of the membranes will shorten and cost would be prohibitive.

    As asked previously, what are the water test results? thismight help answer your concerns.

    Andy Christensen

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