Discolored Water: What does it mean when your water is discolored?


Updated:  August 23, 2018.

The blog post, "Discolored Water:  What different colors can tell you about your water supply" is one of our most popular posts.  We recently updated it. 

Here is a snippet:

On the occasion, my kitchen sink's cold water faucet has yellow water.  I wanted to know what was causing my sink's water to turn yellow.  Was it safe to drink?  Was it something I should be concerned about?  This prompted me to my favorite resource, Google! 

Here are some common causes of discolored water.

If you have yellow, red, or orange water (like me), you have rust in the water.  The variation in color depends on the oxidation of the rust.  Rust in the water will not cause health issues.

The rusty water can come from either the city's water main or the pipes in your house.  If your issue only arises when using cold water (again, like me), if the color change is sudden, or if the color is discolored at all faucets, then it is a city water main issue.  Cities usually do an annual flush of the water main to remove sediment, so the problem might go away on its own.  However, if there is low flow in your area, the discolored water can continue.

Read the updated article here.