Best Solutions For Tap Water Smelling Like Sulphur
Why does my water smell like sulfur? Have you ever asked this question in front of any of your faucets? Well, this is a familiar scenery in every home. If you're having this problem, we'll give you the best tips to get rid of this unpleasant smell. This problem occurs when sulfur bacteria take down the organic matter and liberate sulfide gas.
Facts to understand sulfur smell on your tap water
- The cause of the sulfur smell is commonly hydrogen sulfide, a colorless, corrosive gas with a disgusting rotten egg odor.
- Sulfur bacteria isn't a risk for your health.
- Sulfur smell is not related to how clean the water is in the well.
- If the smell is coming from the water treated by a water softener and not in the raw water, you should check the water softener because the sulfur bacteria is in there. To make sure your water softener is in a great shape and is not contaminated by any bacteria, make sure to perform regular checks on it. Check this article for must follow tips on how to maintain your water softener.
- The smell is easier to detect from a hot water faucet given that the heat causes vapor.
- If you notice the odor only in your hot water faucet, the problem could probably be in the heater.
- If the sulfur smell is present in both cold and hot water, then the problem is in the groundwater.
- If the odor goes away after the water is running for a while, the sulfur bacteria might be in the plumbing system or in the well.
- Sulfur bacteria can produce a slime that generates other germs to grow, such as iron bacteria. The sludge can clog your wells and irrigation systems.
Which actions can you take?
When your tap water smells like sulfur, you may start to think about all the possible causes of this problem. Contrary to what you might believe, you're probably capable of fixing it yourself without spending money. Start by turning on all the faucets in your home and letting them run for 10 minutes. This step will clear your pipes, and luckily, the smell will stop.
Before discussing possible solutions, regular cleaning of the water network is recommended, especially in areas where water does not circulate regularly. Among the temporary options to end this problem, a chlorination process is one of them, you can add chlorine to your well. When the smell of chlorine is present in all the pipes in the house, let the water run until the smell disappears. For a couple of months, you will be without the rotten egg odor.
If you're searching for a radical solution, installing a water softener system might be what you need to end the problem. For those who already have it at home, constant maintenance is necessary to avoid the presence of hydrogen sulfide in the water.
Top tips to eradicate sulfur smell in your tap water
- Clean your faucets. Your sink could be blocked by dirt, and this could cause mold, which may be the reason for the unpleasant odor. A broken pipe might be another reason, and you'll need a plumber's snake to clean the dust accumulated. You can use cleaning products and chlorine.
- Test the well water. If you're not receiving treated water from a municipal system, hydrogen sulfide gas may be the cause of the smell. Wells that contain hydrogen sulfide keep producing the gas, so you should apply chlorine every six months approximately.
- Inspect your heater. If only your hot water smells like sulfur, the problem is on your heater system. Check the anode rod, and if it is damaged, it could be the source of the disagreeable smell. The anode rod is commonly made from magnesium and is installed on your heater to attract particles that lead to corrosion. Chemicals in your water react to the anode, creating the sulfur smell.
- Replace the magnesium anode with an aluminum anode. This action should eliminate the odor. However, over time the anode dissolves, and particles end up at the bottom and could cause damage to the pipes and contaminate the water with aluminum.
- Search for a specialist. A professional that can perform a profound diagnosis to identify the source of the hydrogen sulfide could be the solution. Many companies are dedicated to eradicating this problem, offering treatments with high-quality dosing equipment.
- Install an impressed current anode rod in the water heater. Changing the anode could be a solution in the long term. It will protect the structure of the pipes avoiding corrosion and will eliminate the bad smell in a few hours, thanks to the stream that impressed current rod system projects.
Frequently asked questions
1. It is safe to drink water that smells like rotten eggs?
Hydrogen sulfide can damage your pipes, and also, when it starts to rust, it can deteriorate metals and cause black stains on your plumbing. Although this odor is incredibly unpleasant, it is safe to drink the water. The most important thing is to understand everything about sulfur bacteria to act appropriately according to your specific situation.
2. Which is the quickest solution to remove the sulfur smell from my well water?
Using chlorine bleach is the easiest way to remove hydrogen sulfide odor. This chemical reacts with oxidizers eradicating the rotten smell and disinfecting your water supplies.
3. How much bleach should I put in my well?
Most people tend to believe that more bleach is more effective, but this isn't right. Don't use an excessive amount of chlorine because it can produce corrosion on the pipes. Combine the bleach with water to reduce the concentration, and you'll eliminate the smell without causing any damage.
4. Can bacteria in my tap water make me sick?
Even if sulfur is considered an important part of a healthy diet, high levels of it can lead to dehydration and diarrhea. It not only will cause an awful smell, but also, can create stains on your toilets, damage your plumbing system, your sinks, and more.
Assess the recommendations mentioned above and choose the one that best suits your needs to eradicate this problem. Remember, the first step to solve this is to know where the sulfur smell comes from. Once your water no longer smells like rotten eggs, we recommend preventive maintenance once in a while, so you don't have to go through this situation again.