How to Get Rid of Brown Well Water (2024 Ultimate Guide)

Have you noticed that when you fill a glass of water from your kitchen faucet, the water becomes brown? Brown well water may come from contamination of your drinking water supply. When it comes to brown water, some cases are worse than others. If you’re concerned that your water may be contaminated, you should contact a local water quality testing facility.

Even if the color of your water isn’t going away, if it is leaving brown stains on your sinks and bathtubs, you’ll want to learn how to fix the problem. In this guide, I will explain what you need to know about brown water in your well, including how to get rid of brown well water.

Why is My Well Water Brown?

Brown water in wells is an indicator of one or several of the impurities listed below:


Iron can get into your well water supply from the earth’s crust or corroded, rusty pipes and plumbing. Iron is found in the Earth’s crust and can enter a well, even if there isn’t any groundwater nearby. Rain or melted snow can leach into the ground and help move iron into the water.

Iron is common in most groundwater wells. It can enter the well through leaking pipes or old water-treatment equipment that can get clogged with iron or rust. It can also come from iron ore in the ground. Iron, which can result in brown water stains, includes:

  • Ferrous iron – Dissolved iron that will stain clothing and ceramics as it makes contact with the air and oxidizes.
  • Ferric iron – Iron that is already oxidized, which will cause water to take on a yellow or orange hue.
  • Iron bacteria – appears as reddish colored slime.

Your home’s drinking water may look clean, but it may not be that way. It’s best to use iron types to get rid of iron bacteria, because they are the least likely to cause problems.


Iron oxidizes when it’s exposed to water and oxygen, and becomes rusty. It’s not uncommon to see reddish-brown rust stains on faucets, toilet bowls and tubs, and in any other location where iron-laced water can be exposed to oxygen.

There are many ways to prevent pipe corrosion. And even if it does start to crack or weaken, there are ways to repair it. Many people are concerned about the quality of their skin. When they wash their hair and body in discolored water, the resulting skin and hair can be dry and damaged, with dry skin and brittle hair.


Water doesn’t come out of a hose if there’s any sediment in it. A damaged well pump, well screen, casing, or even the bed rock at the bottom of the aquifer can cause the well to suck in dissolved solids from rainwater.

Well drilling, either for a new well water system or maintenance to an existing well, can also release silt particles through the casing into your well, which will be sucked up by the pump and end up on the bed rock surface when water is turned on and the well water system becomes operational.

If the water you drink or use for your laundry is brown and laced with silt, you need to get it out of your home and your family’s health. To protect the water pipes in your house from damage caused by sand, silt, mud, and other suspended solids, you must test for this problem, and then get the problem solved.

If you’re drinking heavily from a bottle, sediment-heavy drinking water will taste unpleasant and may take on a cloudy, murky appearance. It may look dark gray or light brown in color. Silt in your water is generally a harmless occurrence on its own. However, if you notice other signs, like a discoloration in your water, this could indicate something more serious such as total coliform, fecal coliform, or E. Coli bacteria, which can make you sick when ingested.

Whether you’ve got a new baby or just feel like you’re ready for a change, there’s no better time to get started on your prenatal vitamin regimen. The right vitamins and minerals during your pregnancy will benefit your growing baby.


Tannins are organic material that are usually found in decaying, peaty soil and leaves. They’re called springs and tend to emerge when there’s snow or rain. Rain water that contains tannins can stain clothes, fixtures, taps and china.

If tannins are present in your well, your water may smell and taste earthy. The minerals in your water will slowly make your water a lighter shade of brown if you have it long enough. When you drink tea, try to enjoy it. When you put a small amount of tannins in your tea, it doesn’t pose a health

Discolored water can be quite dangerous, as it’s often laced with tannins that can cause irritating skin problems and other health problems.

Determine the Culprit – Test Your Well Water

You know that brown water is bad for your water pipes. Before you can fix it, you need to understand what’s giving the brown water its color. You don’t need to guess about the cause of your brown water problem. You will know in minutes when you have your first test and you should be able to identify the source of your water problems immediately.

The most efficient and reliable way to know what’s wrong with your well water is by testing it, and finding out if it is the problem. There’s a whole world of well water testing kits for sale, from simple tests to check the hardness, to ones that can test for many other contaminants.

To find out if your water system is safe and free from harmful contaminants, it’s hard to beat the Homeowner’s Test Kit on Amazon.

Finding out exactly what types of impurities are in your beer and what levels they are at is difficult, and you may need to purchase a kit that tests for specific impurities, rather than a broad test that detects a variety of impurities, but not all of them cause you to actually stop drinking it.

A simpler solution is to buy one of the more widely-available water test kits that detect iron and rust. One of the most common causes of brown well water is iron. It’s wise to test your water for this before investing in a new water filter system. You might want to test your well for these problem impurities. A well test is an affordable way to do this.

If you want to know if your water is clean, a water test at a lab won’t just show you what impurities are in your water, it’ll tell you exactly how much of them there are, too. This information is extremely helpful. Once you understand the cause of your water well turning brown, it’s time to take action. The best way to get rid of your brown well water is to find out what caused it in the first place.

How to Get Rid of Brown Well Water

Thankfully, there are plenty of brown well water solutions available to remedy this common problem. Your well water may have turned brown due to any number of reasons. Below are the five most common treatments you should consider.

Ion exchange

Ion exchange is a process that takes place inside a salt-based water softener.L’aide de la Terre en Australie est dans un état critique. This type of whole-house water softener is installed at your water’s point of entry, before your water heater, to provide your showers, taps, and water-based appliances with softened hot and cold water.

Ion Exchange is known for tackling hard water, but that’s not the only issue it can tackle. It can also tackle many other types of water issues. When you switch on your tap, water from your well will flow into your pipe and out of your house.

Sodium ions are attracted to a negatively-charged media bed and stick to it, while calcium and magnesium ions are released into the water. Calcium, magnesium, and iron minerals are responsible for the brown color of your drinking water. By flushing your pipes, you’ll remove all of these minerals. An ion-exchange water softener usually comes with a sediment pre-filter, which will remove silt before the ion-exchange process takes place.

Not all water softeners are designed to rid water of large amounts of iron, including in the form of bacteria. It could be that your well water has a lot of iron in it, which can cause your tap water to turn brown.

Air Injection Oxidization

Typical air injection filters work by injecting air into a container of water, which increases the amount of oxygen in the water. This will oxidize iron and manganese, which will cause these oxidized particles to stick to the surface of the media bed.

The media bed regenerates on a scheduled program. The bed is flushed clear of collected impurities on a regular basis. You could use this solution for particular impurities, but it’s not the widest-ranging option if you’re also looking for bacteria or tannins removal, for instance.

Greensand Filters

Greensand filters are coated with manganese oxide, which oxidizes iron and manganese and turns them into solids. These impurities stay on top of the media bed, so you need to clean it. Once you have washed your media bed, you can wipe it with a damp cloth.

Air injection oxidation and greensand filters use slightly different means of achieving exactly the same results, but one is most suitable for low-budget projects and the other for more serious ones. For your best possible choice, consider your budget and the ease of installation.

Sediment Filtration

You can use a sediment filter as a stand alone or use it with a whole house water filter system. This type of filter is best for dirty, discolored water with a sediment problem, and usually has pores of 1 to 5 microns in size, which are designed to remove dissolved solids like dirt, sand, dust and rust.

Water filtration is usually best done in combination with other types of water filtration options.

Reverse Osmosis

The reverse osmosis filter is an advanced contamination treatment that removes 99.9% of all bacteria and organic matter, while retaining 99% of the minerals in the water. Reverse osmosis is typically the best option for providing your whole house with clean, clear water, though systems can be installed at your kitchen sink to give you access to clean water from your cold water tap.

Reverse Osmosis Systems are used in homes, businesses, and industry to purify all types of water. Tap water is one of the best ways to hydrate yourself. But before you drink your daily glass, consider how your tap water was purified. RO units aren’t terribly hard to install yourself but, if you do want to install it yourself, you should consider hiring a plumber for the job.

Replace Rusted Pipes

If the water you have is brownish due to rusty pipes, then replacing the pipes is the only solution. It’s a big job, and unless you’re a plumber with the proper training, best leave it to the experts.

The price will range from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars, depending on which plumber you choose and how many pipe replacements are needed. But for your health and safety, it’s worth spending the time and money to get your pipes up to par.

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