Orange Water Stain - NOT Iron???

We have pretty good well water in unincorporated Naperville, IL, Wheatland township, but we have orange stains on the grout and fixtures. Not uncommon, but I figured it was just high iron content. I got a test kit with several strips and these are the results: Copper - 0 ppm Iron - < 0.3 ppm Nitrate - < 5 ppm Nitrite - < 0.5 ppm Chlorine - < 0.5ppm pH - 6.5 Alkalinity - 240ppm Hardness - 25 grains / 420ppm
Maybe the test is bonkers, maybe the hardness and alkalinity have something to do with it. I figured I'd see white or grey deposits with this. I've heard the orange might be chromium, but I figured chromium deposits would end up grey, white or yellow.
I've been told by Eco Lindsay that we don't need an iron filter, and that it'd be about 65 bucks a month (maybe every three months -- anything in that price range is a bit steep from my POV). I guess they're right. Maybe what I should do is just install a sediment filter or something. Iron Out takes the stains off pretty good, so I'm just a bit confused.
Any recommendations or ideas?
Mark
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^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ This is enough to color deposits.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
That's pretty hard. It doesn't take a lot of iron to create visible coloration and the hardness minerals contribute to incorporating it into a film.

A water softener can deal with this small amount of iron. Using an iron removal salt or periodically regenerating with Iron Out or Rust Raze will prolong the life of the media.
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victor wrote:

Mark, we now have a similar mystery. A couple of weeks ago, we had to have our submersible well pump replaced. I've had orange water since then. Why now?
I'll be interested to see what people tell you. We haven't had our water tested since the pump replacement. Dora
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Maybe your well now is infested with iron bacteria because the guys who put the new pump in didn't disinfect it properly.
http://www.dnr.state.wi.us/org/water/dwg/febact.htm
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"Iron Bacteria"? Are you being facetious, or is this something you've seen? And how could it exist in water with such low iron content? If there is such a thing, as there is with the "sulfur bacteria" that causes the hydrogen sulfide smell, I do chlorinate occasionally, and that takes care of it. Why not this other bacteria?
Now, if this is a sediment problem (lots of construction around us, and water quality has changed quite a bit with it), I GUESS free- floating iron and dissolved iron would allow a high sediment iron but a low iron concentration, as shown by the test I ran.
If THAT's the case, what do folks recommend as a good whole-house filter for that? Is it pretty much just a case of choosing one with a decent capacity so as not to affect flow as the filter gets nearer needing replacement? I mean, there's a WHOLE lot of different models out there with a big range of prices.
Mark
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I was responding to limey, not you. And yes, there are iron bacteria. Look at the link I provided above. An excerpt:
Iron bacteria in drinking water
For a free brochure containing the information on this page, contact the nearest DNR office and request publication number WS-004. Table of contents
1. What are the effects of iron bacteria 2. How do I know if I have iron bacteria in my well? 3. How can I prevent iron bacteria from entering my well? 4. How do I treat iron bacteria? * Chemical treatment * Mechanical treatment 5. More information on iron bacteria in drinking water.
What are the effects of iron bacteria?
Common effects of excess iron in water are a reddish-brown color, stained laundry and poor tasting coffee. An equally common but less well understood problem is infestation of water supplies with iron bacteria. Iron bacteria are a natural part of the environment in Wisconsin and most other parts of the world. These microorganisms combine dissolved iron or manganese with oxygen and use it to form rust-colored deposits. In the process, the bacteria produce a brown slime that builds up on well screens, pipes, and plumbing fixtures.
In Wisconsin the dramatic effects of iron bacteria are seen in surface waters as brown slimy masses on stream bottoms and lakeshores or as an oily sheen upon the water. More serious problems occur when bacteria build up in well systems.
Iron bacteria in wells do not cause health problems, but they can have the following unpleasant and possibly expensive effects:
* Cause odors * Corrode plumbing equipment * Reduce well yields (clog screens and pipes) * Increase chances of sulfur bacteria infestation.
...etc...
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So what would be the treatment for this? Is there any reason to expect that the chlorination I've been doing would exliminate that sulfur- odor-generating bacteria, as it has done, but NOT kill iron bacteria?
Mark
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We get an orange buildup in the edges of the shower curtain and along the edges of the tub. Could these be this bacteria? We have a water softener and without it hard water and rust stains form within a day if we run out of salt.
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I live in the south and in the south we have a lot of clay. I have seen well water that is red from the clay. Could this be your problem?
<a href="http://allamericangeneralstore.com ">hardwareman</a>

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wrote:

We get a reddish stain in the bathroom. Sometimes it is along the top of the water in the commode and other times it is where water was standing in the shower, along the rim of the tub. I believe it is related to mold/mildew and not rust stain. I am not sure what causes it. I had never seen it happen before I moved to FL.
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Okay, based on all the input here, I figured I'd install a filter and see what happens. After getting an estimate of 65 bucks a month for an iron removal system, it was nice to get a whole-house unit at Menards on sale for twenty bucks. The one with the filter included was 25 bucks. Similar units at Home Depot and other places were around 30-50, and the replacement filters were between 19 and 29. I checked all around and could not find anything negative about the brand, "Omni". Replacement filters at Menards were about three bucks for the standard pleated paper and around 7-9 dollars for a pack of two activated charcoal chemical and odor filters. I soldered the unit in after the softener, thinking that the filters would last longer, and the softener, being a rental, is maintained rather well.
No stains, no odor, no red, no rust in the toilets. And while I haven't gotten around to replacing the valve/washers on the upstairs shower faucets that leak a bit, there's no more residue from them, either.
Thanks, all!
Mark
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--WebTV-Mail-850-231 Content-Type: Text/Plain; Charset=US-ASCII Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7Bit
i had a well that was very red and stinky and turned anything it touched red. i had a water softener installed and now the water is usable. I RENT my unit from CULLIGAN . I buy the salt from the grocery store. Sure made a difference. JO
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