Rust. The dissolved "black iron" in the well water turns to "red iron
(rust") when exposed to oxygen.
Anticipating your next question, any acid will get rid of it. Phosporic
acid is commonly used, generally in CLR or similar ptoducts.
In Hahira Georgia (where you are) you apparently have some ground water
sources that are high in iron.
This document (dated 1993) might be of some interest, seeing that
Valdosta is very close to where you are:
==============The Upper Floridan aquifer is the sole source of water supply for the
city of Valdosta, Ga., and much of the surrounding area. The aquifer
yields an ample supply of water; however, water quality is a concern to
users and developers of ground-water resources in the area.
In some areas, the aquifer contains water having high color, high
concentrations of iron and hydrogen sulfide, and undesirable bacteria,
protozoa, and fungi (Krause, 1979). The water also contains relatively
high concentrations of organic material in some areas. Humic substances
associated with the organic material in ground water can react with
chlorine during water treatment to form compounds referred to as
Total trihalomethanes have been detected in treated water in
concentrations that exceed the maximum contaminant level of 100
micrograms per liter (|ig/L) for drinking-water supplies established by
the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Environmental Protection
Division (EPD, 1990).
I haven't tried cheap 'pool quality' muriatic acid for this, but used to
use a mild fluoric acid, commerically available under the name Whink.
Flourine based acid is used to etch glass, but Whink is so mild haven't
seen any evidence of being able to do that. I tried, but didn't work.
That acid is a sleeper so neutralize with baking soda when finished. AND
wear gloves. Doesn't hurt your fingers at all, until about an hour later
when the damage under your fingernails becomes noticeably apparent, feels
like your nails are being ripped off, but that feeling only lasts about
half a day.
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