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Is yellow or rusty water safe to bathe in or shower in? It can be quite disgusting to fill up your tub with water, only to realize that it’s turning yellow. Yellow bathwater flowing in from the faucet is an alarming thing to say the least.
Obviously, once you overcome the shock, you will have a few questions. For starters, is the yellow bathwater suitable for drinking or even bathing in?
What’s causing this problem? More importantly, are there any steps that you can take to prevent this from happening and ensure a clean supply of running water?
One of the main reasons why your bathwater is turning yellow is because of the presence of rust in the pipes. Rust is a serious issue that can eventually compromise the integrity of your water pipes.
It’s important to understand that certain amounts of iron and oxygen are readily found in different plumbing systems. However, when their quantities increase, it leads to a chemical reaction that creates rust.
This ultimately gives the water its yellowish shade. So, to put it simply, there’s really nothing else mixing in your water supply; it’s just the abundance of iron and oxygen in the pipes through which the water passes through.
The greater the amount of rust, the darker your water is likely to be.
What causes water to look yellow?
Yellow water is primarily caused by rust. Rust within the pipes of a shower or bathtub can cause the water to turn a yellow colour when it comes out of a shower head or faucet. Yellow water can also be caused by a rusty water heater if only the hot water faucet produces yellow water.
The first and most obvious reason for yellow bathwater is rusted pipes. If you turn on the water each morning and get an influx of yellow water through it, it’s probably because of the rust that’s carried through the water overnight.
Similarly, if you turn on the faucets after a considerable break and have yellow water flowing through, it’s also rust. If it’s not the pipes, the problem could be caused by the rusting in the faucets in your shower or your bath.
If you check the water coming from other taps, and it’s only rusted from one particular faucet or tap, you might want to remove that and check it from the inside. The interior must be properly rusted, which is what turns the water all yellow.
Rusted Water Heater
Then, the issue could be caused by a rusted water heater. All of the hot water that runs through your plumbing system has to pass through the water heater.
There’s a pretty simple way to check this. Turn on the hot water and see if the water is yellow. Then, only turn on the cold water and see if there’s a difference in the color.
If the water is clear when it’s cold, it’s probably the water heater that’s rusted. Finally, it could be due to the fact that your entire water supply is rusted out.
If the water throughout your house is constantly yellow, regardless of the faucet or the shower head, there’s an issue with the supply of water in general. Ask your neighbors if the water in their house is yellow too.
If yes, the entire city supply is affected. You may want to check in with the water supply company or install a filtration system at home. This can help you reduce the extent of discoloration as well.
Is yellow bathwater safe for bathing?
Showering or bathing in yellow water is safe on your skin, but it could irritate your eyes or if you ingest yellow water it could make you sick. If your shower or bathtub faucet is producing yellow water, you should contact a plumber to help determine and fix the issue as soon as possible so that your water becomes clear again.
Furthermore, if you’re bathing in yellow bathwater it is unlikely to clean you, so it should just be avoided from a cleanliness point of view.
When you call a professional plumber they may run a few tests to determine what’s causing the problem, and whether it can be fixed easily or not.
They will try out several solutions to fix the issue. If nothing can be done, they will just test the water to see if it’s safe for jumping into it.
Can You Drink the Yellow Water?
If your tap is producing yellow water, it is not suitable to drink.
First of all, it looks disgusting. Most people just don’t feel good drinking yellow water. Second, you will want to figure out why the water is discolored.
It’s best to err on the safe side and drink only bottled water. Do not even cook or wash your utensils and crockery in yellow water. Get a professional assessment first from an experienced plumber before you make a decision.
Most plumbing companies can carry out detailed water testing to determine the mineral content and the nutrients in it. If they deem it safe, you can easily drink the water.
However, if they express their doubts, it’s best to avoid drinking it altogether. Keep in mind that your body uses a considerable amount of water for a range of biochemical reactions.
If you are not drinking clean water, you are essentially harming yourself. Don’t take the risk of drinking unclean water because it could immediately lead to a litany of problems.
Most people don’t realize this, but unclean water could lead to diarrhea and other digestive problems. You may start vomiting and your immune system might be compromised as a result.
It’s important for you to treat this as a health threat. If you have kids in the house who like to drink water straight from the tap, you may want to prevent them from doing so as well.
What’s the solution to yellow water?
If the water continues to flow yellow from the tap, one of the best solutions available to you is to install a water filtration system.
Water filtration systems are generally quite robust and are able to filter out all of the harmful substances that could be affecting the water supply.
It’s recommended that you install a high-end filtration system if you are sure that the water supply is going to remain this way in the long run. However, it’s best to get in touch with your water company and your plumber and see if they can fix the problem or not.
Hello, my name is David Zal and I’m a plumber with more than 20 years of experience based in Englewood (Florida). I like to teach normal people how to make easy fixes in their homes. I believe that a lot can be achieved just with DYI and that’s why I started this blog.