Why Does the Water Smell in My House? Common Smells and Their Causes

Why Does the Water Smell in My House? Common Smells and Their Causes

March 10, 2022

If the water in your house smells bad, don’t ignore this potentially hazardous issue. Tap water that smells wrong can be harmful. The fact is that well water needs to be filtered, and foul-smelling water may be a sign that your filter isn’t working properly.

Let’s take a closer look at the leading causes for water that doesn’t smell right so you know what kind of action you need to take to address it.

Water smells like sewage

If the scent of dirt, grime and human waste is in your water supply, you’ll probably hesitate before taking a sip. This sewage smell could be caused by a number of factors. It’s possible that it’s from food and soap left in the drain. You may think that the sewage smell originates from the faucet, but it’s more likely due to the buildup of bacteria in the drain, resulting in the sink having a generally unpleasant smell.

It’s possible that the water in your water heater has been left unused for too long. If you were away for an extended period of time and shut the water heater off, the smell could be linked to bacteria that built up in the water heater.

Water smells like sulfur

Hydrogen sulfide gas creates a smell similar to rotten eggs. This is liable to build up in the drains or pipes connected to leftover material (like soap, food and hair) piling up. The smell isn’t appetizing, but it’s typically not harmful to those in the home; however, in the long run, it can corrode your pipes. There are well water filtration systems on the market that can help.

Water smells like metal

Deposits of metals like iron, zinc and manganese are liable to leach into water sources over time. These are naturally occurring and not typically a cause for great concern; however, in some cases, a metallic odor could be linked to the presence of lead in the water supply, which is a serious health concern. Here is another reason well water needs to be filtered.

Water smells like chlorine

The vast majority of public water treatment systems use chlorine to disinfect the water supply. That said, occasionally, high levels of chlorine can build up and result in unpleasant side effects. It is safe to drink water with chlorine levels below 4 milligrams per liter, but water heavy with chlorine will dry out your skin and hair. Water filtration systems can help drain away excess chlorine.

Water smells musty

The water from your taps should smell fresh. If it, instead, smells like it’s been in your basement for a while, it could be because organic materials are polluting the supply. One solution for this is to sanitize the plumbing system and the water softener.

For the leaders in well water filtration, turn to Royal Water Works, Inc. We have more than three decades of experience in the business. We provide consulting services to a wide range of municipal, commercial and residential customers. Contact us right now to find out more about what we offer.

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