Are you noticing red, yellow or brown stains on the back of your home’s toilet, sink, shower or other plumbing fixtures? Does your tap water have a metallic taste?

If you get your water supply from a well, you’re probably experiencing a high iron content. While iron doesn’t typically pose a health risk — it is a vital nutrient humans need to survive — it can be harmful in other ways. Iron can damage plumbing and appliances, leave stains on clothing during laundering and cause dry, irritated skin. 

How Does Iron Get in Well Water?

Iron can infiltrate well water in several ways. Rain or melting snow can penetrate rocks containing a high iron content. This process can dissolve the iron and allow it to seep into groundwater. Corroding iron or steel pipes can also allow iron to enter well water. 

The Best Ways to Remove Iron From Well Water

The most effective method for eliminating iron from a well water supply depends on the type of iron content. 

Ferric Iron

This form of iron is insoluble, meaning it doesn’t dissolve fully in water. You can tell if your water contains a high ferric iron content if it exhibits a bright red or orange color. 

Iron filtration systems can deliver reliable results when removing ferric iron from well water. A sub-micron-rated sediment filter prevents solid materials like undissolved iron particulates from entering a home’s plumbing system while enabling the well water to flow freely. These filters can also keep out dirt and other debris.

Natural cotton string wound filters with a sufficient micron rating work best for ferric iron elimination applications. 

Ferrous Iron

Unlike ferric iron, this type can completely dissolve in water. You likely won’t see ferrous iron — affected water in a glass will look clear. However, if you leave the glass on a table overnight, the water will transform into a precipitate and leave reddish-brown iron flakes on the bottom. Ferrous iron typically forms in deeper wells where sunlight cannot reach it.

Water softening is usually the most effective solution for removing low ferrous iron levels from well water. The process works via ion exchange, where positively charged mineral ions swap places with negatively charged sodium ions. If ferric iron is also present in the water supply, it will be necessary to start with sediment filtration to prevent clogging.

Bacterial Iron

This form of iron in well water occurs when bacteria within a well combine with iron to create a bright red sludge-like substance. Bacteria growth within the well can result from a lack of timely maintenance or improper servicing. Bacterial iron can be a significant issue because it tends to cling to the inside of plumbing pipes and cause clogging. 

Water filtration and water softening are ineffective when removing bacterial iron from well water. Shock chlorination is a more reliable iron bacteria treatment method, which works by introducing an intense chlorine concentration to disinfect the water and the well. 


Trust Atlantic Blue Water Services for Iron Removal

Trust Atlantic Blue Water Services for Iron Removal

Atlantic Blue Water Services is the company to contact for removing iron from well water in much of Maryland and Southern Pennsylvania. Our stellar reputation for integrity and sound business practices have enabled us to build a large, loyal customer base throughout the region. 

Our services include comprehensive testing to determine the type of iron in your well water. We’ll then implement the most suitable and cost-effective solution to rectify the issue. 

Learn more about how to get iron out of well water on your residential or commercial property. Submit our online form to schedule service today.