What Is the Meaning of Discolored Water

Your water has the potential to be many different colors depending on what plumbing issue you're experiencing. We're talking about black and orange which are usually signs that there is something seriously wrong with your plumbing system. This could be an issue with your municipal pipelines or your personal ones.

Red, brown, orange, yellow

If you notice a stream of red, brown or orange water coming from any of your water faucets, this usually indicates the presence of iron or manganese, meaning your old cast iron pipes are rusted. The variations in color have to do with different oxidation levels, but either way, you should replace your pipes as soon as possible. While rusty water isn't detrimental to your health, it stains your sink and laundry. This color water will also affect the taste and color of your food.

To prevent this dirty, colored water in the future, considers having your pipes replaced with a non-rusting metal, like copper, or the new PEX piping that is flexible and non-corrosive.


Black water coming from a drain pipe poses a serious hazard to your health as this color reflects the presence of sewage caused by a drain clog or sewer backup into your home. What causes the growth is the wet hair and soap scum that accumulates within the drain over time. Consider purchasing a drain stopper to prevent this type of buildup. While some people may not react to mold at all, others might experience stuffiness, coughing, or irritation to the eyes, throat, or skin. Call a professional plumber to have your pipes replaced immediately.

Foggy/foamy white

While foggy water isn't harmless to your body, it indicates a damaged pipe and results in a stained sink. The cloudiness is caused by mineral particles that are finely divided in the water.

For additional questions or concerns regarding your discolored water, contact JCN Plumbing today (305) 770-6860.