Turning on the faucet in your bathroom to see black water surging out where clear water usually emerges is obviously very disconcerting. If you see black water coming out of one or multiple faucets in your home, there is no need to panic. There are many reasons why your faucet water might be discolored—several of which can be solved fairly easily.

Even if your water is currently coming out clear, it is a smart idea to create an action plan in case a plumbing problem that causes black faucet water ever plagues your home. Preparing in advance can prevent you from getting blindsided by plumbing issues in the future. Keep reading to learn the most common potential causes for discolored water coming out of your faucet and what you can do to resolve the problem as quickly and easily as possible.

1. Mineral Deposits

An excess of mineral deposits in the water that flows through your home plumbing system can cause black water to emerge from your faucets. Magnesium, manganese, and iron are common minerals that build up in your water system over time. When these minerals oxidize—i.e. mix with oxygen as they come out of your faucet—they can turn black, which in turn causes the water that flows out of your faucet to appear black as well. The good thing is that these excessive mineral deposits are generally harmless to humans. However, no one wants to drink, brush their teeth, or wash their clothes or dishes in black water.

black water from faucet

black water from faucet

Fortunately, getting rid of excessive minerals in the water that flows through your home plumbing system is pretty simple. All you need is a water filtration system or water softener system that removes excess minerals from your water before it comes out of your faucets. Getting a high-quality water filtration system installed in your home should make your water turn from black back to clear again if the root cause of the emerging black water is oxidized minerals in the water.

2. Rusty Pipes

If the pipes that make up your home plumbing system rust, flakes of rust can make their way from the inside of the pipes into your water. The rust in the water then oxidizes and turns dark and discolored as it makes its way out through your faucets. While rusty water most commonly appears dirty orange, red, or brown, it can appear black sometimes as well. Steel pipes, iron pipes, copper pipes, and pipes that are galvanized with a protective layer of zinc are all susceptible to rust.

If your black water is due to rusty pipes, you will probably notice hard, misshapen particles in the discolored water that comes out of your faucets. If your pipes are rusting and causing black water to emerge from your faucets, that is a sign that those pipes or at least the rusted sections of them need to be replaced as soon as possible.

3. Mildew Growth

Black water coming out of your faucets can also be a result of mildew growing in your pipes or water heater and discoloring the water that flows through them.

If you suspect that mildew might be growing in your home plumbing system, it is important to call a plumbing expert as soon as possible. Mold and mildew in your water can be very dangerous to your health and the health of others in your home who are drinking or otherwise using this water.

4. Sand or Clay Particles

If you get your water from a private well rather than a city water line, black water coming out of your faucets might be due to sand or clay particles making their way into your water.

Sand or clay particles can be removed from your well in different ways, depending on the type of well you have. If you have a sandstone well, you can install a liner into your well. If you have a gravel well or a sand well, you can install a screen into your well or replace the existing screen to prevent sand and clay particles from getting into your water supply.

5. Old Filter System

Many water filtration systems use granular activated carbon in their filter cartridges because granular activated carbon particles are effective at absorbing tastes, odors, and chemicals from unfiltered water.

Over time, however, those particles of granular activated carbon can make their way into your water supply and turn the water black as it comes out of your faucets. Fortunately, this problem has an easy fix. Simply replace the cartridge in your water filtration system and the black water should turn clear again.

Accurate Leak Locators and Plumbing is a plumbing company based in the city of Menifee, California, that is staffed by a team of plumbing experts who can quickly and efficiently diagnose and solve virtually any plumbing issue at an affordable price.

If you are located in Riverside County in Southern California and notice black water coming out of your faucets, get in touch with us today to get your water running clear again as soon as possible.