When the water coming out of the faucets inside the house smells bad, there is probably a problem with your hot water heater. There can be a few different causes of stinky water, yet the leading reason is bacteria. In case bacteria is coming into the water, a smell may appear. Well water is commonly responsible for this developing. However, there are a few steps a Durham homeowner might take to stop bacteria from developing in their water and to get rid of existing bacteria and odors.

According to Soquel Creek Water District, “The smell is the result of four factors that must all be present for the odor to develop. These factors include:

  • A high concentration of sulfate in the raw water
  • Sulfate reducing bacteria, non-toxic to humans (sulfate is reduced to a sulfide state by the bacteria)
  • Little or no dissolved oxygen in the water
  • Hydrogen (a component of water which may be present due to water conditions reacting with the anode)”  Read more here…

Controlling Water Heater Bacteria Growth

The easiest way to stop bacteria from developing and leading to awful tastes and smells in one’s residence, is to ensure the temperature is set at 140 degrees or higher on one’s hot water heater. At this climate bacteria are unable to grow and will be killed. Whenever your water heater temperature is set below this, bacteria will not only survive but will be able to grow.

Cleaning Out Hot Water Heater BacteriaEliminating Durham Water Heater Odors

In order to remove present bacteria and odors, one will have to apply harsh chemicals to remove it. Chlorine bleach is the most powerful and comprehensive chemical cleaner to utilize. In cases where you are making an attempt to clean the water and kill the bacteria using bleach by yourself, be sure to fully understand the precise process of doing so. First of all, the electric or gas going to the water heater has to be switched off. And then the cold water supply should be turned off. After that, you must turn on one of the hot water taps inside of the home. This lets air into the tank. Utilizing a garden hose, empty the water out of the hot water heater and close up the drain valve once all the water has been drained. After that, it’s time to pour in the bleach. One will need five ounces of chlorine bleach for each gallon of water the tank retains. Unscrew the flexible cold water hose and pour the bleach in the opening. In the event that the cold water hose isn’t flexible, it could be a wise decision to call in a professional. Hook up the water line once more and fill up the tank with water. It is necessary to shut the hot water spigot in the home as soon as all of the air is out of the pipe. It’s also really important to run each one of the faucets that utilize hot water in the home until you are able to smell the bleach. The bacteria that is in the water heater may also be in pipes and fixtures for that reason you should wipe out the bacteria in these areas too. Let the bleach water stay in the tank and inside the pipes for approximately 3 hours while not utilizing any hot water. Then another flush is due. After the tank is cleared again, do not add more bleach but fill it up with water and let it sit in the tank and in the piping for at least thirty minutes. Finally, drain out the water once again and then replenish the tank with water. Allow all the hot water appliances in the house run until you can no longer smell bleach. Either flip the power on again or relight the pilot and you will be all set!

For any questions about water stench, flushing a hot water heater, Durham water heater repairs, or any other water heater issues, give us a call!