Common water supply problems and simple remedies 13 December 2017 We have had a number of water shutdowns today across the District, here are some tips if you are experiencing issues with your water supply. My water is a dirty brown or black colour The experience of “dirty water” is due to the presence of very minute amounts of soluble compounds of iron and manganese that gradually build up as a coating on the pipe wall. When the normal flow of water is disrupted for any reason – such as during a maintenance shutdown, a sudden break in the pipeline, or use of the street fire hydrant - the iron and manganese is re-suspended in the water, causing a brown discoloration. The water is still completely safe even though its appearance might suggest otherwise. Usually the discoloration will gradually clear of its own accord, but in severe instances our contractors may need to assist residents by flushing the mains in the street to restore clear water. Please contact us if you are having such problems – 07 868 0200. My clothing has been stained from dirty water The stains are due to the iron and manganese - referred to above. We recommend that the clothes are kept damp until they can be rewashed when the water clears. My water is a cloudy whitish colour During re-filling of the water main after repairs or maintenance some air may be trapped. This is dissolved in the water under pressure and when released forms fine bubbles of air. This is the white colour that is seen. Leave some water standing in a clear glass and the white colour should disappear after a short time. The water from my tap comes out in sudden spurts or is noisy This may be due to air trapped in the pipe under pressure, which expands suddenly when the tap is turned on. The solution is to leave several cold water taps just cracked on slightly, allowing the trapped air to be safely bled from the line. If the problem persists, call us on 07 868 0200 or your plumber. My water tastes terrible or has an odour First check your household appliances. Something as simple as a washer on the kettle that has deteriorated can cause an unpleasant taste. Contractors may need to flush the street mains on some quieter streets or check for a valve inadvertently left turned off. Sometimes you may need to seek help from your plumber if normal checks and remedies do not clear the problem. If you are new to the district, you may just need to take time to get accustomed to the different taste.