Iron bacteria are generally more common than sulfur bacteria because iron is abundant in ground water. Iron bacteria are oxidizing agents and combine iron or manganese dissolved in ground water with oxygen. A side effect of the process is a foul smelling brown slime that can cause unpleasant odors, corrode plumbing equipment and fixtures, and clog well screens and pipes. If conditions are right, the bacteria can grow at amazing rates, rendering an entire well system useless in just a few months. Signs that may indicate an iron bacteria problem include yellow-, red- or orange-colored water; rusty slime deposits in toilet tanks; and strange smells resembling fuel oil, cucumbers, or sewage. Sometimes the odor will only be apparent in the morning or after other extended periods of non-use.
There are two categories of sulfur bacteria; sulfur oxidizers and sulfur reducers. Sulfur-reducing bacteria are the more common. Sulfur-oxidizing bacteria produce effects similar to those of iron bacteria. They convert sulfide into sulfate, producing a dark slime that can clog plumbing. Sulfur-reducing bacteria live in oxygen-deficient environments. They break down sulfur compounds, producing hydrogen sulfide gas in the process. The distinctive “rotten egg” odor of hydrogen sulfide gas is the most obvious sign of a sulfur bacteria problem. Hydrogen sulfide gas is foul smelling and highly corrosive. As with odors caused by iron bacteria, the sulfur smell may only be noticeable when the water hasn’t been run for several hours. If the odor is only present when hot water is run, sulfur-reducing bacteria could be building up in the water heater. Blackening of water or dark slime coating the inside of the toilet tank may also indicate a sulfur bacteria problem. Iron bacteria and sulfur bacteria contaminations are often difficult to tell apart because the symptoms are so similar. To complicate matters, sulfur reducing bacteria often live in complex symbiotic relationships with iron bacteria, so both types may be present.
Fortunately, both types of bacteria can be treated using the same methods.
Prevention with a HYDROFLOW SYSTEM
The Hydroflow system kills bacteria 99.99%.
HYDROFLOW is best solution for both iron and sulfur bacteria prevention.