Coloured bits in your water

Tiny particles or bits in your tap water can sometimes cause discolouration.

In most cases this is not harmful and is usually short lived. 

There are a couple of reasons you may notice some very small bits in your water.

Dark red or brown particles or bits can be caused by the disturbance of naturally occurring sediment in the supply, or particles from corroding, unlined iron pipes. 

This disturbance can be caused by a sudden change in the direction or flow rate of water which can happen due to a burst, work being carried out on pipes nearby or an increase in demand – for example when the fire service connect to our mains or someone illegally uses a hydrant.

Often it is simply limescale caused by the hardness of your water. Normally this limescale is white, but can often be stained blue by new copper pipes bedding in, or by old copper pipes breaking down. 

If you’re experiencing any of these issues, all you need to do is run the cold tap that’s closest to the point at which the water supply enters your home. This is usually your kitchen tap.

Run the tap on a slow steady flow for about 20 minutes, and it should clear.

The water coming out of the tap shouldn't be wider than a pencil. If the flow is more powerful it could actually make the problem worse by stirring up more sediment.

If you're on a water meter, we can credit your bill with an amount to compensate you for the water you've used to flush the system.

You should report this problem to us if it persists or reoccurs.