Iron bacteria thrive in water containing high levels of iron and can accumulate in appliances and plumbing to create sludge, biofilm, and foul odors in water.
Chlorine, ozone, or peroxide can kill bacteria and inhibit its recurrence when continually injected into water supplies, however, continuous injection systems require a bit of available space for installation and proper operation. While some folks would rather not spend the money on these additional disinfection systems, others simply don't have the room for them.
If you fall into either of these groups, know that you can still rid your plumbing (and the water that flows through it) of iron and iron bacteria – you'll just have to expend a bit more effort to disinfect your pipes and ensure that they remain clean and bacteria-free.
The best way to clean your pipes without continuous injection of chlorine, ozone, or peroxide is to periodically shock-chlorinate it with household chlorine bleach or dry chlorine pellets. Without a continuous injection of a disinfectant, your iron bacteria will likely resurface and continue to cause problems in your water, and so it is important that you shock-chlorinate your well around 2-3 times a year if you are experiencing bacteria and not using a continuous chlorinator.
It's also important that you choose an iron filter that can be exposed to chlorine without harming the filter media. Pro-OX iron filters and Greensand Iron Filters can be sanitized with chlorine bleach, but some iron filters such a Birm iron filters cannot be exposed to any chlorine without harming the filter media.
For complete instructions on shock-chlorination of wells and plumbing, read our how-to guide here. For further information about well sanitation (CT values, measuring chlorine concentrations, etc.) consult the rest of our how-to guides here.
To browse our iron filters, chlorine injectors, and other water treatment systems, check out our online store. Finally, if you still have any questions or concerns, you can reach us at [email protected] or on Facebook for quick, personalized assistance with your particular water problem. Thanks for reading!