Blue water mystery - The Planted Tank Forum
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-23-2012, 02:27 PM Thread Starter
Planted Member
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Near Lake Wylie NC
Posts: 283
Blue water mystery

We are on well water, and if we fill any large container such as a bucket or tub from outside at the well head or inside the house, the water has a distinct light blue color. It's not strong enough to see in a glass of water, but anything over 3 gallons against a white background starts to become visible as a faint blue color. In a filled bathtub, it appears as if someone added blue bath beads or something similar to the water. It is unmistakably blue.

My initial thought was that we might have a copper problem, but I tested and copper is not present. I assumed we had hard water, because over time, we get some very hard to remove white deposits on the shower glass that CLR (Calcium, Rust, Lime) and soap scum remover products will not touch. It must be removed by using Bartender's Friend and a lot of elbow grease. Our water also does not feel slimey like soft water often does.

However, on testing, I found our water is very soft. GH tested around 1-2 dH. KH was at around 2 dH. A TDS meter shows 42 PPM out of the faucet. I do show some nitrates in our water (5 PPM), which doesn't really surprise me, since we live in a rural area with farming. 0 Ammonia, 0 nitrites. Out of the tap, the water is slightly acidic at around 6.8.

I've read that blue-green algae may cause blue water, but this is true blue with no green tint. Our aquifer is in solid granite about 350 ft deep. We are, however, about 1/2 mile from a large lake.

I know we had our well tested when we built our house, and I don't recall anything weird. We obviously passed the health inspection. I will have another test done soon, but does anyone have an idea what the blue might be?

Thanks.

Salty


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
SaltyNC is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-23-2012, 02:42 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (23/100%)
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Durham, NC
Posts: 2,261
Does the house have copper water pipes?


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
freph is offline  
post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-23-2012, 02:53 PM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
rainbuilder's Avatar
 
PTrader: (28/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 804
It might be the chlorine in the water. My water is the same way. After I treat it with chlorine remover and pour it in the tank the color goes away.

RAOK Club #38
Fraternity of Dirt #91

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
rainbuilder is offline  
 
post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-23-2012, 02:53 PM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
PTrader: (17/100%)
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Stockton,CA
Posts: 863
They already ruled out copper. If it was me, id find a couple of the oldest farmers in the area and ask them. Youd be surprised at the wealth of local knowledge old farmers have

Sent from my DROIDX using Tapatalk 2
DerekFF is offline  
post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-23-2012, 03:06 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (23/100%)
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Durham, NC
Posts: 2,261
Quote:
Originally Posted by DerekFF View Post
They already ruled out copper. If it was me, id find a couple of the oldest farmers in the area and ask them. Youd be surprised at the wealth of local knowledge old farmers have

Sent from my DROIDX using Tapatalk 2
This is very true. Farmers know the land well. Might just be some minerals floating around...cobalt may be one.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
freph is offline  
post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-23-2012, 04:29 PM Thread Starter
Planted Member
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Near Lake Wylie NC
Posts: 283
Quote:
Originally Posted by freph View Post
Does the house have copper water pipes?
No copper pipes. Tested for copper at well head and in the house. 0 copper.

Salty


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
SaltyNC is offline  
post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-23-2012, 04:30 PM Thread Starter
Planted Member
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Near Lake Wylie NC
Posts: 283
Quote:
Originally Posted by rainbuilder View Post
It might be the chlorine in the water. My water is the same way. After I treat it with chlorine remover and pour it in the tank the color goes away.
Is chlorine ever found naturally in water? This is on a well.

Salty


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
SaltyNC is offline  
post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-23-2012, 04:35 PM Thread Starter
Planted Member
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Near Lake Wylie NC
Posts: 283
I'll ask around and see if anyone knows anything about it. There is naturally occurring kyanite in this area, but most of it is locked up in gneiss, so it don't think it would dissolve into the water table. In fact, if you look at the rocks in my aquarium, the little bumps on the rock are kyanite crystals embedded in the gneiss. I wonder if there is a test for kyanite. I don't think I'll find that at the LFS.


Plus, what is so weird is that the total dissolved solids is so low. You would think if a mineral were present that could color the water, I would show a higher TDS reading than 42 ppm.

Salty


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
SaltyNC is offline  
post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-24-2012, 01:53 AM
Wannabe Guru
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: NJ
Posts: 1,458
Do you have dyed flowers that might have accidently been dropped into tank?
AirstoND is offline  
post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-24-2012, 04:30 AM Thread Starter
Planted Member
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Near Lake Wylie NC
Posts: 283
Quote:
Originally Posted by AirstoND View Post
Do you have dyed flowers that might have accidently been dropped into tank?
No dyed flowers, and this blue coloration is present in water straight out of the ground...near the well, in the house when filling buckets, in the tub, etc. It's very distinctive in the tub. The first time I saw it when we moved in, I did a double-take.

Salty


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
SaltyNC is offline  
post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-24-2012, 04:49 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Contra Costa CA
Posts: 11,721
I just googled 'blue well water' and came up with some really interesting (but not helpful) hints.
The only thing I could add is possibly zinc.

Try setting up a 5 gallon bucket (White is best) and running a small filter on it. Put into that filter, one at a time, all the possible water treatment things:
Water softening pillows, Cuprisorb, phosphate removing media and so on, including activated carbon and purigen.
Put different treatments in the water (only one at a time) but look for chelator (label says something about locking up heavy metals) (Kordon Nov-Aqua is one such product). Also see if water clarifier does anything to the water.

Goal: Each of the water treatment systems does more than what the label says, and if you find certain treatments make the blue go away you can look into that treatment in depth to see what are the 'side effects'.
Diana is offline  
post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-24-2012, 12:56 PM Thread Starter
Planted Member
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Near Lake Wylie NC
Posts: 283
Great idea Diana on the filter! Evidently a lot of people have blue water, but when it isn't copper, there seems to be no good answers on the net. Water is blue normally, but not this blue. I'll try some experiments with filters and let you know what I find.

Salty


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
SaltyNC is offline  
post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-24-2012, 01:09 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
HD Blazingwolf's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chattanooga, TN
Posts: 4,907
my water has a slight blueish tint as well
i have copper pipes but test zero copper
carbon removes the color easily. and so does letting it sit for a day with a pump

Sump Pimp #7

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
HD Blazingwolf is offline  
post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-24-2012, 05:12 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (84/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 21,012
Quote:
Originally Posted by HD Blazingwolf View Post
my water has a slight blueish tint as well
i have copper pipes but test zero copper
carbon removes the color easily. and so does letting it sit for a day with a pump
If carbon removes the color it must be an organic compound. Carbon only removes large molecules, not the typically small inorganic compound molecules. Letting the water sit for a day allows gases in the water to reach an equilibrium with the gases in the air. Perhaps some organic compound is decomposing?

In any case this is a very interesting problem - as long as it is someone else's problem

Hoppy
Hoppy is offline  
post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 08-24-2012, 05:19 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
HD Blazingwolf's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chattanooga, TN
Posts: 4,907
YEAH crazy stuff. doesn't bother my fishies so i don't mind it.

Sump Pimp #7

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
HD Blazingwolf is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome