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Plumbing in the Home/dirt sediment coming from hot water


Every time I draw hot water in my bath tub there is some kind of dirt sediment on top of the water. I noticed that it isn't seen in the cold water. Can you suggest what may be happening?

Dear Robyn,

Your hot water heater may be accumulating a buildup of sediment in the bottom of the tank or the minerals could be collecting on the heating elements.  During the times when no water is running through the water heater heavier particles of sediment will settle on the bottom of the tank.  Then when water is run it becomes stirred up and becomes visible in the tub.  Other faucets may have a screen which is catching larger particles so that you don't see them, but eventually they can clog the screen and restrict the flow.

You can flush out the water heater if you want... there are many videos availabe describing that process.

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Thomas Ambler


I am experienced at troubleshooting and solving all types of plumbing problems. Issues related to specific manufacturers fixtures and specifications though are beyond my field of expertise. I have dealt with problems in both rural and urban areas, and with water supply and drainage systems. Plumbing issues can be very obscure... such as odors, stains or occasional seepage. I have even had to chase rats from a customer's sewer line.


I have 25 years experience dealing with plumbing systems (which also includes hot water and steam heating systems). My main expertise is in diagnosing and solving problems. I have worked in construction and installation of new systems but do not regard myself as an expert in that area.

Asbury Park Press, Seattle Times, Denver Post.

I completed high school and one year of college. I served 4 years in the Marine Corps and have education in electronic and electrical troubleshooting and repair. I have attended classes on installing and repair of oil burners, and I have EPA universal certification for air conditioning and refrigeration. I am now enrolled as a full-time student at Everest college to re-train for a new career. Any donations of financial support would be greatly appreciated.

Past/Present Clients
All of Denny's Restaurants in NJ, Several Burger King stores, I have done work at two different homes for Bruce Springsteen. I have also worked for Jim Johnson (of J&J) and his family, Whitney Houston, Steve Forbes and many others.

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