Why Does My Water Smell Like Rotten Eggs (Sulfur)?

Kraai Well Drilling and Water Softening receives hundreds of calls each year, asking the same question:

Why does my water smell like rotten eggs?

The majority of the time, the problem is with the magnesium rod in the hot water heater. This problem shows itself in extremely old water heaters and those that are less than six months old. Cold water will also take on the rotten egg smell at a shared faucet, but rest assured, the problem almost certainly lies with the hot water heater. Kraai Well Drilling advises that the magnesium rod be removed by a licensed plumber and an aluminum rod be installed in its place. Here’s a great video, from the guys at This Old House, demonstrating the process of replacing a hot water heater anode rode (aka sacrificial magnesium rod).

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