Iron Bacteria & Slime
Iron bacteria are commonly cited as the culprit for any “slime” problems found in a well. However only a very small percentage of the slime seen in wells and pipelines is actually iron bacteria, also referred to as iron oxidizing bacteria, or by its proper name, Gallionella.
The slime generated by iron bacteria isn’t a health hazard, but it can do damage in other ways. Along with the unpleasant odor, it can corrode pipes and plumbing equipment, and clog pipes, screens, and other components of the well system. The slime can also hamper the effectiveness of the well system’s water treatment components. It can overwhelm carbon filters, defeat bactericidal resins, and attack or plug reverse osmosis membranes and cartridge filters. In certain conditions, the bacteria can grow quickly and leave the entire well system virtually useless in just a few months.