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Thread: Iron H2S odor issues

  1. #16
    DIY Junior Member TerriK's Avatar
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    Hi Gary,

    Thank The Lord the duke is not in the crawlspace! It is in the garage. 24 year old house, not so skanky. We put a screen at the end of the exterior venting. It draws four or five times before refilling so I'd say it goes down halfway before refill on the 160 gallon tank that probably only top fills to 140 gallons and is 65" tall. So I would guess at 70 gallons, it refills. It has a submersible pump. The interior is stained from oxidizing the iron but no sign of IRB. Only sand at the bottom, very fine sand, hardly gritty so the sand trap seems to get the larger particles only.

    In regards to the air injection. That is what we had prior to this system. This was one of the first things we tried to remove the remaining odor. I called waterguard who manufactures this item and they told me we could try boosting the air prior to the system as well so we used our old wall mounted air compressor and used a T to inject air before entering the duke with a check valve before it. It used to run at 50 psi but for whatever reason we can only adjust it to about 20 psi. In addition we have tried a bubbler stone. I'd say the gases are gone at this point!

    Now I am no expert ( really, hah) , but this is what I have learned. It is rated for removal of gases like hydrogen sulfide, methane etc.....and as an added bonus, thru the addition of air it oxidizes clear ferrous iron to ferric ( I may have the F's mixed up), red iron because of the aeration process. This residue, left unchecked will clog the pipes and build up over time so the iron filter, filters/traps those large particles out and when the tank back washes, they go down the drain vs thru your household plumbing. Although, the water softener would catch it and probably foul before it's time.

    Good call, since we had IRB in the old well, as all the parts were 22 us old, we did infact replace everything new.......pump, pressure tank, etc. nothing was reused. Less worried about the toluene, although it is a petroleum by product, just such a small amount and I have never detected the sweet odor. As for bunnies, I think that suckers odor would have dissipated after a year and a half!

    Thank you Gary! Terri

  2. #17
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Most air compressors used for water treatment have a pad type air filter in the air inlet. You might want to take it out and see what all it has filtered out and if it smells and clean it.

    Air injected into the inlet water of the Duke should be oxidizing the iron into rust (ferric iron) in the water line and reducing the water flow plus possibly blocking up the spray heads. A dirty air filter on the compressor should reduce the psi. Blocked spray heads should too, plus your are running 50/70 psi but I'm not sure it's on the well pump.

    If the submersible pump in the Duke is standing upright, you will have more stagnant/dead water in the Duke to get smelly and less if the pump is laying down, IRB can be anything from clear to black snotty/slimy coating above, at and below the water line. It can produce an odor many people would call H2S but it is slightly different IMO. So can Coliform bacteria.

    If the Duke were removing all gasses, you shouldn't have any odor in the water unless the stagnant water in the Duke is causing it. I suggest checking the pressure tanks for a broken bladder. To test rock the tank side to side and see if it is heavy. You can leave a spritz of air out and see if it is misty/water vapor but if the water above a broken bladder isn't high enough you won't get mist or water out and the only way is to shut off the pump and drain the tank and then see if it is still heavy. At the same time you can check for proper air pressure; it should be 1-2 psi less than the turn the pump on switch setting. I.E. 50/70 gets 49-48 psi air with no water in the tank.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  3. #18
    DIY Junior Member TerriK's Avatar
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    Thanks Gary.

    The filter on the air compressor is maybe 6 months old. I refurbished/ cleaned it when we did our first aeration project 6 months ago. It did get up to 50psi and then some, had to adjust it several times. So I do know it is in good working order. My husband suggested maybe we change up the configuration and inject air post duke. We used to have air bubbles in our water the former way but not so much now with the additional pressure tank.

    I did a manual regen of the mangox today and it the duke was apparently at a draw phase so I lifted the lid and the spray nozzles are working vigorously so no blockage. Plus the stench from the outside vent.......during this strangely long aeration time, assuming because of the backwash, the first pressure tank did empty completely and I was able to jiggle it. The second one was full.

    We did some bart tests and IRB and SRB were negative. Did a coliform way back when it was drilled and negative. Although the former developed one or two black spots after 18 days and a bit cloudy.

    I'll ask my hubby about the pressure on the tanks and get back to you. I may empty the duke today to see about stagnant water, although during the regen it really stirred up some water usage and I did check the interior plumbing to see if the odor was less, nope. All good ideas. I am thinking surely the gases are outgassed and it is a filtering issue. Since we still have .1 ppm of iron, and iron sure is odiferous and the tannin issue. Although you did get us thinking about the post air injection so I will let you know how that goes, maybe it will be the trick. Thanks again Gary, I am grateful, Terri

  4. #19
    DIY Junior Member TerriK's Avatar
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    I want to thank Gary as he got me thinking a bit ( in good ways).

    I called the duke manufacturers and told them our air compressor would only jump to 15 or 20 psi and they immediately came up with a solution. I ended up installing 3, 1/2 inch plugs on the spray nozzles and it raised the psi to 35-40. Definitely helped reduce some more odor, not all, but made a dent!

    We still have .1 ppm of iron residual, our incoming is at .6ppm. The remaining taste/odor is mineral ish like iron. I researched our mangox birm and found it only filters to 30 microns. I can say the clear backwashing drain tube is rusty and the water softener is clear. Inlet piping to mangox is rusty, outlet is clear so is definitely doing it's job. Our original kinetico system we had for 11 years used macrolite, a ceramic media, for the filtration post oxidation. Upon research it filters down to 3 micron. I purchased 1 cu ft and am considering re bedding the tank.

    Question. It is a 1 cu ft vortex tank. I have re bedded a few tanks, but I have read that a vortex does not need a gravel or garnet underbedding. Any opinions? Terri

  5. #20
    In the Trades Tom Sawyer's Avatar
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    No gravel or garnet in a vortex tank.
    [B]No, plumbing ain't rocket science. Unlike rocket science, plumbing requires a license[B]

  6. #21
    DIY Junior Member TerriK's Avatar
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    Thanks Tom.

  7. #22
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    TerriK, I don't see much sense in blocking 3 of the 5 spray heads in the Duke when initially the air pressure was 50. That seriously reduces the aeration capability/capacity of the Duke.

    To me there is something wrong with the compressor. I sold more than a few air compressors and had low pressure problems with one where I was tearing my hair out for about 3-4 weeks adjusting it about a 50 mile round trip until one day I got upset enough to tear the thing all apart. Took the whole head off.

    I found baby powder fine pine wood saw dust that had gone through the pad filter clogging up one or more reed valves so they couldn't close properly which prevented pressure buildup. Had a hell of a time finding out it was saw dust until the woman of the house came home from work one afternoon while I was in the basement and I saw this dust in the air. It was in a new house and trying to find out where the dust had come from, I was told the carpenters had been cutting molding on a saw about 10' away from the compressor. The bat insulation between the overhead joists was full of it and when people walked on the floor above, it fell out of the insulation and the compressor sucked it in when running when the dust was in the air.

    I had called the manufacturer numerous times with nothing they suggested helping so I called to tell them what I had found. It formed a sticky paste due to humidity I guess. They had never heard of anything like that.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

  8. #23
    DIY Junior Member TerriK's Avatar
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    Gary, I hear you on the air compressor. This is our second one in 13 years. The first ones diaphragm failed. I took the newer one apart and cleaned it eight months ago, replaced the seal and air intake pad etc. we used it even VERY recently as a point of air injection prior to the duke and did get up to 50 psi so I know it is in good working order. To boost the duke in particular, we had to re wire it to the solenoid valve vs the pressure tank so it would inject air at the appropriate time, but it only went up to 15-20psi. Our duke guy said we were limited by our pump size and needed to lower our gpm. Our pump is 7.6 gpm and the nozzles are rated for 4.5gpm. He told me to plug two, shoot for 35-40 psi then cap another if we did not reach that. He absolutely nailed that one. I think there are 6 nozzles. It does take a longer to fill but certainly smells noticeably better. I think the remainder is surely a post filtration issue.

    What got me to call them was you suggesting the duke was not aerating all the gases. I didn't think so but I mulled it over for a week or so and did recall the lower psi. Thanks for putting the possibilities out there. Terri

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