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What are the Effects of Having Too Much Manganese in Your Water?

Aside from iron, the mineral that is most often found in excess in water is manganese. Manganese is a natural mineral which can be found in many different types of rock and soil. Like with iron, it finds its way into water supplies by being dragged through soil with various types of precipitation.

When present in water, this mineral can cause a bevy of different problems; some of them minor and some of them major; some of them short-term and some of them long-term. Let’s discuss the effects of having too much manganese in your water, shall we?

Short-Term Effects of Manganese Water Toxicity


Perhaps the most common effect of having too much manganese in your water is staining. Manganese, when oxidized, will cause light brown, tea-colored stains on clothing, bathtubs, fixtures, and other items that come into contact with water.

While you can certainly clean bathtubs and fixtures after the fact, clothing could be ruined by this staining. Your best option is to eliminate manganese from your water before it gets a chance to do any damage. This can be done with the use of an iron buster system.

Pipe Clogs

While not as common as staining, pipe clogging is another effect of having too much manganese in your water. This is caused by manganese (and iron) building up on the inside of pipes and narrowing the passageway for water to flow through freely.

Once pipes become clogged, it will be necessary to call in a plumber to have work done on them. This can be costly to say the least. The wise thing to do is to fight the problem proactively and ensure that manganese can’t make it into your water in the first place. An iron buster water filtration system will allow you to do this.

Foul-Tasting Water

If you’ve ever had a drink of water and discovered that it possessed a bit of a metallic taste, it very well could have been contaminated with excess amounts of manganese. Manganese can have quite the effect on the taste quality of your water.

Again, if you want to get rid of this taste, you need to keep manganese from infiltrating your water in the first place. Installing an iron buster system will do this for you.

Long-Term Effects of Manganese Water Toxicity

Fertility Problems

While, in small doses, manganese can actually promote fertility, in large doses it can cause some fairly pronounced fertility problems. Male fertility, in particular, is negatively affected by the consumption of excess manganese.

Studies have shown that men who are exposed to inordinate amounts of manganese have their sperm counts lowered by as much as 50%. It’s important to consume some manganese, but eliminating it from your water will not hurt you. You consume enough manganese through food to keep your body functioning normally.

Neurological Disorders

The most serious effect that an excess of manganese in your water can have is an increase in the risk of neurological disorder. Consuming excess manganese over prolonged periods of time can cause a Parkinson-like syndrome called manganism. Symptoms of manganism include slowness of movement, extreme muscle tightness, loss of coordination, and tremors.

Once these symptoms have set in, they are permanent. The only thing you can do to prevent them is to avoid excess manganese consumption in the first place. This can be done in a number of ways, but the best way is to make use of water filtration methods. In the case of manganese elimination, the best type of water filtration system to use is an iron buster system.

If you’re interested in installing one of these filtration systems in the Chicago area, we here at Johnson Water Conditioning are the people to call. Contact us to schedule an installation today!

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