Troubleshooting My Philips steam iron leaks brown water or white flakes When your Philips steam generator iron is leaking brown water or causes brown/white stains on your garment, it is time to descale it. Please find out here how this works. Perfumed water was used in the iron Perfumed water causes lime scale and organic residues to remain in the heating element and this will cause brown water leakage and white flakes/particles on your garment. Please, descale your steam generator to remove lime scale. Find here all descaling information for your Philips iron. Scale can cause brown water or white flakes Your steam generator iron needs to be descaled. The Calc-Clean process for your Philips steam generator removes most limescale and organic residues. If you use very hard water, it could happen that you still experience flaking. In this case, please perform the descaling process again. Find here all descaling information for your Philips iron.