Sterilising Water

Submitted: Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 19:57
ThreadID: 32689 Views:3117 Replies:16 FollowUps:16
This Thread has been Archived
What do the rest of you do for sterilising large quantities of water (say 20-50 litres) when on larger trips .. eg drawn from wells on the Canning
- Boiling isn't practical for for large volumes.
- Chlorine tablets (eg: Aquatabs) kill bacteria but not Giardia apparently
- Iodine tablets kill both bacteria & giardia but not too good for you if used too often

so what do you all do??
Back Expand Un-Read 0 Moderator

Reply By: Peter 2 - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 20:14

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 20:14
when we fill up with questionable water as you do on the CSR we try to put it in the second tank rather than the main. (we have two water tanks, one purely for known good drinking water and one for washing etc.) Both are around 50 litres.
If as on the CSR we need to top up the 'drinking' tank we boil and allow to sit before putting it in.
Usually though we just top up the 'washing' tank and on the rare occasion the 'drinking' runs out, then we boil 3 or 4 billies last thing before going to bed and allow to cool/settle overnight. Then top up drinking bottles and the rest in the 'drinking' tank.
Peter
1996 Oka Motorhome

Member
My Profile  My Position  Send Message

AnswerID: 165849

Reply By: Atropos - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 20:14

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 20:14
Well... you could drink beer, someone told me that there was water in beer...

Would a solar still of some kind do the trick?

john
AnswerID: 165850

Reply By: ev700 - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 20:25

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 20:25
Have Puritabs sodium dichloroisocyanurate for emergencies. Approx $10 for 36 tabs and 1 tab to 2 litres of water if left to stand for 30 mins.

Don't get to use them often, prefer to boil water.
AnswerID: 165854

Reply By: Willem - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 20:35

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 20:35
Have never ever ever bothered with sterilising water even though we carry Puritabs.

On the CSR we just cheked the water supplies available and if it looked sus we left it alone.

Have drunk water out of wells, station bores, creeks, sulphur bores(have to let the sulphur settle overnight), water holes, gnamma holes, rock holes, waterfalls and have never been crook anywhere in Australia over a 38 year period !!!
AnswerID: 165856

Follow Up By: Big Kidz (Andrew & Jen) - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:24

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:24
Tis the other stuff he drinks that makes him crook!
0
FollowupID: 420763

Follow Up By: Willem - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:36

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:36
Ahhhh YES!!!

And how have the Holliday Family been?

Must've been working for a change as you have been scarce around here...:o)
0
FollowupID: 420769

Reply By: Member - TPM (SA) - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:01

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:01
A study was done and one of the best water purifiers was good old fashion cordial ! Bickfords was used in the study I think.
It drops out any impurites and salt in the water and they settle out in the bottom not sure on bacteria.
I have yet to try it out myself, it would be a easy experiment though.

Probally not handy if you want to cook or make tea with it, but some like there food and tea sweet.

Just some trivia for you all.
AnswerID: 165860

Follow Up By: V8Diesel - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:08

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:08
I'm sure the CSIRO did a study into this and it proved surprisingly effective.

I thought it was red cordial but I may be wrong.
0
FollowupID: 420759

Follow Up By: Member - TPM (SA) - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:12

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:12
It was a while ago when I saw it , it prob. was red, did it kill bacteria ?
0
FollowupID: 420761

Follow Up By: V8Diesel - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:31

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:31
Can't really remember. I think Dr Karl did a story on it.

I might have a Google later on.
0
FollowupID: 420767

Follow Up By: Member - Ed. C.- Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 23:51

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 23:51
Raspberry cordial:-))

Apparently pig & poultry breeders had been onto this for years...
(helps to keep the tummy-bugs at bay, apparently)...

It's been a while since I read about it, but from what I recall, the cordial has to be at least 25% pure (raspberry) fruit juice...

Problem here is that most (if not all) of the commonly available "raspberry flavoured cordials" which claim to contain x% fruit juice, the juice is actually "re-constituted apple juice".. (read the label;-))
Confucius say.....
"He who lie underneath automobile with tool in hand,
....Not necessarily mechanic!!"

Member
My Profile  Send Message

0
FollowupID: 420793

Reply By: Member - Wayne M (WA) - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:21

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 21:21
Hi,
There is some interesting info at this sight www.sodis.ch/ and also the solar cooking sight which is mentioned in the next post,
regards, Wayne
AnswerID: 165865

Reply By: Brian B- Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 22:30

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 22:30
I have used Betadine 3-4 drops per litre for sterilising then add cordial to enable you to drink it, does kill Giardia though.

See Ya

Brian B
Brian B (NT now Bris)

Lifetime Member
My Profile  Send Message

AnswerID: 165874

Reply By: Lyds- Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 22:40

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 22:40
there is quite a discussion on purifying at

Site Link

seems that hikers tend to think a little more on this.

AnswerID: 165877

Reply By: geordie4x4 - Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 23:32

Saturday, Apr 08, 2006 at 23:32
I use a simple household filtration system that I got from Bunnings. AquaPure brand filter housings with Cuno brand 0.5 micron solid extruded carbon filter. Yes it is fine enough to remove faecal coliform bacteria, Giardia and cryptosporidium cysts. I simply pump the water through with a Flowjet 4L min pump connected to 12V. You can get 20 L through with a hand pump but it is hard work.

The unit has two filter housings as you would use under the kitchen sink. These take several different grades of cartridge from very coarse to remove sediment from the Murray river (or Adelaide tap water for that matter). I use a 5 micron cartridge ($5 to $10) in the first housing and an ultra fine 0.5 micron extruded carbon cartridge in the second ($25 to $50 depending on brand). I have filtered about 200L of Murray river before changing the first filter. If the first cartridge is fine enough you can get a longer life out of the second more expensive cartridge, six months household use of Perth water or 1000L of Murray river (if you change the first cheap one regularly).

The bonus is that the water tastes good enough to drink (without cordial). Makes good coffee even in areas with “hard water” without the kettle crusting up with calcium carbonate.

It is a bit more bulky than a bottle of cordial but the pump is also used for the shower and the filter housing and cartridges also get used as my normal home drinking water system. No need to risk poisoning yourself with heavy metals or nasty anti bacterial to have safe water. If you are in a very risky area, you can filter it first then use a smaller dose of antibacterial.

Geordie
AnswerID: 165881

Follow Up By: Willem - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:32

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:32
Good grief

What happened to all the tough, healthy, bronzed Aussies :o)
0
FollowupID: 420849

Follow Up By: Richard Kovac - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 14:27

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 14:27
Hi Willem

There all gone last one died last month or so

Just as soft city folk left

Richard
0
FollowupID: 420876

Follow Up By: Willem - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 18:39

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 18:39
Hahahaha.....Richard....Good one!!!!
0
FollowupID: 420908

Follow Up By: geordie4x4 - Monday, Apr 10, 2006 at 09:55

Monday, Apr 10, 2006 at 09:55
Yeah Willem,
it used to be safe to drink water out of our farm dam or even to swim in a local river mud hole. Unfortunately now we have so many lovely imported diseases and parasites, I don’t trust in just straining the mud out with a sock anymore.
0
FollowupID: 421048

Reply By: Footloose - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 08:34

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 08:34
Impractical for 4wd, but I've recently been looking at a machine that extracts drinking water from almost any liquid, including some of the vilest cattle watering holes I've seen. The inventor claims that he can purify any water except that contaminated by radiation.
Now there are 3 or 4 main ways of getting large amounts of fresh water commercially but apparently his process is unique and has been certified etc. I suggested that he license the technology to a company that can develop it.
Anyway, its impractical for 4wds because its a big machine and uses 3 phase power.
Now if he could only transistorise it ...........

AnswerID: 165901

Follow Up By: Willem - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:28

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:28
Yesssss Footy. Maybe a nice big trailer with a diesel transformer on it...LOL
0
FollowupID: 420847

Follow Up By: Footloose - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:37

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:37
Mate, anything that gets rid of that ^%(%^ taste and smell of bore water is fine by me :))
0
FollowupID: 420851

Reply By: David from David and Justine Olsen's 4WD Tag-Along - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 09:17

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 09:17
Membrane plants such as nanofiltration and reverse osmosis are used to deliver drinking water from just about any source including sea water and yes, even to recycle sewage.

The problem is the amount of electricity required to drive the pumps to produce the presures required. Though cost of treatment has dropped so much that on an industrial level or municipal supply level, the costs are justified, the practicallities of making a portable unit for 4wd's is the problem.

I just sent a 130 t/hr containerised plant to a pacific island, it is in a 40 foot container and requires much more power than a truckload f 4wd batteries could deliver. Still 130t/hr would probably be a bit big for your 4b footloose :-)
AnswerID: 165909

Follow Up By: Footloose - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:35

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:35
David, yes those systems are great. But there are problems in terms of training, maintainance and taste with other systems. Some systems are better than others but all have their drawbacks.
Obviously you know far more than I, but thats what I'm led to believe.

His system takes up around a pallett size, too big for me. But I've often wondered why such systems aren't used to get rid of that vile bore water small and taste that I pay big $$ for at outback motels :((

David, as you're such a full bottle on this topic, do you know of a web source that comapres the systems currently on the market, and includes cost of system and cost of running ?
Cheers
0
FollowupID: 420850

Follow Up By: David from David and Justine Olsen's 4WD Tag-Along - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:49

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:49
Footloose,

I am not the full bottle on portable systems such as campers would use, in fact I know little about them. My comment was that such systems as your friend has (if Iread your post correctly) would be similar if smaller than the industrial units I work with, and those just aren't practical for 4b use.

I am sure that some form of micro or nano-filtration using a hand or small pump is possible, in fact I've seen them. The pore size to eliminate bacteria is pretty small, so dirty water would prove a real challenge to filter unless you pre-settle and prefilter it, then the quantities would be small before pressures built up to rediculous levels.

It is an interesting subject. I suspect a system u make yourself that filters almost all bacteria out and eliminates taste would be the way to go if you are prepared to accept some risk (maybe add stertabs after) but manufacturers are loathe to claim safe filtering of bad water in order to improve flowrate and lower pressures on the systems I work with.

Dave O
0
FollowupID: 420854

Follow Up By: Footloose - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 12:54

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 12:54
Dave, I obviously gave you the wrong impression. I was looking at the field as a whole, trying to work out if my friends machine has a place in the industry. I know that it's off topic but .......
0
FollowupID: 420859

Follow Up By: David from David and Justine Olsen's 4WD Tag-Along - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 13:03

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 13:03
My mistake
0
FollowupID: 420862

Reply By: hoyks - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:28

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 11:28
I opperated a mobile water purification unit in the army for a few days and, from memory, all we used in it was pool chlorine and potash to stabilise the PH.

It was a long time ago though.
AnswerID: 165928

Reply By: Member - Mike H (VIC) - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 15:24

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 15:24
Many years ago on a Simpson Desert crossin and beeing unable to cross Eyre Creek we drove north to the Annandale Ruins to wait a few days for the country to dry out.
Our water supplies were running low, although there was plenty in the waterhole, but extremely muddy.
We filled every available bucket and container and then covered the water with a liberal amount of white ash from our camp fire.
Next morning all the mud and dirt had settled with the ash to the bottom of the containers and the water was crystal clear.
We poured it into our billy cans, taking care not to disturb the sediment at the bottom. After boiling the billy's and cooling down we topped up our water containers.
We kept that going for the 3 days we were there and then had plenty of good drinking water.

These days when I take people on tours I always carry "Micropur" and a few drops of that in my watertank kills all the nasties.
Here is a informative web site:
Katadyn

Cheers,
Mike
AnswerID: 165954

Reply By: Member - Oldplodder (QLD) - Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 19:28

Sunday, Apr 09, 2006 at 19:28
Only one not mentioned yet is UV light.

Find a clear container, fill and leave out in the sun for the day.
The UV kills a lot of germs.

Also have used the cordial, and the ask for settling that fine mud.

I think the Australian army were the first to use cordial.
It may the perservative in the cordial. But you do need to let sit for 8 to 12 hours.
AnswerID: 166002

Reply By: Skinny- Monday, Apr 10, 2006 at 10:17

Monday, Apr 10, 2006 at 10:17
I just boil it one kettle at a time. Have a cuppa.

Skinny
AnswerID: 166120

Reply By: Member - Drew T (VIC) - Monday, Apr 10, 2006 at 10:37

Monday, Apr 10, 2006 at 10:37
thanks for all your replies. in the end i've bought a 100ml bottle of Micropur Forte liquid which will sterilise 1000 litres and unlike the chlorine based products (aquatabs, puritabs etc) will also kill Giardia. Only cost $32 so very cost-effective too!!
AnswerID: 166124

Sponsored Links

Popular Products (13)