Friday, September 12, 2014

How to Disinfect Water During an Emergency

In times of emergencies such as a contamination found in your city’s water supply, you may not have access to potable water. Of course, this can be circumvented by installing a reverse osmosis water filter in your home, or by stocking up on bottled water.

If an emergency hits before you can add a water filtration system to your home and/or if you do not have access to bottled water, don’t panic. There are several disinfecting methods you can follow to make your existing water supply potable:


Bringing water to a boil will kill most pathogens and parasites present in it. If you use this disinfecting method, be sure to let the water boil for at least one minute; three minutes if you’re residing in altitudes 6,500 feet above sea level.


If boiling water isn’t possible, you can use certain chemicals to disinfect water, although this should be done as a last option as chemicals aren’t very effective in getting rid of parasites.

If you use household chlorine bleach, be sure to use a regular and unscented one. The ratio should be 1/8 teaspoon for every gallon of water. Stir well and let the mixture sit for at least 30 minutes before using.

You may also choose to use chlorine dioxide tablets. These can be found in many outdoor supply shops. Be sure to use these chemical disinfectants following the manufacturer’s instructions.

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