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Taking Disinfection into Your Own Hands


It is a good idea to know how to disinfect your own drinking water; it’s easy and you may have to do it at some point in your life.

Information gathered from the United States Environmental Protection Agency

1. Using bottled water is the easiest way to safely drink water. Yet in some cases even bottled water can be tainted with unwanted minerals and ingredients. One example of that is called Leaching. That is the process of water in plastic bottles absorbing the harmful chemicals that many plastic bottles contain.

2. Boiling- any type of infection causing entity is usually killed when water is boiled. After the water boils vigorously for about three minutes it must be stored in a clean, covered storage container. Boiling is the surest method to make water safe to drink and kill disease.

3. If you are unable to boil water, you can disinfect it by using household bleach. You can safely consume water that contains bleach if done correctly. If the water is cloudy, filter it through clean cloths or allow it to settle, and draw off the clear water for disinfection. Add 1/8 teaspoon (or drops) of regular, unscented, liquid household bleach for each gallon of water, stir it well and let it stand for 30 minutes before you use it. Store disinfected water in clean containers with covers.

4. If you have a well that has been flooded, the water should be tested and disinfected after flood waters recede. If you suspect that your well may be contaminated, contact your local or state health department or agriculture extension for specific advice.

5. Using chemical treatments is another method of disinfection.  Chlorine and iodine are the two most commonly used chemicals used to treat water. Both chemicals work better in warmer water rather than cold.

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