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Removing Chlorine and Chloramine from Drinking Water

Removing Chlorine and Chloramine from Drinking Water

 Just try to imagine how our life would be without water, what are we going to use to take a bath or to shower?

What are we going to wash our clothes and dishes with and most importantly, what are we going to use to quench our thirst?

It is true, life is unimaginable without water, but what if the thing that we all think is the one sustaining our life is actually the one that is slowly poisoning us, leading us to sure death? If you think about it, that really is not a long shot.

With the pollution and different kinds of harmful wastes being thrown in some body of water, you can only imagine what kind of toxic substances can be floating in the water that you drink, you use to clean your body with and to wash your clothes and dishes with.

Because water companies know how dangerous raw and untreated water can be, they started using some agents in order to disinfect the water.

Two of the most famous and the most commonly used agents for disinfection are chlorine and chloramine.

Disinfection with Chlorine and Chloramine

For decades now, chlorine has been used by a lot of water treatment facilities to effectively disinfect water that is meant for consumption since it can eliminate waterborne germs and bacteria.

That process is what we call chlorination and it is extremely efficient in killing pathogens and diseases on water.

Chlorine is used widely because of a lot of reasons, for one, it is an inexpensive means as compared to other processes.

Chlorination is also an easy task to perform and it is very easy to control and to monitor.

A residual amount of chlorine is left in the water for it to continue to protect the safety of the drinking water from bacteria and pathogen growth.

There are different kinds of processes that can be used to add chlorine in a drinking water and it is also available in many form, we have solid calcium hypochlorite,sodium hypochlorite solution and in a form of compressed elemental gas.

While Chlorine can be quite dangerous in high doses, adding it in water and letting it mix in and spread out resulting in low levels could kill germs but still make the water safe to drink.

The process of adding chloramine to the drinking water to remove germs and bacteria is what we call chlorination; this process is sometimes used as an alternative to using chlorine.

Chloramines are a combination of chlorine and ammonia and the form of chloramine that is used to disinfect drinking water is called the monochloramine.

Monochloramine may be safe in low levels, there is a form of this chemical that can cause chemical reactions that could result to respiratory and eye problems.

The most common chemical agent that is used to disinfect water is chlorine, but for some reason, chloramine can actually clean the water and rid it of harmful substances a lot better.

One of those reason may be that chloramine has a slower evaporation rate as compared to chlorine.

Are Chlorine and Chloramine Dangerous?

A lot of research studies have been done regarding these two chemicals especially since they are added by water treatment facilities to the water that we are consuming.

According to those studies, small amount of chlorine and chloramine in your water will not pose a significant risk.

Yes, they do a really great job at disinfecting the water that we use, but that does not mean that we should just drink tap water straight from our faucet, it would be better and safer if we try to eliminate chlorine and chloramine from our drinking water.

For one, water that is treated with those agents have an unpleasant smell and taste that can change the taste of your coffee and other beverages, that tastes and smell are also more than enough to make you feel sick.

Another reason why you need to filter out these substances from your drinking water even though they are disinfecting agents is because it is better to be careful and safe than sorry since the chlorine and chloramine levels are not the only thing that you should worry about.

When chlorine is added to water, it can combine to the organic matter in it and from a byproduct, THM or Trihalomethanes, which is toxic when it comes in contact with the skin, inhaled or consumed.

When it comes to chloramine, they are all respiratory irritants; it’s just that one of its form is more toxic than the others.

It could also rapidly change from one form, the one which is safe to consume, to another form which is toxic and harmful.

Chloramine can also form THM or Trihalomethanes as a byproduct but only at a lesser concentration level.

How to Remove Chloramine and Chlorine on Your Water

It is no longer enough to just simply leave the tap water and just wait for the chlorine or chloramine to evaporate, it could take too long and they could already form a harmful byproduct.

This is why another form of neutralization or removal is going to be needed.

Now remember the the right filtration system for you will depend on the amount of water that you need to purify and of course, what method is most convenient to you in terms of labor, cost and time consumption.

It is also important that you choose a system that has been certified by the National Sanitation Foundation or NSF.

Here are some of the neutralization systems that you can use.

Reverse Osmosis

This water filtration system is one of the common choices because it will leave your drinking water with almost no dissolved solids.

If you need to neutralize a large amount of water, a reverse osmosis system can be installed just under your single so that it can filter all of the water that you are going to use inside your house.

A filtration system which uses reverse osmosis is not only effective in removing chlorine and chloramine, it can also remove the by products, and heavy metals in the water.

Ultraviolet Light

The UV light is also another good option to neutralize your drinking water and also to kill germs and bacteria.

Ultraviolet light is also commonly used in some reverse osmosis system as a pre-filter to protect the membrane of the RO system from bacteria and chloramine.

Activated and Catalytic Carbon

There are water filter pitchers that make use of activated carbon is order to reduce the contaminants in their drinking water and make it taste and smell better, but for it to effectively remove chlorine and chloramine, the water will need to be in more contact time with the filter.

The Catalytic Carbon, which has been described as activated carbons soaped up version, is more effective in doing that job, even with just less contact time.

You can use a whole house catalytic or activated filtration system and if your only to need to neutralize just small amounts of water, you can use both filters for you to achieve the highest purity of water.

Chemical Neutralization

This method can chemically neutralize chlorine and chloramine that is in tap water and transform it into chloride or other byproducts that are not harmful.

Berkey Water Filter System

Berkey Filters can remove both Chlorine and Chloramine from water to greater than 99.9%. With many water municipalities switching to chloramine disinfection instead of chlorine, using our system was rated #1 for contaminant removal by Natural News Water Filter Labs.

Here we have test results for "Black Berkey Elements",  "Organic Testing Results" and "Sport Berkey Filter Elements"

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