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Small Cabin Forum / General Forum / Do you use bleach for water purification for washing?
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justins7
Member
# Posted: 30 Oct 2018 15:04
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I use pond / stream water for washing dishes. I also use it filtered through a Berkey system for drinking. The water is relatively clean, with some silt in it as-is.

I am wondering about washing dishes. I put the water for washing in a 5-gallon electric hot water tank with a spigot (meant for coffee and tea), and use it for dishes. I get it hot, but not boiling.

Do I need to use bleach? Or are water purification tablets better? Or boiling? Is this even necessary if it's just for cleaning?

Thoughts?

bobrok
Member
# Posted: 30 Oct 2018 20:04 - Edited by: bobrok
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Can't speak for tabs or Berkey.

I pump lake water thru a 5 micron and then a 1 micron string filter (big blues) into 55 gal. drums for storage in the shed. I add 1/4 oz. of 6% bleach per 55 gal. drum as I pump. If the water has been there several weeks I add another 1/4 oz. per barrel. We wash dishes and shower with no issues. Let dishes air dry.

FWIW between the water pump and the cabin I've installed a charcoal filter. I immediately noticed the elimination of any/all odors in the water upon doing this.

I hope this is helpful.

rockies
Member
# Posted: 30 Oct 2018 20:18
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I might add a UV light to kill any pathogens that make it through the filters.

bobrok
Member
# Posted: 30 Oct 2018 20:34 - Edited by: bobrok
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Quoting: rockies

I might add a UV light to kill any pathogens that make it through the filters.


For off-grid, like me, it's not practical to add UV. But thanks for the suggestion. I'm going to add it to my power estimates for when I upgrade my solar next year. đź‘Ť

justins7
Member
# Posted: 30 Oct 2018 22:18
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Thanks for the info.

I wonder about the possibility of pathogens surviving on dishes, air dried. Is that likely? (My fiancé is several months pregnant, so I am suddenly more cautious.)

moneypitfeeder
Member
# Posted: 31 Oct 2018 17:57
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We also use pond / stream water for washing and drinking. Here's our process (for what its worth). Pull water up, for washing: pour through a fiber pre-filter to remove most sediment, use as is, adding heated water for easier washing. For rinsing, either use purified Berkey water, or bring (pre-filtered for sediment only) water to a rolling boil for 1-3 minutes, then cool and use when temps are where you can handle them. The pre-filter I use is the filter that came with an off-grid ceramic dome filter, it looks like a fabric cup, little tighter weave than felt. I turn it upside down, place in a strainer over a bucket, and pour water into the "cup" (it's meant to install over the dome filter and keep sediment away from the ceramic).

FishHog
Member
# Posted: 1 Nov 2018 10:05
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I use lake water for my dishes. Straight out of the lake and heat for hot dish water. A couple drops of bleach if I remember and if you don’t use too much dish soap I don’t even rinse. Air dry and put away

I don’t think there is much of a risk here. After all we swim in the lake all summer and wash hand directly in it. What could be left on a dried plate really doesn’t concern me

A few drops of bleach is your easiest solution if you are concerned though

offgrididaho
Member
# Posted: 1 Nov 2018 11:04
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When I was river guiding we always used three wash basins for dishes using river water... first was hot soapy water, second was hot rinse, third was cold (not hot) with a bit of bleach in it (like one or two caps in 5 gallons), then let the dishes air dry. Always worked for us, none of our guests got sick and there was definitely things in the water (natural things, not man made pollutants).

-- Bass

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