Water and chlorine

The International Compost Sanitation Forum and Message Board: Humanure Handbook - A Guide to Composting Human Manure: Water and chlorine
Author: scott
Friday, June 23, 2006 - 12:31 am
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I have been thinking about not even using the uv light. Just send the water through 2 good filters (before entering the house water system, and then get one of those gravity-fed ceramic water filters that you set on your countertop for filtering drinking water.

Given a situation of bacteria in the water, if we only showered, brushed teeth, and did laundry with it, would it cause any concern? I am trying to simplify the system as much as possible and if I could get by without replacing a uv light yearly I will, but do not want to get me and my family sick.

Author: Joe Jenkins
Thursday, June 22, 2006 - 7:10 pm
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The chlorine sounds like paranoid overkill. The UV and the filters should do the job.

Joe

Author: Rangdrol
Thursday, June 22, 2006 - 8:32 am
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Greetings Scott.
We use rain water here.
We read up on filters and boiling, evaporators, UV and tons of backyard filters before we went to rain water full time.
We tried some of the free market filters and other peoples water.
Each system has its strong and weak points.
There is a tremendous amount of plain old BS out there about it.
A great deal has been known about this subject for years but it does not produce an "industry" so the industry hype drowns out the facts.
"Pure" water is not really good for you and you will not find it in any American water systems.
I encourage you to dig a little deeper before you spend all that money.
Unless you are raising poultry on your roof there is no need for the UV nor the chlorine or the micron filter.
All the hype about them is 90% marketing, 8% scare tactics and 2% real science.
If you read the fine print you will find that a good number of the free market filters are actually far more dangerous than snow melt and rain water.
Unless you are down rain from Houston Texas your rain water sent to a proper sand and charcoal filter is probably far "cleaner" than most city supplies with or without the odd bird dropping.

You would be doing yourself and the planet a favor to pay the cost to have your rain water tested by a good lab.
It will be far less than all the cost of the UV or micron filter and you can compare it to the water you think is good.
If by some outside chance it is "contaminated" the test will alert you to what really needs to be removed if there is anything at all you decide needs removed.


Try reading up on the work done by the Woods Hole people or the Ark project 30 years ago. They found that simple sand bed filters could be "salted" with shell and char to produce water of near perfect chemistry for human, animal or plant consumption for pennies a year. Read up on the Indian Sari project for a real shock - plain old cotton is just as effective as most free market filters.


We live far enough down rain from the big stink that we do not even filter our rain water with sand most of the time. We separate the first 40 gallons or so as washing water because of the roof debris and we put it thru a Sari filter when the Pines are mating.

Please post your findings on what ever you do build.

Author: scott
Thursday, June 22, 2006 - 12:45 am
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In the Humanure Handbook the subject of chlorine in water is discussed. It is generally talked about as a poison. I am building my house this year and trying to get all my systems in place - water system, humanure compost pile, greywater, etc. My water system is comprised of a rainwater catchment off of my 'outbuilding' metal roof which first goes through a roof washer and general sediment filter and then into a 5000 gallon cistern underground storage. Eventually I am going to develop a small spring down in the valley into a water source that will pump up to the cistern storage.

My plan for water treatment is to go through (2) high quality filters from harmsco (sediment and then 1 micron absolute filter) and then through a UV light. I have talked with several people about this and they have all highly suggested that i carefully mesaure and put a 1 part per million chlorine in the cistern (if not continually then at least monthly or so) as a way to flush the piping in the house that will eliminate residual bacteria then will get beyond the uv light.

I really do not want to use chlorine if it is indeed a major health risk but i am not sure what else to do. Any suggestions?

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