Home-made water purification

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Here's an important area for a "best alternative" or "best practices" and that is water purification. I live close to the Missouri River, and neither I nor anybody else in my neighborhood will be able to afford something like a Katadyne water purifier.

So I'm wondering how a water purification system could be put together from things normally found laying about in neighborhoods. I am not a scientist in this field, but it seems to me that something along the lines of:

1. a settling tank, the initial place the river water is poured into.

2. a purification tank, which would be something with layers of sand and charcoal. (Note, these "tanks" could be big buckets.)

3. a final step which would be boiling the water, or treating with chlorine or something like that.

I'm thinking that Missouri River water would really need some work to be drinkable, but unless I find some local springs or artesian wells, it seems to me to be the primary emergency source other than melted snow.

Robert Waldrop http://www.y2k-civil-society.org

-- Robert Waldrop (rmwj@kc.net), December 11, 1998


Most water pruifiers use at least some charcol filters. I have been think about the possibility of building a large two chamber processor. Fill the top container with rocks, gravel, sand, and the charcoal remainder after putting out the cooking and heating fires. I would put the charcoal on top as fire left over charcoal tends to washout small particles of the black stuff. The sand and the rocks will filter out the left over particles of charcoal. but hen again maybe the charcoal should be put in a bag and become the last step in the filtering process. I haven't run enough tests yet to know for sure.

-- Ron Amos (lingtekvis@webtv.net), December 19, 1998.

If you add commercial grade hydrogen perioxide and silver colloidal to your water, I think it will take care of 95% of any water problems

-- LuLou (luana@walkon.net), January 02, 1999.

Chlorine should be the last resort choice, colloidal silver is often discussed, but simpler methods with screens using sand and earth/charcoal will probably be easier, and solar pasteurization the easiest. I am experimenting with rainwater harvesting now and in most areas clean catchement means less work for purification. remeber that a 2,000' sq. ft. roof can catch a lot of water, and a cistern will protect it. Areas with as little as 3" of water through rainfall a year can survive.

-- Charmaine Taylor (tms@northcoast.com), January 05, 1999.

My solution to the problem I have (rusty ,smelly well water) may be of help to some other fellow sufferers. I almost forgot to mention the high cost of ready made equipment. Anyway I am Injecting Chlorine into the water before it enters the pressure tank. Then I am making a large sand filter(out of an old salvaged water softener tank unit. This should remove the chlorine activated rust( my worst problem). The old softener unit has the ability to rinse its self out. Then after that I would like to make a carbon filter, using another small pressure tank.I am still getting my supplies together and havent made the rig yet,(My excuse is the cold weather) but I will do it as soon as weather permits. I hope this may be of some help, I have spent many hours on this solution and many years with rusty, smelly water. If anyone has more or better ideas please let me know.

-- Bill Bergin (bbergin@webTV.Net), February 13, 2001.

I tihnk the best way to clean the water is to make a conatiner, then put three layes consisting of charcaol, sand, and gravel

-- M. A (maximumheat89@hotmail.com), October 01, 2002.

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