Tagged Questions

Questions about making the water found outdoors safe for drinking.

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3
votes
1answer
77 views

Water filter that handles mercury?

Is there any camping water filter that handles mercury in the water? I live in an area with lots of cinnabar (mercury ore), so all the streams have some mercury content. According to the local water ...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

What are some emergency water purification methods? [duplicate]

If you're lost in the wilderness (and you've foolishly left behind your handy dandy water purification tablets and water filter), what are some of the best and safest ways to purify water? What do you ...
3
votes
1answer
129 views

Does water in the sun get purified from or polluted by algae, fungi and bacteria?

We drink water from PET bottles laying around on the soil (27° latitude, about 200 metres above sea level). They are filled with fresh water from a well and reused over and over again. We drink the ...
6
votes
1answer
84 views

How long is an activated charcoal filter good for after initial use?

I have a water filtration system that uses activated coconut shell carbon as its media. The filter is listed as being able to purify up to 50 gallons, but I won't be using it for anywhere near that ...
3
votes
1answer
116 views

How can I tell when water is contaminated with industrial chemicals without any special equipment?

With fracking, chemical spills, and all sorts of environmental nonsense on the rise, water quality can be compromised in some areas. How can I tell when it's not safe to consume even after filtering ...
12
votes
4answers
622 views

Do you need to purify all mountain water sources

I was just reading this question What is the safest way to purify water? Now I walk a lot in Snowdonia in North Wales and on occasion I drink from mountain streams. I've even camped next to mountain ...
5
votes
3answers
157 views

When to perform a filtering of the water?

Let's imagine I'm hiking and I find a water source - like a lake, a stream or a well, and I want to fill my water bottle with it. I have a bottle and a water filter. And a bandana. Since I can't ...
5
votes
2answers
127 views

What backpacking water purification techniques can be substituted safely during a city's boil order?

Can I use my Sawyer filter when the city issues a boil order? Or could there contaminants such as viruses present that require boiling? How about other filters such as carbon filters? I'm confident ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Are water purification tablets safe?

There are a few questions regarding safety of water purification, one regarding expiration date, another regarding iodine, but I know that there are more than one types of water purficiation tablets. ...
4
votes
1answer
263 views

How to clean the ceramic filter of a water pump?

We used a Katadyn Vario filter during our last hike in Scotland. It uses a ceramic filter when used in LONGER LIFE modus. The waters in Scotland however have a tendency to be brown (due to the peat ...
9
votes
1answer
337 views

Safe to use Old Water Filter?

I have a PUR Hiker Microfilter and a Katadyn Water Microfilter sitting in my closet that I only use once in a great while (I don't go on overnight backpacking trips very often). Whenever I do plan on ...
7
votes
2answers
422 views

What backwoods trick to get pure water produces the most safe water?

So I read this answer and I was wondering what contraption produce the most water when you don't have a water source? So what water trap produces the most water? Specifically, what should I do with my ...
13
votes
1answer
379 views

Will Iodine Tablets Ruin My CamelBak?

In the past, I have gone backpacking with some fairly expensive, heavy water purification tools. But the more I read about water safety in California's Sierras (here and here), the less I think these ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it safe to use water purification tablets after their expiration date?

As I understand it, water purification tablets (Chlorine, in this case) are just chemical tablets sealed in foil. So what causes them to expire? Are they still safe to use after their expiration date? ...
12
votes
4answers
4k views

Where can I find an iodine crystal water purification product?

For years I used a product called Polar Pure for water purification when weekend backpacking. It was an iodine based solution, so not great for a thru-hike, but fine for a week or less. Specifically, ...
10
votes
2answers
455 views

Will boiling be enough to decontaminate standing water from pathogens and toxins?

Will the boiling of the water itself be enough to decontaminate water taken from such standing water reservoir as that: This water looks horrible, and probably drinking it raw would cause serial ...
9
votes
4answers
173 views

Will any filter/pump purifier last through longer hikes?

I've been reading a lot of product reviews, and filter/pump solutions seem to be very high maintenance, very heavy, or both. Are there any lightweight filters which can be relied on for many liters ...
37
votes
3answers
52k views

How long does water need to be boiled for to kill all bacteria / viruses?

This has come up a few times in a few other questions, but I've heard varying opinions from different people in a number of answers and comments on here - some saying that just boiling for a moment is ...
24
votes
4answers
7k views

Do iodine water treatment tablets have negative effects?

I've heard that iodine water treatment tablets can have negative side effects. Is this true? If so, what are some healthier alternatives?
10
votes
2answers
3k views

How do I desalinate seawater?

I know I shouldn't drink seawater (because of the salt it contains), but how can I desalinate it?
35
votes
3answers
18k views

Is drinking urine safe?

We've all heard stories about how people saved their lives by drinking their urine. Is drinking urine safe when there are no other water sources available? Can I filter it with a water purifier?
13
votes
4answers
4k views

Can any waterborne pathogens survive boiling?

I know that boiling does little to break down chemical contaminants or heavy metals. But I'm unsure if it kills all microbial life. Are there any waterborne illness-causing ...
17
votes
2answers
14k views

What are the different methods to purify water?

What methods can I use to purify water? And what's the difference between those several methods (safety, duration needed, ...)?
34
votes
8answers
4k views

What is the safest way to purify water?

There are a number of ways to purify water, off the top of my head we have filters, iodine, and boiling. Clearly each has some advantage/disadvantage (iodine tastes terrible, boiling takes time). ...
16
votes
4answers
1k views

Where in the Alps is it safe to drink the water without filtering?

In some places, the Swedish Lappland for example, it's perfectly fine and even recommended to drink water directly from streams. Is it also recommended whilst hiking in the Alps, and if so is it only ...