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Old 08-12-2019, 04:56   #1
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Fresh Water Filtration Question

I have access to what is essentially a fresh water swamp where the boat project is. There is no water service to speak of.

We need water for the boat project for washing off the decks, showering, etc.

I think you can see where this is going. Ha ha

Does anyone have knowledge regarding filtration of stagnant, tanning filled fresh water to shower in? It is of unknown biological quality. It's in the tropics essentially. Other boats at be dumping sewage in it. It definitely has N. Fowleri in it. Turbidity isn't completely awful, but lots of tannin. Manatees are living and grazing in it so it's clean enough for their standards.

What sort of setup do I need to filter this water to use only for showering? I do have a 50 gallon water tank so I could potentially drop chlorine into that tank to take care of sioof the biological issues.

Any thoughts?

Am I crazy?

PS:. Watermaker is used, don't know if it's working yet and it's in storage 1000 miles away. Otherwise I'd just run that.
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Old 08-12-2019, 05:53   #2
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

At appears the water has frequent harmful algae blooms. So the question is moot. Not showering in those toxins.

I assume the water maker will successfully filter those out?
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Old 08-12-2019, 16:43   #3
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

I'd use bleach, for the biologicals. The tannins won't hurt you, I've drunk tannin-dark water the color of Coca Cola from its source without problems. So, the tannins are safe for showering, too. In showering, the water does contact mouth, and orifices, which is why I want the other stuff gone.

As to using the watermaker to purify that water, yes, it will work. Be prepared for frequent membrane cleaning.

Something I once read, don't know if it is true or not.... If faced with two holes in a rock with the only water for miles around, one murky, with bugs, the other crystal clear, always drink from the murky one because the clear one doesn't support life.

Think it's worth a try? say why or why not....

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Old 08-12-2019, 17:14   #4
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

Interesting anecdote, Ann. Thanks for sharing that. Love those little tidbits.

I think I'm going to get the watermaker going and put some hefty, multi stage pre filters before it so it's getting pretty clean water.

Then I'll just make sure to clean it often.
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Old 08-12-2019, 17:45   #5
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

If you want to clear the water up filters will take out the larger particles but will probably leave the color. It's probably not practical to install a system to remove the color in a boat. For biologicals just shock it with chlorine bleach and let it set for several minutes and your good to go.

It has been almost 30 years since I was the engineer over a water treatment system and I only was for about a year so I have forgotten alot.

use plain bleach not scented. I think the ratio is one cap full per gallon of water but it should say on the label.

Thx-Ace
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Old 08-12-2019, 18:02   #6
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

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If you want to clear the water up filters will take out the larger particles but will probably leave the color. It's probably not practical to install a system to remove the color in a boat. For biologicals just shock it with chlorine bleach and let it set for several minutes and your good to go.

It has been almost 30 years since I was the engineer over a water treatment system and I only was for about a year so I have forgotten alot.

use plain bleach not scented. I think the ratio is one cap full per gallon of water but it should say on the label.

Thx-Ace
I'd love to go straight to bleach like that, and I usually treat my tanks with bleach anyway, but bleach won't remove the toxins. I'm going to have to use reverse osmosis (assuming the toxins are larger than water).
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Old 08-12-2019, 18:49   #7
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

I make good water out of fresh water with my watermaker any time I can. I have a 20 micron and a 5 micron that are washable before a filter set that is similar to what home RO systems use. (1 micron, granular carbon, carbon block) And then the membranes. I get great tasting water out of river water, etc.
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Old 08-12-2019, 19:10   #8
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

I would pump water into the tank at 1-2 gallons a minute - first through a 20 micron pleated filter followed by an ANSI 53 filter with good flow like the Pentex Floplus 10 and then a $50 UV filter bought off Ebay. This whole setup will be less than $100.

After filling the tank the first time do a bleach shock treatment to make sure everything was dead in the tank.

After a few hours drain the tank and refill. Then add just enough bleach to keep it at 1ppm chlorine when measured with a test strip. Just a teaspoon or so.

You could certainly shower in this. Drinking would likely be safe too - tannins normally won't hurt you -- but I'd get more expert advice than the internet first. If the color bothers you add a third filter with a tannin cartridge - these don't work perfectly but will help some.
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Old 09-12-2019, 03:26   #9
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

Though not a direct health risk, tannins (also known as fulvic or humic acid) impart a yellow or tea-colour to water, making it aesthetically unpleasant and reducing the efficiency of ultraviolet disinfection systems. Further, tannins can bind iron organically; make it extremely difficult to be removed by conventional methods.
A simple test for tannins involves filling a clear glass with water, and letting it sit overnight. If the colour settles to the bottom of the glass, the discolouration is most likely caused by iron and/or manganese, and not tannins. If the intensity of the colour remains intact, it is most likely caused by tannins.
If you are testing for tannins, it is also recommended to test for bacteria.
Common tannin treatment uses an organic scavenging anion exchange resin. The anion resin is sensitive to hardness, so most systems include a water softener as pretreatment. The water softener extends the life of the anion resin and increases tannin absorption. Oxidation (chlorination) and activated carbon filtration is another method to remove tannins, but is not as simple as anion exchange and softening.
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Old 09-12-2019, 04:38   #10
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

Thanks for the posts.

I'm not concerned about the tannins, that's what makes tea brown.

I'm concerned about tropical things like flukes and cyanotoxins.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyanotoxin
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Old 09-12-2019, 06:44   #11
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

We have ecoli in the ground water, I just bought a UV water treatment system for the house today believe it or not.

The one I bought comes with a 20 and a 1 micron prefilter, you can also get one with a third carbon finer filter. I think this would clean out most unwanted particles. The UV will kill most organisms.

For the UV to work the water needs to be fairy clear, you would need to know the filters will clarify the water sufficiently.

I'm not sure if it suitable for your water but I suspect it would make drinking water from swamp water.
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Old 09-12-2019, 07:08   #12
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Fresh Water Filtration Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chotu View Post
I'd love to go straight to bleach like that, and I usually treat my tanks with bleach anyway, but bleach won't remove the toxins. I'm going to have to use reverse osmosis (assuming the toxins are larger than water).


What are you calling toxins?
I know of no real way to clean membranes myself. But fresh water RO systems are not that expensive, nothing like our salt water systems.

If you have an RO, of course you cant bleach until after the RO.
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Old 09-12-2019, 09:53   #13
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

You say stagnated water, this is a biological minefield , for all sorts of water borne disease, and insect larva and algae blooms , showering after some filtration yes no problems do not know how clean you would get, but brushing teeth and drinking , unless seriously filtered , boiled or UV treated would not touch it .
there is reason people in the Sub continent die drinking any stagnated water.
Your water maker would get clogged too quickly and then how are you flushing your membrane , oh stagnated water .
Ah whats the worst that could happen ?
Science still has millions of Bacteria you could be the first .
My Wife is A Dr of Freshwater Ecology I have first hand experience of what lurks in there
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Old 09-12-2019, 10:23   #14
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

Tarian, you have first hand experience of what lurks in your wife? Smile...
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Old 09-12-2019, 10:30   #15
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Re: Fresh Water Filtration Question

Chotu, where are you at? Because you mention Manatee I'm assuming Florida.

By education and profession I'm a scientist with medical microbiology. Just be careful ...especially with stagnant water. Animals have adapted to environments for an incredibly long time. Stagnant water....holy smokes...people are getting eaten these days from microorganisms from hot tubs. Not trying to scare you...but stagnant water has to be treated thoroughly with bleach, boiling, or ultra filtration. Even then...it ain't getting swallowed by me or used for cooking.

I'm not telling you anything you don't know. Just confirming what you already are concerned over.
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