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Home Methods Of Purifying Water

Sources: A Handbook Of Health

Boiling. Where the water that you are obliged to drink is not known to

be pure, then it can be made quite safe for drinking purposes by the

simple process of boiling it for about ten or fifteen minutes. But this,

except in travelling or in emergencies, is a lazy, slipshod substitute

for pure water, and extremely unsatisfactory as well; for the boiling

drives off all its air and other gases, and throws down most of the

alts, so that boiled water has a flat, insipid taste. These salts,

although sometimes regarded as impurities, are not such in any true

sense; for the lime and soda especially are of considerable value in the

body, so that boiled or sterilized water is neither a pleasant nor a

wholesome permanent drink. Instead of boiling the water, get to work to

protect your own well from filth of all sorts, if you drink well water;

or, if not, to help the Board of Health to agitate, and keep on

agitating, until something is done to compel your selectmen or City

Council to secure a pure supply.

Domestic Filters. Much the same must be said of private or domestic

filters. These are, at best, temporary substitutes, and should not be

depended upon for permanent use. Many of them are made to sell rather

than to purify, and will remove only the larger or mechanical impurities

from the water. Others, while they work well at first, are exceedingly

likely to become clogged, when the tendency is to punch at them to make

them work faster, thus either poking a hole through them or cracking the

filter-shell, so that a stream of water flows steadily through, just as

impure as when it entered. Private filters, like boiling water, are only

temporary ways of meeting conditions which ought not to be allowed to

exist at all in civilized communities, or in your own homes.

A score of court decisions in all parts of the world have now held that

the water company is legally responsible for all avoidable pollution of

public water-supplies, and nine tenths of pollutions are avoidable.