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East Ender
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September 25, 2010 1:02 pm  

I have a Seagull water filter and drink my cistern water. The water is checked every month by a lab.

flatlander: WAPA is the water and power authority. They desalinate sea water which is then distributed through private water companies in tanker type trucks. If you live in the drier areas, you may have to buy water. There is also a potable water system, but not everyone is on line yet. People are a lot more aware of water use here than in the states.

Re: sewage...There is a sewage sytem in the town area. Lots of folks have septic systems, but I believe most new construction is required to have a treatment system. Many places have "grey water" systems- sewage, water from the showers and sinks go into it, are treated, and you get water for flushing the toilets and watering outdoors. Pretty cool. But, when you have to pay a nickle or more for a gallon of water, you will still see places with the old signs "In these isles of sun and fun, we never flush for number one.";)


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Neil
 Neil
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September 25, 2010 9:38 pm  

But those contaminants are as nothing compared to those to which you are exposed via the bottled water supply stream in the islands.

It's not the contaminants in the air that I would worry about... it's all the bat and bird poo on the roof that the water is draining over that concerns me. "Adding some bleach when it starts to smell" is a bit scary as well.

When we were drinking from our cistern, here's the way I looked at it: the COST of putting in a proper filtration system was LESS than the cost of me being sick for a few days every year.


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DUN
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September 26, 2010 1:50 am  

I have a 6 stage RO system, it uses 2 carbon filters that remove/reduce chlorine &smells.
The first filter is a sediment filter, the next reduces particles to 30 microns.
The next stage is a 5 micron filter, next 2 carbon filters, one 5 micron, one 2 micron.
Finally is the reverse osmosis membrane which high pressure water is forced through it (like desalination @ WAPA or in a boat use).
Yes, in the long run it is cheaper than buying water (& MUCH lighter).

Yes, I agree you must start off with a clean cistern, use bleach & common sense.
Though I think everyone has their own comfort level, you don't have to agree, but this is mine.


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Suzette
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September 26, 2010 3:37 am  

What the heck is a water 'softener' ? I thought that was something to use in the washing machine ?


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STXBob
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September 26, 2010 1:13 pm  

What the heck is a water 'softener' ? I thought that was something to use in the washing machine ?

You might be thinking of fabric softener.

Here are some articles about soft water:
Soft water (a very short article): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soft_water
Water softening (a longer article): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_softening


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islandboy
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October 3, 2010 11:26 pm  

Get a Big Berkey - drink pretty much any water after running through this filter - http://www.britishberkefeld.com/


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Ice Water
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December 29, 2010 6:07 pm  

When renting an apartment, and you don't have control over the water. What are things to look for? Both red flags and green lights?


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shdoug
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December 30, 2010 2:00 am  

Most cistern water is perfectly safe. I've seen frogs swimming in mine and I just can't deal with that image as I'm drinking my water. I use the water machines. But my neighbor drinks his with no filter and has for years with no issues. What do you think they drank 100 years ago, and our cisterns are coated now. Let's not be hypersensitive about the water. If it smells ok, it probably is.


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scubado
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December 30, 2010 2:14 am  

Honestly, if the owners of the place you are staying take care of their system you have a good chance of being fine. One of our worse vacations was from drinking bad water and spending the week getting over it. When a case of bottled water is so reasonable why take a chance?


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DixieChick
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December 30, 2010 9:23 am  

we have the ultraviolet home treatment thingy that someone mentioned so i feel safer drinking cistern water.
would probably drink it anyway.

we add bleach to the water for a precaution.

have also seen frogs in cistern. how are they getting in there???? we checked screens in gutter and all if fine.


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STXBob
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December 30, 2010 10:22 am  

Frogs lay eggs in the gutters, and the rain washes them into the cistern. That's how mosquitoes, bird poop, lizard poop, and other nasties all get past the screens. I would never drink untreated cistern water, and I certainly wouldn't risk my guests doing so.


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chefnoah
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December 30, 2010 11:32 am  

I think the assorted additives add a delectable bouquet to my untreated cistern water. I think my immune system is getting a workout and my stomach is increasing its "iron like" character. A little bleach here and there does just fine.
It's all in how you look at things, I guess


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Future Islander
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December 30, 2010 12:10 pm  

Noah:

I really hope that you're kidding.

Our condo association installed a R/O filter and UV sanitizer in our water filtration system. Plus we use another paper/carbon filter at the faucet.

F.I.


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chefnoah
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December 30, 2010 2:28 pm  

I usually kid, but not about this.
I've been drinking cistern water right off my roof for nearly a year now. I run it through a Pur filter, but that's just a particle filter.

I drink a lot of it every day. What's the big deal?


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Hiya!
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December 30, 2010 2:43 pm  

There are thousand and thousand of waterborne diseases that can kill you, put you in the hospital or just lay you up for a week. I splurge and spend the $4 bucks a week for water. 🙂


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chefnoah
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December 30, 2010 5:20 pm  

I use to say that tap water builds character....I think it applies to cistern water too 😀


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East Ender
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December 30, 2010 9:14 pm  

I stand by my Seagull: http://generalecology.com/marinesystem.htm


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NugBlazer
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December 30, 2010 9:23 pm  

Brita filters are not water purification systems. They are particle filters.

Ding, ding! Someone get this guy a cigar.

Aussie hit the nail on the head. Those Brita filters only remove particles: sand, sediment, etc. But, that's not what you have to worry about. It's the biological stuff that'll get you, and Brita filters don't do squat about that. Honestly, they're fairly worthless unless you're drinking really muddy water or something like that.

Me? I've drank cistern water before, but after seeing a dead, decomposing frog floating on the surface of my own cistern a few years ago, I decided to go bottled. Those 5-gallon jugs are pretty slick.


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aussie
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December 30, 2010 9:49 pm  

After this thread, I did some research and I am now drinking my cistern water! I bought this puppy and I couldn't be happier with it. The unit I bought only makes about 2 gallons/day but that's plenty for me. Tastes great!

http://www.aquarain.com/


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Hiya!
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December 30, 2010 10:04 pm  

Do you remember how much it cost? Doesn't seem to say anywhere on the site.

edited to add....oops, never mind found it.


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divinggirl
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December 30, 2010 10:06 pm  

$239.99 - there is a link to the online store at the bottom of the page.


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aussie
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December 30, 2010 10:07 pm  

Do you remember how much it cost? Doesn't seem to say anywhere on the site.

edited to add....oops, never mind found it.

This site has prices and the store has high ratings.

http://www.campingsurvival.com/aqwatfil.html


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Ice Water
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December 31, 2010 2:12 pm  

The Aqua Rain looks EXTREMELY awesome! Can anyone tell me (I didn't see it - and it just might be exhaustion) how the unit gets its water? Does the user pour water in to be filtered?


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aussie
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December 31, 2010 2:44 pm  

The Aqua Rain looks EXTREMELY awesome! Can anyone tell me (I didn't see it - and it just might be exhaustion) how the unit gets its water? Does the user pour water in to be filtered?

Just pour water into the top chamber. Gravity draws it through the filters into the bottom chamber which has the faucet. It requires no electricity so it's perfect for WAPA outages and storms. The instructions say that it is so effective that you can pour in water from a lake, river, or even a swimming pool. Of course, lakes and rivers are in short supply here 😀

I bought the 202 model which I use to purify about 2 gallons per day.


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Bombi
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December 31, 2010 2:47 pm  

the purified water from the machines is 60 cents a gallon or about .021 per gallon, just keep your containers clean.


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