De-ionised vs Distilled water - easy sources & is one preffered?

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RogueRose

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I was wondering if anyone has used de-ionised water in place of distilled. I have collected water from my dehumidifier (about 5 gal's a day) and it can also be collected from air conditioning units. This water is considered de-ionised I believe and it is very similar to distilled and has virtually the same qualities. I think the major difference is the method about which it is obtained. Distilled is boiled and then condensed.

Either way, they both usually have a neutral pH (7). If getting water from dehumidifiers and AC's I would be sure to filter before using (coffee filter seems to work well).

Does anyone else know if there is any major difference between the two and or do you have any good means of obtaining them?
 

DeeAnna

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Distilled water is basically condensed water vapor. Boiling may be or may not be involved -- it really doesn't matter how the liquid water becomes water vapor. Water vapor collected by a dehumidifier is the rough equivalent of distilled if you keep the collection container clean and sanitary. One of the issues with water collected from ACs and dehumidifiers is that the water may not be microbiologically safe since there is usually little or no attention to keeping these systems sanitary -- Legionnaire's disease was originally found in the "distilled" water in an AC condensing unit.

Deionized water is water that has been passed through a resin bed or a reverse osmosis system to specifically remove certain types of ions. There is no water vapor involved, so it's an entirely different process than distillation. A lab quality deionizing system is basically as good as distilled.
 
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RogueRose

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So can anyone suggest a way to sanitize/sterilize water collected from dehumidifiers? I am thinking of making a large activated carbon (AC) filter and running the water through that - possibly boil the water first. I know that I could also just dump some AC in a water container, stir/settle, (repeat a number of times) and then siphon off the top/clean water as needed. This is another way to use AC if you can't make a filter.
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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I've said it before and I'll say it again - if it can survive the lye, it deserves to live!

But I think that boiling it might well be enough. With bar soap, the water is not a worry for us like it is with liquid soap, so with saponification and high pH, would there be much left in there to cause an issue? Especially if you are collecting daily and boiling before use
 

DeeAnna

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"...I am thinking of making a large activated carbon (AC) filter and running the water through that..."

Don't bother. Granular activated carbon can do a lot of things, but it cannot make water microbiologically safe. If the water is more or less distilled and kept sanitary, that's all you really need. If I could offer a gentle suggestion -- don't overthink this. :)

"...possibly boil the water first...."

This is the way to go if you want to kill bacteria.
 

CanaDawn

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A berkey water filter would do it. Removes bacteria and viruses.
 

sassanellat

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Though the ads say differently, most cartridge water filters just do an OK job at bacteria and little or nothing to remove viruses, and unless you regularly sterilize everything from the exit point of the cartridge and your containers, you'll still have LOTS of viruses and bacteria in the water (yes, I'm a microbiologist, and yes, I've done water testing professionally). But, as you've noted previously, nothing in the water will survive the sodium hydroxide.
 

LazyUmbrella

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eh, maybe it's the paranoia in me, but I'd be wary of using AC/dehumidifier water even if you boil it, unless you test for microbial activity. Thinking about elderly, children or people with compromised immune systems, who might be super-susceptible to sickness.
I just wonder if it's worth the risk/hassle as opposed to buying it at the local pharmacy?
 

DeeAnna

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Everyone's comfort factor is different, and I appreciate your point of view, LU. If the dehumidifier collection container is kept clean and sanitary and the water is removed often and stored properly, the risk is fairly low, especially if the water is used in lye soap. Disease problems arise in systems that aren't maintained well.

That said, I buy my distilled water at the store. I think the convenience and reliability are worth the small price. I also use this water to make lotions as well as soap, and I am very conservative about the safety of products like that.
 

CanaDawn

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Though the ads say differently, most cartridge water filters just do an OK job at bacteria and little or nothing to remove viruses, and unless you regularly sterilize everything from the exit point of the cartridge and your containers, you'll still have LOTS of viruses and bacteria in the water (yes, I'm a microbiologist, and yes, I've done water testing professionally). But, as you've noted previously, nothing in the water will survive the sodium hydroxide.
ceramic filters are pretty effective, far as I know.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20009242
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19926110
There's some pretty well known ones (katadyn etc)

But yes, as with ANY storage or treatment option, what you do peripherally to the water and equipment counts at least as much as what method you use to filter/treat.

I agree with DeeAnna though....why bother when there are safe, inexpensive options? Use the collected water where any microbe population won't matter, and skip the added hassle.
 
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sassanellat

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Considering that virus are the most numerous biological entity on earth, even a 99% reduction means very little when you are still often exceeding the infectious dose by millions of times. Rotovirus (most of what people call the 'stomach flu') has an infectious dose of 10 viruses, and Giardia (75% of travelers diarrhea) forms oocysts than can evade many types of filters and has an equally terrifying infective dose. Usually, the real culprit is the storgae vessel and the water contact surfaces subsequent to the filter. Personally, I can get water pure enough to strip the calcium right off your teeth, but I just grab jug water from the store because, really, nothing you can't see with naked eye will survive the lye.
 

CanaDawn

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Considering, more usefully, that most people haven't got a clue about filters, infectious doses of virus, the viral load of the initial water, nor aseptic technique......it's probably enough to say "lye will kill any nasties, if you haven't cleaned your dehumidifier, but buying distilled water is quicker"

I have ultrapure water available to me (won't register a pH), but I would never consider using it for soap, simply because tap water works just fine, and if it didn't, a large blue jug of 'boughten' drinking water will work just dandy and be safe even without the lye.
 

lady-of-4

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We actually use a water deionizer since our parish water system produces extremely hard water compared to where we used to live. You can't even hand wash dishes and let them air dry, or else water spots are left behind. Or, when we boil tap water, a white residue is left at the water line. It's that bad. So, seeing this, we purchased a water filtration system called ZeroWater. From what I could research about how the filters work, going off of the webiste descriptions, their " ion exchange' filters are dual bed, or mixed bed deionizing filters, paired with other filter levels, to remove virtually all material contaminants in our water, or Total Dissolved Solids (TDS), along with chlorine and other chemicals. And while they won't outwardly admit that their filters are rated to remove flouride, they do hint at the high possiblity. In the end, the filter produce EPA certified pure water when used as directed, ie, testing for TDS with a meter regularly. So the only issue I concern myself with is microbes. So I boil the water for that, though the dispensing tank puts out blister causing scalding hot water. Considering distilled water bascially does all that my filters do, just at a slightly more pure level, I haven't noted any difference between th 2 in my soaping. Hope my experience helps answer OPs question.
 

sassanellat

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Personally, I think it's useful to know not to rely on even the better filters, especially when the topic is whether to choose still warm, dehumidifier water, filtered water, or bottled water (and why). More information when making choices is never a bad thing. I'd shy away from the humidifier water regardless, even if we ignore the rare possibility of Listeria and such (which could be a problem for the soaper, not the soap). But starting any chemistry, like sopamaking, is certainly going to go better with good clean water. :D
 
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