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Monday, 6 June 2016

To Filter or Not to filter... THAT is the question!

or rather, HOW to filter to be precise.

As you may know, narrow boats have reasonably large water tanks - usually in the bow which provide storage for the boat's occupants needs.

On Ellis, we've increased the size of the water tank  from somewhere around 300, to 500 litres.  The tank is going to be stainless steel as a posed to mild steel to avoid the need for painting.   When I say painting, I don't mean picasso style - I mean an unpleasant job that involves some poor soul having to fold themselves up and squeeze into the tank in order to apply a "safe" paint product to the interior surface every few years.

Given that all most unpleasant jobs in our household tend to fall onto my ginger shoulders, having a stainless steel tank was a no brainer - I get claustrophobic in tunnels as it is, so there was NO chance of me climbing inside a tank to paint it.

Stainless steel, 'generally' means a maintenance free tank - except for perhaps the odd bleach tablet if required ... chances are, we'll flush ours out regularly enough to avoid that anyway.

ALL that said, given the general method of filling the water tank is by dragging a skanky bit of hosepipe across the tow-path to a tap and then shoving it down the filler tube - it's inevitable  likely the tank will be contaminated with 'something' ....sooner or later.

Our good friend compromise is paying a visit again...  IF we had plenty of money, we'd be having this

It's NOT the most expensive one available, but it is good... but at circa £300.00 we won't be having it.

Given our tank will be a) new b) stainless steel and c) we'll take care when filling, I hope we'll get away with something a little bit more affordable...

Something along the lines of this from our friends at Screwfix :screwfix water filter

It's only about £20 and I'll fit it to one dedicated "drinking tap" in the galley for when we want to drink fruit squash or just water.  It comes highly recommended by many live-aboards over on Canalworld forum!

Another good thing about it (besides the price) is the availability of filters - there are screwfix stores all over the country so wherever we are on our eventual travels, we won't be too far from a  replacement  filter when the time arrives.

Before I go off to bed (busy day tomorrow removing old rivets the manual way because the plasma cutter packed in today at work)  an update on the missing anchor  -  I finally opened a case on Ebay regarding it and the money has since (this morning) been credited to my paypal account so I guess the anchor is not going to be coming now... which is a pain... hey ho.  Time to  start my search again.

Until next time.


TonyT said...

Hi. The bwt filter is a carbon filter only from what I can see so will do the same job as a Brita filter jug and won't remove any bacterial contamination that may get in your tank. It will remove chlorine and odour and "sweeten" the water. The nature pure system filters down to 0.1 micron which will remove pathogens and toxins from the water. They are two completely different ends of the scale. You could buy the BWT housing and fit a better quality filter to it. I work in health care and if we have any suspected contamination issues we would fit two filters generally - a carbon or sediment to act as a present filter and then a high efficiency filter to guarantee water quality. Carbon filter elements are about £10 and the others are about £80 to fit the 10" housing and meet the same quality of the nature pure. In this case you get what you pay for. If you intend to drink the water from the tank it is essential that it is kept clean and regularly turned over and the system chlorinated at intervals. We have a jabsco aqua filter on the boat. Not sure why really because I haven't chlorinated the system since we bought the boat and so don't drink the water. Hope this is helpful.

Quaysider said...

Thanks for that Tony - we WOULD prefer to have a "proper" filter. Once the boat is complete, we intend to live onboard full time so the contents should be turned over regularly and I'll make sure on filling, we take care over "dangling hose ends" and shove a couple of chlorine tablets in once in a while. If we can find a better filter to fit in to the housing then that's a good idea.... I suppose it'll be a suck it and see approach - hopefully with nothing more sinister than an upset stomach... famous last words eh?