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How to make distilled water at home for free



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You only need basic cookware to start making your own distilled water.


Steve Conaway / CNET

Distilled water can be incredibly handy to have around. Your aquarium, car maintenance, humidifier, CPAP machines or other health-related equipment may all need or take advantage of distilled water.

If you don't currently have enough access to distilled water – your local supermarket is out of stock or you're just trying to do your bit through social distance – you have no bad luck. I'm going to walk you through the different types of water you drink and take the steps to create your own unlimited supply of distilled water at home. The best part is that you probably don't have to buy anything to do it.

Read more on CNET: The best pitchers of 2020

What is distilled water?

If you don't know the difference between faucet, filtered, purified and distilled water, don't feel bad. It's confusing.

Tap water is simple. Turn on your kitchen faucet. Voila! Tap water. Tap water quality varies by location and may contain traces of minerals specific to the geology of your area, as well as traces of chemicals used in municipal water treatment. Hopefully your tap water is safe to drink, but over 45 million Americans don't have that luxury. Filtered water is one solution

Filtered water starts as ordinary tap water. You may have already filtered water in your house using a whole house filter system, a tap filter or a water bottle (you may even get a filtered water bottle ). Most filtered water passes through a combination of carbon and micron filters, which help remove chemicals such as chlorine (often added to municipal tap water as a disinfectant) or pesticides and metals such as copper or lead. Filters can also eliminate odors and odors.

Purified water usually also starts as tap water. It will undergo many purification processes, including those used for water filtration. Purified water goes a step further than filtering, with a process that removes chemical pollutants, bacteria, fungi and algae. You can often find purified water in bottles at your local grocery store.

Distilled Water is a more specialized type of purified water, but much easier and cheaper to produce at home. As with purified water, it meets the classification requirement of 10ppm (parts per million total dissolved solids, also known as impurities) or less. The distillation process is simple. Heat tap water until it turns into vapor. When the vapor condenses back into water, it leaves behind all mineral residues. The resulting condensed liquid is distilled water.

Is distilled water safe to drink every day?

The disadvantage of distilling is that it removes all the useful things that naturally occur in tap water. For that reason, it is generally not recommended to use distilled water as your daily drinking water.

You should also carefully choose each storage container that you use for distilled water. Due to the lack of nutrients in distilled water, it can rinse out chemicals from the container in which it is stored. If you plan to use the water immediately, most containers will do well, but for long-term storage, use glass or high-quality stainless steel.

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Steve Conaway / CNET

How to Make Your Own Distilled Water at Home

Not too scientific here, but this is exciting to me. We use water in all three known states – solid, liquid and gas.

The core is this: you heat water (liquid), turn it into water vapor (gas) and then collect the condensation with the help of ice (solid). It's kind of a high school science class again. You will probably find everything you need in your kitchen. A large pan, a lid for the large pan, a small pan, water, ice and oven gloves for handling the hot cookware.

It takes a while for all this science to happen, so be prepared. In my example below, I started with 8 cups of water in the large pot. After an hour, I had produced about 1 1/4 cup of distilled water. To make a liter jug ​​that you would find in the supermarket, you need about 13 hours of distillation time.

If you follow these steps you should get close to 100% yield, but whatever amount of distilled water you want to finish, make sure to add extra water so you can avoid emptying the pan (s) heats up at the end of the process, which can damage some pans.

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Steve Conaway / CNET

1 . First, place the large pan on a stovetop burner and add 8 cups of water. Then place the smaller pot in the large pot. At this point, the smaller pot should float on top of the water. The key to circulating water vapor in the large pot is air flow. Make sure the smaller pot has enough of it, both on the sides and between the top and top of the larger pot.

2. Then turn the burner somewhere between medium and medium heat. I specifically tried to avoid actually boiling the water and tried to keep the heating level simmering constantly – somewhere between 180-200 degrees Fahrenheit. If you use a higher temperature, you will not get a higher yield, but the cold side of the lid will heat up faster and it will be more difficult to handle the equipment.

3. After turning on the burner, place the lid upside down on the large pan. The lids are usually higher in the center than around the edges. By inverting the lid, the condensed distilled water can drip into the center of the lid and into the smaller jar. When all this is done, go to your ice cream maker (or tray) and load the top of the inverted lid with ice. The temperature difference on both sides of the lid will accelerate the condensation process.

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Steve Conaway / CNET

4. At this point, you can sit back and wait. Finally, I replenished the ice supply twice within an hour, once at the half-hour mark, and once after 45 minutes. For this you need the oven mitts – that lid gets hot! Be careful when you dump that now hot melted ice.

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Steve Conaway / CNET

5. All the water that has dripped into the smaller pot is now distilled. Again, I was able to make about a cup and a quarter of distilled water during this time.

Remember that making your own distilled water is easy (and fun!), But a lack of nutrients makes it a poor choice for everyday drinking water. But if you're stuck at home and you trust a device that needs it, or maybe you just want to keep your fish healthy, then you probably have the means to make it yourself.

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