Avoid the trip to the store and make distilled water for free. here’s how

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You just need some basic cooking utensils to start making your own distilled water.

Steve Conaway / CNET

The uses of distilled water are endless. Aquariums, auto maintenance, humidifiers, CPAP machines, and other health-related equipment all require or benefit from the use of distilled water. You can buy it in your grocery store for $ 1 or less. But you can also do it at home for free.

There are different types of distilled water that you can drink at this time. Plus, I’ll give you five quick and easy steps to create your own to save you time and money. The best part? You can probably find all the tools you need in your home right now.

Looking for some extra life tips? here’s how cleaning mold and bacteria from your washing machine and how to clean a clogged sink. We recently updated this story. And here are the best water filters to get rid of bacteria that may float.

Read more: The best water filter pitchers of 2021

What is distilled water?

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

Tap water is the easiest. Open your kitchen faucet. There ! Tap water. The quality of tap water 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. I hope the tap water is safe to drink, but more 45 million Americans don’t have that luxury. Filtered water is a solution.

Filtered water starts off as tap water. You may have already filtered the water in your home through a whole house filtration system, faucet filter, or water filtration pitcher (you can 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 (typically added to municipal tap water as a disinfectant) or pesticides, and metals like copper or lead. Filters can also remove foul odors and tastes.

Purified water usually starts with tap water. It will go through many purification processes including those used for water filtration. Purified water goes beyond filtration, with a process that removes chemical pollutants, bacteria, fungi and algae. You will 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 10 ppm (parts per million total dissolved solids, i.e. contaminants) or less. The distillation process is simple. Heat the tap water until it turns to steam. When steam condenses into water, it leaves mineral residues. The resulting condensed liquid is distilled water.

Is distilled water safe to drink every day?

Distilled water is completely safe to use, but the downside to distillation is that it removes all the useful minerals like calcium and magnesium that are naturally found in tap water. For this reason, it is generally not recommended to use distilled water as your daily drinking water, and you may find that it lacks flavor.

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

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Steve Conaway / CNET

How to Make Your Own Distilled Water at Home

I don’t want to be too scientific here, but it’s exciting for me. We will use water in its three known states: solid, liquid and gas.

The bottom line 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 like a science class in college. You will probably find everything you need in your kitchen. A large pot, a lid for the large pot, a small pot, water, ice and oven mitts for handling hot cooking utensils.

It takes a while for all of 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 cups of distilled water. To recreate a gallon jug that you find at the supermarket, you will need about 13 hours of distillation time.

If you follow these steps you should get a yield close to 100%, but no matter how much distilled water you want, be sure to add extra water to avoid heating one or more. several empty pans at the end of the process. , which can damage some kitchen utensils.

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Steve Conaway / CNET

1. First, place the large pot on a stovetop burner and add 8 cups of water. Then place the smaller pot inside the larger pot. At this point, the smaller pot should be floating above the water. The key to circulating water vapor inside the large pot is airflow. Make sure the smaller pot has plenty of it, both on the sides and between it and the top of the larger pot.

2. Then turn the burner to somewhere between medium and medium-high heat. I specifically tried to avoid boiling the water and tried to keep the heat level at a constant simmer – somewhere between 180 and 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Using a higher temperature won’t give you a higher output, but it will heat the cold side of the lid faster and make general handling of the equipment more difficult to manage.

3. After lighting the burner, place the lid upside down on the large pot. Lids are generally higher in the middle than around the edges. Turning the lid upside down will allow the condensed distilled water to flow to the middle of the lid and into the smaller pot. With all of that done, head over to your ice maker (or tray) and load the top of the inverted lid with ice. The temperature difference on both sides of the cover will speed up the condensation process.

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Steve Conaway / CNET

4. At this point you can sit down and wait. I ended up replenishing the ice supply twice in an hour, once every half hour, and once after 45 minutes. This is what you need the oven mitts for – this cover will be hot! Be careful when throwing out this now hot melted ice cream.

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Steve Conaway / CNET

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

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


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