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#76471 - 11/10/06 04:16 PM Re: Side effects of drinking pool water?
brandtb Offline

Registered: 11/26/04
Posts: 249
Loc: S.E. Pennsylvania
Freddie the Pool Guy. That was a while back.
Brian Brandt

#76472 - 11/10/06 08:33 PM Re: Side effects of drinking pool water?
Pharaoh Offline

Registered: 07/26/06
Posts: 49
Loc: The Hague, the Netherlands.
Read my post on the "Survival Straw" . This is mainly what I use it for !<img src="/images/graemlins/confused.gif" alt="" />
It works. <img src="/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />
-Smile and the world smiles with you. Fart and you stand alone-

#76473 - 11/10/06 09:53 PM Re: Side effects of drinking pool water?
frediver Offline

Registered: 05/17/04
Posts: 213
Loc: N.Cal.
Better check a bit more on this use of pool water.
If iy was onlt clorine then a filter will remove it but it's not! Pool water contains salts as well and your normal filter will not remove salts.

#76474 - 11/10/06 09:58 PM Re: Side effects of drinking pool water?
KenK Offline
"Be Prepared"

Registered: 06/26/04
Posts: 1929
Loc: NE Illinois
In water with good pH levels, the chlorine added generates hypochlorous (HOCl) and a Hypochlorite ion (OCl). The Hypochlorous acid is the part that does the disinfecting. Hypochlorous acid is fairly unstable. High heat drives the chlorine from hypochlorous acide in the form its elemental gas (very small quantities). The same thing happens when the hypochlorous acid is exposed to UV rays from the sun.

That is why pool owners are careful not to let the water get too hot (one problem with hot tubs) and they make sure to add cyanuric acid, which binds with the chlorine to form chlorimide, which is much more stable (not as easily driven off by heat & sun) and at the right PPM levels is still a very effective disinfectant.

The suseptability of chlorine to high temperatures is also why it is recommended that when washing dishes you use lukewarm water for the chlorine rinse rather than hot water. You don't want to use cold water either, since that reduces the chlorine's disinfectant properties.

#76475 - 11/12/06 12:15 AM Re: Side effects of drinking pool water?
Arney Offline

Registered: 09/15/05
Posts: 2485
Loc: California
I'm not aware of any toxicity to drinking the chemicals in a properly maintained, chlorinated pool for a relatively short period of time (i.e. not months or years). I have no idea about the safety of pools that use other disinfectants besides chlorine. You often run across admonishments to not drink pool water, but I suspect that the warning is aimed at curbing gastrointestinal illness and not because pool water is poisonous. In everyday life, yes, don't drink pool water. You can get sick. Why risk getting sick when you can just walk over to the water fountain for a drink of water?

But in an emergency, I think it is OK, although it may irritate your gut. However, you should assume that the water needs treatment since normal chlorination may keep the water clear and algae-free, but it won't necessarily kill all the bugs that may make you sick. I would definitely treat water from a public pool or any pool that gets a lot of use. An emergency is not a time to play Russian roulette with your health by drinking untreated pool water.

If a pool is going to be used as a water source, then it should really be tightly controlled to prevent additional contamination after some disaster. No more swimming, cover it to keep organic debris out, don't let pets drink directly from the pool, don't bathe or wash dishes near the pool so that waste water drains into the pool, don't dip potentially contaminated buckets into the water, etc. Any contamination would, of course, be diluted by the large volume of water, but then again, the pool likely won't be filtered and maintained after a disaster starts, so its best to minimize further contamination.

#76476 - 11/12/06 01:20 AM Re: Side effects of drinking pool water?
nursemike Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 774
Loc: wellington, fl
The non-chlorine pool disinfectant that i have used is called baquacil, active ingredient polyhexamethylene biguanide. It is used in various concentrations as a pre-surgical scrub, mouthwash and eye drops for ugly infections. Drinking poolwater with baquacil in it may well be better for one than drinking tap water. On the other hand, swimming pools collect everything that falls out of the sky. Remember the words of WC Fields when offerred a glass of water.
Dance like you have never been hurt, work like no one is watching,love like you don't need the money.

#76477 - 11/12/06 03:05 AM Re: Side effects of drinking pool water?
ironraven Offline
Cranky Geek
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 4642
Loc: Vermont

THAT is what I was trying to think of, thanks.

And the note about fallout is a good one- fallout is anything, it doesn't have to radioactive. And while not all of it has the immediate knee jerk fear that radioactivity does, not all of it is as nice a bird poo.

When a man dare not speak without malice for fear of giving insult, that is when truth starts to die. Truth is the truest freedom.

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