PDA

View Full Version : Tannin filled water sources and water filters



GGS
2010-10-14, 00:54
I'm curious what experiences you've had with filtering tannin rich water.

A group of friends just returned from a weekend of camping and backpacking in the Michigan Tahquamenon Falls area. The falls are known for their "root beer colored" tannin rich water. They were actually camped by nearby Clark Lake, from which they tried to filter water. Apparently they had two filters fail before pumping a single liter of water.

One of the filters was ten years old, which understandibly could have just failed because of its age. As I understand it, while filtering a crack appeared and water begain spurting out of the crack as the filter was pumped.

The other filter was brand new. The hikers assembled it before camping. As I'm told after filtering less than a liter of water the new filter started blowing water out of the relief valve. Upon dissassembly the filter looked dark colored and was presumed clogged.

For my part I've filtered some pretty nasty looking water through my Katadyn and never had a problem. So I'm wondering if tannins cause problems for water filters. I've tried a few Google searches and while I've found an odd hit or two I'm not seeing legions of posts to avoid filtering tannin water or such.

Any thoughts or experiences?

warraghiyagey
2010-10-14, 07:24
Never hear d of water tannin. . . just sun tannin. . . .

MonkeyBoy
2010-10-14, 08:27
Tannin water is nothing more than a "tea" that has been made due to rainwater running through leaves and pine needles and then into the river bed.

Think of a really big Mr. Coffee machine.

All water except springs here in Florida is brown tannin water.

I would use a ceramic filter, but you have to keep it clean, clean, clean..... The tannin will build up on the outside of the filter quickly. I would suggest cleaning it after every nalgene fill.

Paper filters will clog so quickly as to be ineffective.

By itself, however, tannin does not harm you anymore than drinking tea, so another effective way is just to strain it and then boil it, or put in iodine tabs.

enviro
2010-10-14, 14:07
MB is correct that the tannins themselves are not dangerous. However, if you are going to use oxidation chemicals like iodine or chlorine to disinfect the water you may need to use extra, because the chemicals will likely react with the tannins and try to break those mostly double carbon bonds. May even lighten the water color a bit if you use chlorine.

SGT Rock
2010-10-14, 20:27
I've drank some of that stuff while hiking in Louisiana but never filtered it. I used iodine, so there was an interesting flavor to it already.

auburnbreeze
2010-10-14, 21:11
Never hear d of water tannin. . . just sun tannin. . . .

Merlotion?

erin
2010-10-15, 21:31
What a timely question. Just packed up in Minnesota last month on the SHT and the water was rust colored, even from falls and fast creeks. My Katadin filter did just fine for the week. Pumped water looked awful but tasted fine. We were very curious about why even running fast falls were rust colored.

MonkeyBoy
2010-10-15, 22:26
If it's tannin, it's more brown tea colored.

Rust colored would be a high iron content due to large amounts of minerals from the mud.

Either way, it doesn't harm you, just makes you clean your filter more often.

warraghiyagey
2010-10-18, 08:48
Filter? . . . what is this, filter? . . . :albertein

Hikerhead
2010-10-18, 12:26
Back in the day, sailers would go for tannined (is that a word) water over fresh water. It lasted longer on long trips. That's what I've read. Drink up!

MonkeyBoy
2010-10-18, 12:55
It doesn't evaporate as quickly........maybe that's what they were going for.

saimyoji
2010-10-18, 13:29
How would you consider the tannin levels of this:

http://www.pennsylvaniawatersheds.org/wp-content/uploads/2007/12/img_2031.JPG

think i should filter, or just treat with iodine? :albertein

enviro
2010-10-18, 14:03
How would you consider the tannin levels of this:

http://www.pennsylvaniawatersheds.org/wp-content/uploads/2007/12/img_2031.JPG

think i should filter, or just treat with iodine? :albertein

I'd like to see what that water trickle coming over the top of that pipe looks like. This may be what MB was referring to regarding high iron content, that turns everything rust colored.

Or it could just be a sewage overflow.

saimyoji
2010-10-18, 14:44
its acid mine drainage. you don't wanna go near it. :afraid:

SGT Rock
2010-10-18, 16:23
I'd like to try a filter with coke once to see if it could turn it back into water.

MonkeyBoy
2010-10-18, 16:41
Is that before or after you melt it in the spoon.........

:)

SGT Rock
2010-10-18, 16:42
You use a spoon to melt coke? I've been doing it wrong.

erin
2010-10-18, 22:10
Gosh, I don't know if our Minnesota water was more brown v. tea. I posted the pic since that is what it looked like. They had a ton of rain before I was up there. I should have taken a picture of our filtered water. I think tea colored than more rust colored in retrospect.

warraghiyagey
2010-10-19, 08:22
You use a spoon to melt coke? I've been doing it wrong.

Forks are less efficient. . .

warraghiyagey
2010-10-19, 08:22
Gosh, I don't know if our Minnesota water was more brown v. tea. I posted the pic since that is what it looked like. They had a ton of rain before I was up there. I should have taken a picture of our filtered water. I think tea colored than more rust colored in retrospect.

That be the tannin. . . completely harmless. . .

GGS
2010-10-20, 11:42
I would use a ceramic filter, but you have to keep it clean, clean, clean...

Hmmm. The dilemna of how to clean a water filter in the backcountry especially when you can't filter a liter of water before the filter clogs...

MonkeyBoy
2010-10-20, 11:46
Pump a liter. Scrub filter. Splash a little on it from the liter. Repeat.

You should be able to get a liter out of it before it clogs.

If not........I'd be leary of the water you're drinking.

We're talking tannin water......not sludge water.

GGS
2010-10-20, 14:59
You should be able to get a liter out of it before it clogs.



That's what _I_ thought! If there really was a problem with filters and tannin water I would expect to see posts everywhere. I'm thinking something weird happened on my friends' trip. Old filter failed, brand new filter had a manufacturing flaw or some other coincidence.

As for myself I HAVE filtered some pretty nasty water, not only did it filter fine but I'm still using the same filter.

Sumpin' ain't right heah...

MonkeyBoy
2010-10-20, 15:01
That'd be my guess......

enviro
2010-10-20, 15:48
That's what _I_ thought! If there really was a problem with filters and tannin water I would expect to see posts everywhere. I'm thinking something weird happened on my friends' trip. Old filter failed, brand new filter had a manufacturing flaw or some other coincidence.

As for myself I HAVE filtered some pretty nasty water, not only did it filter fine but I'm still using the same filter.

Sumpin' ain't right heah...

Yeah I agree. Particulate matter will clog a filter fast, but dissolved organic matter like tannin shouldn't clog it that fast.

sheepdog
2010-10-21, 11:24
If you put the water in a bucket and let it settle first it filters a lot easier.

warraghiyagey
2010-10-21, 11:28
If you put the water in a bucket and let it settle first it filters a lot easier.

Thanks Dogstein. . .

sheepdog
2010-10-21, 11:32
danada

GGS
2010-10-21, 11:48
If you put the water in a bucket and let it settle first it filters a lot easier.

Works great if you have sediment in the water, but I think tannins are a dissolved substance and won't settle out.

warraghiyagey
2010-10-21, 11:59
Works great if you have sediment in the water, but I think tannins are a dissolved substance and won't settle out.

I think that's his point. . . . :albertein

saimyoji
2010-10-21, 12:10
I think that's his point. . . . :albertein

no you don't

sheepdog
2010-10-21, 12:12
point
counter point?

rhjanes
2010-10-22, 16:02
point
counter point?Jane, You ignorant slut.....













(Danny Ackroyd....SNL....1977)