de-chlorinating-waterHow to De-chlorinate Water Using Microbes is very important. Most people take our drinking water from the tap for granted. It has been treated with chlorine so we never have to worry about pathogenic microbes cramping our style. But you have to remember that this same chlorine is a beneficial microbe killer as well. So when applying water to your Hydro-Organic tanks, seedlings, or performing any hydration work, it is important to de-chloronate this water before hand. But it ain’t hard so stop the frowning.

De-chlorinate Water Using Microbes | Short Version

 Place the water in an open mouthed tank, bucket or container and let it sit out overnight. That’s it. I told you it was easy. Chlorine (Cl2), over time, separates from the water and bubbles up and out. You can see that by filling a glass container up with tap water and letting it sit. Soon you will see the bubbles on the edges of the glass. That is chlorine gas. saying by-by to the beneficial microbes.

De-chlorinate Water Using Microbes |Detailed Version

Chlorine has made it’s mark by virtually eliminating water borne pathogens. This allows the world to drink it down safely.  It is easily applied to water sources. Small amounts have the ability to be effective throughout a municipal distribution network, from the water treatment plant all the way to the faucet tap.  The discovery of these benefits coupled with it’s low cost resulted in chlorine being chosen as the preferred chemical.

Air and Sunlight  | De-chlorinate Water Using Microbes

If exposed to the atmosphere and sunlight however, chlorine dissipates quickly, in as little as 10 hours of exposure. But if you have chloramine, a newer additive, used in place of chlorine in some water systems in the United states and Europe, it will not leave the water when exposed to air. You have to check with your water supply company to find out which is being use.

Vitamin C |De-chlorinate Water Using Microbes

Vitamin C is a somewhat newer chemical method for neutralizing chlorine. Two forms of vitamin C, ascorbic acid and sodium ascorbate, will neutralize chlorine. The United States Department of Agriculture Technology and Development Program has done a lot of work with this. You can see the entire report below. Basically what it describes is simply adding

One gram of Vitamin C per 100 gallons of water, stir for one minute and no more available chlorine to kill our little friends.

United States Department of Agriculture Technology and Development Program

Ascorbic Acid

One gram of ascorbic acid will neutralize 1 milligram per liter of chlorine per 100 gallons of water. The reaction is very fast. The chemical reaction (Tikkanen and others 2001) of ascorbic acid with chlorine is shown below:

C5H5O5CH2OH + HOCL → C5H3O5CH2OH + HCl + H2O

Ascorbic acid + Hypochlorous acid → Dehydroascorbic acid + Hydrochloric acid + water

Approximately 2.5 parts of ascorbic acid are required for neutralizing 1 part chlorine. Since ascorbic acid is weakly acidic, the pH of the treated water may decrease slightly in low alkaline waters.

Sodium Ascorbate

Sodium ascorbate will also neutralize chlorine. It is pH neutral and will not change the pH of the treated water. Sodium ascorbate is preferable for neutralizing high concentrations of chlorine. If a large amount of treated water is going to be discharged to a small stream, the pH of the treated water and the stream should be within 0.2 to 0.5 units of the receiving stream.

>The reaction (Tikkanen and others 2001) of sodium ascorbate with chlorine is shown below:

C5H5O5CH2ONa + HOCL → C5H3O5CH2OH + NaCl + H2O

Sodium ascorbate + Hypochlorous acid → Dehydroascorbic acid + Sodium chloride + water


Approximately 2.8 parts of sodium ascorbate are required to neutralize 1 part chlorine. When vitamin C is oxidized, a weak acid called dehydroascorbic acid form