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  • TerryF30 commented on amalkhan's instructable How to Distill Water8 months ago
    How to Distill Water

    Thanks for posting - quite clever and handy to keep in mind. Though I use a home distiller that I have had for many years, it is a good idea to discard (i.e., throw out) the first 1/2 cup of distilled tap water of a gallon or so produced. The reason is that many solvents (e.g., toluene, acetone, etc.) that now appear in tap water, especially near urban areas, have a lower boiling point and will distill out first. If this is not done, the resulting distilled water is not pure water but will have retained solvents of which many are known carcinogens. This caution was first brought to my attention by a chemist who had a water distillation set-up in his lab and needed pure water. Charcoal filtering distilled water will remove most of the solvents but just discarding the first 1/2 cup or so ...see more »Thanks for posting - quite clever and handy to keep in mind. Though I use a home distiller that I have had for many years, it is a good idea to discard (i.e., throw out) the first 1/2 cup of distilled tap water of a gallon or so produced. The reason is that many solvents (e.g., toluene, acetone, etc.) that now appear in tap water, especially near urban areas, have a lower boiling point and will distill out first. If this is not done, the resulting distilled water is not pure water but will have retained solvents of which many are known carcinogens. This caution was first brought to my attention by a chemist who had a water distillation set-up in his lab and needed pure water. Charcoal filtering distilled water will remove most of the solvents but just discarding the first 1/2 cup or so of the distillation will remove all of them.

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