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I've been drinking the water from the water tanks on boats for the 50-odd years I have been hiring them for boating holidays, and have never had any ill-effects.

 

I remember reading somewhere that the aeration that the water in a mountain stream gets by tumbling over rocks is sufficient to kill off pathogens in a remarkably short time. So the rotting sheep upstream was probably far enough away not to have been a problem. 

 

The mains water at my late brother-in-law's house in Normandy was very hard, no doubt due to having come from the chalk of the region. He had a water softener supplying all the taps except a very small tap in the cellar that was originally upstream of the water meter until his water company replaced the lead pipe supply mains, whereupon it was moved to downstream of the meter.  He always used to fill his kettle from the cellar tap and use bottled water for drinking. Softened water is generally very high in sodium: the usual zeolite-based softening process replaces (hard) calcium carbonate by (soft) sodium carbonate that is not healthy to drink in large quantities, especially for children or anyone who needs to keep to a low-sodium diet.  I did consider getting a water softener many years ago, and the advice from (reputable) suppliers was that drinking water taps should not be supplied with softened water for that reason. 

 

Not that all types of bottled water are good for you anyway. An acquaintance who was a bit of a health fanatic used drink only Evian. Evian is so high in minerals that it gave him serious gall stones, and he was advised to stop drinking it for the sake of his health! 

 

When I was working in London I sometimes used to treat myself to a bottle of Welsh mineral water whose label proclaimed it was so pure it contained hardly any minerals. I used to buy it because it tasted so good. That was in the 1980's and I don't remember the name.

Edited by Ronaldo47
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3 hours ago, nb Innisfree said:

One hot summer day when I was a nipper I was in the Peak District and asked my dad if I could drink from a stream, "aye owd lad tha can" he replied. Seeing my dad was the fount of all knowledge I drank deeply, later I wandered upstream a couple of hundred yards and just round a bend I came across a dead sheep in the stream, gently rotting away. 

 

That was the first clue that my dad was flawed 🤔

 

ETA: I'm 74 and still alive btw. 

Did similar many years ago in the Brecon Beacons, filled water bottles from the stream and as we continued uphill found a dead sheep in the stream. Fortunately we had put purification tablets in the water bottles so carried on drinking it.

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Bottled water costs more than the fuel you put in your boat. 

You realise that Evian is Naive backwards.

I read somewhere that in the Brexit deal we gave special for continental bottled water because the mineral content exceeds our own standards. Maybe we should revoke that to facilitate the easing of the ridiculous bureaucracy being applied to N.Ireland shipments.

  • Greenie 1
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On 22/07/2021 at 09:37, doratheexplorer said:

A lot of the West Midlands get's its water from the mountains of mid-Wales and is surprisingly soft.

 

Indeed, when we moved from Surrey to the West Midlands I was surprised how soft it was, despite the local water company classifying it as "hard". Looking at the figures, it seems it is at the lowest end of the hard classification.

Edited by cuthound
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23 hours ago, ditchcrawler said:

I think when we hired we probably drank the water from the tank, Today I wouldn't consider it after seen a hose dragged from boat to boat on changeover day, the  end going along the ground, through the grass and pulled from boat to boat through the canal its self. On our boat we drink straight from the tank because we take care what goes into it.

I remember seeing a few times hire boats using the pump out water hose to fill there clean water tank! 

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21 hours ago, Ex Brummie said:

Bottled water costs more than the fuel you put in your boat. 

 

Not quite 

5 litres about £1

Plus the bottle may be refilled from the water point for free

2 hours ago, Narrowboater1 said:

I remember seeing a few times hire boats using the pump out water hose to fill there clean water tank! 

That's a good point . Best to use your own hose.

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3 minutes ago, MartynG said:

Not quite 

5 litres about £1

Plus the bottle may be refilled from the water point for free

That's a good point . Best to use your own hose.

 

He's probably right if you buy the small bottles (330ml?)from a local shop.

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40 minutes ago, Machpoint005 said:

 

He's probably right if you buy the small bottles (330ml?)from a local shop.

I'm sure .

But you can refill those bottles  also . I dare say diesel in 330mm bottles would be expensive also.

We  have one small water bottle  in use recently - its been handy  to keep in the boat fridge in the recent hot weather . I am going to refill it just now.

 

We have just had two weeks on the boat and never far from a tap.

There is no real need to drink from the boat tank from my perspective although I guess not everyone has such easy access to water .

 

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On 22/07/2021 at 15:05, nb Innisfree said:

One hot summer day when I was a nipper I was in the Peak District and asked my dad if I could drink from a stream, "aye owd lad tha can" he replied. Seeing my dad was the fount of all knowledge I drank deeply, later I wandered upstream a couple of hundred yards and just round a bend I came across a dead sheep in the stream, gently rotting away. 

 

That was the first clue that my dad was flawed 🤔

 

ETA: I'm 74 and still alive btw. 

My experience was exactly the same apart from the location. As I recall it  was Exmoor. I've also made it to 74. On the boat I use refilled 5 l bottles for tea, coffee  etc. I do buy 330  / 500 cc bottles to put in the fridge and for a sip when popping pills or in the middle of the night. Got caught out the other day when I had to pay £3 for 6 small bottles  of 'designer ' water.  Mind you, the bottles  look  very smart in the fridge

Edited by Slim
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Only drink water if it has been boiled or brewed 😀

1 hour ago, Slim said:

My experience was exactly the same apart from the location. As I recall it  was Exmoor. I've also made it to 74. On the boat I use refilled 5 l bottles for tea, coffee  etc. I do buy 330  / 500 cc bottles to put in the fridge and for a sip when popping pills or in the middle of the night. Got caught out the other day when I had to pay £3 for 6 small bottles  of 'designer ' water.  Mind you, the bottles  look  very smart in the fridge

Needed a bottle to keep water in when working outside yesterday, popped into Tesco’s who were selling two litre bottles of Staffordshire spring water for 20p!

Edited by Tim Lewis
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On 22/07/2021 at 19:33, Ex Brummie said:

 

You realise that Evian is Naive backwards.

 

That's clever.

Edited by Athy
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21 hours ago, cuthound said:

 

Indeed, when we moved from Surrey to the West Midlands I was surprised how soft it was, despite the local water company classifying it as "hard". Looking at the figures, it seems it is at the lowest end of the hard classification.

In days gone by, you could use Birmingham to top up batteries.

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I drink water through quite an expensive General Ecology Nature Pure filter via a dedicated drinking water tap and change the filters annually. I know I could drink straight from the tank. I'm not worried about bugs, etc, but the filtered water just tastes so much better. 

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2 hours ago, Ex Brummie said:

In days gone by, you could use Birmingham to top up batteries.

 

 

When I was very young we lived in a rented house in  Birmingham for a short while whilst parents were looking for a permanent house. We eventually moved to Stourbridge where us kids couldn't understand why we couldn't create a bath full of foam from a bar of soap like we could in Edgbaston 😞

Edited by Tim Lewis
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Thanks for all the replies to my question.

I shall check with the hire company as to whether we can drink the water from the tank o.k.

Shall take some bottled water as well and fill these up when empty from the water points along the way.

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