How Long Does Water Need To Be Boiled To Be Drinkable?

In a survival situation, nothing is more important then clean water. Without water, it’s impossible to survive more then a few days. It’s a requirement for our survival. Yet, when one finds themselves in such a situation, clean water is not always accessible.

In an emergency situation, it may prove necessary to drink water from a natural source, such as a stream or lake. Unfortunately, not all streams or lakes are clean enough to safely drink from. It’s also quite hard to tell whether water is safe or not, as many of the possible impurities are not necessarily visible to the eye.

Most people know that they should boil water in order to ensure it’s safety, but many people don’t know much more then that.

The Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) recommends that water is boiled to purify the water and ensure the drinker’s safety.

The good news is that water actually doesn’t have to be boiled very long. Once you see it rolling to a boil, keep it boiling for a minute or so, and it should be safe enough to drink. You can boil it a little longer if you’re drinking water which is particularly suspect.

The National Institute of Health has said that some viruses can quite resistant to heat, so it’s important to make sure you heat your water adequately.

Another thing to keep in mind is that your location, relative to sea-level, actually affects the temperature which your water boils at. This is very important, because at some elevations, water may boil at a lower temp then is required to sterilize it. For example, every 500-foot increase in elevation, water’s boiling point is lowered by approximately 0.5 degrees celsius.

Sources:

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