Do It Yourself: Distilled Water

BY JENNY GOLDSBERRY

Distilled water often disappears from grocery store shelves in waves. When you need it, you don’t want to visit seven different stores to find it. Here’s a quick way to distill your own water.

START HERE:

You’ll need the following items:

  • a large pot and its lid
  • a smaller pot or bowl to fit inside that pot
  • water
  • ice

STORING WATER

If you make large batches of distilled water, make sure you keep it in a container with a lid. You don’t have to refrigerate it but keep it away from sunlight. Always keep the lid on when you’re not using it.

Follow this process:

  1. Fill the pot with water. You can use water you’ve already filtered or tap water. This process will clean either water enough. Place your smaller pot on top of the water. It’s best if it doesn’t completely reach the edge of your large pot. You want space between the smaller pot’s edge and the walls of your large pot, so the water has plenty of space to evaporate from.
  2. Place your pot lid on top upside down, so the top can be a sort of bowl for your ice. Make sure there’s space between the bowl on top of the water and this inverted lid. Put ice cubes all over your lid.
  3. Start boiling the water. The water will start to evaporate but stay within the pot because of the lid. The ice on the lid will help the evaporated water condense quicker. Then, that condensed water will drip into your bowl. Once water has evaporated, it’s considered distilled.
  4. Keep your eye on the bowl; it is possible for it to fill enough that it sinks to the bottom of your pot. Then, you’ll have to start all over. As long as you keep an eye on it, it’s a relatively hands-free process that you can have going as you cook dinner.

HOW TO USE YOUR WATER

Now whatever you have in your bowl is safe to use in medical devices like CPAP machines, humidifiers, your steam iron, infant formula, or even on your car. I like to use it to make my own wet wipes out of cloths or paper towels. Distilled water is also safe to drink, but as you’ve evaporated all the minerals out of it, it will taste very flat. It’s the absence of these minerals that keep your car, medical devices, etc. from eroding or rusting. You’ll find that your CPAP, iron, and humidifier will last longer with distilled water.

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