How to Remove Chlorine From Drinking Water

How chlorine and chloramines can be removed from drinking water

Why is Chlorine in Our Drinking Water

Chlorine and chloramines are commonly used by municipalities to treat drinking water, as they are inexpensive disinfectants that can eliminate algae, mold, and slime bacteria that commonly grow in water supply reservoirs.

Currently, 98% of municipal water treatment facilities in the U.S. use some form of chlorine.

And since 86% of U.S. households receive their water from a municipal supplier, it's safe to say that most households have chlorine in their tap water. In low dosages, chlorine and chloramines are generally safe in drinking water.

86% of homes in U.S. are on public water supply that treat with chlorine or chloramine

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requires municipal water treatment facilities to maintain chlorine levels no more than 4 mg/L. This amount is considered safe for consumption.

Remove Chlorine from Water with RO Filters

A reverse osmosis (RO)water filter system effectively removes chlorine, for improved taste and odor-free water.

Need help selecting the right RO system for you?

Take a quick quiz to receive your personalized recommendation.
 >> Get Started

Why Filter Chlorine from Drinking Water?

Remove chlorine and improve the taste of drinking waterThe downside of chlorine treatment, is the strong bleach-like odor and taste that remains in drinking water.

In addition to the bad taste, concerns have arisen about the adverse health effects of chlorine and chloramine in drinking water. 

Multiple studies have shown that chlorine can react with naturally occurring organic and inorganic matter in water to form disinfection byproducts such as Trihalomethanes (chloroform) THMs and haloacetic acids (HAAs) which can potentially pose health risks.

As a result, many households are looking for a way to remove chlorine and chloramines.

How to Remove Chlorine from Water?

The simplest and most effective solution to remove reverse osmosis drinking water filter systemchlorine from household drinking water, is to install a Reverse Osmosis under-sink drinking water filtration system. In addition, Reverse Osmosis is an economical method.

RO systems incorporate carbon block filters which can remove up to 98% of chlorine, plus chlorine byproducts.

Carbon filters, used as a pre-filter and post filter, can remove chlorine while the other filters and membrane in the RO System will remove many other contaminants including lead, fluoride, Arsenic V, PFOS, nitrates, pesticides, and more. Learn more about what contaminants reverse osmosis can remove.

Reverse Osmosis Can Remove Chlorine Plus Dozens of Other Contaminants

Reverse Osmosis is an effective method for removing 99% of common pollutants found in drinking water. RO filtration can produce healthy, great-tasting, clean drinking water.

RO can remove Chlorine, Taste, Odor and TDS
Chlorine, Taste, Odor & TDS
RO can remove Fluoride, Asbestos, Lead and Mercury
Fluoride, Asbestos, Lead & Mercury
RO can remove Pesticides, Herbicides and Insecticides

Pesticides, Herbicides & Insecticides



Are RO Water Filters Expensive?

RO is a popular water filtration method because it is easy-to-maintain and is cost effective. For example, a family of four can have great-tasting, clean RO-filtered water each day for just pennies per gallon. A new reverse osmosis drinking water system generally costs about CA$422.99. To maintain the system, filters should be replaced annually. The filter replacement schedule may vary depending on the quality of incoming water.

What are the Pros and Cons of RO Water Filters?

RO Water Filters

Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Systems Start at CA$421.58

Pros of RO Filtration
check box
Improves Water Taste & Odor
check box
Removes Most Contaminants
check box
Simple Maintenance
check box
Promotes Drinking More Water

Cons of RO Filtration
X
Slow Filtration Process
X
System Can Become Clogged
X
Some Systems Use a lot of Water
X mark
Cost of Replacement Filters

Read more about the advantages and disadvantages of reverse osmosis water filtration.

Best Water Filters to Remove Chlorine

To remove chlorine from water, reverse osmosis is the most effective method. We recommend a point-of-use (POU) drinking water RO system installed at your kitchen sink.

Here are three of our top picks for Reverse Osmosis systems that provide outstanding drinking water:

Top-Selling Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Systems

Chlorine Alternatives for Well Water

While households on city water don't have a choice whether chlorine is used to treat their water, homes on well water can choose.

Well water is highly susceptible to bacteria, and chlorine is an inexpensive way to kill bacteria in water.

But a UV water disinfection system is the recommended alternative for treating bacteria in well water. Chlorine is a harsh chemical and can have adverse health effects. Plus, chlorine is only a temporary method to "shock" the well for bacteria.

A UV light sterilizer can monitor and treat bacteria and viruses in well water 24/7, without any adverse health risks. Learn more about UV well water treatment.

VIQUA IHS22-D4 UV STERILIZER
  • Inclues two integrated prefilters to improve the taste and odor of your water.
  • LED Status system indicator.
  • All-in-one UV solution boasting added layers of water filtration and sterilization.
  • Makes sure ALL the water coming into your home is microbiologically safe.

FAQs

Does Boiling Water Remove Chlorine?

Yes, boiling water for 15 minutes is one way to release chlorine from your tap water. But you'd have to boil for hours to remove the chloramine. And because dissolved air leaves water during the boiling process, the result is a "flat" taste when you're done. You could also let the water sit at room temperature to dissipate the chlorine. Chlorine gas weighs less than air and with time, will naturally evaporate off without boiling. But this process also leaves water tasting "flat".

On a day-to-day basis, boiling water (or waiting for the chlorine to evaporate out) for drinking water is generally not feasible.

It's much easier and effective to install a reverse osmosis water filtration system to remove chlorine from the water.


How long to boil water to purify?

It's generally recommended to boil water for at least one minute at a rolling boil to purify it. However, if you're at higher altitudes (above 6,562 feet or 2,000 meters), you should boil the water for at least three minutes, as water boils at lower temperatures at higher elevations.

Keep in mind that boiling water doesn't remove chemicals like chlorine or chloramine.


How long does it take to remove chlorine from tap water?

Typically, if left exposed to air in an open container, chlorine will naturally dissipate within a few hours to a day. Boiling water for 15 minutes also helps to remove chlorine as it causes the chlorine to evaporate. But the quickest and most effective way to remove chlorine from drinking water is with activated carbon filters in a reverse osmosis drinking water system. An under-sink RO unit can effectively remove chlorine from tap water, providing clean and chlorine-free water for consumption.


Can Reverse Osmosis Remove Chloramine?

If you're mostly concerned with Chloramine removal alone, you can take a different approach than that of chlorine. Because of chloramine's low molecular weight, it cannot be removed with a typical carbon filter, but rather with a catalytic carbon filter.

Certain filters are designed for chloramine removal (such as the Omnipure Q-Serioes 2.5" x 12" 1-Micron Carbon Block Filter w/ Chloramine Reduction (Q5629)) and can be paired with the appropriate housings also sold at espwaterproducts.com

If you have questions, our customer support team is happy to answer your questions.


What is Chloramine?

In simple terms, chloramine is chlorine PLUS ammonia. Municipal water suppliers are now using chloramine even more than chlorine as a disinfectant chemical. One reason for the switch is due to concerns about the adverse effects of chlorination (see below). But the main reason for the switch is that chloramine as a disinfectant remains in the water longer during the distribution process.

To learn more about what's in your drinking water, you can access a report at Environmental Working Group (ewg.org). Simply input your zip code and you'll be able to see what contaminants are in your tap water, and specifically which contaminant levels exceed guidelines.


Chlorine and Chloramine: What's the Difference

The fact that chloramine disinfectant remains in water longer than chlorine (during the pipeline distribution process) is a PLUS for municipal water suppliers. But the downside of chloramine's longevity is that chloramine is harder to remove with a water filter.

    • Chloramine must be removed before using a kidney dialysis machine as chloramine can enter the bloodstream through dialysis membranes
    • Chloramine can cause skin sensitivities and reactions
    • Chloramine can cause leaching of lead from lead soldering or lead pipes (learn more about lead poisoning)
    • Chloramine-treated water should not be used in fish tanks, as the chemical can harm fish
    • Chloramine causes strong bleach-like taste and odor (similar to chlorine) in drinking water

More You Might Like

Air Gap vs. Non-Air Gap RO Faucet

What's the difference between an “Air Gap” faucet and a “Non-Air Gap” faucet? Which one should you use with your reverse osmosis filter system?
Read More>

Advantages & Disadvantages of RO

Is reverse osmosis filtered water worth it? Are RO replacement filters expensive? Let's explore the pros and cons of Reverse Osmosis filtration.
Read More>

Benefits of UV Water Disinfection

Treating water with Ultraviolet (UV) light is one of the MOST effective ways to treat waterborne microorganisms, such as bacteria and viruses...
Read More>

Water During Times of Emergency

How to have enough clean water for survival, disaster relief, emergency preparedness, camping, and food storage programs.
Read More>

Get Great Results from UV Sterilizer

Before purchasing a UV water disinfection system, we suggest considering the following recommendations to get the best results.
Read More>

Interactive Quiz to Select Filter System

Answer a few questions, and we'll provide a personalized recommendation for the water filter system that will work best for you.
Get Advice>

Explore Other System Types

Reverse
Osmosis

Ultraviolet

Standard
Filtration

Emergency