Warning - Distilled Water Jugs

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by Born2Late, Nov 29, 2018.

  1. Born2Late

    Born2Late Subscriber
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    I am sorry if this is the wrong forum for this topic, but since I primarily process B&W and probably most here do it's the spot I chose.

    I mix my chemicals with distilled water and I've had good luck with the results. Over the last 12 to 18 months I've had numerous unopened jugs start leaking while sitting on the shelf. I've tried different brands and had specimens of all leak, not every jug, but all brands. They are all stored in my basement darkroom where the temperature is very constant and never below about 65 degrees. I went down to my darkroom tonight and found one had leaked again with near disastrous results, another day and it would have been. I guess I'll have to start storing the jugs in a large plastic tray or transfer the contents to glass jugs.

    Anyway, just a word to the wise.
     
  2. jim appleyard

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    I've this this happen. I think the plastic is so thin (like a gallon of milk) and it just doesn't last. Best go to glass. Lots of folks like the bottles from Boston Rounds; I think that's the name. Besides, the plastic will let oxygen in, glass won't.
     
  3. AgX

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    We had here reported a case of cracking where these jugs were stored outside. And likely got their portion of UV light.
    But stored in the dark?
     
  4. OP
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    Born2Late

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    Yes, in the dark.
     
  5. ic-racer

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    I distinctly remember cleaning a huge mess from a leaking jug. I was amazed how 4 liters of water can cause so much damage, from warped countertops, soggy kick boards, lifting tiles etc. hours of work to repair.
    The reason I remember it so clearly is that it happened the week before the last sunami hit. Incomprehensible the damage caused by four thousand trillion liters of water (actual volume!)
     
  6. AgX

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    I understood. But my remark was meant to show my surprise how such could happen in the dark.
    With a lot of imagination I can think of a jug being kinked at one location many times until being at the verge of cracking and then during storage under stress the crease tearing. But such would be incidential.
     
  7. Pentode

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    I usually keep a plastic jug or two of distilled water on the floor of my basement darkroom. I haven't had one leak yet, and it really wouldn't hurt much if it did, but it's good to know that it's a possibility. Thanks for the heads up.
     
  8. wiltw

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    During the drought in CA in recent years, we started capturing the cold water from the hot water tap as the hot water line clears the cold water, storing in gallon milk jugs to use for flushing the toilet. On multiple occasions the bottles have spontaneously sprung slow leaks (drip...drip...drip...) onto the tile floor, usually after the bottle has been in use for maybe 6 months or more to capture the cold water. Direct sunlight never entered the bathroom they were in.
     
  9. Sirius Glass

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    I store chemicals in Jobo bottles and photographic chemical bottles from photo stores.
     
  10. RalphLambrecht

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    Calumet once sold 5-gallon chemical containers with a release faucet st the bottom .they were made from thick-walled poly ethylene; don't know if still available.
     
  11. Alan9940

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    I have often wondered if the expiration date on a bottle of distilled water was for degradation of the bottle?
     
  12. MattKing

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    Best before or expiry dates are often related to the packaging.
     
  13. Arklatexian

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    What are you storing in these jugs? I was buying gallons of vinegar for non-photographic purposes and collected quite a few. I have sleep-apnea and use distilled water with that equipment and collected quite a few of those also and use distilled water in the darkroom also. I store fixer and acetic stop bath in the used vinegar bottles. They are made of a heavy grade plastic. I have had no leakage. With developers, I would store in brown glass bottles. Yes, I am old fashioned but I know these work. Empty distilled water bottles are too thin to trust and probably the wrong kind of plastic....If in doubt, use glass.........regards!
     
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  15. NedL

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    The thin milk-jug type ones can have pinholes or tiny cracks that only leak when the bottle is squeezed, or only start to leak later if sitting around. Sometimes I don't notice until I've got them home from the store. Good to give them a bit of a squeeze when you purchase them! I use them to store silver nitrate, toner, and hypo waste, all very diluted with wash water. I've got my salt printing tuned so that I use distilled water at the same rate I need the jugs for the waste... they sit in the garage for a month or two until there are 15 of them, and then they go to the county hazardous waste facility. Very convenient.
     
  16. Andrew Kleinfeld

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    I like the bottles sold for people who brew their own beer - lots of liquor stores sell them, together with good caps.
     
  17. AgX

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    Could someone hint at a photo of such jug likely to crack? I am still clueless.
    I mean, schlepping home a jug and then turning out to have already been leaking from within the store seems strange.
     
  18. Rudeofus

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    I have never seen a canister leak out the liquid it was originally made to contain (unless it was mechanically damaged), but I have seen many canisters leak out photo chemistry. Some materials are great for water but not for alkaline liquids, and it is next to impossible to find out, what a specific container has been made off.

    In most cases it was developer which leaked out, but maybe it was just more noticeable than other bathes due to its very visible brown discoloration. It would not go drip drip drip, but if you left a canister in its secondary containment for a week, there would be liquid residue underneath the canister, even if you thoroughly cleaned and dried the surface of that canister before putting it into the clean&dry secondary containment.

    Proper containers don't do that. I now use 2l bottles intended for storing photo chemistry, and there is no leakage to speak of.
     
  19. Neal

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    Just to toss in my experience, I purchase distilled water mainly for coffee but also for mixing photographic chemicals. I find leaking jugs to be rare. I probably purchase over 100 gallon jugs each year and usually there are no leakers.

    Neal Wydra
     
  20. Alan9940

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    FWIW...for interest sake...I live in a very dry climate and I've seen new sealed jugs of distilled water lose quite a bit of liquid simply through evaporation! I've never had a leaky distilled water jug, but I have had several milk jugs leaking both at the store and once in our refrigerator.
     
  21. Pieter12

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    This has me very concerned. I do not have plumbing in my darkroom, and usually have 2 to 4 gallon jugs of distilled water under a counter for mixing chemicals. The scarier part is I store the used chemistry in the same jugs in a cardboard box under the same counter until I have about 12-15 gallons of waste and then have that picked up by the city's hazardous waste program. I have yet to experience any leakage of any sort, but now I think I will try to use the heaviest cardboard boxes I can find and line them with plastic sheeting. I certainly don't want to find 15 gallon jugs leaning photo chemicals on my darkroom floor!
     
  22. slackercrurster

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    In the early 70's we could buy NACCO premixed chemicals for a buck a gallon or so. (D-76, Dektol, Fixer) They came in a heavy plastic bottle that you could reuse. Never any leaks back then.

    The plastic is made thinner and thinner because it takes crude oil to make as well as cutting back on the plastic pollution. When the EU and the Brits ban single use plastic, what will be the situation for plastic water bottles and jugs? When I was a kid we used 1 galllon glass water jugs with a deposit on them. Maybe back to that era??
     
  23. slackercrurster

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    Wow, that is economy! I've had gallon jugs leak with no sunlight as well. They get creases in the plastic and they spring a leak. Just very thin plastic they use. Can't pile things on then either. If you need good jugs, save recycled vinegar gallon bottles or buy heavy plastic gallon photo bottles. I used to get mine from BH.

    But you are on the right track with distilled water. Tap water is filthy in most parts of the US...terrible.

    water 1-gal-cadiz-oh-tap-water-distilled (1).jpg

    Distillation residue in 1 gallon of tap water Cadiz, Ohio. (Water was perfectly clear before distillation.) You can compare the tap water above to a distillation of store bought distilled water. Virtually no residue. (See test photos for bottled water tests.)

    Here are the photos of distillation tests from around the USA for tap water / bottled water / raw spring water / runoff water / water filters, etc.:

    https://danielteolijr.wordpress.com/2016/01/18/6035/

    If you want to test your tap water for dissolved solids I will split the cost of shipping me a gallon of San Francisco tap water. (in 4 - heavy litre water / soda bottles in a large fixed rate box.)

    write direct if interested.

    w1000w@aol.com

    This split cost offer goes for Seattle or Boston tap water too!

    Would love to test Europe's water, but too much for me with shipping costs. In the US we have 'toilet to tap' recycling, do you Europeans drink recycled human waste? (Of course they say we are all drinking recycled dinosaur pee.)
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2018
  24. pentaxuser

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    slackercruster, the E.U. and the Brits haven't quite separated yet and when or is that still if we separate I think you are right about banning single use plastic in the near future. On that matter the E.U. and U.K. will remain as one.

    pentaxuser
     
  25. Ronald Moravec

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    Store jugs are garbage. Store them in a 2 gallon pail just in case. Chemicals go in glass, i.e. i gal of D76 goes in 3 quarts, one 16 oz, and two 8 oz bottles. Decant each quart as first used. Or just put them in 8 or 4 oz bottles when I mix a liter of D76, what ever your "one time use" quantity is.
     
  26. jeffreyg

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    I have a an old (forgot how many years) oj jug with distilled water in the fridg that so far has never leaked. I keep the mixed chemicals in empty very well rinsed jugs that originally held photographic chemicals ie fixer and have not found any problems with contamination or leakage. Once I start using the solution I transfer the rest of the concentrate to amber glass pharmacy bottles which l have used for forty some years.

    http://www.jeffreyglasser.com/
     
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