# How do I remove copper from water (be realistic)

1. May 16, 2005

### ShawnD

I made a distillation rig, and it works fairly ok for the most part. The problem is that the condenser is made of copper, and it leaves a strong copper taste in the product.
How can I remove the copper from the water? When I say be realistic, I mean don't suggest something like "oh run it through a $1000 deionizer you find a lab" sort of deal. 2. May 16, 2005 ### quetzalcoatl9 sure, just distill the water again...just kidding. copper ions are not going to come out of solution easily. doing some kind of reaction to get them to precipitate out will ruin the drinking water further. you are going to need one of those$1000 barnstead units i guess.

the only realistic option is to not use copper, or to at least flush the copper out really well since it is obviously corroding. many households have plumbing made of copper, yet it doesn't affect the quality of the water unless the copper is being oxidized. just use glass, it will work better anyway.

3. May 16, 2005

### Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
For about \$100 or less, you can buy a home RO kit. These are typically not great at removing most metal ions. Have you thought about adding EDTA ? I think RO kits are pretty good at taking out EDTA complexes. This is just a thought, so you might want to look into it further.

4. May 16, 2005

### chroot

Staff Emeritus
Can you passivate copper in the same manner as you can stainless steel? Using a nitric or citric acid bath?

- Warren

5. May 17, 2005

### DrMark

In a word nope. Nitric acid will dissolve the Cu and any complexes formed with citrate will be water soluble.

ShawnD if you must use copper (I am clueless as to why), there are various zeolites that can be used to remove transition metal (including Cu+/2+). Google it ;)

6. May 17, 2005

### Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
It's a little harder than that. Yes, copper can be passivated well enough that it won't be dissolved much by distilled water. I know for sure that citric acid does not work for passivating copper - though it works well for cleaning it. Not sure about nitric acid, but I have my doubts. I know there are commercially available solvents for passivating copper. One that I know works pretty well has a name that is basically "M" followed by some number (and/or more letters).