Water: tank vs tap

I’ve been drinking tank water (and cooking with it), since we put in our tank 14 years ago, although we do have town water on tap also. The tap water gets used for washing, because the tank isn’t plumbed to the house and there’s not enough of it to do everything.

The main reason for doing so is that fluoride is now added to our water supply. I did some research at the time, decided that it was a poison and that I didn’t want to put it into my body any more than was necessary (remembering though, the well-known saying that the ‘poison is the dose’).

I did some more research some time ago, because someone commented in a letter to the daily paper about a TV program on fluoridation, complaining that it was all up-market, feel-good stuff and the downsides weren’t mentioned. The writer said it accumulates in the body and that made me sit up and take notice. I hadn’t remembered that.

The jury still seems to be out on the benefits/problems with fluoride. Dentists are way in favour of it, my own included, but there are still many people who are against it. Not all countries fluoridate their water supplies. Here’s the Wikipedia entry on water fluoridation in Australia.

Getting back to that comment that ‘the poison is the dose’, makes me wonder:

  • what about people who drink a lot more water than others?
  • what about children and babies? They’d be getting a lot more fluoride relative to body weight than adults. Has that been considered?
  • what about elderly people, probably already coping with numerous co-morbidities. What’s the effect on them?
  • how rigorous is the quality control of the addition process?  (In Ipswich, Queensland, 12 months ago, a double dose of fluoride was accidently added to the city’s water supply).
  • if its only benefit is for dental health, what about people who no longer have their own teeth?

Another reason for walking away from town water supplies is that I just don’t agree that the government—any government—has the right to decide what I put into my body. That should be my choice and my choice alone. It’s one of the reasons why I want to produce as much of my own food as possible and why I’m such an avid reader of supermarket labels on the food I do have to buy.

I’m not going to put links here to pro/anti fluoride websites (and there are plenty); I think it’s better if you do your own research and make up your own minds. Let me know what you think in the comments box.

It concerns me, that for something as vital as water, we don’t have a choice.

8 Responses to “Water: tank vs tap”

  1. rabidlittlehippy Says:

    Don’t forget fluoride collecting in the animals we eat and the fruits and veggies watered with fluoridated water. I too have serious doubts about the safety of it. One day I plan to be off grid for water too but that’s a long way down the track at this stage.

    In the meantime we try and drink filtered water which still contains fluoride but it should filter out the chlorine at least. I can understand why they chlorinate water but I don’t like the idea of drinking chlorine. No wonder gut health is so poor. Chlorine kills bugs. Surely that would be the good tummy bugs too? That’s my theory anyway.


    • foodnstuff Says:

      You can get rid of the chlorine by simply boiling the water, or letting it sit around for a few days till the chlorine escapes.


  2. guerillagrrl Says:

    We also have tank and mains… Our mains is for when we run out only, or for garden use…. It tastes like crap, so much chlorine as the local water company adds maximum chlorine to save time- they don’t need to come back as often that way. And, although you can boil out some of the taste, some also remains… I can’t drink a cuppa at the local cafe, tastes so bad!. I’ve heard boiling water only changes it from a chlorine to a chloride.. If that’s true, who wants that in their bodies?
    I live in a small Australian country town and they don’t add fluoride due to costs- so thankful for this . My kids and myself have excellent teeth, I cook A LOT of bone broth which is added to everything we eat, and they drink raw milk (shhhhhhh!!! ) and lots of yellow butter. These foods contain the building blocks of teeth remineralisation. Like you, I also regard fluoride with a good deal of suspicion….


  3. Chris Says:

    We’ve been off town water since we moved here, seven years ago. There’s only one 54,000 gallon rainwater tank, and we plan to get another one this year, fingers crossed. In all that time, we’ve only had to get water trucked in twice – just recently was the second time.

    When it rains and the tank is overflowing, it feels great. When it hasn’t rained for months though, I start to think those connected to town water are fortunate. I don’t think I’d want to change how we supply our water though. I like not being on mains.

    In Dalby recently (an hour or so away from us) people were told not to drink their bore water, as the Army had allowed something toxic to seep into the water table. So not even some natural water supplies are safe either.

    The way our policy makers organise for maximum profit, pretty much no water supply will be safe any more. If coal seam gas gets its way in our surrounding districts, more water tables might be effected with leeched toxins, and there’s quite a lot of produce grown for market in the lowlands.

    If you can set up your own water supply, then people should. It’s a safeguard if nothing else.


  4. notsomethingelse Says:

    I have lived on tank water for over three years now. I would hope not to have to go back to mains. I admit to some trepidation at first when making the decision to ‘ruralise’ but my fears were groundless.

    I do use a water filter for drinking supplies, better safe than sorry, but for cooking and everything else it is straight from the tank.

    The water situation is not going to improve and it would be wise to prepare for conditions where it may be necessary to survive for shorter or longer periods using water from any source. To this end I have gathered equipment that will provide quite a few different ways to do that, even on the move. I have had the intention to do an article on that for some time now but like many other things have never quite got around to it.


  5. fergie51 Says:

    Thanks for reminding me of something I need to follow up on!


  6. narf77 Says:

    10 000 water now stored near the house (also not plumbed in but close to the back door) and as soon as I can find a large tank at a reasonable price (second hand) I will be buying one for the veggie garden (fed from the shed roof) as I no longer want to use mains water if I don’t absolutely have to. I hear you and I applaud you 🙂


  7. Steve Says:

    Almost 50 years of drinking tank water, I recall 2 flouride treatments with the school dentist (yuck) I have Never had a filling.
    I honestly think my allergic reaction to some food colourings is what made the difference, I tended to (mostly) avoid lollies, cordials, most carbonated soft drinks and colourful icing sugar.
    Although I still get a craving for caramalised nestle condensed milk every year or so.


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