Councils and water authorities around the country are moving towards the use of chloramines as an alternative to chlorine.
Chlorine has been used for decades in Australia as a means of sanitising our drinking water. However it produces a byproduct called THM’s; which is a known and proven carcinogen. Due to this, and the low residual life of chlorine, councils and authorities are moving towards the use of chloramines instead.
Chloramine is now the primary disinfectant used in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney drinking water supplies.
Chloramines stay in the water longer than chlorine and continue to disinfect in the extremities of extensive pipeline systems. Monochloramine is a weak disinfectant and the most common of the chloramines used in water sanitisation; requiring 25 to 100 times the contact time of free chlorine for equivalent disinfection. Chloramine also has less taste and smell than chlorine so many consumers do not realize it is in the water or can still be in the water after filtration.
The downside of chloramine, apart from the fact that it contains ammonia, is the difficulty in removing it from drinking water supplies. Standard GAC or Carbon Block water filters can only remove chloramines for 10-25% of their rated capacity. Consequently the filter cartridges would need to be changed more often, or a more specialized different type of filter used instead.