Maximum Contaminant Level
MRDL – 4.0 mg/L or ppm
MRDLG – 4.0 mg/L or ppm
Chloramine is used for the disinfection of water; it is recognized by the CDC and WHO as a safe disinfectant and good alternative to chlorine.1 Chloramines are formed when chlorine is combined with a small amount of ammonia. Municipalities began the use of chloramine as a disinfectant in 1929; and most of today’s water supply companies are switching to chloramine use. Although it is a weaker germicide than chlorine, it is more stable, which is why water systems are making more use of it. Chlorine dissipates fairly quickly when exposed to air; chloramines remain in the water and provide longer-lasting disinfection as water moves through pipes to consumers. Water that is treated with chloramine will also typically have less of an odor and/or flavor than water that is treated with chlorine. If your water is treated with chloramine, you cannot remove it by exposing your water to air for a while. Chloramine will not dissipate into the air like chlorine does; but it can still be removed with the use of an activated carbon filter.
Chloramine is safe to consume in small amounts in our drinking water because the body’s digestive process neutralizes these disinfectants before they reach the bloodstream. According to the CDC, studies show no health effects from drinking water with chloramine levels of less than 50 mg/L. Normal levels for drinking water disinfection range from 1.0 to 4.0 mg/L.1
Keep in mind that chloramine is toxic to fish, other aquatic animals, reptiles, and amphibians. Do not keep these animals in water that contains these disinfectants! You can find out whether your water is disinfected with chloramine or chlorine by checking with your local water supply company. Check your local aquarium supply store for products that will remove chloramine from the water intended for your aquatic pets. Other pets (such as mammals and birds) are not affected by chloramine in drinking water.
Chloramine can be removed by:
- Activated Carbon
- Catalytic Activated Carbon