Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > General Cycling Discussion
Reload this Page >

Mold in Camelbak drinking tube

Notices
General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

Mold in Camelbak drinking tube

Old 10-03-22, 09:12 AM
  #26  
KerryIrons
Full Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 468
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 224 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 240 Times in 145 Posts
Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Those are generally hard surface materials that are easy to rinse completely as well as being unreactive towards the dishes and untensils. The same can’t be said of the plastic. It does react with the plastic and the break down products aren’t necessarily good for you.

Because household bleach is not that safe to use. It can be irritating and it can have bad reactions is mixed with certain chemicals. Hydrogen peroxide…in household concentrations…doesn’t have the same problems. There is little that the peroxide could react with to make any side chemicals. It does much the same thing as chlorine bleach without the issues. And, contrary to what has been said above, hydrogen peroxide is cheaper… about 3˘ per ounce vs 6˘ per ounce.

As someone who have worked extensively with chlorine and chlorine containing compounds, I can tell you that is not a material to treat lightly.
Diluted household bleach does NOT react with the PVC tube to any significant extent. Please provide a citation for your claim of dangerous byproducts from a bleach/PVC reaction. Note that any byproducts would need to be present in meaningful quantities, not just detectable in the PPT range. Using bleach as described here will NOT result in irritation and unless someone is mixing bleach and ammonia, no issues there. As someone who has worked extensively with chlorine and chlorine containing compounds, I can tell you that in the usage described here, bleach represents essentially no hazard.
KerryIrons is offline  
Old 10-03-22, 09:17 AM
  #27  
rumrunn6
Senior Member
 
rumrunn6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: 25 miles northwest of Boston
Posts: 28,058

Bikes: Bottecchia Sprint, GT Timberline 29r, Trek FX Alpha 7.0

Mentioned: 109 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4798 Post(s)
Liked 2,617 Times in 1,769 Posts
fwiw - Wifey uses Vinegar on her CPAP components ... just googled this:

Vinegar is safe to clean your CPAP supplies with, but won't remove any buildup. It actually helps to use a vinegar solution of 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water once a month to really disinfect your equipment like your mask and tubing. Allow each part to soak in the vinegar solution for about 30 minutes.
rumrunn6 is offline  
Old 10-03-22, 09:30 AM
  #28  
cyccommute 
Mad bike riding scientist
 
cyccommute's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 25,717

Bikes: Some silver ones, a red one, a black and orange one, and a few titanium ones

Mentioned: 138 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5157 Post(s)
Liked 2,698 Times in 1,596 Posts
Originally Posted by pdlamb View Post
If you've got mold in the tube, a combination of bleach solution and tube brush may be needed. I'd think about a quick rinse, followed by scrubbing with the brush, then coil the tube up and soak it in a bleach solution. Rinse with water (three times or until you're bored holding it under the faucet) and dry thoroughly.
Again, the bleach isn’t needed. You could use dish washing liquid and a tube brush to remove the mold. That’s all that is really needed. If you have to soak, peroxide is just as effective and, again, safer to use.


Reminds me of the middle 1970s when the California legislature considered a bill to outlaw chlorine in any product. IIRC it passed one house before someone pointed out that salt (NaCl) would also be outlawed by that bill. This kind of phobia isn't really called for. "The dose makes the poison" still applies. The soaking can be done outdoors if the bleach odor is offensive, diluting the outgassing hypochlorite to well below the damage threshold.
Yada, yada, stupid Californians, yada. Given the amount of times that people have said that stupid Californians have done something dumb when it hasn’t, I’m going to need a citation to believe that one.

Something isn’t a “phobia” or “irrational fear” if you have knowledge and evidence that a material can cause harm. Bleach solutions shouldn’t be used without gloves because the bleach can damage your skin. Your internal parts are far more sensitive to chlorine and chlorine bleach than your outsides are. The wise person chooses the least toxic (or dangerous) option that is still effective. If the least toxic option isn’t toxic at all and still as effective, why choose the option with a higher risk?
__________________
Stuart Black
Gold Fever Three days of dirt in Colorado
Pokin' around the Poconos A cold ride around Lake Erie
Dinosaurs in Colorado A mountain bike guide to the Purgatory Canyon dinosaur trackway
Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
cyccommute is offline  
Likes For cyccommute:
Old 10-03-22, 09:37 AM
  #29  
MoAlpha
• —
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Land of Pleasant Living
Posts: 10,468

Bikes: Shmikes

Mentioned: 56 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8689 Post(s)
Liked 4,606 Times in 2,458 Posts
Sterilization is pointless. Molds, if that's what's in that tube, are ubiquitous in the environment, will regrow on hospitable surfaces as soon as the the sterilizing agent is gone, and are generally harmless. Mechanical removal should be sufficient.
MoAlpha is offline  
Likes For MoAlpha:
Old 10-03-22, 09:50 AM
  #30  
cyccommute 
Mad bike riding scientist
 
cyccommute's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 25,717

Bikes: Some silver ones, a red one, a black and orange one, and a few titanium ones

Mentioned: 138 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5157 Post(s)
Liked 2,698 Times in 1,596 Posts
Originally Posted by KerryIrons View Post
Diluted household bleach does NOT react with the PVC tube to any significant extent. Please provide a citation for your claim of dangerous byproducts from a bleach/PVC reaction. Note that any byproducts would need to be present in meaningful quantities, not just detectable in the PPT range. Using bleach as described here will NOT result in irritation and unless someone is mixing bleach and ammonia, no issues there. As someone who has worked extensively with chlorine and chlorine containing compounds, I can tell you that in the usage described here, bleach represents essentially no hazard.
Are you sure that tubing is PVC? From what I can find, it’s likely polyethylene or some copolymer. I wouldn’t be so quick to say that it can’t react with bleach because the exact composition isn’t that clear.

PPT or parts per thousand would be considered “meaningful” for many compounds. That only 0.1%. That’s easily detectable.

Finally, as a chemical student long ago, we were taught to choose compounds and methods that has the least possibility of risk. As a practicing chemist that was reinforced over nearly 40 years of work. If you there is no other substitute, of course you use the more toxic chemical but take extra precautions to avoid exposure. However, if the alternative is safer to use and just as effective, you use the alternative.
__________________
Stuart Black
Gold Fever Three days of dirt in Colorado
Pokin' around the Poconos A cold ride around Lake Erie
Dinosaurs in Colorado A mountain bike guide to the Purgatory Canyon dinosaur trackway
Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
cyccommute is offline  
Old 10-03-22, 09:51 AM
  #31  
cyccommute 
Mad bike riding scientist
 
cyccommute's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 25,717

Bikes: Some silver ones, a red one, a black and orange one, and a few titanium ones

Mentioned: 138 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5157 Post(s)
Liked 2,698 Times in 1,596 Posts
Originally Posted by MoAlpha View Post
Sterilization is pointless. Molds, if that's what's in that tube, are ubiquitous in the environment, will regrow on hospitable surfaces as soon as the the sterilizing agent is gone, and are generally harmless. Mechanical removal should be sufficient.
Completely agree.
__________________
Stuart Black
Gold Fever Three days of dirt in Colorado
Pokin' around the Poconos A cold ride around Lake Erie
Dinosaurs in Colorado A mountain bike guide to the Purgatory Canyon dinosaur trackway
Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
cyccommute is offline  
Old 10-03-22, 09:57 AM
  #32  
MoAlpha
• —
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Land of Pleasant Living
Posts: 10,468

Bikes: Shmikes

Mentioned: 56 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8689 Post(s)
Liked 4,606 Times in 2,458 Posts
And, not that it matters for present purposes, but a lot of the black stuff growing in wet places is algae.
MoAlpha is offline  
Old 10-03-22, 11:17 AM
  #33  
streetsurfer
Junior Member
 
streetsurfer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2022
Location: NW Suburbs of Chicago
Posts: 188

Bikes: ‘95 Le Tour, 80’s Nishiki Competition, Coda F900, Diamondback Response Trail, several schwinns-contis, suburban, letour lux, supersport? (repaint)

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 47 Post(s)
Liked 128 Times in 76 Posts
I’ve used the standard bleach tablets made for cleaning bladders for years…no problems.

streetsurfer is offline  
Likes For streetsurfer:
Old 10-03-22, 01:34 PM
  #34  
KerryIrons
Full Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 468
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 224 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 240 Times in 145 Posts
Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Are you sure that tubing is PVC? From what I can find, it’s likely polyethylene or some copolymer. I wouldn’t be so quick to say that it can’t react with bleach because the exact composition isn’t that clear.

PPT or parts per thousand would be considered “meaningful” for many compounds. That only 0.1%. That’s easily detectable.

Finally, as a chemical student long ago, we were taught to choose compounds and methods that has the least possibility of risk. As a practicing chemist that was reinforced over nearly 40 years of work. If you there is no other substitute, of course you use the more toxic chemical but take extra precautions to avoid exposure. However, if the alternative is safer to use and just as effective, you use the alternative.
If the tube is a polyolefin instead of PVC then it would be even less reactive to bleach. PPT in my reference (should have been more clear) was to parts per trillion. Many reports of contamination reference vanishingly small concentration. Parts per thousand of reactive byproducts from bleach chemistry are simply not going to happen in this situation. As a chemical engineer with decades of experience in chemical research, there is zero risk of health issues from using bleach in this application.
KerryIrons is offline  
Likes For KerryIrons:
Old 10-03-22, 02:15 PM
  #35  
pdlamb
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: northern Deep South
Posts: 7,918

Bikes: Fuji Touring, Novara Randonee

Mentioned: 33 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2094 Post(s)
Liked 1,339 Times in 849 Posts
Originally Posted by KerryIrons View Post
If the tube is a polyolefin instead of PVC then it would be even less reactive to bleach. PPT in my reference (should have been more clear) was to parts per trillion. Many reports of contamination reference vanishingly small concentration. Parts per thousand of reactive byproducts from bleach chemistry are simply not going to happen in this situation. As a chemical engineer with decades of experience in chemical research, there is zero risk of health issues from using bleach in this application.
Back of the envelope calculation:

For a 2 liter bladder, there's 2,000 ml of water in it. To get 1 part per thousand, you'd need 2 g of chlorine (Cl). IIRC from my chemistry courses, ordinary household bleach is about 5% Cl by weight, so you'd need 40 ml of bleach to get to 1 part per thousand -- about a tablespoon and a half of pure bleach in the tube.

Rinse the tube when you're done. Problem solved.
pdlamb is offline  
Likes For pdlamb:
Old 10-04-22, 07:51 AM
  #36  
pdlamb
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: northern Deep South
Posts: 7,918

Bikes: Fuji Touring, Novara Randonee

Mentioned: 33 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2094 Post(s)
Liked 1,339 Times in 849 Posts
Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Yada, yada, stupid Californians, yada. Given the amount of times that people have said that stupid Californians have done something dumb when it hasn’t, I’m going to need a citation to believe that one.
It was cause for some jocularity in the chemistry department when I was an undergraduate, and Chemical and Engineering News (the weekly put out by the American Chemical Society) had a note about it. I've let my ACS membership lapse, so I'm not going to bother to look it up. I don't expect you to look for the citation -- I don't care if you believe me or not.
pdlamb is offline  
Old 10-04-22, 07:55 AM
  #37  
Gym123456
Newbie
 
Join Date: Nov 2021
Posts: 53
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 21 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 7 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
I would not use bleach. It’s not really meant to be consumed. Soak in hydrogen peroxide with a bit of dishwashing liquid. Then physically remove any remaining bits with a piece of chinelle (pipe cleaner for the less sophisticated) dipped in the same solution. That’s what “pipe cleaners” were designed for. Rinse well.
In case anyone actually wants to find that material, doing an online search will show 'chenille'- not being a grammer dork, just commenting about what I saw when I searched.
Gym123456 is offline  
Old 10-04-22, 10:05 AM
  #38  
dedhed
SE Wis
 
dedhed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Milwaukee, WI
Posts: 9,431

Bikes: '68 Raleigh Sprite, '02 Raleigh C500, '84 Raleigh Gran Prix, '91 Trek 400, 2013 Novara Randonee, 1990 Trek 970

Mentioned: 36 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2309 Post(s)
Liked 2,444 Times in 1,515 Posts
Originally Posted by KerryIrons View Post
If the tube is a polyolefin instead of PVC then it would be even less reactive to bleach. PPT in my reference (should have been more clear) was to parts per trillion. Many reports of contamination reference vanishingly small concentration. Parts per thousand of reactive byproducts from bleach chemistry are simply not going to happen in this situation. As a chemical engineer with decades of experience in chemical research, there is zero risk of health issues from using bleach in this application.
I think millions of miles of PVC, HDPE, and now PEX tubing in public and private water systems that require a PPM chlorine residual to the tap, will agree with you.
dedhed is offline  
Old 10-04-22, 10:58 AM
  #39  
autonomy
Senior Member
 
autonomy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Boston Roads
Posts: 962

Bikes: 2012 Canondale Synapse 105, 2017 REI Co-Op ADV 3.1

Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 500 Post(s)
Liked 201 Times in 118 Posts
Homebrewer here. We deal with plastic hoses all the time
  • To get rid of mold, soak in hot water and fragrance-free Oxyclean. If that doesn't do it, use a brush or a piece of string with a paper towel on the end. This may not be super-helpful advice as you may not want to buy OxyClean just for this purpose.
  • Avoid mold by always drying your hoses! Spin them like helicopter blades to get rid of excess moisture then hang down to dry so that both ends are hanging down
  • Do not blow into your hoses, that introduces moisture and bacteria
  • Avoid putting anything with sugar in your bladders
autonomy is offline  
Old 10-04-22, 11:46 AM
  #40  
indyfabz
Senior Member
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 35,850
Mentioned: 204 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16458 Post(s)
Liked 11,245 Times in 5,459 Posts
Originally Posted by autonomy View Post
If that doesn't do it, use a brush or a piece of string with a paper towel on the end.
See link in post #6. The brush is also good for washing your cat box.
indyfabz is offline  
Old 10-05-22, 11:31 AM
  #41  
Pratt
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 797
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 298 Post(s)
Liked 311 Times in 191 Posts
Or store it with a couple of ounces of the booze of your choice in it. Draining before the next ride, optional.
I used to use cheap rum to winterize the fresh water tanks on the boat, never had a problem with mold over years of layups.
Pratt is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2022 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.