Chloramines in Drinking Water


Chloramines are a group of chemical compounds that contain chlorine and ammonia. The particular type of chloramine used in drinking water disinfection is called monochloramine. Monochloramine is mixed into water in levels that kill germs but are still safe to drink. Chloramination is the process of adding chloramine to drinking water to disinfect it and kill germs. Chloramination is sometimes used as an alternative to chlorination. Chloramine exists as three different forms or species: monochloramine (NH2Cl), dichloramine (NHCl2) and trichloramine (NCl3). They are chemically related and are easily converted into each other; thus, they are more appropriately called chloramines. The three species of chloramine constantly and rapidly shift from one form to another. The species that predominates is dependent on pH, temperature, turbulence, and the chlorine to ammonia ratio. Even time plays a factor because after a day or so, with no changes in conditions, monochloramine in a water system will slowly degrade to form dichloramine and some trichloramine.

Chloramines are all respiratory irritants with trichloramine being the most toxic (order of toxicity: monochloramine < dichloramine < trichloramine-most severe). A limitation of chloramine treatment is the potential to set up nitrification in the distribution system.  Nitrification occurs when small amounts of excess ammonia promote the growth of “nitrifying” bacteria in the distribution system.  Nitrification increases when the water temperature rises.  Nitrifying bacteria can be difficult to eradicate and cause water quality problems, but they do not directly cause disease. Chloramine levels are more complicated to regulate than chlorine levels. Failure to properly control and monitor the treatment process can cause undesirable chemical reactions such as increased corrosion of pipes or nitrification in the distribution system. Corrosion can cause leaching of lead and copper from pipes and solder. Nitrification can cause a loss of disinfectant residual. Proper operation and management of the treatment system and disinfectant levels prevents these potential drawbacks to the use of chloramines. In addition, chloramine will deteriorate natural rubber products like toilet tank “flapper valves” faster than chlorine. Alternative synthetic products are available in plumbing and hardware stores if rubber deterioration becomes a problem.


Pelican Water Countertop Drinking Filter System is a state-of-the-art system with a unique modern design that provides healthier, great tasting water. It is the most cost-effective way to deal with common contaminants in water, such as chlorine and lead, as well as chloramines, cysts, VOCs, THMs, PFOA & PFOS. This not only results in high quality drinking water, but it improves all kitchen-related tasks that use water – from washing vegetables and cooking pasta, to making coffee and tea, everything tastes exceptionally better. This system also provides convenience and flexibility, with easy installation on both the countertop and under-counter models.

Benefits the Pelican Countertop Drinking Filter System Provides:

  • Filters Over 60+ Contaminates Incl: Chlorine, Chloramines, Lead, Cysts, Mercury, PFOA & PFOS
  • Results in Healthier, Great Tasting Water
  • Environmentally-friendly with no water wasted and no electricity required to operate
  • Easy Installation
  • Minimal maintenance, with long-lasting filters that are quick and simple to replace
  • Compact design, takes up less space on your countertop or under your sink

Great Features Include:

  • NSF/ANSI 42, 53 Certified Performance, & P473 for PFOAs & PFOS.
  • LED Filter Life Indicator
  • 450 gallons / 6-Months
  • Unique Modern Design



While chloramines are not a drinking water health concern to humans generally, their removal improves the taste and odor of drinking water. Chloramines are small, stable molecules with no net charge making them difficult to remove by distillation, reverse osmosis, and ion exchange resins. Due to the reaction of aqueous chlorine with organic nitrogen, chloramines also present a concern for municipal water systems utilizing chlorine as a method of disinfection. This reaction is of concern because there is potential for harmful disinfection byproducts to be produced from it. The most effective nonchemical method for removing chloramines is by activated carbon filters such as the Pelican Countertop Filter System.


Saniwater can help their customers with suitable recommendations for chloramine and to resolve taste and odor issues.  The technicians can also help with installation of the recommended filter products. Sani Water is dedicated to offer best solutions to meet the drinking water requirements of their customers.




Meet our Expert

Abhiram Satyadev has a Masters in Environmental Engineering at Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, an MBA at Goldey Beacom College in Delaware, and a Masters Certificate in Standford University. He is currently the Program Manager, Potomac Interceptor for the DC Water in Washington DC. He is responsible for developing, implementing, and maintaining the Potomac Interceptor Renewal Facility specifically including operation and maintenance of odor control facilities at the Potomac Interceptor Sites and Pump Stations.

With Saniwater, he serves as our Research and Development Consultant and provides us with insights into his expertise. Read his section here on to know more.