Protocol Online logo
Top : Forum Archives: : Cell Biology

Microbiocidal additive for water in incubator - question re water in incubator (Sep/03/2004 )

Hi, we have had occasional problems with contamination in my lab. Someone recommended adding Microbiocidal additive for used for heating waterbaths to the water pan in my incubator. Has anyone else tried this, or any other types of antibiotics? I normally replace water weekly.
thanks in advance....Dave


We routinely use Roccal in the water in the incubators. It inhibits bug and fungal growth


We use Clear Bath from Spectrum Industries (a few drops in a gallon of water is enough) and it is said to inhibit contamination. Don't put to much though as you can inhibit cells growth as well.

Simon cool.gif


Just add a "pinch" of Sodium azide to the water.


uhhm, I wouldn't recommend Sodium azide, since it's really poisonous to humans and the environment!

N3Na = T+

LD50 oral 27mg/kg
LD50 skin 37mg/kg


This is the protocol of my lab.

For 10L of pure water:

·Cooper sulfate 10g.
·EDTA 0,2g.

This solution should ba changed when a blue deposit appears at the base of the tray.


Dear All,

Change water in the CO2 Incubators and Waterbaths on A WEEKLY BASIS, this will ensure that the contamination is not coming from the water. If you do not have clean water i.e UV sterilised and 0.22uM filtered, autoclave it before use.

HOWEVER...... all your dishes and flasks are the major contributor to Contamination. Aerosols of tissue culture media are all that is required for bugs to grow. Before putting TC flasks/dishes back in the Incubator, wipe them with 70%IMS.

Years ago people used Copper Sulphate as mentioned before. If you do not have a copper lined CO2 Incubator, copper sulphate WILL corrode your stainless steel interiors.

All the products mentioned i.e. Antibiotics, Panabath and Copper Sulphate are NOT required. It is pure laziness to rely on these products and extra expense