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How do I sterilise my Flow frames?

Hi, Can you please let me know if I can sterilise my Flow frames with Milton sterilising tablets? They are used for sterilising baby bottles and contain 1% sodium hypochlorite (NaClO) and 16.5% sodium chloride (NaCl; common salt). I saw on the Flow website that one can sterilise Flow frames using 0.5% sodium hypochlorite solution, but will the salt affect the frames in any way, even if I rinse them afterwards?
Many thanks for your help, Vittoria

I’m no scientist but bees love salt. Curious, why do you want to sterilize the frames? I’ve not had to do that to mine; I’ve had them for 3 or 4 years.

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Tim, many thanks for the information. The reason I’m asking is I lost a hive to Chronic Bee Paralysis (I’m fairly sure that was it, but not 100% certain) this spring. They went into last autumn healthy (or so I thought) and took the Flow super off in September. I cleaned it up as normal to store for winter. Now I want to put it back onto another hive but it suddenly occurred to me that it the bees were sick last year, they may carry the spores so don’t want to take the chance to infect another hive. I want to make sure they are completely sterile just in case. There must be others who have had to sterilise if they had diseased hives.
I didn’t know bees liked salt. I thought if Milton was suitable for sterilising baby bottles, it would be ok for the Flow frames but wasn’t sure about the salt content.

I would just use a bleach and water solution to give them a good soaking, rinse them off, let them air dry out and then they would be usable. The ratio is 1 part bleach to 5 parts water.


Follow Tim’s advice and you won’t go wrong with it. Any bleach will do the job.

Thanks for all for your replies. I also contacted the Flow team and they said it was fine to use Milton tablets so long as I rinse thoroughly as bees have a very acute sense of smell. I’ve done them now so hopefully will be ok. I’m hoping to put them on this weekend.