Let's Talk About Water Storage
We talked about food storage last week, but this week we are turning to another vital resource, water. If the power were to go out, or the water in our towns/cities become contaminated in some way, we would need ways to stay hydrated, and have water for regular things like cooking and cleaning.
Generally, adults drink about a half a gallon of water a day, if you add some extra for cooking and hygiene purposes, the recommendation is about a gallon of water per person, per day. However, if you have children, a nursing mother, someone who is sick, or someone who regularly drinks more water, you should plan to have more on hand.
So how do we store water for our families? Let’s talk about some options!
Buy Some Bottled Water
An inexpensive way to have some water on hand is just to buy some bottled water! You can buy cases of plastic bottles, or gallons, or buy some stackable 5 gallon water buckets for easier storage. These are usually already treated so you can just open them and use them. It makes for an inexpensive and convenient solution if the water is only gone or unsafe for a short time. However, for longer periods, it may be good to have a more long term solution in place.
If you can, like we talked about last week, you can also can water! This is a way of purifying and storing water, and because it is in a glass container, it is safe to drink longer than its plastic bottle counterparts. (They will be safe for over a decade!) The downside is that many of us want to use those bottles to store food, and you can only store a quart of water at a time using this method.
A rain collector is a great way to collect fresh water to store for later. Rain water can be cleaner than water from the faucet, but should still be filtered before drinking. Rain collectors can be purchased in most hardware and preparedness stores, as well as places like Walmart or Amazon. You can also build your own with a trash can! In some states however, there are restrictions or laws against collecting rain water. To check out what your state says about rain collecting, click here.
50 Gallon Bucket
Another similar solution is to have a 50/55 gallon drum to store water in in your yard or garage.These are usually large plastic containers that you fill with water and add either drops or tablets to so they are purified for about 1-2 years, after which the water needs to be replaced and retreated.
There are several types of water purifying tablets and drops. They are available in stores where camping and outdoor essentials are available. They are usually about $10-15 and will treat several gallons of water. The tablets or drips are added to the water and treat the water for bacteria and other harmful contaminants in between 30 minutes and 4 hours.
Another great way to prepare to have safe water, particularly if you don’t have a lot of space for storage is a water filter. (Not just a Brita filtering picture) There are personal filters such as a Lifestraw where the straw is inserted into the stream or water source and you can drink directly from the filter. There are other filters that will clean your water a few gallons at a time such as a Berkey, Alexa Pur, or similar brands. These can sit on your counter and filter water so it’s safe to drink. Then there are bigger filters like LifeStraw’s community filter, that filters more quickly, and higher quantities, but tend to be more expensive.
There are several reasons why we may need to have water on hand, or a way to make your water safe. Make water another part of your family preparedness plan!