Water Purification For Survival-Simple Filter & Storage Methods
A disaster has happened. You’re still breathing. You’re dry and have found some sort of shelter. What’s next?
Remember the “Survival Rules of 3”
You can survive for:
3 Minutes without Air
3 Hours without Shelter (in hostile conditions)
3 Days without Water
3 Weeks without Food
Knowing how to purify water in an emergency and how to store water in preparation of a disaster or emergency is critical to your survival. Watch any newscast on a disaster, and what’s the first supplies being delivered? That’s right-water!
With water being so critical to our survival, we want to be prepared 3 ways.
Having water stored and ready
How to find more water when supplies run low
How to purify that water to make it safe
How Much Is Needed?
Most survival experts agree that about 1 gallon of water per day per person is what we need. That covers the basic drinking, cooking, and basic hygiene needs.
So if you want enough water for 72 hours (the minimum recommended) for a family of 4, that’s about 12 gallons. For a week, that’s about 28 gallons. That’s over 12 cases of bottled water! And that doesn’t include any water for sanitation, like flushing your toilet!
Make sure all water is stored in safe containers. Don’t re-use gallon milk bottles, juice bottles, or soda bottles. They are almost impossible to clean thoroughly enough to keep bacteria from developing, and the plastics used are not meant for long term storage. Many types may leech dangerous chemicals into the water inside. Use Food Grade Plastic Containers. There are other options available, but may be more expensive.
Bottles water (12 oz. bottles in a case)
5 gallon or 6 gallon containers often used for camping
55 gal plastic barrels designed to store water
Larger containers (like the Surewater 260 Gallon Water Storage Tank)
If you have time to plan for a known disaster approaching like a hurricane, you can even get storage systems that can convert your bathtub into emergency water reserves. (WaterBOB or AquaPodKit)
Finding More Water Sources When Supplies Run Low
If you run into a longer term disaster situation and your stored water supply runs low, you must have another source to obtain more water. You will want to filter or treat this water to make it safe. Keep in mind that many types of water filters and water filtration methods do not remove all dangerous chemicals and metals from the water, so be aware of possible pollutants that may be in these sources.
Home water heater
Wells (May get contaminated during disasters & usually need electricity to run pumps)
Swimming Pools (Know what water treatments have been used. For example, algaecides often used will make you sick.)
Rivers, lakes, streams, etc.
Ceramic filters (LifeStraw, Sawyer Filters, etc.)
Reverse Osmosis filters
UV Light filters (SteriPen)
Water treatment tablets (
Calcium Hypochlorite (“Pool Shock”)
The trick to being prepared in and emergency or disaster situation is to start now!
Buy an extra case of water to put in your survival storage pantry. Purchase or start saving a little to get a 6 gallon water storage container. Learn how to use bleach to treat water safely. Buy a water filter and learn how to use it. Get started now, you don’t want to be scrambling and fighting to get that last case of water off the shelf at the store if the time comes and you need it!
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