Water

Looks like I'll start this off. I am fairy well stocked to get through most emergencies' with food, supplies, etc. My biggest shortcoming right now is water. I am entirely dependent on city water right now. With myself, my daughter, and our two big dogs, even a few 5 gal water bottles wouldn't last long if the city water supply was down. I thought about a 55 gal barrel in the garage or an IBC tote. My backup plan right now is a few Sawyer water filters I have, which I would have to find a water source, and that doesn't seem like a good long term plan.

"Never underestimate the predictibility of stupidity" RIP SSG Brad King. KIA April 2, 2007.

Original Post

Possibly nothing more important in a true emergency (vs a massive 'inconveniencing') than adequate potable water.

Consider the waterBOB for bulk storage - If you have a decent amount of warning - storm coming - and have 2 bathrooms, one with a tub, this is a decent option in theory.  Note that I haven't actually used mine yet.  There are a few versions out there, but the basic one is 100 gallons and only $22.  Reviews are pretty good.

https://www.amazon.com/WaterBO...s=waterbob&psc=1

I also have 8 water bricks - 1 is in the freezer to take up extra space.  For a family of 4, they should cover a few days, and they can be carried with us if it is going to be an 'interesting' bugout.  You can get good deals on these if you watch ebay and Walmart for sales.

https://www.amazon.com/WaterBr...VRK7ZTE69D8Y0Y0A8PM3

I also have one of these:

https://www.amazon.com/Interne...Filter/dp/B007HUYGNS

I see it for more extended use if staying put and needing to purify water past my initial stockage.  I'm not sure of the total utility of it and need to test it out at some point...

Finally, each family member should have a camelbak in addition to at least one member having a hard container to ease filling.  Filling a camelbak from anything other than a spigot/hose is a pain in the butt.

Tankersteve

In Yorktown, VA.          Joined August 2008

Gov't Civilian, after retiring from active duty in 2015. 

 

'One's own open sore never smells.'  - Haitian proverb

In my area, Earthquake is the more common threat. Not much warning. I keep three 55 gallon food grade drums full and add a cap of bleach and rotate every six months. Also have a 5 gallon bucket gravity feed filter. http://www.monolithicdotorg/water-filters

We have a swimming pool Chlorine, not salt water and can filter water from that for a long time.

Garg 'nuair dhùisgear

One of the very few paranoid end of the world thing I keep excess supply on hand of is purification. I need them for outdoorsy work, but keep too many just in case of boil orders, or unexpected disasters. Our house is very high, it will not be flooded out, but water needs pumps and stuff. I could be high and dry and have power and keep working but have no water for ??? days because all the water plants are under 10 feet of water. 

I have rain barrels (like, a 500 gallon feed tank) which are non-potable, but even with concerns about roofing material runoff I am comfortable with drinking it if purified. 

I use tablets as they are low-storage, low-maintenance, but also have purifier machinery around here somewhere. Just make sure to do the math so you have enough for the expected number of people for the expected time, etc. 

The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living and the get rich quick theory of life. – Theodore Roosevelt

 

Joined: 19NOV2004   Location: Mission, Kansas

Never seen the WaterBOB before. Cool twist on an old concept.

I'd still keep a bottle of bleach around for purification of water that's been sitting for awhile (1 tsp to 5 gal) or run it through a gravity-fed water filter.

 

Know what you know; Know what you don't know. -Paul Petzoldt

Is there a formula for how much bleach to add to a specific amount of water? 

    I have a spare bedroom closet I have filled with various supplies - not to be confused with a bug-out bag I keep elsewhere.  I use two liter soda bottles filled with water, and I put about 3-4 drops of bleach in each one.  Once a year I dump them and replace.  I also keep about 3-4 flats of bottled water stacked up as well.     Year 'round, I keep a medium sized cooler in my pickup with a bunch of individual water bottles.   In the winter I keep the lid open so the heat will keep them from freezing, and close the lid when I go in for the night.  I just had to get used to "pickup running/lid open, pickup off/ lid closed"  We just had our worst/coldest winter in 35 years and I never had a problem with them freezing.   Water is IMHO one of the most overlooked SHTF issues.  

 

 

(That and dog food.)

 

From what I read, water doesn't "go bad" it just gets flat over time. The bleach sounds like a good idea to keep anything from growing in it. I think the easiest solution for me might be to have a 55 gal food safe drum in the garage. There is a guy here that sells them locally for $30 or whatever that are food safe. I have two gravity filters set up if I need them.  I could get a few surplus 5 gal water cans  or those water BOB's if things god bad enough I need to load up my Subaru and head out.

Idaho Bill, thanks for the reminder on dog food.

"Never underestimate the predictibility of stupidity" RIP SSG Brad King. KIA April 2, 2007.

Our biggest concern is water.  We've got over 2 years of food in storage (from bulk rice and beans, to powdered just about anything that could be powered, to freeze dried/dehydrated meals), so food is already taken care of.  Water on the other hand, is very scarce.  We live about half way up a 1200 ft hill (this side of Noah's flood, anything to do with flooding is really not an issue for us). 

The problem is, and I've had drillers come out and give me an estimate, is that a well is almost impossible.  Water table is at LEAST 500 ft down, and then they have to case the entire thing because of the soil.  We would have to pay $20 a foot for the hole, with NO guarantee that there will be water at the other end.  Our street is supplied by a 20,000+ gallon water tank , about 1/2 mile up the road in the forest.  I take the dog for a walk every morning and afternoon BY it,  but not only do I not know where the water comes from (is it pumped UP the mountain?  is it being fed from a well?), I don't know if it will still work if things go south.  There are NO solar panels around it, so if the power goes out, will we still have water?  (we've been without power for about 72hrs, during an ice storm.  While we did still have water, I wasn't sure if it was the water that was still in the tank or if it was being pumped up some how)

It's just the wife and I.....and 1 hundred pound +/- German Shepherd, and 6+ cats to take care of.  To drink, cook, feed/water the animals, and maybe every once in a while clean our nasty bodies, I've figured a requirement of 10 gallons a day at a minimum.  We bought two of these:  https://www.amazon.com/gp/prod...ge?ie=UTF8&psc=1 for around 500 gallons of water.  I rotate the water ever 6 months (instead of chemically treating it indefinitely) with the two staggered 3 months.  That would give me about 6 weeks to figure out where to get water from.  

There's a pond about 3/4 mile down the hill from us, that we could get water from.  The only issue with that is 10 gallons, at 8 pounds a gallon, isn't really FUN to be dragging UP hill (while pulling our own security).  There's possibly a "spring" about 1/2 mile away, but it's on someone else's property.  

So, one of the things we've been looking at is rain water collection.  We're in the queue right now to get a metal roof put on the house (our roof is 18 years old, it HAS to be replaced.  We want to do it Once and be done with it...figuring we're going to live about another 40 years +/-.  Not only do will it be a one time and done thing, but it will also help negate our one major concern living in the forest....forest fires).  Once we have the metal roof, one issue with rain water collection will be taken care of.  Our roof is about 3500 ft2, so we can actually get some pretty good amounts of water between snow and rain fall.  At issue is, where to put the collection barrels (think 1000s of gallons, not 10s or 100s) and how do we get to the water once we've collected it?   We could "bury" the barrels, but then how do you get the water?.,...I actually want to put the barrels on the uphill side of us to use gravity, but then how do I get the water from the roof to those barrels without our property looking like Sanford and Son?

We have all kinds of purification stuff after we get the water.  As we DON'T want to use a bunch of chemicals, all of our (including the animals) drinking/cooking water will be boiled.  After it's boiled, it will be run through a large (4 gallon) gravity fed filtration system (think Berkey) for any particulates etc. still hanging around.  

SO....I'm looking more at LONG term solutions rather than the "oh shit, there's a storm a comin" stand point.  We also have the bathtub liners as well as 7x 7 gallon water jugs that we can use if we needed to leave  (see forest fire comment above).  We got BOBs, carriers for the animals, and even a couple of document books to grab if we HAVE to leave, that's not the issue.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


If it's a Pain in the Ass....you're doing it WRONG

I don't make policy, only suggestions, take them as such.

 

Joined: 8/5/05    Location: 20 miles west of Gettysburg, PA

 

 

Earthquake is the main hazard where I live too. Sooner or later, the Cascadia Subduction Zone is going to make all of us her bitch at a magnitude that once changed the course of the Columbia River near today's Bonneville Dam and caused a major Japanese tsunami on 1/26/1700.

Our water source is our own well (less than 50 ft from the house), and we on natural gas. So, we "feel" independent on water, but it's vulnerable to electricity loss (as is the septic).

Current plan for run-of-the-mill power outages is to add a backup generator to run on dual NG/LP.  We built the house with gas and electric hook-up for a whole house generator. Obviously NG is going to be as vulnerable to disaster as electric, and may even be intentionally shut off to broad areas until deemed safe. My thoughts are that we could do pretty good for water as long as we have a good size tank of LP on hand to fire up the generator and re-fill stuff as needed. Am a crazy?

I am a big fan of redundancy, so I am not at all opposed to having drums for backup-backup. An idea I've been throwing around is having several drums daisy-chained and having irrigation water from the well run through them to keep it fresh. Instead of adding disinfectant for long-term storage.

I love the idea of those tub bags. Easy, no-brainer. We could easily have one under the sink in each bathroom.

 

Adversity is another way to measure the greatness of individuals.  -Lou Holtz

XTCBX posted:

I have a pool (chlorine)...what do I need to do to make that water drinkable?

A good ceramic gravity filter will work. If the pool is getting algae after the pump not running just filter out (run it though cloth) to remove most ot the the algae before running it through the gravity filter. The ceramic filters can be cleaned and keep working. The charcoal will eventually run out, but the Chlorine level in your pool would probably be nil by that time.

Garg 'nuair dhùisgear

Cytez posted:

Our biggest concern is water.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Would a underground cistern meet your needs pair with a water pump running off solar panels + battery. 

2600 gals for $3k or 3500 gals for $4400. 

http://m.plastic-mart.com/cate...erground-water-tanks

Also if you have a truck you can get a 450 gal water tank for transporting water from lower level "sources" to your hide site. 

"Be an example to your men, in your duty and in private life. Never spare yourself, and let the troops see that you don't in your endurance of fatigue and privation. Always be tactful and well-mannered and teach your subordinates to do the same. Avoid excessive sharpness or harshness of voice, which usually indicates the man who has shortcomings of his own to hide." - Field Marshall Erwin Rommel

 

Joined: 12/24/04    LOCATION : Moments away from BFG and DD

Don't forget that restaurant supply places have food safe containers as their business, cheap. Most of them are walk in, no need for an account. We have some foodstuffs in large (50 gal?) rubbermaid/husky trash can. White ones are food grade and white so you don't use them for trash. I am sure they have other containers with spigots. 

If not sure a container is safe, anything reputable should have the NSF round logo (national sanitary foundation or something) on the bottom somewhere. 

The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living and the get rich quick theory of life. – Theodore Roosevelt

 

Joined: 19NOV2004   Location: Mission, Kansas

This is awesome...keep it coming...

i rotate 3 gallon water jugs and 1 gallon water jugs.

The 3 gallon jugs are for every day drinking.

I keep the 1 gallon jugs in the fridge and freezer. I buy the 1 gallon jugs from .99 cent store and rotate every year or so. I also rotate them for camping and when traveling. 

I have some 5 gallon jugs stored I think I'm going to start using hose again for long term storage of water. 

Aussies have a lot of knowledge about collecting rainwater, storge, purification, etc.  I think I heard that rainwater collection is mandatory in certain regions.

It is better that they do it imperfectly than that you do it perfectly. For it is their war and their country and your time here is limited.

 

                                                                                                                        —T. E. Lawrence

 

 

POSREP: UAE

A long with as much water as you can store.  At least 2 ways to purify water.   Gravity filters  don't take much effort and work while you can do something else. Containers for both treated and un-treated water. Roof, gutter collection system is my next project.

Dave

"Keep that cheap, wail'n slut quiet!" A.J. Maggott

Thanks for all the great information here, everyone. I don't have much of a water storage capacity, mainly because with our regular moves every 3 years or so, I don't want to accumulate a bunch of bulky storage containers. As much as I'd like to have the 260 gal tank in my garage, that's going to have to wait until I retire and settle down.

I tend to fill up containers and stockpile bottled water when things appear to be going south (like before Sandy when we were in DC). I've filled the tubs before, but the WaterBOB is a much better way of doing that. The advice about using bleach will be helpful, because I previously didn't want to keep containers filled for more than a couple months.

If it's useful to anyone, I found Lexington Container Company to be the best price for new Scepter military water cans:

http://www.lexingtoncontainerc...tary-Water-Cans.html

These cans are incredibly tough, but also really heavy when full. I figure a couple are good for loading in the car if needed. I can also stage them around the house for flushing toilets if the water gets shut off.

For dispensing water, I like the Aqua-Tainer 7 gallon containers:

Reliance Products Aqua-Tainer 7 Gallon Rigid Water Container https://www.amazon.com/dp/B001...cp_api_r2oQzbWFKFB5Y

Walmart usually has them pretty cheap. I like that they could be set on a shelf in he garage or on the kitchen counter to dispense water for cooking.

Dave

krax posted:
Bill, Idaho posted:

Is there a formula for how much bleach to add to a specific amount of water? 

1 tsp to 5 gallons.

Household bleach doesn't store very well, and loses efficacy over time.   It has a shelf life of roughly six months, so don't just throw a few gallons of bleach under your sink and think you're good the next time a disaster happens.  Your bleach may be worthless by then.

What DOES store well, however, is standard, regular, granular "pool shock." (yes, the same stuff you throw in your swimming pool every so often).    Depending on the concentration of Calcium Hypochlorite in your brand of pool shock, you can add a few teaspoons of granules to a quart of water to make fresh, full-strength bleach.  

A single pound of pool shock can treat a huge amount of water... and if stored in a cool/dry place, lasts for YEARS.

“One sometimes gets the impression that the mere words ‘Socialism’ and ‘Communism’ draw towards them with magnetic force every fruit-juice drinker, nudist, sandal-wearer, sex-maniac, Quaker, ‘Nature Cure’ quack, pacifist, and feminist in England,”  -George Orwell-

I live in an condo/apartment setup, me having 55 gallon drums is not feasible. However, we all have water heaters unless you have an inline heater, it's not pretty but the drain at the bottom acts like a spigot in a pinch. Depending on the calcium deposits and gunk at the bottom, i'd still recommend water filtration like https://www.rei.com/product/77...tment-system-4-liter. I don't have first hand experince with it, I've heard good things, however it's slow. 

The other thing is that as soon as your infrastructure(sewer, water, and power) is remotely about to be compromised, it's in your best interest to have the ability to isolate yourself from the grid. 

sewage:

http://www.balkanplumbing.com/...city-sewers-back-up/

Electricty:

breaker panel 

water:

if you are on public water, know how to shut it off, or where the water key is on the street. 

 

if your shit is properly flooded it won't matter anyway, but if you share the same infrastructure with a heavily compromised environment, your gonna want to isolate yourself. 

 

 

 

"The facts, while interesting are irrelevant: It's not what you know that matters, it's what you don't know that tends to get people killed."

 

"Nobelesse Oblige"

REI link not working. 

I know apartment dwellers who store emergency supplies, even cases of water, etc. Having a storage room helps, and no you do not want a drum of water in the apartment just for floor weight (many modern one: very cheaply built for things like floor force) but there are certainly ways. 

Good points on using existing supplies. If you shut off from the water system, there should be a drain near the shutoff and there's a hell of a lot of water in the pipes. 

Label the breaker panel if not everyone gets it and add a flashlight near the panel as it's always located in the corner of a coal mine. My wife still doesn't get that for individual breakers off is center, vs all being the same left/right. 

The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living and the get rich quick theory of life. – Theodore Roosevelt

 

Joined: 19NOV2004   Location: Mission, Kansas

BigOaf posted:

I live in an condo/apartment setup, me having 55 gallon drums is not feasible. However, we all have water heaters unless you have an inline heater, it's not pretty but the drain at the bottom acts like a spigot in a pinch. Depending on the calcium deposits and gunk at the bottom, i'd still recommend water filtration like https://www.rei.com/product/77...tment-system-4-liter. I don't have first hand experince with it, I've heard good things, however it's slow. 

The other thing is that as soon as your infrastructure(sewer, water, and power) is remotely about to be compromised, it's in your best interest to have the ability to isolate yourself from the grid. 

sewage:

http://www.balkanplumbing.com/...city-sewers-back-up/

Electricty:

breaker panel 

water:

if you are on public water, know how to shut it off, or where the water key is on the street. 

 

if your shit is properly flooded it won't matter anyway, but if you share the same infrastructure with a heavily compromised environment, your gonna want to isolate yourself. 

 

think.   

 I never thought about the city sewer. Are they usually gravity systems? I am on a pretty large hill, and it would have to be a flood of biblical proportions to affect my house I would 

"Never underestimate the predictibility of stupidity" RIP SSG Brad King. KIA April 2, 2007.

A lot of cities require the backflow valves on the sewer. Some not just for new construction, but for any serious drain work. You may have one already. 

Like anything (DRLs, helmets...), some people hate them for no clear reason so I have seen folks remove them (or disable them) right after the plumber leaves. Check your actual hardware if possible. 

The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living and the get rich quick theory of life. – Theodore Roosevelt

 

Joined: 19NOV2004   Location: Mission, Kansas

https://www.rei.com/product/77...tment-system-4-liter

for the broken link

Ground Pounder you are probably isolated. For the people who live at the at the base of the hill they would get all of your guys refuse. Also  do you have people "upstream" from you? Highly unlikely scenario but if a blockage happens next door, you would be screwed. More so in an earthquake or other type of environment factor then flooding.  

If the system is blocked from refuse, or in some cases, the sewer and rain water run off system are the same. This combined system cannot always handle capacity, especially in low lying coastal areas. 

It would suck to have water in the bathtub compromised because the sewer backed up and ruined it lol. 

 

 

"The facts, while interesting are irrelevant: It's not what you know that matters, it's what you don't know that tends to get people killed."

 

"Nobelesse Oblige"

BigOaf posted:

https://www.rei.com/product/77...tment-system-4-liter

for the broken link

Ground Pounder you are probably isolated. For the people who live at the at the base of the hill they would get all of your guys refuse. Also  do you have people "upstream" from you? Highly unlikely scenario but if a blockage happens next door, you would be screwed. More so in an earthquake or other type of environment factor then flooding.  

If the system is blocked from refuse, or in some cases, the sewer and rain water run off system are the same. This combined system cannot always handle capacity, especially in low lying coastal areas. 

It would suck to have water in the bathtub compromised because the sewer backed up and ruined it lol. 

 

That's definitely something to think about. Come to think about it, some of the houses in my neighborhood are higher than me. I know when the city flushes the fire hydrants, I get a lot of the sediment and I've learned to flush my system with the outside faucets after my dishwasher became clogged a few times. I might have to look into that more.

"Never underestimate the predictibility of stupidity" RIP SSG Brad King. KIA April 2, 2007.

BigOaf posted:

... or in some cases, the sewer and rain water run off system are the same. This combined system cannot always handle capacity, especially in low lying coastal areas. 

It would suck to have water in the bathtub compromised because the sewer backed up and ruined it lol. 

This happens a lot. Kansas City has a combined system and a LOT of people do not know that. Find out how yours works. 

My parents had a flooded basement when I was 7. It was not flooding but sewer backup from flooding elsewhere, otherwise handled well and dumped into the creek and drain system. But, came into many houses. Carpeting, walls, most of my toys: gone. Sewer backups are no fun even when it's mostly stormwater. 

The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living and the get rich quick theory of life. – Theodore Roosevelt

 

Joined: 19NOV2004   Location: Mission, Kansas

shoobe01 posted:
BigOaf posted:

... or in some cases, the sewer and rain water run off system are the same. This combined system cannot always handle capacity, especially in low lying coastal areas. 

It would suck to have water in the bathtub compromised because the sewer backed up and ruined it lol. 

This happens a lot. Kansas City has a combined system and a LOT of people do not know that. Find out how yours works. 

My parents had a flooded basement when I was 7. It was not flooding but sewer backup from flooding elsewhere, otherwise handled well and dumped into the creek and drain system. But, came into many houses. Carpeting, walls, most of my toys: gone. Sewer backups are no fun even when it's mostly stormwater. 

Shoobe01, 

I don't mean to make light of the situation, but i lost it when you said toys . Because lets be real, we for the most part are grown 7yr olds who primarily talk about "toys" on here lol. That still has to be no fun none the less. 

 

"The facts, while interesting are irrelevant: It's not what you know that matters, it's what you don't know that tends to get people killed."

 

"Nobelesse Oblige"

BigOaf posted:

I live in an condo/apartment setup, me having 55 gallon drums is not feasible.  

Most condos/apartments have swimming pools. A five gallon gravity filter or two could make use of that water. Also good for water from creeks, ponds etc.

Garg 'nuair dhùisgear

Do any of you disinfect your storage source (5 gal container for me) when you rotate? I've gotten into the habit of disinfecting it the same way I did after I bought it, which was a bleach solution and then thorough rinsing afterward. I rotate every 6 months so I'm not treating the water. Is it overkill to clean it each time?

I don't bother to disinfect when rotating water out. Taking clean water out, putting clean water back in. I use 55 gallon drums though. A five gallon is small enough and easy enough, it wouldn't hurt to give it a bleach rinse.

Garg 'nuair dhùisgear

I am sure there are chemical test kits but when I dump water from anything (even just water bottles/bladders) I try to taste it. If it's not great, time for a washing. But that's rare. Especially if it's long term storage and you aren't using it (so no contamination from your mouth, etc) it shouldn't go moldy or anything if sealed, and treated. 

The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living and the get rich quick theory of life. – Theodore Roosevelt

 

Joined: 19NOV2004   Location: Mission, Kansas

Do any of you disinfect your storage source (5 gal container for me) when you rotate? I've gotten into the habit of disinfecting it the same way I did after I bought it, which was a bleach solution and then thorough rinsing afterward. I rotate every 6 months so I'm not treating the water. Is it overkill to clean it each time?

Probably... but it doesn't hurt and it might even help. If you're going to rotate the water anyway. 

Years ago, I religiously rotated my stored water supplies. Every six months or so. Then I realized it was a waste of time (and water). If you start out with a bleach sanitized/clean container, then add chlorinated tap water, then seal the container tightly (using the normal cap/lid/bung), the water stays pretty much potable damn near forever. At worst, it might develop a bit of algae or bio-slime if the drum is exposed to a lot of sunlight.  By adding a dose of bleach before you seal it, you pretty much kill off any remaining critters/algae that city water treatment didn't already get.  Standard liquid bleach (no additives & not splashless), chemically degrades into water & salt over time. Meaning the bleach you add today is effectively inert after about a year. 

I maintain 55 gallon water drums that haven't been rotated in over 8 years. Once every year or two, I add a fresh dose of standard household bleach to re-treat the contents. Same with 5 gallon Scepter (military) water cans or other containers. 

BTW: Some 55 gallon barrel hints...

1. You don't actually need a pump for 55 gallon water drums. About 7 feet of clear plastic .5" to 1" hose from any hardware store will serve as a siphon. That hose costs a few cents per foot. Alternatively, an aquarium siphon hose from pet aisles will work just as well (but cost more). You can siphon off most of the water and eventually tip the nearly empty barrel over to drain the last of the contents. 

2. Mildly important update to the dosage recommendation for liquid household bleach: 

A few years back, Clorox Company started selling “Concentrated” plain household bleach with an additional increase in concentration above the old 5.25% - 6% sodium hypochlorite. The new concentration is 8.25%. Almost all bleach manufacturers have followed suit. It is pretty difficult to even find the old "Regular/Standard Bleach" of 5.25%... which is the strength that many guidelines found on the internet use for advising 8 drops of liquid bleach to treat a gallon of water. 

The simple fact of the matter is that by going with a stronger solution, bleach manufacturers were able to cut costs. Smaller containers & less liquid weight = greatly reduced storage & shipping costs. It was just business...

With the new (stronger) 8.25% stuff, the guidelines are now six (6 drops) per gallon and double that (12 drops) for cloudy, visibly dirty, known contaminated, or very cold water. 

Here's the good news: Regardless of off-the-shelf bottled liquid bleach strength, a few drops more will not hurt you. 8 drops vs. 6 drops... or double dose 16 drops vs. 12 drops. 

The very fact that they recommend doubling the basic dose for really questionable water tells you that there is quite a margin for safe consumption of bleach treated water. If you confuse strengths and add 33% too much... it's still fine to drink and the pathogens in the water are just more assuredly dead. The CDC, EPA, US military, American Red Cross, and the bleach companies themselves all advise double dosage. Because they know it actually works more effectively, that it's still safe to consume, and that their lawyers, chemists, and medical consultants have blessed off on that dosage level.

With liquid bleach, I utilize a KISS Rule of Thumb. If I'm disinfecting drinking water, I just use the double dose to begin with. I'm not guessing on disaster contaminated public pipelines, cloudy pond water, or trying to estimate if a winter temperature icy stream is chock full of harder to kill cold water cysts. I just double tap the basic dose for sure results right from the get go. Right to the double dose recommended for known bad water. Max instead of minimum. The slightly greater chlorine taste difference is not noticeable to me and the results (dead pathogens) are more sure.

Another consideration is that liquid bleach on the shelf degrades as the months go by. It breaks down into salt & water. Clorox advises:

Quote:
“When Clorox® Regular-Bleach is stored between 50°F and 70F° and away from sunlight, it will maintain label strength of the sodium hypochlorite active for up to 6 months... "

http://blog.rjschinner.com/clorox-sh...fe-date-codes/

I keep a couple of unopened jugs of household bleach specifically for water treatment prep usage. Those jugs are not used for laundry room or other cleaning duties. Just kept for a time of need in order to sterilize drinking water. The day I bring them home, I mark them for disposal in 6 months (with a bold sharpie pen). Six months later I carefully poor (to avoid splash-back onto my clothing or floor) the contents into my home toilet bowls. Then purchase new. Let the old stuff sit in the commodes for a few hours (with the lid down to prevent pets from drinking it) and then flush. It cleans mildew/stains in the bowls and then goes down the pipes. You get a last beneficial use out of the stuff. 

If I'm not completely sure about the labeled % level of the liquid bleach (perhaps not marked on the container) or it's age (but no more than 6 months), I'm adding 16 drops of plain, unscented, non-splashless, no-additive household liquid bleachto treat a gallon of water. Period. I have done so and drunk that double dose treated water. Taste sensitive snowflakes (there's always someone) can set their treated water container uncovered with subsequent evaporation of chlorine over the course of a day. The same way chlorine evaporates from backyard pools. A lot better than contracting Cholera or Giardia during some disaster.

https://www.clorox.com/dr-laundry/di...rifying-water/

http://totallyunprepared.com/2014/08...o-do-about-it/

http://www.waterandhealth.org/high-strength-bleach/

3. Cleaning & storing lessons learned for 55 gallon water drums:

1)  I purchased several 55 gallon drums that had formerly contained soft drink base and were marked with "corrosive" & "citric acid" hazmat stickers. The drums were pre-washed by the seller but had been stored outside with a moderate amount of residual rinse water and fine debris in the bottom. After I got them, I wound up leaving them outside for several months of the winter. The following Spring, I finally got around to filling them. By then, algae had grown in them. Rain had washed additional dirt and mud onto the outside of my drums.

2) I first sprayed them out using a small power washer and fresh water, just to flush out the old water/debris/alagae. Just used a few gallons of fresh water, sticking the wand inside to wash away any visible algae or sediment, and then tipped them over to drain. I probably could have used a garden hose with an adjustable garden nozzle. I considered taking them to a manual car wash (the kind with the overhead user operated hose), but decided to just do the job at home. It was easier to do them all at one time and place. 

I paid particular attention to cleaning the bung holes and screw tops, blasting them with water and scrubbing them with a clean bristle brush or toothbrush. This removed exterior dirt from the threads and bung caps, as well as the top surface of the barrels. Not complicated...just a simple scrubbing of the fill holes and top of the barrel.

3) After each barrel drained, I added about 1 cup of 6% Sodium Hypochlorite...otherwise known as Clorox Regular Bleach (unscented). I then filled each barrel to the very top, sealed the bung, and let them sit for a day filled with this strong disinfecting rinse solution. Why did I use 1 cup of standard bleach? Well...it takes between 1/4 and 1/3 of a cup to disinfect 55 gallons of otherwise untreated water. I just tripled that for the initial cleaning (a wild-assed guess) in order to kill everything inside the drums. Fill the barrel with water first...then add the bleach. Otherwise you get huge bleach suds overflowing from your barrels. Ask me how I know. I probably could have used a lot less bleach for the disinfecting rinse...more like half a cup.

4) The next day I drained the drums. I probably could have drained them after an hour or two on the first day, but I wasn't in a rush. I worried that such a strong solution would kill any grass or plantings when I emptied the barrels. I found an area of my yard that was mostly mulch chips and just emptied the drums (after manhandling the close to 500 lb containers). Quite a flood of water...which reached a few plant beds anyway. Apparently no harm done...the plants and grass seemed to survive the rest of the warm season.

5) Filled the drums with tap water after positioning them in their permanent positions (indoors). I ran a regular everyday garden hose (no...not an RV "food safe" white hose) indoors to the drums and filled them almost to the top. After they are full, you are looking at almost 500 pounds of weight. So think hard about where they should go before you fill 'em.

6) My drums sit on concrete or tile flooring. To protect the tiles and avoid concrete chemical leaching into the plastic drums...I placed a section of 2' x 2' Wal-Mart procured interlocking grey exercise mat under each drum. I don't know if it's critical to do so, but I preferred not to chance scratching trapped floor grit into nice tile finish or finding out that bare concrete was degrading my barrel bases. Again, place the pads before you start to fill the barrels.

7) Last thing I did was to add 1/4+ cup of bleach to each 55 gallon drum and seal them tightly. In reality, as my municipal water is already treated, it didn't really need the bleach treatment...but I intended for this water to sit for a long time. Were I to refill them with pond water...I'd use the same amount of bleach. A little more than 1/4 cup and a little less than 1/3 cup. 14 teaspoons of bleach to be exact.

8) If I were to leave them outside for the winter, I'd only fill a barrel about 80% to allow for ice expansion. Water expands in volume by about 9% when frozen. I would hate to have to deal with 55 gallons of ice...so I keep my emergency water indoors.

9) Any brand of standard household bleach will work...as long as the active ingredient on the label is Sodium Hypochlorite (and it has no added whiteners, brighteners, scent, splashless additives, etc.). Most household bleach in the USA is between 5-8.25 % in strength.

10) After initially reading about prepping with large water barrels, I figured the hard part would be measuring exact amounts of bleach. In reality, the hard part is simply cleaning them to your satisfaction and then finding a spot where you can wash and rinse them without causing a flood. That and designating a make-sense location where they can be both stored and yet remain accessible. It ain't rocket science. Wash & rinse the barrels, fill 'em up with clean water, add some bleach if you like, and...Bob's Your Uncle...instant long term water storage. 

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The moral high ground is sometimes just a head on a long pike... - Astronomy

 

A new Plt Ldr is like a first time new mother. The Plt Sgt is a lifelong midwife and nanny. It's your baby, but he knows a lot about changing diapers and other ugly things. - Astronomy

krax posted:

That's a good tip.

Is the preferred method to make liquid bleach first, or can you just add the granules to the water you're treating?

You could probably do either... but most sterilization recipes use liquid bleach, so I stuck with it for simplicity.

“One sometimes gets the impression that the mere words ‘Socialism’ and ‘Communism’ draw towards them with magnetic force every fruit-juice drinker, nudist, sandal-wearer, sex-maniac, Quaker, ‘Nature Cure’ quack, pacifist, and feminist in England,”  -George Orwell-

krax posted:

 Very good.

Any special considerations for those on well water vs city water during hard times?

Generator for your pump. If you have space, a large water storage tank. Tractor Supply has some reasonably priced.  I know several people in the mountains near me that have the well water go into their tank and then draw water for the house from the tank. Keeps the water rotated.

Garg 'nuair dhùisgear

It's extremely difficult to add pool shock dry granules directly in order to treat water for consumption.  A pound of that dry powdered stuff can treat something on the order of 10,000 gallons of water. You damn near need science lab measuring equipment to arrive at the proper dose for smaller containers (quarts, liters, gallons). You'd be measuring individual grains/grams of powder. Not practical.

Pool shock (concentrated powdered calcium hypochlorite) gets used to make a bleach disinfecting solution. That bleach solution is then used to sanitize drinking water. You don't directly add dry pool shock to water you want to drink. Because you can't practically eyeball estimate the amount of dry pool shock to be added to a typical drinking water container. Not unless it's something large like a 500 gallon water buffalo trailer... or a swimming pool.

One heaping teaspoon of high-test (73%) granular calcium hypochlorite (approximately ¼ ounce) mixed into two gallons of water creates two gallons of disinfectant BLEACH solution. That is then used to treat drinking water at a ratio of 1 part bleach disinfecting solution per 100 parts of water to be treated. This disinfecting solution is not the same strength as household liquid bleach (it's weaker), so the previous advice about household liquid bleach drops does not apply.

Example: 2 liquid US gallons of disinfecting bleach solution = 16 liquid US pints. At a 1:100 ratio, 1 pint of the solution gets added to each 12.5 gallons of water you need to treat. Or roughly a half liter of solution added to 50 liters of water needing treating.

There are 90,921.8 drops in one gallon of 8.25% concentrated Clorox household bleach. At a water treatment dosage of 16 drops of bleach per gallon of water treated, 1 gallon of liquid bleach will treat over 5,682 gallons of drinking water. 

One gallon of home made pool shock bleach solution (weaker) will treat ~100 gallons of drinking water. But you can whip up about 100 gallons of that 1:100 solution from a pound of dry pool shock. Just remember that you're not making the same thing as store bought 8.25% liquid Clorox bleach. The stuff you mix up using pool shock is a weaker solution.

 

For Marines:

1. Add 16 drops of plain old household bleach (no additives, no scent, and not the splashless kind) to one gallon of ditch water. Wait 30 minutes, then drink.

2. Add 1/4 oz (a heaping teaspoon full) of dry pool shock granules to 2 gallons of water & mix well. Add 1/2 pint of the resulting pool shock solution to 6 gallons of ditch water. Wait 30 minutes, then drink.

 

 

 

 

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The moral high ground is sometimes just a head on a long pike... - Astronomy

 

A new Plt Ldr is like a first time new mother. The Plt Sgt is a lifelong midwife and nanny. It's your baby, but he knows a lot about changing diapers and other ugly things. - Astronomy

jcustisredux posted:

Aussies have a lot of knowledge about collecting rainwater, storge, purification, etc.  I think I heard that rainwater collection is mandatory in certain regions.

Some thoughts.

Bigger storage is better: when it rains, you want it all rather than slop out- 8 months later into a drought you will wish you caught it all.

If you are collecting of your roof...you might want to test what is coming down with it in terms of pollution.  Or is  already there...like being down wind of a lead smelter/mine 20 years ago- roof scrub might be in order.  Or the bird crap, dead animal residue that washes into your rainwater tank.

Need to watch out for insects colonizing your tank as well.

Gunge will collect at the bottom of the tanks: you might want a way of removing it (say in dusty areas) or sampling it for analysis (heavy metal, asbestos, dreaded ju-ju nematode etc) now and then.

If you have tanks....think about how they (and any exposed piping) might be damaged?  Say from vehicles.  Or maliciousness.   Have a tank repair kit handy.

Positioning the large tanks for other considerations might be a factor as well: do you want them to warm the residence or cool it?  Is there a threat you would prefer there was 10 kiloliters between it & you?

This brings us to shape & configuration: do you have room for a single big tank?  Would you prefer a series of small ones?  What about those long flat ones to line an exterior wall?

One character I knew (IT guru who who broke down & went ITless) collects all water & feeds it into his large yabbie/fishpond.  Any he draws for personal consumption is filtered from there.  The rainwater collection is basically fed directly/progressively into the pond or used for the vegepatch.  I think he might be better filtering from the tank but he argues the pond acts as a settlement for any metals or other undesirables.

 

CAE5 posted:
krax posted:

 Very good.

Any special considerations for those on well water vs city water during hard times?

Generator for your pump...

This reminds me of my favorite story regarding other-than-usual situations, which I have certainly relayed here before, but will type out now from memory so someone can look it up and find the inconsistencies in my story: 

A particular facility (not to be named) absolutely has to have power when there are disasters, etc. due to servers. They put the servers on a higher floor. They install a battery room, a diesel generator, and on-site diesel tank good for the max they could in the office building they are in (a few hours) and include pumps as well as not installing any critical items below the water line. They do not rely on trucks to deliver diesel (I worked a place that did and it suuuuucked) but have a week's worth at a tank on another property a few hundred yards away. It's all monitored off an automated system, the 24x7 server staff gets extra monitors and training to run the system. 

They test the system, successfully running the building for half the day. They tweak process, test again on a regular basis. A power outage happens during a bad storm. Who cares, they have an awesome system. Watch it switch over and it is all good. Then 3 hours later, the system fails. Takes a long time to figure out why, but eventually they find that the generator on site tank is empty. Eventually they find out that's because there's a pump halfway between the remote tank and the building that sends the fuel over. One they forgot about, and which is only powered by the city. It takes half a day for an electrician to come and wire it up to pump the fuel over, and get the system back up and running. 

The lesson is: plan well, but then test the plan, test the hell out of it. In this case, do the best you can to knock your whole property off power one afternoon, grab the voltage meter to make sure it's all off and nothing in running, then fire up the generator to see if you can pull water with it, get running water all the way to the house. 

 

Also for wells and unrelated to the above, if earthquakes are on you risk matrix, store some water in containers:

http://greenrisks.blogspot.com...fter-earthquake.html

Wells pull water from the earth, which just betrayed you by shaking. Water may become unusable, it may toss so much sediment up that the filters or pump becomes clogged (so know how to clear that and have spares on hand) or the level may simply drop so far you cannot pump. Maybe for months. 

The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living and the get rich quick theory of life. – Theodore Roosevelt

 

Joined: 19NOV2004   Location: Mission, Kansas

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