Every 21 seconds a child dies from water-related diseases. Not only does this make people question the safety of their water but also how they store it.
While it is important to store extra water, choosing the right emergency water storage is just as crucial. Improper storage can lead to diseases and this defeats the purpose of storing water in the first place.
To help you properly store emergency water, consider the following myths people often fall for. At the same time, learn about survival facts and what you can really do to keep your stored water safe and clean.
Myth #1: Water Expires
Water doesn’t expire but why do water bottle products come with an expiration date? Although water won’t go bad, the plastic bottles they come in will degrade over time. This lets chemicals leach into the bottle.
This doesn’t mean the water becomes lethal or toxic. It does mean it will taste a little funny instead of refreshing.
It is also important to consider the fact that bottled water products are consumable food products. The law states that all consumable products need to have an expiration date. This includes water products even if water can’t go bad.
Myth #2: Any Emergency Water Storage Is Fine
Do not use random emergency water storage containers. Even if you clean out a milk jug, microscopic milk will still be there. This means your water can still get contaminated.
Milk and juice containers are also biodegradable. Over time, they’ll break down and chemicals or bacteria will find their way into your stored water.
It is ideal to use food-grade plastic containers that are UV-resistant. Commercial water storage containers are polyethylene plastic and labeled BPA-free. Most of these containers are blue since this reduces biological growth and light exposure.
Myth #3: You Only Need 1 Gallon of Water
On a conservative level, a person needs 1 gallon of water per day to survive emergency situations. This doesn’t mean you should only store 1 gallon of water or only a barrel of water.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency advises a family to store at least 2 weeks worth of extra water. This means 14 gallons of stored water for each family member.
Although it is good to have a 55-gallon drum of stored water, FEMA also notes that portability is important. This means having a gallon or two of water stored in BPA-free plastic containers. This type of emergency water storage lets you take extra water in case you have to leave during an emergency.
Myth #4: Stored Water Tastes Horrible
Bad-tasting water from a stored container isn’t always a sign of contamination. It only means the water lacks oxygen. This affects how it tastes, especially if it was in storage for a long period of time.
You can make stored water taste better by pouring repeatedly into a glass or pitcher. This exposure and motion infuse oxygen into the water. Once done, the water will taste good again.
If you’re not sure you can add four drops of bleach per gallon of water to kill bacteria. You do have to wait 30 minutes before you can drink the water, especially if you have kids.
More Survival Tips and Tricks
Man can’t survive on water alone. The wilderness can get very dangerous, very quickly. A sudden earthquake or fire can leave you stranded without help.
Fortunately, you don’t have to wait for the apocalypse before you prepare yourself. We have a list of survival guides to keep you safe even in the stickiest situations.