Water Storage

The Most Important Preparedness Supply

A person can survive for 3 weeks without food, but only for 3 days without water.It doesn't matter how much food you have stored -- if you run out of water, you're done!It's recommended to have 1 gallon of water stored per person per day. This allows not just for drinking, but also cooking, washing, etc.If you have a family of 4 and want two week's worth of water stored up that means you'll need to 56 gallons of water stored somewhere in your house.   ​


Before Storing Your Water ​rinse out your container with soap and water. THEN....​

Add 8 drops (1/8 teaspoon) of unscented chlorine bleach per gallon of water to keep water tasting fresh for up to 12 months

Treating Water Before Drinking ​(Just in case) 

  • What water should you pre-treat before drinking?

  • Tap water that is no longer safe

  • Old stored water that you haven't been treating

  • Rainwater Water from a stream

  • Any water you're not sure about


If water is cloudy, let it settle and filter it through a clean cloth (like a T-shirt) or a coffee filter.Bring water to a rolling boil for at least one minute. At altitudes above 5,000 feet (1,000 meters), boil water for three minutes.Let water cool and store it in clean containers with covers.       To improve the flat taste of boiled water, add one pinch of salt to each quart or liter of water, or pour the water from one clean container to another several times.


Use regular, unscented chlorine bleach products .The label should say that the active ingredient contains 6 or 8.25% of sodium hypochlorite. Do not use scented, color-safe or bleaches with added cleaners.Use the table above to decide how much bleach to add to the water.Stir and let stand for 30 minutes. The water should have a slight chlorine odor. If it does not, repeat the dosage and let stand 30 more minutes.



There are many storage options, and you can use more than one:

Bottled water

Water barrels

Bath tub (last minute option)

Standard ​pre-packaged water bottles are convenient, but the cost adds up and they are not very long-lasting so they are not great for the environment. The "best by" date on bottled water is usually 1 year.

These BPA-free water storage barrels can be filled with tap water and treated once per year with 2 drops of (unscented) bleach per gallon -- which means you'll need to add 5.5 ml of bleach per year! Don't store on concrete.

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