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Saturday, October 9, 2010

Water Storage - Your MUST Have!

Mineral water being poured from a bottle into ...Image via Wikipedia
Our Bishop has given us a challenge to purchase our 2 week supply of water! This is an essential storage item, and the first thing you should have in an emergency. Here is a PDF file with a shopping comparison of water prices for you. Prices are as of September 2009.


1. What is the #1 emergency storage item? Water

  • According to Scientific American we lose water not only by sweating and urination, but also by way of stress and exhaling (air is water saturated when it leaves the lungs).
  • That fact combined with hot weather conditions means that one could dehydrate or overheat within a very short period of time.
  • Taking sips is not recommended either, as that does not get water to your brain and vital organs quickly enough – taking a good drink when you need it is recommended.
  • Usually, we obtain some of our daily intake of water from food, but with most long-term storage foods in dehydrated form, that is not possible.
2. How much water do I need?
  • Adults need to drink at least 2 quarts of water each day. Children, nursing mothers, and ill people may need more.
  • Additional water is needed for cooking, pets, hygiene and auto maintenance – for a total of one gallon per adult per day.
  • The Church recommends storing a two-week supply as a minimum – for an adult, that’s 14 gallons (53 L).
3. How can I store water?
  • On the chart are a few storage options to consider – think about the size of the space you have in your home to store these items – water should be stored in carefully cleaned, non-corrosive, break resistant, air-tight containers in a cool, dark place.
  • Since many containers are clear, and light can permeate them, you may want to cover them or store them in dark plastic bags. DO NOT store in direct sunlight.
  • Food grade containers labeled PET, PETE and HDPE (High Density PolyEthylene) plastic coded with the recycle symbol and a “2” inside are recommended.
  • NEVER use a container that has held toxic substances or non-food items. Soft drink bottles work well, but milk & fruit juice containers are undesirable due to difficulty in cleaning.
  • Prepackaged water bottles are somewhat permeable to hydrocarbon vapors, so keep away from stored gasoline, kerosene, pesticides or similar substances.
  • Clearly label “drinking water” along with the date.
  • If not using commercially bottled water, replace water every six months. Check pull date on containers when you purchase them to be sure they haven’t been sitting on the store shelf for a year already.
4. How do I prepare containers for water storage?
  • First clean containers and lids with hot, soapy water and rinse.
  • Then sanitize them by rinsing them with a solution of 1 tablespoon of chlorine bleach (no scents or additives) per gallon of water. Leave wet for 2 minutes, then rinse thoroughly with water.
5. How do I treat the water for storage?
  • There are many ways to treat water, although none is perfect. Often the best solution is a combination of methods.
  • If the water has been treated with chlorine by a water utility, you do not need to add anything before storing it.
  • Before treating, let any suspended particles settle to the bottom, or strain them through layers of paper towel or clean cloth.
  • Boiling is the safest method of treating water – bring to a rolling boil for 3-5 minutes, keeping in mind that some water will evaporate. Let the water cool before drinking or storing.
  • If the water is not chlorinated and is clear, add eight drops or about ¼ teaspoon of household bleach (without additives like scents, thickeners – with 5.25 percent sodium hypochlorite) per gallon of water, stir and let stand for 30 minutes. If the water does not have a slight bleach odor, repeat the dosage and let stand another 15 minutes.
  • If the water is not chlorinated and is cloudy, add 16 drops of chlorine bleach per gallon.
6. What are other emergency water sources?
  • Do you know the location of your incoming water valve? You’ll need to shut it off to stop contaminated water from entering your home if you hear reports of broken water or sewage lines.
  • You can use the water in your hot-water tank – be sure the electricity or gas is off, and open the drain at the bottom of the tank. Start the water flowing by turning off the water intake valve and turning on a hot-water faucet. Do not turn on the gas or electricity when the tank is empty. See a professional when you are ready to have it turned back on.
  • You can use the water in your pipes – let air into the plumbing by turning on the faucet in your house at the highest level. A small amount of water will trickle out. Then obtain water from the lowest faucet in the house.
  • In the even of contamination, water from either sources would need to be purified – which is why ready, potable water is so important.
  • Swimming pool water is not suitable for drinking.
Thank you Stephanie for preparing this!!