How much water? I think I have a clue.

A place to discuss special considerations involved prepping and reacting to a disaster with children, pets and other family concerns.

Moderator: ZS Global Moderators

User avatar
Gingerbread Man
ZS Lifetime Member
ZS Lifetime Member
Posts: 10834
Joined: Mon May 17, 2010 10:05 am

How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Gingerbread Man » Thu Oct 27, 2011 3:20 pm

After reading and studying I believe I may have a clue on how much water to store as a minimum. I believe that number is one months worth. Here's where I got my thought process from.
There is approximately 4 days of food in stores, less water. So if the box stores are cleaned out and if tap water is unavailable you have to over come that hump. Now, there will be folks on the move for water if supplies are gone. So to avoid conflict and interaction with the mass of survivors over water it better, imo, to lay low. I have a kneejerk guess of two weeks for random disturbances. Therefore the last week of water will be used in setting up a way to accumulate more water.
Therefore by my math for a family of four with 5 gallons per day times 30 that's 150 gallons on hand at a minimum.
What say ZS? This is a question that has bothered me for some time.
Shrapnel wrote "nobody is trying to be a dick and give out warnings for every little thing" :|
Image
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DS1icEssOUM

User avatar
dukman
* * * * *
Posts: 3374
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 7:50 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: All of them!
Location: Pacific Northwest

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by dukman » Fri Oct 28, 2011 12:34 am

Give a person a fish they will eat for a day. Teach them to fish...


I think water is essential, but you should also have ways to make dirty water potable as well. During big winter storms where the water lines would freeze my dad would rather melt snow than use any water reserve.


Also different climates will need different levels of water. Here water is plentiful, so I only store a couple gallons. There is a stream nearby that flows nearly year round that I could get water from if I needed it, and nothing upstream of it to pollute it.
M-O-O-N, that spells survival, law's yes!
Duk's Bags: GLOF GHB ONB EDC
It's only after we've lost everything that we're free to do anything ~Tyler Durden

User avatar
Apollo-11
* * * * *
Posts: 2543
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2007 5:07 am
Location: NW

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Apollo-11 » Fri Oct 28, 2011 2:29 am

I think the OP is on the right track. We have about 250 gallons. Some in 55 gallon drums and some in 1 gallon containers.

It's also important to be able to collect and purify more water for the long term. There is a thread about using powdered pool chlorine (pool shock). It's very concentrated and it stores well. A $20 investment will purify many years' worth of water - 20,000 gallons will go a long way.
Image

JackBauer
ZS Member
ZS Member
Posts: 593
Joined: Sat Sep 18, 2010 11:05 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: All of the Night of the Dead series
I Am Legend
28 Days Later
Walking Dead (tv series)
Location: North Jersey
Contact:

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by JackBauer » Fri Oct 28, 2011 3:37 pm

I'd say it's a good estimation with some great strategic thinking involved. Well done!
A person should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog,. .., build a wall, set a bone, take and give orders, cooperate, analyze & solve problems, fight efficiently, die gallantly RH
http://johnfoberg.blogspot.com/

User avatar
Teqnikal
* *
Posts: 146
Joined: Fri Sep 23, 2011 8:54 am
Favorite Zombie Movies: Zombie Land, AAAAAAAH ZOMBIES!!!
Location: Lompoc, Ca

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Teqnikal » Fri Oct 28, 2011 4:56 pm

I did some similar thinking and came up with the same result. One month of water for my family is 150 gallons. If after a month of a major event some semblance of order/normaility has not been restored, it's time to bug out. Now I need to get my hands on some 55 gallon drums.

palehorse1301
* *
Posts: 158
Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2011 9:06 pm

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by palehorse1301 » Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:17 pm

One of the benefits of living in Louisiana is the ready supply of water pretty much anywhere. I live a block from a major river, my holdout location with two wells is on a lake, and you can't 'go five miles down any of the highways in the area without driving over a bridge. Of course there is still the matter of making it safe to drink, but supplies for that take up sooooooo much less storage space than storing water.

User avatar
Gingerbread Man
ZS Lifetime Member
ZS Lifetime Member
Posts: 10834
Joined: Mon May 17, 2010 10:05 am

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Gingerbread Man » Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:27 pm

One of the points I was trying to make was to avoid contact with others. Security may be an issue. If it is then having a ready supply would be preferable. One thing I can think of as a security risk would be looters or in the case of a pandemic, getting infected. It's not just me I'm worried about but I have a family as well. I have ready access to many sources however there is only so much water you can carry and still be mobile. Im talking worst case. Normally, 7 days would be adequate. Or a environmental disaster that causes the rivers/ streams to become unuseable. Perhaps a pathogen in the water. Also flooding would render water non potable.
Shrapnel wrote "nobody is trying to be a dick and give out warnings for every little thing" :|
Image
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DS1icEssOUM

palehorse1301
* *
Posts: 158
Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2011 9:06 pm

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by palehorse1301 » Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:34 pm

I do keep a week or so on hand here. I just don't really see the point in storing more water than that when you're on a property way past the middle of nowhere, with multiple wells and a filtration setup. I'd rather store treatment supplies rather than have multiple drums of water in the cabin and worry about the floor caving in from the weight.
Last edited by palehorse1301 on Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
whisk.e.rebellion
ZS Board Member
ZS Board Member
Posts: 8187
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2009 1:34 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: 28 Days Later. Dawn of the Dead (both versions). Return of the Living Dead. Shaun of the Dead. Dead Alive.
Location: Monterey Bay, California

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by whisk.e.rebellion » Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:36 pm

The mantra I always heard is a gallon per person per day, but that extra gallon for a family of four could be luxurious.
I survived Zombie Con 2011: Full Spectrum Pain
I survived Zombie Con 2012: Our word is "douchebag"
I survived Zombie Con 2014: <Insert inappropriate website here>

User avatar
Gingerbread Man
ZS Lifetime Member
ZS Lifetime Member
Posts: 10834
Joined: Mon May 17, 2010 10:05 am

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Gingerbread Man » Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:38 pm

palehorse1301 wrote:I do keep a week or so on hand here. I just don't really see the point in storing more water than that when you're on a property way past the middle of nowhere, with multiple wells and a filtration setup. I'd rather store treatment supplies rather than have multiple drums of water in the cabin and worry about the floor being damaged from the weight.
Mines being developed in my garage, concrete floors. This is just my thinking, this is not a set rules by any means.
Shrapnel wrote "nobody is trying to be a dick and give out warnings for every little thing" :|
Image
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DS1icEssOUM

User avatar
Chantrea
ZS Global Moderator
ZS Global Moderator
Posts: 1737
Joined: Sat Aug 02, 2008 8:18 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Uh...does Bubba Ho-Tep count? It's got Bruce Campbell in it!
Location: Eastside Seattle
Contact:

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Chantrea » Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:39 pm

Yep, water storage can be a challenge, even if you live in a saturated area (like me)! We have storage-storage (but a limited amount since we have a small house), but also have the supplies to make water potable (as a PP mentioned). We also have rainwater collection (right now it's used primarily for gardening, but would do for other uses). For short term emergencies we have a backup generator for the well, with its own dedicated fuel storage--but because it's reliant on gas, that's obviously not a great long term solution. Our well is pretty deep, so hand pumping is not a feasable alternative at this time.

One of the mistakes I made pretty early was only counting drinking water accurately and really lowballing the amount needed for cooking. Looking at that made me adjust my food storage considerably (in the beginning, I mostly stocked backpacker/rehydratable food and grains as the primary stuff I was storing--not a great idea when you're lowballing the water needs to rehydrate/cook!). I didn't expect thinking about water to make that much of an impact on what I store for food but it really altered my plans!

User avatar
Gingerbread Man
ZS Lifetime Member
ZS Lifetime Member
Posts: 10834
Joined: Mon May 17, 2010 10:05 am

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Gingerbread Man » Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:40 pm

whisk.e.rebellion wrote:The mantra I always heard is a gallon per person per day, but that extra gallon for a family of four could be luxurious.
I'm thinking about bathing, dishes and general cooking/cleaning as well.
Shrapnel wrote "nobody is trying to be a dick and give out warnings for every little thing" :|
Image
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DS1icEssOUM

palehorse1301
* *
Posts: 158
Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2011 9:06 pm

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by palehorse1301 » Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:44 pm

Chantrea wrote:One of the mistakes I made pretty early was only counting drinking water accurately and really lowballing the amount needed for cooking. Looking at that made me adjust my food storage considerably (in the beginning, I mostly stocked backpacker/rehydratable food and grains as the primary stuff I was storing--not a great idea when you're lowballing the water needs to rehydrate/cook!). I didn't expect thinking about water to make that much of an impact on what I store for food but it really altered my plans!
Very, very true. Bathing is also very nice when the temp reaches 110F. My hideaway location is down miles and miles of half a dozen dirt roads, so there's no traffic. It's also on a lake that some rather uncouth people dump the contents of their houseboat toilets into on occasion. My family and I have planned to treat water accordingly.

User avatar
Kutter_0311
* * * * *
Posts: 6135
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 4:44 am
Favorite Zombie Movies: too many to get into...
Location: Frozen Tundra, WI

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Kutter_0311 » Fri Oct 28, 2011 7:00 pm

This reminds me: I need clean 55gal drums for water!

I currently have water jugs for 35gal of water, which about covers 7 days for our family of 5. Thinking about it, I'd really like 5 or 6 55gal drums of water for long term storage.
JAYNE COBB wrote: Well, what you plan and what takes place ain't ever exactly been similar.
TravisM.1 wrote:If a rifle is an option, a rifle is usually the answer.
minengr wrote:I've said it numerous times, a quality rig is only as good as it's weakest link. Which usually is the nut behind the butt.

User avatar
Sckitzo
ZS Lifetime Member
ZS Lifetime Member
Posts: 5571
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2008 3:42 am
Favorite Zombie Movies: Dawn of the Dead (org)
Location: Tucson, AZ
Contact:

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Sckitzo » Fri Oct 28, 2011 7:10 pm

Think it's dependent on your area as well.

For me, it might actually be better to have more water then food for example, it's not that food is easy to come by, it's just that water is really hard, we've destroyed the aquifer in my area and as we saw locally last winter, one hard freeze disrupted water to the entire city, gas as well.

My rough number is 1.5 gallons a day, that should leave enough for a whore bath every few days. Right now I just use 2liter soda bottles, starting to get a large collection but once I have some more funds going to grab 3 55g drums for the garage.

User avatar
MrMendigo
* * *
Posts: 715
Joined: Sun Dec 07, 2008 7:04 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: The Army of Darkness, and The Evil Dead,
Shawn of the dead, ect.

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by MrMendigo » Fri Oct 28, 2011 7:18 pm

Do you have a well, or city water?

User avatar
LtCmdLeia
ZS Member
ZS Member
Posts: 1417
Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 12:25 pm
Location: Rocky Mtns of Colorado

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by LtCmdLeia » Fri Oct 28, 2011 7:28 pm

My rule is, take whatever you think you need and double it. I know the rule is 1 gal per person per day, but no one is used to rationing like that. Face it, we're a water wasteful society, we don't think about how much we're using. I think you'll find you'll need more water than you stored once you have to use it.
"So this is how liberty dies, with thunderous applause" ... Senator Padmé Amidala, Star Wars, Episode 3, Revenge of the Sith


ImageImageImage

Image

User avatar
MrMendigo
* * *
Posts: 715
Joined: Sun Dec 07, 2008 7:04 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: The Army of Darkness, and The Evil Dead,
Shawn of the dead, ect.

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by MrMendigo » Fri Oct 28, 2011 7:38 pm

LtCmdLeia wrote:My rule is, take whatever you think you need and double it. I know the rule is 1 gal per person per day, but no one is used to rationing like that. Face it, we're a water wasteful society, we don't think about how much we're using. I think you'll find you'll need more water than you stored once you have to use it.
QFT...but since we are on a preparedness website we should advocate learning to conserve before we need to conserve.

User avatar
Apollo-11
* * * * *
Posts: 2543
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2007 5:07 am
Location: NW

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Apollo-11 » Sat Oct 29, 2011 12:08 am

LtCmdLeia wrote:My rule is, take whatever you think you need and double it. I know the rule is 1 gal per person per day, but no one is used to rationing like that. Face it, we're a water wasteful society, we don't think about how much we're using. I think you'll find you'll need more water than you stored once you have to use it.
This needs to be underlined and repeated. We lost our water supply once in recent memory, and flushing the toilet with a bucket of water really opens your eyes to the amount of water you use. That doesn't include any other sanitation needs such as bathing, washing dishes, or going laundry.

One thing that is entirely useful and practical when you are in a water rationing situation is to reuse the water as many times as possible. So you start out washing your hands with it, then you collect the soapy water and use it in your laundry bucket, then you flush the toilet with that.

FYI for those just starting out. Dollar Tree has an endless supply of 1 gallon water containers that are made of the same strong PET material that they make 2 liter soda bottles out of. They're a buck and they'll last for many years. If you don't know where to start, go down and buy a case of 6. It's not the most economical in the long run, but it's a start, for those who have nothing.

Image

Just don't buy the ones that look like regular milk jugs! They will leak.
Image

User avatar
Gingerbread Man
ZS Lifetime Member
ZS Lifetime Member
Posts: 10834
Joined: Mon May 17, 2010 10:05 am

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Gingerbread Man » Mon Oct 31, 2011 7:00 am

Well, for flushing I would use unfiltered water from the pond and wet land around my home. There is also a medium sized lake near by that takes me about 5 minutes to get to.
For laundry the lake water would be perfect, it's relatively clean.
Shrapnel wrote "nobody is trying to be a dick and give out warnings for every little thing" :|
Image
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DS1icEssOUM

User avatar
Phoenix David
ZS Member
ZS Member
Posts: 3108
Joined: Tue Oct 21, 2008 11:28 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: I am legend, Omega man
Location: Glendale, Az

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Phoenix David » Mon Oct 31, 2011 7:24 am

Sckitzo wrote:Think it's dependent on your area as well.

For me, it might actually be better to have more water then food for example, it's not that food is easy to come by, it's just that water is really hard, we've destroyed the aquifer in my area and as we saw locally last winter, one hard freeze disrupted water to the entire city, gas as well.

My rough number is 1.5 gallons a day, that should leave enough for a whore bath every few days. Right now I just use 2liter soda bottles, starting to get a large collection but once I have some more funds going to grab 3 55g drums for the garage.
Mine is closer to 3 gallons per day in the summer. I had 55 gallon drums in my laundry room for a year and it doesn't have AC. I checked the water after a summer and noticed no change to it. It still had the faint bleach smell after 1 year of storage with summer time temps. Do yo know of this guy? Probably best to have someone with a truck and do a bulk buy and drive them down there, unless you got a local seller.
Nobody ever wishes they brought a smaller gun to a gun fight

LibertyBelle
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2011 7:10 pm

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by LibertyBelle » Wed Nov 02, 2011 12:48 pm

I have four square 5 gallon water containers in the house along with some bottled water, a couple of 55 gallon barrels of rainwater just outside, and live water literally just a few feet from the barn (has never gone even close to dry). The 5 gallon containers inside will supply my family for a few days if the power goes out. If we're talking long term, there are methods of water purification at hand to utilize the other sources.

Omega DR
*
Posts: 67
Joined: Tue Jul 12, 2011 8:46 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Dawn of the Dead (remake), Night of the Living Dead(1990), The Zombie Dairies, 28 Days Later

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Omega DR » Wed Nov 02, 2011 1:09 pm

My two cents. No one can possibly store enough water for long term usage, beyond a few months at best. Even if you use 3 gallon per person a day, that's over 600 gallons of water of one month. Where is gonna store it? How you gonna move it?

Access to a reliable water source and multiple water purification systems are a better long term plan.

User avatar
Sckitzo
ZS Lifetime Member
ZS Lifetime Member
Posts: 5571
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2008 3:42 am
Favorite Zombie Movies: Dawn of the Dead (org)
Location: Tucson, AZ
Contact:

Re: How much water? I think I have a clue.

Post by Sckitzo » Wed Nov 02, 2011 2:48 pm

Omega DR wrote:My two cents. No one can possibly store enough water for long term usage, beyond a few months at best. Even if you use 3 gallon per person a day, that's over 600 gallons of water of one month. Where is gonna store it? How you gonna move it?

Access to a reliable water source and multiple water purification systems are a better long term plan.
I agree, but I think short term is at least equally important, by all means having a long term plan in vital but not realistic to many and the likely hood of me dipping into my short term water preps is much greater then having to enact my long term ones.

I really think it's a region thing, short term for me is going to have to suffice, finding water in the desert can be a challenge, finding water in the middle of a city in the middle of the desert is going to be damn near impossible, so a migration to a water source will be required, but is not feasible at this point and time.

Post Reply

Return to “Family Prep”