Finding drinkable water will be one of your main concerns in a SHTF situation. You want to make sure you’ve got enough alternatives so you always have a way of purifying water. Some methods will be more costly while others require more prepping. However, this knowledge will be priceless in a crisis situation. All of the following solutions are very time efficient. The main concern is to get pure water as quick as possible, as time will always work against you.
#1 Household bleach
Regular unscented bleach can purify water in 30 minutes. You need about 8 drops per gallon to get the job done. Depending on how cloudy or how clear the water was initially, you may have to use up to 16 drops per gallon. Make sure you shake or stir after adding the bleach and let it sit for 30-60 minutes. Smell it, and if it has a tint of chlorine, it should be ok to drink. Otherwise, repeat the process. Always remember to check the expiry date on the bleach. Also, be aware that bleach won’t remove chemical contaminants or metals.
Iodine is very similar to bleach. As long as you store it properly, it can last for a year without losing its properties. Make sure you check if it’s made from minerals or shellfish, to keep safe of allergies. Besides being allergy-free, the one made from minerals also lasts longer. Iodine has some additional purifying properties. However, many avoid using it because of its taste and relatively high cost. You’ll have to use twice the number of bleach drops to get the same effect. So, that’s between 16 and 32 drops, depending on water quality. They both take about 30 minutes to purify water.
#3 Purification tablets
These tablets are usually made from iodine or chlorine dioxide. It will take about 30 minutes of stirring and they don’t kill protozoa or chemical contaminant. They’re also a little more expensive than other alternatives. However, you can use some extra tablets to remove the taste, and they are very easy to pack. The bottle is small and you can easily add it to your survival gear.
This is one of the simplest and most basic ways to purify water. Boiling water for at least 10 minutes will kill just about anything in it. The only things it won’t remove are metals and chemicals. It will also take a little more time to build a fire and you’ll need a metal container for the job. Still, this method, should be taken into consideration in a survival situation.
#5 Water filters
Nowadays, water filters come in all sizes. You can have a large one that you keep at home or at your safe house. Make sure you get one made from stainless steel, so you don’t have to worry about rust. Some of the best water filters can filter down to .05 microns, meaning they’ll even keep it clear of viruses.
You should also consider getting a pocket water microfilter. They can be quite expensive, but they can also be priceless in a survival situation. Depending on price, quality and size, such a filter could be used for hundreds, even thousands of gallons of water, before you have to replace it.
#6 The Lifestraw
This is a very nice survival gadget you could consider. It can filter up to 250 gallons of water before you have to replace it. It doesn’t work against viruses, but it does allow you to drink from just about any puddle or pond.
#7 The Steripen
This is another very nice survival gadget. It will only work with clear water, so for best results, you might want to use it together with one of the above devices or methods. This device uses ultraviolet light to kill harmful pathogens in water. There are a wide variety of such devices available on the market. They can be powered by batteries, USB ports, a hand crank or even the Sun.
Make sure you add some of these solutions to your survival plans and gear. It would be worth your while to try a few of them before you make a decision. If you’ve got several safe houses, shelters, or survival caches, you should consider including some of these gadgets or devices in each of them. Being able to purify water will greatly increase your survival skills.
Do you know any other ways to purify water? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.