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View Full Version : How do you know if your stored water is good?


Fireguy
09-27-2011, 5:59 PM
There are many opions on long to store drinking water before replacing, how do you know it is still good? Are there water testing kits to determine if the H2O is still drinkable?

OC-Indian
09-27-2011, 6:01 PM
Have someone else drink some and wait awhile...

Stormfeather
09-27-2011, 6:09 PM
Have someone else drink some and wait awhile...

LOL

Seriously though, I found a easy way to keep everything on the up & up when it comes to my water. When the time changes twice a year, I do a full round robin of water, batteries, smoke/cO2 detectors. I change it all out and call it good til next spring/fall.

damon1272
09-27-2011, 10:02 PM
Strom feather has it right. If you have a large supply you could have it tested for hpc's but it really is not worth the cost. Cheaper to dump it and refill the tank.

TKM
09-27-2011, 10:21 PM
Water's cheap when it's available, just do the lawn or something and refill.

The people who encourage you to replace expensive 10 year batteries every six months should be hit with a wiffle ball bat where it will do the most good. Micro-rant.

vetnet
09-28-2011, 10:12 AM
If you Google "Water quality test strips" you'll find all kinds of home test kits to use for everything from Iron content to pesticides to bacteria, though most bacteria tests take 48 hours.

You may want to buy some kits in bulk, as clean water is paramount to keeping you healthy in what would be an already stressful situation.

ritter
09-28-2011, 12:59 PM
Water doesn't go "bad", so to speak. It can become contaminated by leaching chemicals out of what it's stored in or it can support colonies of organisms if not properly treated. And it can taste flat if the dissolved oxygen content gets too low. This can all be rectified by storing in an approved container (HDPE, typically), making sure there is a residual chlorine content when you put it in there (typical requirement for municipal tap water but you well folk should add some nonscented bleach prior to putting the lid on) and shaking it up a bit prior to needing to drink it. Other than that, water has an indefinite shelf life, it just might not taste quite the way you're used to it.

If you're unsure, add some bleach, mix and leave uncovered for a bit. Should be good to go.

odysseus
09-28-2011, 1:03 PM
..or boil it if you have to.

If stored properly in a controlled environment in proper containers and given a sterilizing agent to keep it aseptic, you will be good to go for at least a few years, if not more. Rotating and re-sterilizing will keep that going.

QQQ
09-28-2011, 2:03 PM
Water doesn't go "bad", so to speak. It can become contaminated by leaching chemicals out of what it's stored in or it can support colonies of organisms if not properly treated. And it can taste flat if the dissolved oxygen content gets too low. This can all be rectified by storing in an approved container (HDPE, typically), making sure there is a residual chlorine content when you put it in there (typical requirement for municipal tap water but you well folk should add some nonscented bleach prior to putting the lid on) and shaking it up a bit prior to needing to drink it. Other than that, water has an indefinite shelf life, it just might not taste quite the way you're used to it.

If you're unsure, add some bleach, mix and leave uncovered for a bit. Should be good to go.

I use municipal water and still have to add bleach or else I get algae growth.

demi
09-28-2011, 8:53 PM
Have someone else drink some and wait awhile...

if that doesnt work then you willhave to resort to cannibalism or water enema's

but seriously you can use those purifying tablets or you can run it through a filter. i like to go natural spring water so i dig a little hole near streams where theres dirt or lots of sand and rocks and that work as a good filter.....well good enough

Cali-Shooter
09-28-2011, 8:57 PM
If you store bottled water for long periods of time (like for years) the water inside the bottle becomes "plastiky" in taste and is undrinkable, because it is likely to make you sick.

If you plan on storing bottled water, only store them for 1 year maximum, then rotate or use up, don't keep them in storage any longer.

If I were to store water in "permanent" containers, I would keep them for a max time period of 6 months, and then rotate them, although I would definitely make an effort to rotate them sooner than that. I would also have water purification tablets to treat water that has been stored longer than 3 months before I drink it. Just my preference.

Fireguy
09-29-2011, 12:37 AM
Let's assume that you bugged in and your water rations disappeared and you had to relocate. Your new refuge has a cache of water but you have no idea how old it is. Would you drink it ?

bob7122
09-29-2011, 12:45 AM
Let's assume that you bugged in and your water rations disappeared and you had to relocate. Your new refuge has a cache of water but you have no idea how old it is. Would you drink it ?

no, i follow bear grylls' advice and drink my own piss.

http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRVM2M8ye2NV1Gm-RLsURFG2t4C0B8wBnx4zvheYQgdZr1JARvnhttp://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcT--XtRGQMKrpsj0d1i9QzwOiuISYtKWkfaRdPJ0tsFUjWoTtyL

Cali-Shooter
09-29-2011, 1:04 AM
Let's assume that you bugged in and your water rations disappeared and you had to relocate. Your new refuge has a cache of water but you have no idea how old it is. Would you drink it ?

As long as it is screened of any debris (big or small) and has been mixed with purification tablets or screened thru a water filtration & purification system, why not?

Ideally, you'd want to boil the water first, to kill any harmful microbes or bacteria, but if you can't wait or can't boil, I'd screen it, filter/purify it, take a sip to make sure it isn't inedible, and then drink.

This is only if you know that the water doesn't have poison or toxic substances or is diseased or otherwise severely contaminated (like radiation or if there were dead animals in it).

Cali-Shooter
09-29-2011, 1:06 AM
no, i follow bear grylls' advice and drink my own piss.

http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRVM2M8ye2NV1Gm-RLsURFG2t4C0B8wBnx4zvheYQgdZr1JARvnhttp://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcT--XtRGQMKrpsj0d1i9QzwOiuISYtKWkfaRdPJ0tsFUjWoTtyL

I'd happily throw a jar of piss at the guy w/ the knife, although I wouldn't give a golden shower. I'm not R.Kelly. :eek:

kemasa
09-29-2011, 8:46 AM
..or boil it if you have to.

If stored properly in a controlled environment in proper containers and given a sterilizing agent to keep it aseptic, you will be good to go for at least a few years, if not more. Rotating and re-sterilizing will keep that going.

Boiling water does not remove contamination in the water. Some filters will remove some things, but not everything.

Pool water, for example, is a problem due to the build up of heavy metals and such due to evaporation, pure water leaves, the rest remains.

You can make a solar still to get just the water, but pure distilled water can be an issue in terms of drinking, but can be mixed with other water.

It is a good idea to have a book on survival skills. Instead of storing water, you can use a clear trash bag and a rock to collect water from trees, but need to change branches or you will kill the tree.