Your Long Term Water Storage – It May Eventually Run Out – Then What?


Do you have water set aside for long term water storage? That’s great!!

It is higher level preparedness to go beyond just a case or two of bottled water – to having a serious quantity of long term water storage.

It is also a potentially dangerous presumption that your water storage will be enough.

Here’s why, and what to consider:


Long Term Water Storage – Finite

Any long term water storage that you have will eventually run out! And it may happen sooner than you think once you start using it!

This is the typical amount of water that people consume each day. Check it, and come back to read more about what to do:

The Average Gallons Of Water People Consume Each Day

During a serious long lasting emergency where water is scarce, people will conserve (they’ll have to!). But I just wanted to point out how much water is consumed during ‘normal’ times.

Don’t get me wrong – I’ve written plenty of articles advocating the importance of having some stored water for drinking and other uses (the more the better).

But the fact is that if a disaster scenario runs on beyond the time frame of your water storage / usage, then you’re SOL until you replenish it. Then what?

Towns and city region municipalities may store millions of gallons of water in ‘long term’ storage tanks for day-to-day use. The thing is, how long will it last? It needs to be constantly replenished or it will run dry. What if they can’t?


How To Replenish Water Storage

If you already have stored some water for ‘just in case’, the next thing you need to do is figure out WHERE and HOW you will replenish it. Make an assumption that you will not be replenishing it from your faucet tap! (worst case scenario – just in case)

A replenish-able water source should be a priority for higher level preparedness.

This is next-level ‘survival preparedness’ thinking. It’s not just about having jugs of stored water or a 55-gallon water barrel filled and ready (which is great!). Think outside the box. Stored water is only for relatively short term emergencies.

Finding, sourcing, hauling, replenishing and purifying water is NOT going to be easy (unless you live on a lake or on a river). Water is heavy and transporting it from your nearest natural source may not be easy at all.

If you have your own well and an alternative energy source to power your well pump, then you’re in good shape (EMP may create issues though). Otherwise you will have to look for it. A stream, river, pond, lake, rainwater capture, etc..

How far away is your nearest water source? If you have no fuel, no working motorized vehicle (again, worst case), will you be able to transport it back to your home?

Do you have a heavy duty cart or wagon and containers to haul it back?

The simple (but very important) point I’m trying to make here is this:

If you’re going beyond just ordinary general preparedness, think about what it would take or what you may have to do to REPLENISH if the stores aren’t open for business or the power is out long term…

Especially WATER!

Research and find a few nearby water sources. And then get what you need to be able to haul it back and then purify it for safe drinking!

Read more: The Smallest Berkey Countertop Tabletop Water Filter

Read more: Articles on Water Filters

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  1. Best option we have at the moment is to start pulling water from our pond. Filter and treat it.

    1. That’s great – having a pond nearby!

      One major issue for those in that position is to consider how far away that pond is – and how the water will be transported back to the house.

      Water is heavy. And there will likely be a good number of trips to get more… (under worst-case scenario conditions)

      1. I have rigged up a small 12v pump i had from a old sprayer, will pump about 8gpm from the pond up to my deck, abou a 28’ lift, wont break any records but is way better than carrying it. Used a 100’ 1/4” air hose to try it out, was all a Mckgiver job, but it worked

    2. I’m with you. One reason we bought the property that we did was the pond on the property. We still have plenty of stored water tho. The pond would be a last resort along with catching and purifying rain water (or snow).

  2. Our town has a water tower like that pictured; with an overnight low of minus 38 F I wonder how vulnerable they are to freezing.

  3. I’ll just push the Gators aside, throw my bucket in, and haul the water out of my pond – to be filtered, purified, containerized.
    What could possibly go wrong ?

  4. We have about 200 gallons stored. We also have barrels that our gutters run into. We normally use this to water the garden but in a bad situation we could purify it for drinking.

  5. My major concern when I purchased my Berkey was to have the ability to use surface ground water for drinking without worry. I think this is where the Berkey really shines. My plan includes prefiltering water from ponds through a five gallon bucket stuffed with cheese cloth to remove as much of the particulate matter before filtering through the Berkey.

    I keep a 305gal water container/cistern mounted on a platform about 30″ off the ground, with a water valve at the bottom, filled with co-op water at all times. This will cover my five current occupants’ drinking water requirements for a full month (2 gallons a day each). Two months if rationed at one gallon each per day. I have three springs, but the closest to the house is about a hundred feet lower elevation and 150 yards from the house. I have partially developed it, with a pipe that streams water out at about a gallon per minute. Worst case scenario would entail each one to fetch their own water daily in buckets/jugs. I have drank this water straight out of the pipe numerous times with no ill effect.

    I also have the guttering and pipe on hand for replenishing the cistern with rain water off the roof. This will pose it’s own problems though, due to being surrounded by trees. Leaves and other debris will have to be contended with.

    While I have only one small pond on the property, surrounding neighbors have ponds of varying sizes that are spring fed. Locating water sources will not be a problem for me, but transporting it might.

    1. Dennis
      I have seen a plug that goes into the down pipes on the gutters on Pinterest which keeps the leaves & other debris from entering into a water catchment.
      Your roof will determine if it is safe to drink, composition roofing is good for other things besides drinking. I would be concerned due to the oils in the shingle materials, no I am not an expert but we have this catchment system an I personally would not consume the water in those tanks.
      If you have metal roofing then you would be on good footing for purification of that water.

      1. My aunt was on a cistern and when the rain began she would go around the house and put her homemade filters on the gutters. This how the cistern was filled with water.

    2. Dennis
      If you know of spring feed ponds then you should have the larger pvc pipe (& parts) for water transfer. I have seen a ram pump that is hand primed for pressure which would assist with the moving of the spring water to your place. fyi

  6. I’ve printed maps from several sources to show where the nearest supply is at home, the BOL and a stop or two in-between. I’m working on a rain catchment as well. We have practiced using the deer cart and the 5gl military jugs in sneaking in and transporting it back from the creek with overwatch. We plan on most of it at night.
    We’ve got 2 of the caged 250gl tanks with one that has a garden hose attachment. # 65gl open top barrels, 1 non potable barrel 30gl, 7 of the 5 gl jugs and several other smaller sources until then.

  7. When we drilled our well in the desert, we installed a Simple Pump. The great thing about this is that we can hand pump the water from the well into the pressure tank and still have running water at the house. The not so great thing is that in the desert this is the only guaranteed water source. So what happens if it breaks or the water goes away. We would have to rig a water collection system from the roof. And currently it is illegal to collect rain water in our county!!

    1. Set up the rainwater system, with all the pieces and tanks, but leave it disconnected for use in an emergency. Use the tanks right now to collect and store water from your well, but keep all the pieces necessary to transition.

      1. Great idea. We could actually set it up to look like it is draining to the ground and instead divert it to an underground tank.

  8. Good food (water) for thought, so to speak.

    Water crises happen all the time in the US, all alone all around the world, but let’s bring it home for a second. How many times in the last 5 years have we heard of a contaminated water system around the Country? How many times has the EPM polluted a river near you? How many times do we hear of Flint Michigan’s lead piping? Heck people, even here in the Four Corners we get “Boil your Water warnings”, nice huh? Makes ya wonder if turds are going to start pop out of the faucet?

    My friends this does not need to be an EOTWAWKI situation. Maybe the water out is just for a month or so. Now yes, if it’s localized the .gov would truck in water (remember the same ones that took 5 days to get water to the Super Dome) or people would have time to drive to 7-11 and but water at 5 times the norm.

    So, how about worst case, POOF, the world goes to hell, and the .gov is taking care of itself (most likely).

    I agree with Ken (yes I do that at times) one had better have a way to take care of themselves, God knows you had better NOT depend on someone else to do so, FEMA will be trying to take care of the Cities and major population areas, the Red-Cross and other organizations will be doing the same.

    So is having a plan such a bad idea? Do YOU have a plan for flushing that nasty toilet a couple of times a day (depending on the number of people in your household? How about the wife or daughter that needs extra needs/water at that time?

    Ok enough old-man, get to the point; My plan is simple, I have 50 cases (24 pack) of bottled water stored (and yes I rotate the stock all the time, and it’s stored correctly), I also have several 55 gallon barrels for Gray Water/Rain water. I also have a “Tote” full and mounted on a trailer that can be pulled by almost any running equipment, even the lawn mower I have stored in a Conex (EMP Proof) to the very close Lake or the Orange River. Also have the filtering system to handle needed consumable water (no need to purify water for the toilet ya know).

    BUT I also know the best laid plans WILL go all to hell after the first 10 seconds, so I have a couple of 5 gallon buckets and a pair of boots for that walk to the nearest water and haul it back using a Shoulder Yoke, AND take a S-S-S & wash the wardrobe when there, downstream of course.

  9. 50 gallon water barrels (5) and lots of gallon jugs wouldn’t last too long. I do have the three tanks fed by water catchment from the roof. I figure that would last the two of us up to six months if used carefully. I need to rig a fill spout on the tanks so they can be filled from the hose more easily if that becomes necessary.

    If enforcement wasn’t an issue, as a last resort I could dig through concrete and asphalt in the business development next door and tap into the stream that they “contained” so they could build a subdivision here. The storm drains are another option. Because they’ve built city over much of the watershed, the water is contained and runs through the storm drains. It seems to run pretty constantly, although I don’t know whether that’s because of sprinkler overflow during the summer.

  10. I am going to build a houseboat and move it to lake Michigan. I will be long gone before it runs dry.

  11. Our current plan is to bug-in. We clean and save our 2 Lt. soda bottles and fill them with distilled water. We then keep these bottles in the root cellar. We also have a very large water storage tank for daily use. I like the 2 Lt. bottles because they are easy to move and work with. If we have to bug-out they fit in those empty spaces when packing the vehicles.

    1. Left Coast;
      Please research a little on drinking “Distilled Water”, a little is not a problem, but drinking only Distilled Water can be.

  12. About 15 years ago I put in a 25x15x6 foot koi pond. Around 2012, got a Berkey filter just so I can now use this water for my local back up. Now instead of looking at the pond thinking how nice it looks, I just tell the fish, “Someday I may need to eat you; just not today.” 40 plus fish between 1.5 and 2 foot long. If they can live in the water, with a little filtering, we should be able to eat and drink our way to the bottom. Then again, new plan is to be long gone before I ever need to use the pond. Maybe someone will be smart enough to find it. Just know, I will not be leaving the Berkey.(smile)

      1. NRP: Cant remember the last time I ate carp (about what koi are), but thinking about it made me come up with many other provisions. My BOL has wild brook trout, deer, elk, and turkeys. I think the koi are safe from my hands. However, I’ll take the rice in a chicken soup or venison goulash. Cheers.

  13. We have a counter top Berkey, a 8000 gal cistern under house, a dugout near house, a shallow well with electric pump plus a back up hand pump in storage plus a dug out that is only used for cattle 1/4 mi. away. We also get quite a bit of snow in the winter which we can count on for at least 5-6 mo. This we can melted next to the wood heater or melted in a 45 gal. cast iron kettle which is set up in yard with a home made fire box (burns wood) under it. Cistern takes water off roof but also pumped from well or hauled from community well to make sure it is full at freeze up.. Think we are good to go but never can be sure if water table drops which it does periodically.

    1. +1 for the cistern under the house! I have 3 cisterns currently unused in back of the home we purchased. Used to be the water source for house with water from pond on prop. When time allows, will uncover them all and determine capacity and reroute at least half of roof run-off to them. Heck if we don’t ever need it for the house it will be a welcome source for garden water if we have a dry year!

    2. For what it’s worth on the subject of underground cisterns. If you did not install them yourself, or know for sure the history of it’s use, be sure to inspect it closely. Many older rural homes had underground cisterns for storing water originally, but many of those cisterns were turned into convenient septic tanks when folks got indoor plumbing and better or more reliable sources of water, then later abandoned them for better waste management systems. Not trying to rain on anybody’s parade, just a word of caution. My brother’s home has one that he discovered has that history.

      1. Thanks, Dennis!
        This is why I like this site so much: To glean other folks outlook over what I may post. I never even thought about alternate uses over the years! I know one of mine still has water in it about half full and still has water line into basement. 2nd one was filled with bricks by previous owner when he broke down an old fireplace. The last one I still have to locate the access to and is still a mystery. Obviously I need to put some serious thought and cleaning before use of them. On the septic system- same one has been in use since home was built. Inspected and pumped regularly.
        Thanks again Dennis

  14. Surface water; lake, ponds, creeks, gulleys, etc. are readily available to me. One, a small pond, is close enough to pump the water to my home. That is of course, assuming a “protected” 12 vdc pump and the solar/battery system to power the pump. One would need the piping and fittings to make this work. Do ya have them?

    How many of us have actually worked with surface water? It is quite dirty. Lots of sediment and mystery materials floating in and on the water. I cannot see through the brown water. It smells bad. In younger days, I often swam and seined bait in creeks and ponds. Trust me, you won’t feel clean if you bathe in it.

    I guess that means filtering at this point. I would think some type of pre-filter would be required. A homemade barrel with layers of gravel, sand, charcoal, whatever you could come up with. After all, your berkey or whatever filter would clog very quickly with straight surface water. Things to think about.

    My grandfather was in the pump and well business his whole life. I worked with him when I was young. I was the “go-getter” and manual labor part of the equation. I recall a system he designed and we built, for a customer of his.

    I hand dug a rectangular hole in the ground approx. 25 feet from the edge of a large pond. The plan was to form and pour a concrete box open on one end. We then formed and poured a trench to near the edge of the pond. We placed a small sandpoint horizontally in the bottom of the box and piped it up to above the ground. We filled the box and concrete trench with sand. I then dug out the ground between the pond and the trench. This allowed the pond water to flow into the trench and box filled with sand.

    We put a pitcher pump on the pipe and I was amazed at how clean the water was that came out. I seriously doubt it was fit to drink, but it sure looked clean. A little filtering from that point would be easy to accomplish with a berkey or similar system. I’m sure there are better ways to do something like that. I just know it was done with a shovel and concrete and sand. This was in the mid 1970’s. I still think about my grandpa and what I learned from him.

    I plan to use a dc deep well pump in my (245′) cased well. I keep the 24vdc pump in a faraday cage. I have the fittings and 1/2″ pec piping to hook it up. You must use small pipe as the pump cannot handle the weight of the water if using larger pipe. Also a check valve for half-way to the top will help with that issue. This pump is powered directly from 2 100 watt solar panels. No battery needed. It pumps when there is enough sun light and doesn’t pump when there isn’t. These pumps are low volume, less than 2 gpm. I can make that work.

    There are many ways to solve the water problem. No one solution will work for every situation. If you are thinking you’ll use surface water, you had better have some serious filtration figured out. Just buying a couple extra berkey filters isn’t going to work well.

    1. @ plainsmedic, what you just described is a slow sand filter design, or a modification of one. I believe both london and warsaw use them for municipal water, they are quite effective at filtering pathogens out. It’s one of the more interesting things to look at on the internet, search for ‘slow sand filter’

  15. 10 55gl drums filled with 2 more set up to take water from the roof. About 40 1 gl bottles in the house plus a half dozen 6 gl water jugs along with 4-5 cases of bottled water depending on the week. 4 lifestraws and two setups to turn 5 gl buckets into filters. have another drip filter which I don’t remember the brand of but it is gravity fed and I think it is made by lifestraw also. canal about 1/4 mile from the house and multiple ponds and small lakes within a 5 mile radius so I could most likly move about 20 gl at a time from them with a wheel barrow and jugs

  16. Water is not a problem for me. The city I live in is right on a lake/river system. Very good, clear water. Still needs filtering or boiling to be safe. The problem is, as already been said here, transporting it home. That’s where the work comes in. It’s about a mile or so to the water, and if nothing is working, it will have to be toted home somehow. and it’s all up hill to my house. Well, if I feel tired or lazy, I have a 250 gal. fish pond I built, in my yard. Have to filter that good though. I would probably try to save that for the garden, and use it for drinking as a last resort.

    1. BigBadCat;
      One thing you might add into the equation, People.
      How many of those around you will be wanting that water that you brought home for them????

    2. BigBadCat,
      “Water is not a problem for me.” Really

      I urge you to reconsider your situation. The water is a mile or so from your home. How fast do you walk while pushing a wheel barrow or pulling a cart? I’m guessing maybe 2 mph, and I think that’s optimistic. So you are dedicating a bare minimum of an hour just to walk there and back. Then the time to gather the water. Then the time to filter / boil, and then bottle the water. Consider the time for gathering firewood / fuel to do the boiling.

      I’m guessing you could only handle around 20 gallons at a time, 8.3 x 20 equals heavy. Consider your security while gathering water and how many people you need to gather water for. Looks like you will be dedicating a large bit of time and effort everyday, for water.

      I’m not trying to pick on you. I’m only asking that you reconsider your comment, “Water is not a problem for me.” I’m rooting for ya! I’m sure my plans for water could use some improvement as well. As NRP noted watch out for those who would steal your labor and your water. Kinda hard to be armed and ready with both hands on a cart or wheelbarrow.

      Kinda what this blog is about. Figuring out our weaknesses and better ways to deal with them. Lots of good ideas on this topic. I need to work on rain collection.

      1. Plainsmedic, Your comment is exactly the type of thinking I was hoping for with this article. Thinking about the logistical and physical problems that people will have (which will vary) with sourcing and transportation (and security as has been suggested).

        It’s good to think about this, and is certainly critically important for worst-case preparedness.

  17. I have a 220 gal tank buried with one side of the house gutters 110 feet worth with leaf covers running into it.1/4 inch rain on my 8/12 pitch roof will fill it. We use it for garden but could filter it and purify.would like to put bigger tank in line for overflow. It is 15 feet from basement door.

  18. The well came in at 15 plus gallons a minute. Has a giant new old time anti freeze hand pump. Delivers water pumping up and down. The water is what we call a black Sulphur. However after 24 hours all of the stuff falls to the bottom of the bucket and what is left is very clear smell free water which will be filtered through the Berkey. Sulphur gas dissipates and the smell is gone. We also keep a lot of clean sand, small pebbles, charcoal of the correct size and cotton etc for filtering if necessary. Bought a Berkey Light and put it in storage in case we end up with family. On septic so flushing is no issue. Just need to up the TP!

    1. Mrs. USMCBG,
      That is a pretty good well. I would suggest you get a water analysis done, not just the ones to check for bacteria. You want to see what dissolved solids/chemicals/elements are in that water that you can’t see. Compare this to your Berkey specs to make sure you can filter out all the harmful ones like arsenic, and heavy metals. If it can’t you might want to look into a reverse osmosis system to make it drinkable. Had a client that had a beautiful well and sparkling clean water. You drank a glass and you would get sick as heck. We did the water analysis, you would not believe the levels of heavy metals that were in it. just my thoughts and concerns to keep you safe.

      1. Thanks it is on the agenda. The tester is in Nashville and the water has to fresh and in the containers they gave us.

  19. For hauling water check out the Hippo Water Roller. Also, from Arizona comes the parts but not the barrel for building your own water roller. The name is SafeSIPP.

    Stay frosty.

    1. That’s neat but I don’t think it will work for me in my terrain. Still it’s interesting

  20. Three days without water and I think my greenhouse will die. I bought a bilge pump ($25), found a huge 400 gallon container, and will be purchasing eaves troughing for the greenhouse. Details still to be worked out.

  21. Oops! That may have been litres not gallons. It is an industrial plastic container that came surrrounded with aluminum rails and is slightly raised so a forklift can get under it. It came from a pulp mill where they usually throw them out. I checked the numbers on it to see if it was toxic.

    1. Skeezix
      If it is about 4 x 4 x 4 it will be the tote that holds either the 275 gal or 300 gal. We have two of them, for back up water supplies.

  22. Rainwater collection doesn’t have to be fancy for those on a budget. Kiddie pools do nicely. A tarp in the bed of a pickup does well too. I catch mine off the carport roof just by pulling forward. 5 gallon buckets at the corners of the roof. The ice chest you ain’t using and mist have a handy drain plug. Just elevate it on blocks or a chair to pour in a smaller container.

  23. Reading comments here brings up a thought. Might be good foresight to identify other sources of water,even better to run some tests of that water prior to SHTF. Even some basic DIY water tests bought online would give you an idea what you are dealing with, and if your planned treatment process if going to be good enough.

    1. Minerjim;
      Actually that would/could be a MAJOR problem…
      Exactly how contaminated is that water from over there —->
      AND how to treat it once you dumped into your containers?

      1. NRp,
        yup, have seen a lot of water that looked real clean, but had nitrates/nitrites and who knows what else in it that would be difficult to treat well enough to make drinkable. Either you have your alternate sources tested ahead of time and know how to treat them, or have systems available to treat anything that comes your way.(I am thinking an RO system and a multi-staged distillation system.)

    2. Minerjim
      Good idea.
      Makes me leary to drink of a water source even though the water has been treated to the best of my/our ability.
      And what’s worse, your talking now, not what could be in a selected water source after shtf.

  24. 101 to 115 inches (8-1/2 to 9-1/2 feet) of rain per year average depending on the source. Rains every month.

    Back property line is the river. Across the road a few hundred feet is the creek. On my list is a solar outdoor fountain pump to lift creek water over the bank to trickle down to house in hoses, provided neighbor who owns the property approves. Creek is 6-1/2 feet higher than the front yard.

    Currently barn/shop/carport and house roofs drain into hugelkultur-like beds to reduce flooding in the back pasture. If livestock operation comes into being, then will look to divert to tanks/cisterns for stock. First of probably a few kiddie pools and cover arrived this week. Will set up near some garden beds and capture water from a house downspout. A pool 8 feet across with 3-1/3 feet of water in it holds 1,300 gallons.

    Have a 1,500 gallon water tank filled with well water, and a deep well with good water. Just this week got a manual pump, like the one my grandma had at her farm, that fits the well and can pull from 55 feet.

    Case of pool shock is stashed away.

    Picked up buckets, oil drain pans, and dish pans at the dollar store. To help conserve water as need arises will be able to set up hand and dish washing stations.

    A variety of options is a blessing.

    They’re calling for rough weather and snow, maybe a few minutes’ worth, maybe five days, forecast changes every hour. Picked up a couple extra cases of bottled water yesterday, JIC the power is out this next week.

    1. Anony Mee
      8-1/2 to 9-1/2 feet ????
      Holy CRAPO…. That’s how many INCHES of rain I get a year… HAHAHA

      1. Hi NRP

        There’s a couple places in our 49th and 50th states that get more, and a handful of locations here in the PNW. We also get 4 inches of snow a year on average. Still waiting for the first few flakes of this year.

        Until the next mass glaciation I think we’re good for water here.

    2. Oh and BTW the tank cost $699 after a $200 discount. The kiddie pool was $49 through Ken’s Amazon link. If it works, it’s kiddie pools in the future for me. Some neighbors have a large above ground pool they got on sale last year for around $350. It holds all the neighbor kids and their moms on warm days and their 3,800 gallons of reserve water the rest of the time.

      1. Anony MEE ,,,,,,use caution with the kiddy pool the plastic is most likely not safe for food grade use. I can get food grade totes ,,the food processor I work with some times will give them to me just to get rid of them or very reasonable. 275 gal ,, had honey in them ,need cleaned ,,, but that’s easy ,,also food grade 30and 55 gal barrels from pie filling ,

  25. About six months back, we had a well drilled on our new property. It cost a little more because we went for an artisan well.
    Living in Florida this is possible, 4″ well flows at 20 gallons a minute.
    And is below the surface aqua field. The water is actually pretty good, and we don’t need a place pump.
    So the big berk, is about all we need just to make it perfect.

  26. This is the one area I am most comfortable with when it comes to my preparedness. We installed a 2000 gallon underground cistern when we moved in and a simple pump on our well head. I have a rain catchment system set up to install under the gutters that run off our metal roof if needed. And last, worst case scenario we have a large lake about a half mile from the house. I have (3) 55 gallon drums of water in the garage for quick use and a Berkey and pool shock on standby. I’m also pretty thankful for the 25 gallon water reservoir on the back of the wood cook stove that will be mighty nice if/when we need hot water. Now to keep on keeping on with the other improvements to our self-sufficiency.

  27. We’re pretty lucky.
    A creek, two spring feed ponds on the property and a river a quarter mile away. All would definitely need filtered and treated for drinking. All other uses no prob.
    Depending on the circumstances, there is a spring water booth about 9 miles away…
    Charges 25 cents a gallon. Shuts down in the winter.
    Another project is to set up a water collection at the cabin. Has a steel roof unlike the other buildings that are shingled.

  28. Water was a priority when we bought our place.We are on a year round creek that is about 20 feet wide. Our house is 150 feet away from the creek . Walking the property ,I found a small year round spring, that was a real bonus and runs pretty strong .Our well puts out 18 gpm and our rainfall is about 18″ annually. We have 150 gallons stored in the basement for emergency and we have a Berkey for the creek/spring water.
    One big concern is watering the garden during crunch time .No garden no eat !

    1. PVC piping from the springs water source to your garden. If you check around you may find used water tanks that can be filled from this spring for your garden via the pvc line. It will require several shut off valves for the project but the tanks can be filled from the bottom up.

  29. Topic gives me ideas,,,wonder what it would take to sell water ?,,maybe a APC ,with a tank for water in tow ,all kidding aside might be a money maker ,,lemonade any one ?,,,,one gallon of diesel fuel will pump 5000 gallons of water out of my well ,,got to be a way to make a profit on this

    1. Hey there oldhomesteader

      Saw it all over places I worked. Some sold bulk water (literally BYOB), others sold recycled plastic bottles of water. Would certainly be a possibility in areas where FEMA is short staffed, short supplied, a very long distance away, or simply not there. Such a convenience would allow one to focus time and effort on other priorities.

      When I worked for Peace Corps, staff visited the Volunteers in their villages every few weeks. I collected 1/2, 1, and 2 liter plastic bottles, cleaned and disinfected them, and froze them full of clean water. Sent coolers full of them out with the teams. Took the big ones a while to thaw. A drink of cold water was a treat in the tropics. A labor of love for me; I was very fond of our PCVs.

    2. Oldhomesteader,
      Joking aside, I believe having access to potable water would be invaluable. I am very fortunate and have a great well. It’s kinda luck of the draw. Nothing I did, just fortunate. Others in my area have put in wells that were not fit for cattle or other livestock. Many are very salty.

      I would think providing potable water to neighbors would certainly gain some good will. A few have horses and small wagons for the horses to pull (buck-boards?) Especially if I convinced everyone how COMPLICATED my system is. Might improve my personal security, if I’m the only one who knows how to do it. A few junk switches and dials along with lots of wire will cause most people’s eyes to glaze over.

      I’d provide it free to my neighbors, as it is the right thing to do. Who knows when I’ll need their help with something. Most of my neighbors probably have their own water solutions figured out.

      Would be a great barter item.

  30. Yeah wonder who will be guarding the bridge down by the river while pumping water to sell?

  31. On an artesian well, working with neighbor on a flo jack system, his well or mine wouldn’t matter. Dug well 20 feet from the house, always has water available for irrigation. stock pond on the back lot…never seen that dry either. Was digging a hole for a friends old dog that passed away and at 3.5 to 4 feet water was running in, so we are thinking about developing that this summer…so I guess we are pretty well set as far as that goes.

  32. Our annual rain and snowfall leave us with plenty of moisture to harvest from our tin roof. The year we had a drought, our newly created pond filled within a couple weeks and held the water – lots of underground springs. Additionally, we multiple creeks and a deep well and hope to make a second artesian well. Lots of water stored too. The 330 gallon storage tanks are readily available here for water storage, but they do have a shelf life, especially when used outside in the sun. I really like the 5 gallon white water containers from EE.

    We recently purchased a second option to pump water from the deep well in emergency situation. Our water is all on our property and close by but we would still remain vigilant if the situation ever became dire.

    Multiple water filters and Pool Shock stand ready, along with coffee filters to pre-filter water. Actually, we have been using one of the water filters now because the house water here became questionable from the town source. Deep well is used for the farmstead; the house is on town water.

  33. (Your Long Term Water Storage May Eventually Run Out.)

    Very unlikely, so much so that I don’t give it a thought.

    I live in the Toledo Ohio area and the problem is too much water, not a shortage of it. I’m almost 60-years old and I never remember there being any kind of water shortage here. My Dad is 91 and he doesn’t remember a water shortage.

    I have several filters to filter water so I can always have good water on hand.

    Lots of rivers, streams that flow to The Great Lakes (Lake Erie is a few miles away.) There are also ponds all over.

    I don’t even store much water because it’s all over the place. There is a creek 200-yards away that has always been full of water.

    1. Also it rains a LOT so rain collection is easy. And the water table is 5 to 10-feet down, a sand point well could easily be driven into the ground in a day. I have the sand point head and a hand pump, only need a section of pipe to make it complete.

    2. Sounds like you’re in a great spot for ‘just in case’. Your only potential issue would be transportation method of the water back and forth to your home (buckets/containers/storage and the transportation itself).

  34. I have four 86 gal pressure tanks plumbed into my well system. It gives me about 120 gal of water storage that is freshened every time the well turns on. My propane generator will run my pump and it takes 4 minutes to fill the pressure tanks. The other advantage to this setup is the well doesn’t cycle on and off as much which adds to the life of the pump and uses less electricity because starting the pump requires more energy than running it

      1. I have a 2 inch pipe manifold from the well feed with reducer tee’s to 11/4 in to the tanks. The tee’s to the tanks are plumbed with shutoff valves and unions so I can replace a tank without shutting off the system. the pressure switch is mounted on the 2 in manifold. Another tip for people with wells is I run a 3/4in pipe vertical about a foot than reduce to mount the pressure switch and another for the pressure gauge. That way the switch and gauge have air against them instead of water so they last longer.

        1. plainsroamer: Thank you for that tip on the pressure gauge. The pump on the pond runs year round. After hard winters, the gauge quits working and will need to be replaced. I will be elbowing it up and adding a foot this year. Thank you.

  35. All the crying bout container types!!
    Didn’t we grow up drinking from the garden hose, gulping in lake water while being dunked, drinking from aluminum scout canteens and mimicking the dog drinking as a toddler!?!
    I didn’t die from that and I ain’t gonna fall apart now from BPs, metals and whatever’s.
    If I’m drinking these alternate sources of water I’m not looking for perfect health living forever. I’m looking to stay alive today.
    Y’all gotta let that snowflake health guru stuff go.

    1. Matt in Oklahoma,

      Got to agree (to a certain extent). Many of the “studies” that result in folks being terrified about exposure to certain chemicals/materials involved exposure to amounts that would take several life times to duplicate in real life.

      Years ago, in this area where I now live, the state conducted water analysis on several shallow wells, discovering off the charts levels of arsenic in the ground water. This was naturally occurring arsenic due to the fact it’s a remote area that has never had any industry or any chemical dumping. The state advised all the residents to stop consuming the water and were on the verge of declaring a state of emergency. That is, until someone pointed out the fact that the folks that had drink this water their entire life had a life were well into their 90’s. A check revealed most residents had a life expectancy ten years longer than the national average.

      I’m convinced that many “government sponsored studies” have the intent of “herding the masses” to embrace certain government approved/preferred lifestyles. We are carbon based, yet have been propagandized to hate carbon. Why? For our well being, or because of hatred of the oil industry by elements of our population?

      1. I would hafta say something has changed. My friends and I drank from high mountain streams and lakes. Now, however, my friends drinking from the same water sources have all gotten Giardia. What has changed? Bigger world population, more tourists from the city who do not know how to bury their dookies? More animals? I do not know. But I have learned from my friends 40 years later…..something changed and the water is not safe without purification.

        1. Pegasus;
          I would have to add, not only has the water sources changes.
          But food supplies and just about any other things one can think of.
          Remember when one could go out and “Play” all day on the weekends and come home after dark?
          The world is not the place I grew up, that’s for sure.

  36. Ken,

    For water we are covered. 10 storage barrels plus 3 more barrels in water bottles, gutter system, outside water pumps on deep wells.

    However: Personally, I am interested in removing water from sump pumps when there is an EMP or any long term lack of electricity when the sump pump will not work. The only solutions that i have found is a generator. Secondly hand pumping out the basement window, which does not sound fun. Thirdly, we have a 12 volts gas/oil pump that could be used for as long as the battery would keep up.

    It is a 3.5′ from sump to pipe that would lead to the outside as currently installed or 5′ to the window.

    1. you might try an in line automotive fuel pump, they use a lot less battery than a transfer pump but will pump a lot of water. A small solar panel will keep your battery charged for intermittent use. I used one to pump sampling wells and it would lift water about 40ft. Just be sure to place an in line filter in front of it as any particle of dirt will kill a rotary vane pump.

  37. SW Washington. 15 miles inland, we get a lot of rain Oct to July. Then the creek level drops to isolated pools, with only a trickle between them. Metal roof on the garage would provide much needed water through the downspout diverters. I don’t have a source close by for food safe wire caged tanks, so I have two 55 gal food safe barrels. I also have (30) 1 gal water jugs and (6) 5 gallon water cooler jugs, also many cases of bottled water bottles. Our well has good water and could be run by our bi-fuel generator(gas/lpg), 800 gal lpg in an underground tank would last for several years unless the ice age comes. I have a dairy filter funnel that has paper disk filters over mesh in the bottom to use with 15 lbs of activated charcoal. This would be in line with a slow sand filter that is easy to build and can take really gross water from a lake or creek, even mud puddles. Lots of pool shock on hand, along with buckets, fittings and Berkey candles for more filtration. I like the idea of a solar outdoor fountain pump for the creek if it can pump high enough. Thank you for that, one of my problems to work out. Sanitization of water is important, heavy metals not so much. Remember all of the deaths during our settlement due to “bad water”. Lots of good info here, and I have 3 items I have to research and work out.

  38. Best to live in Florida, near a pure spring, which has been flowing about 15 thousand years…and where it does not snow….and where there is so much edible food in the forest and marshes…

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