One of the best tools in a prepper’s arsenal is knowing how to purify water to make it safe for drinking and cooking. Clean water is essential for good health, and it’s something many of us take for granted. If you are in a situation where your access to clean running water is limited, or completely shut off, you are going to have to have an alternative.
Obviously, having a well stocked cellar with bottles and bottles of clean water is ideal, but many of us don’t have that ability. What if the water ran out? What if you had to leave your home? How would you purify water on the go- or if you were living at a campsite or temporary location?
Most people would suggest carrying water purification tablets in your emergency kit or bug out bag, which is the easiest way to make your water safe if you run out of clean water. However you also need to plan how you would do it if you ran out of those tablets, or they were expired – something that can very likely happen if you don’t rotate your emergency supplies often.
Another popular product used to purify water is chlorine bleach. While many have great success with it, the problem is that bleach doesn’t have a super long shelf life – a year in normal storage conditions – so it’s not the best long term purifier to keep on hand if you don’t think you will use it before it expires.
One of the lesser known products to purify water is pool shock. Yes, you read that correctly, pool shock. The pool treatment powder made from calcium hypochlorite that keeps your backyard pool sparkling clean is something you may want to consider stockpiling for water purification. And here’s the great news… it’s about to hit clearance racks across the country as people shut their pools down before cold weather arrives. Late summer and early fall is the perfect time to grab a bunch of pool shock at rock bottom prices!
Why pool shock? Well, it has a longer shelf life – no real expiration date according to some – so it’s a very viable option to stockpile in a long term emergency kit – which may not get used for years. It comes in small packaging, which means it also stores easily and won’t take up much room.
Here are the basic steps to use pool shock to sanitize water. You will actually make a concentrated solution that in turn is used in small amounts to sanitize larger amounts of water.
The actual amount of pool shock to use per gallon of water to make the solution varies depending on what you read. Some experts suggest 1 teaspoon, while others suggest up to 2 teaspoons can be used per gallon of water to make the concentrate. You add the shock into the gallon of water, and make sure it dissolves. It will probably smell a little like chlorine bleach, this is normal. Be sure to write the proportions on the side of the storage container so you know how much to use when you need to make it again.
Once you have your concentrate made – you would use about 2/3 of an ounce to sanitize one gallon of water. Mix it thoroughly in the water to dissolve. If your water still has a “bleachy” smell, you can get rid of that by transferring it a few times between containers. This should get rid of the smell.
While not something you would want to reach for right away to purify water – you would probably want to try and stockpile as much drinking water as possible, then stockpile treatment tablets – but this is a good thing to have on hand that will work if you have nothing else. You definitely want to read up on the different variations of concentrate solutions before making your own, and you may want to try it several times before you are forced to rely on it for survival.
Have you ever used pool shock to purify drinking water?