By Chris Andrews

May 26, 2024

Water storage is essential for preparedness, ensuring that you have access to a vital resource in times of need, so it is also essential that the water is in good condition and drinkable without risk of bringing on illness. As we look into how to achieve this you may find yourself wondering if you’d ever think you’d ask yourself “how to store water long term properly using bleach”!

As we focus on effective water storage techniques, it’s important to understand the various methods available and recognize the importance of selecting the right containers and preparation procedures. Tailoring these methods to large-scale storage options, like a 35-gallon tank, requires attention to detail. When using unscented bleach for treatment, the proper dosage is crucial to making the water safe without leaving an overpowering taste.

Key Takeaways

Effective water storage options and treatment methods are crucial for ensuring a safe water supply.

Proper cleaning and preparation of new water containers prevent contamination.

Using the correct amount of unscented bleach is essential for safe water without altering taste.

In preserving your water supply, cleanliness of the container cannot be overstated. New storage tanks must be thoroughly rinsed to remove manufacturing residues before they are filled. The process not only involves cleaning but also securing the tanks in suitable locations that can support their substantial weight. This step is as crucial as the water treatment method itself to ensure a safe, long-lasting supply.

Significance of Proper Hydration Reservoirs

Water is a crucial resource for survival, and its storage is paramount. Like us, many peoplw will consider getting a 35-gallon storage tank, but it can quickly become apparent to understand how to maintain a clean water supply. There are several approaches to purifying and storing water, from treating with household bleach to utilizing filtration systems.

  • Chemical Treatment: For large reserves of water, unscented bleach is a reliable additive. Employing a ratio of four to six drops of bleach per gallon is typically sufficient—for instance, five drops per gallon for a 35-gallon tank, equating to roughly two tablespoons. Remember, this treatment is applicable for non-potable water as well and is safe when diluted correctly.

  • Filtration: If deriving water from natural sources, such as ponds or creeks, it’s essential to filter out any contaminants. While regular household filters can perform adequately for smaller quantities, for substantial amounts, a large-scale water filter is advisable. A high-quality filter is crucial for processing and ensuring the purity of larger water volumes effectively.

Tank Preparation: Prior to utilization, new tanks should be rinsed to remove any residual plastic shavings, ensuring the water remains uncontaminated. Performing this rinse process three times can help ensure cleanliness. Additionally, it’s critical to store these tanks in a robust area, as a fully loaded 35-gallon tank can weigh around 300 pounds.

Usage and Maintenance: Tanks are equipped with features such as an o-ring for sealing and a pressure relief valve to handle temperature-induced pressure fluctuations. This not only maintains water integrity but also ensures the longevity of the storage unit.

When selecting storage solutions for your utility area, consider stackable options for space efficiency. For substantial discounts on water tanks, promotional codes are often available.

Remember, moderation is key when treating water with bleach. A less-is-more approach safeguards against the risks of over-treatment while still ensuring clean and potable water. Always stir the treated water thoroughly to disperse the bleach evenly. With these methods, you can confidently maintain a safe and substantial water reserve.

Methods for Preserving Water

Treating Water with Chemicals

To ensure your stored water remains safe, several chemical options can be utilized. Unscented bleach is effective and commonly available. A minimal amount, such as four to six drops per gallon depending on the type of bleach, is sufficient. It’s key to avoid overuse to prevent an overpowering chlorine taste.

  • Bleach Usage: For dispensing, approximately two tablespoons for 35 gallons is adequate.
  • Safety Note: While bleach is generally safe, consuming treated water as a constant source should be cautious due to the potential of excessive chlorine.

Purifying by Heat

Thermal purification, encompassing both distillation and boiling, is a failsafe method to purify water. Heating water to the boiling point eradicates microbes and pathogens. However, remember that boiling large quantities is impractical for regular use.

  • Temperature: Boiling at 100 degrees Celsius guarantees the destruction of impurities.
  • Scale: Suitable for small scale use due to energy consumption for heating.

Mechanical Filtration

Utilizing a high-quality water filter can extract impurities from sources like rivers and ponds. When selecting a filter, pay attention to its capacity and lifespan, which should correspond to your water consumption patterns.

  • Filter Capacity: Ensure your water filter can handle the volume needed over its lifetime.
  • Quality: Some filters can cater to large quantities, appropriate for significant water reserves.

Practical Insights:

  • Before filing a new storage container, thoroughly rinse it to remove any residues or debris.
  • Position your storage solution in a location that can support the weight; for example, a 35-gallon tank full of water weighs approximately 291 pounds.
  • Consider integrating features such as a pressure relief valve into your container design, which can extend the lifespan by adjusting to temperature fluctuations.

Selecting an Appropriate Water Storage Solution

When considering the essentials for preparedness, water storage should be at the pinnacle of priorities. Securing a proper setup to store one’s water demands attention to detail and a methodical approach. Throughout this article we will refer to a 35-gallon storage unit to demonstrate an effective storage strategy.

Here’s a guide to ensure your water remains pure and consumable:

  • Initial Tank Preparation: Upon acquiring a new storage tank, you must thoroughly rinse it to remove any manufacturing residues, such as plastic shavings. Performing this with a couple of fills and rinses should suffice in eliminating potential contaminants.

  • Water Treatment Options: There are various methods to treat stored water, including:

    • Chemical treatments using bleach or water purification tablets
    • Boiling to eliminate pathogens
    • Filtering, especially for water sourced from lakes or rivers

For everyday faucet or hose water, these steps ensure safety. However, boiling substantial quantities could be impractical, positioning filtration as a more viable large-scale solution.

  • Choosing Filters: Invest in a durable filter that can handle significant volumes. Stay tuned for recommendations as I aim to include links to top-grade water filters for your convenience.

  • Bleach Treatment: Unscented bleach is my preference for disinfecting water in voluminous containers like a 275-gallon or a 35-gallon acquisition. With precise measurement – five drops per gallon (or about two tablespoons for the 35-gallon tank we referred to above), you’ll maintain a safe and drinkable supply. Since bleach essentially contains chlorine, which is familiar in tap water, it’s acceptable for use in controlled quantities.

  • Storage Location: Given the sheer weight of a full tank (e.g., a 35-gallon container tipping the scales around 300 pounds), selecting a firm, stable storage location is critical to avoid structural mishaps. Placement should accommodate the weight and provide ease of access for usage.

  • Access and Maintenance: Tanks with features such as pressure relief valves can adapt to temperature fluctuations, potentially extending their longevity. Always ensure seals, like the O-ring on the lid, are intact and secure to preserve water quality.

Lastly, consider applying bleach if you’re filling large tanks. Less is more when it comes to the quantity of bleach – aim for subtlety to avoid an overpowering taste. Stir thoroughly to integrate the bleach evenly.

Upon these steps, you’ll be well on your way to ensuring your water reserve is ready for any emergency. Remember, regular maintenance is as critical as the initial setup to guarantee a reliable water supply.

water container set up


Water Container Setup

First Cleaning

Upon receiving your new water storage unit, it’s necessary to conduct a preliminary cleansing to remove any residues from manufacturing. Begin by filling it with a bit of water, sealing it, and thoroughly agitating it. This initial swish will dislodge any loose particles clinging interiorly due to static.

  • Turn on the spigot to initiate the rinsing.
  • Partially fill the container to permit adequate sloshing.
  • Secure the lid and rotate the container, ensuring all surfaces are reached.

Inspection for Contaminants

Inspecting your freshly rinsed container is critical to identifying any remaining debris. After the initial rinse, part-fill the container to confirm that no floating particles, such as plastic shavings, have escaped your attention.

  • Conduct a visual check for visible detritus.
  • Remove the lid to carefully scan the water for floaters, casting them out as needed.
  • Perform this step methodically to ensure nothing evades your detection.

Comprehensive Cleaning

For absolute assurance, multiple thorough rinses are advised. A triple-rinse approach is an effective strategy in ensuring all remaining minute particles are expelled from your storage unit.

  • Repeat the fill, seal, and shake process two more times.
  • Observe the water after each rinse to assess cleanliness.
  • Ensure a pristine environment before deeming your container ready for water storage.

Water Preservation Techniques

Choosing an Appropriate Spot for Water Storage

When contemplating where to place your water reserves, it’s imperative to think about accessibility and the structural integrity of the platform or area you intend to use. A location that can be accessed without difficulty when needed and can sustain the substantial weight of stored water is critical.

  • Accessibility: Ensure your storage area allows for easy reach and operation of the water container.
  • Structural Capacity: The surface must be capable of supporting the significant weight; for instance, a 35-gallon water container can weigh approximately 291 pounds when filled.

Accommodating the Weight of Stored Water

Before positioning a water storage tank, confirm that the underlying support is robust enough to bear the full weight of the container when it’s filled. An inadequate support structure could result in damage or potential injury.

  • Material Suitability: Utilize sturdy materials, such as reinforced shelving or pallets, that can sustain the weight.
  • Stability Check: After half-filling the tank, agitate it gently to confirm the stability of the setup.

Pro Tip: Implement these guidelines with a systematic approach to avoid complications in your water storage strategy, keeping practicality and safety at the forefront.

Water Purification Using Unscented Bleach

In today’s session, we’re focusing on a crucial aspect of water storage—ensuring its safety for consumption through purification. Emphasizing bleach as one of the viable chemicals for this purpose, it’s essential to clarify the type that is safe for this application. Opt for unscented bleach to avoid adding unwanted flavors or odors to your water, which can arise from additives in scented varieties.

Regarding the amount needed, precision is key. Typically, four to six drops of bleach like Clorox are sufficient per gallon of water. For example, if you’re treating a 35-gallon tank, approximately two tablespoons, or slightly less, will suffice. This balance is crucial; while bleach effectively purifies, too much can be harmful, and the goal is to maintain a safe dilution in your water.

Begin by thoroughly rinsing your storage container to eliminate any manufacturing residues such as small plastic shavings. A triple rinse with clean water is recommended to ensure that these particles are removed before adding water intended for storage.

When your container is clean and ready, the process is straightforward:

  1. Measure the appropriate amount of unscented bleach.
  2. Add bleach to the water as it’s filling the tank.
  3. Stir the solution to ensure even distribution of the bleach.

Remember, a good seal on your container is necessary to maintain hygiene. Look out for features like pressure relief valves on lids, which assist in adapting to temperature changes, consequently extending the lifespan of your tank by mitigating internal pressure fluctuations.

Finally, once you’ve added the bleach to your water, secure the storage in a sturdy location. A full 35-gallon tank weighs around 291 pounds, so it requires a robust platform to support the weight without risk of breaking through surfaces.

Following these simple yet effective steps will help you maintain a large supply of clean water, ready for use whenever needed.

Strategic Savings on Water Storage Solutions

Managing water reserves is critical, and having the right equipment is paramount, so you really need to know how to keep your water safe and accessible. For example, whilst a 35-gallon tank is ideal for both seasoned preppers and those starting their journey into preparedness, or a large tank like a 275-gallon unit are both perfect sizes for using regular household bleach as your friend for purification. Tip – opt for unscented bleach to ensure your water remains free from any artificial scents or flavors. While some might express concerns about bleach, rest assured that it is safe in small, properly measured quantities (see table below)

Here’s another smart tip for you: Remember, these containers often come with a pressure relief valve, a feature that prolongs the tank’s lifespan by mitigating stress from temperature-induced air expansion and contraction.

Table of Effective Bleach Purification

Water QuantityUnscented Bleach
1 Gallon4-8 Drops
35 Gallons~2 Tablespoons


Chris Andrews

About the author

Hi, I'm Chris and these days I love nothing more than spending quality time with my son outdoors. As an army cadet in the 80s I was given a real insight into how to look after myself and those around me in unfamiliar environments. No huts, no tents, just survival rations for food and ponchos for makeshift shelter. This started a drive within me to be able to take care of myself and, nowadays, my family in any eventuality.

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