Thursday, September 4, 2008

Preppin' 101 - Part Two - Water Purification

Liquid bleach is not very stable and breaks down gradually over a period of time. It is still usable after about 6 months but you will have to use more than you normally would to achieve the same results. This will lead to a very rapid decrease in your ability to treat your water sources in order to make them safe to drink. Calcium hypochlorite, better known as pool shock, will keep in its dry form for approximately 10 years. Liquid chlorine bleach will lose most of it's potency after only a year and will eventually degrade (turning into salt water) until it is useless as a chemical treatment for your water.

Dry granules of calcium hypochlorite (pool shock) can be used to make your own liquid bleach as it is needed and allow you to have a reliable source of fresh bleach for water treatment purposes. Calcium hypochlorite is very inexpensive and can be purchased anywhere swimming pool supplies are sold. You will need to obtain the plain variety which does not contain any algaecides or fungicides. You will also need to store it in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. Remember it must be 65% calcium hypochlorite only with no additional anti-fungals or algaecides. Calcium hypochlorite granules are highly corrosive and should be stored in an air-tight, plastic container for best long term storage results. Using liquid bleach is an excellent short term water purification solution, while dry granular bleach is much better for long term water purification needs.

Here is a link to a resource for calcium hypochlorite:

Calcium Hypochlorite granular Ca(OCl)2 68%CL2 2 lb bag (Free Shipping)



You can also get additional information about water treatment here: Water Treatment and Storage .

It is important to remember that, prior to chemically treating your water, it may also need to be filtered to remove other contaminants. This will require the use of an improvised filter (bandana, coffee filter, etc.) or commercially available water filters such as the Berkley or Katadyn brands.

Note: Always practice water conservation. The water you conserve could quite possibly safe your life in an emergency! To put this into perspective, people who consider themselves a partsgeek would work with cheap auto parts and would be versed with the ins and outs of automotive parts just as someone who is a prepper should be doing everything they can to be as prepared as possible in a survival situation.  



You can check out my article for some helpful tips here: Preppin' 101 - Part 2 - Water Conservation.

Staying above the water line!

Riverwalker

9 comments:

Marie said...

Thanks for the info and links. I have had to use bleach to purify water for drinking purposes before, but had not thought enough about it losing it's effectiveness in terms of food storage. It's good to have a basic timeline and to learn about possible alternatives--great post!

Wretha said...

Didn't know that liquid bleach would lose effectiveness over time, hmmm, gonna have to buy some of the powdered stuff, thanks for the great info!

Wretha

Patricia said...

Yes, thanks for this very important information, RW. I too didn't know that bleach turns to salt water in time...
HM

riverwalker said...

To: marie

Having a choice is a good thing!
Thanks.

RW

To: wretha

I switched to this for long term needs, but still use regular liquid bleach for short term needs. It's just getting more difficult to find "regular" bleach without scents or other additives.

Thanks.

RW

To: patricia

Your comments and suggestions are always welcome. Thanks.

RW

BTW, added your site to my blog roll.

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