Today I have a Guest Post from Jack over at SkilledSurvivial.com
11 Last Resort Uncommon Home Water Sources
Let’s pretend for one minute that you were caught off guard, unprepared and ran out of water.
Maybe the recent Ebola outbreak gets into your local water supply - did you see that cleanup worker spraying the Ebola vomit down that storm drain?
Or maybe there’s been an extended power failure and the taps have been dry for weeks…
You are trapped in your home with your family, all the survival water has been used up. Now is the time to revert to some uncommon methods to quench your family's thirst.
These water sources are not your first option, but more like your Plan B.
When implementing Plan B it’s not time to get squeamish, it’s time to survive.
I list these uncommon sources from safe to questionable, based solely upon my opinion and personal experience. However, each sources relative safety must be personally assessed depending upon your specific situation and most of these sources can be purified and treated.
1 - Melted Ice Cubes / Freezer Build Up
In a Plan B survival scenario, when you need water desperately, don’t expect to have the luxuries of grid power.
Your ice and freezer build-up will melt quickly and if you are smart, you will get that frozen H2O into a bucket. I recommend doing this early in all power loss situations, Just In Case.
2 - How About Your Water Heater?
A large full reservoir of city water…. a perfect Plan B solution.
3 - Liquids from Canned Goods
If you have some canned Corn or Beans then you have some rehydration available. Canned goods (especially veggies) are floating in a lot of water. These waters will be “flavored” but they are also safe to drink.
4 - Water Drained From Pipes
Standing Water in your home's pipes can be collected.
The amount will depend upon the size of your home, but there should be pressurized water stuck between your main shutoff valve and faucets, showerheads, and toilet refill locations.
Just find the lowest point in your home's piping system. Open it up, and make certain to collect every last drop.
Just be prepared for more water to come out that you think. I’ve done this in order to work on my home's pipes and it always amazing me the amount that comes out.
5 - A Backyard Sprinkler System
Depending upon the time of year, your sprinkler system may have some standing water in it. Each fall, you should drain your sprinkler system to keep it from freezing (if you live in a frost zone) so just follow that same process but you will need to figure out a good way to collect it.
6 - Outdoor Hoses
Similar to the sprinkler example.
Each fall, you should roll up and put away your outdoor water hoses. If you do this right, you lift one end of the hose and work your way to the other end letting all the water drain out into a collection basin.
7 - Water Toilets / Flush Tank
Sounds gross but remember many dogs love this water. They drink it and they have no ill effects. Actually, on average, a regularly flushed toilet bowl is a pretty safe water source.
A survival situation is no time to be squeamish about drinking water from a toilet tank. However, unless you are about to die of dehydration, a little filtration may be in order.
8 - P Traps under Sinks
A P trap is the S curved twisty pipe located under your sinks.
This design is to control odors from your sewer pipes from seeping into your home. The way this works the always present water (due to the curve) blocks these potent odors.
This is not a lot of water but it is wet and can be purified.
9 - What about swimming pools?
Tens of thousands of gallons of water right in your own backyard?
What about the chlorine in the water? It’s actually a sanitizing agent keeping the water free of algae and bacteria---so drink up.
What about a saltwater pool?
The salt concentration in these pools is very, very low; way lower than seawater, and some can be drunk immediately with no ill effects.
If in doubt, this water could be used in solar stills or boiled and condensed to remove any salt or mineral.
10 - Water Beds
Not the first place I’d prefer due to high potential for bacterial growth, but if you have a water bed then you technically have a lot of potential water. Carefully treat and filter and you should be fine.
11 - Rain Water Collection
If you are low or out of water then look to the skies.
The best way to collect rainwater is by using your roof. If you tried setting buckets out on the ground you’ll be lucky to get a few sips of water.
You need to funnel a large surface area (roof) into a focal point (downspout). Just get some large containers (preferably barrels) and collect as much as possible out of your downspout.
It can’t be stressed enough, it’s always smart to carefully treat all uncommon water sources as both biologically and or chemically unsafe. Drinking water from these sources untreated could turn a serious survival situation into a sever survival situation within hours.
A couple of extra cautionary notes: roof rainwater can contain heavy metals and or chemicals from vehicle exhaust depending upon your location. It might be best to distill that water instead of relying on purification and filtration.
Some of these water sources are cleaner than others but to be safe, I recommend that you purify and filter all of them. There are many ways to purify water. You can use a bleach solution, water tablets or a UV pen.
You should also filter the water. As you’d learn at SkilledSurvival.com, my go-to filtering solution is the Life Straw. I have several and I recommend having at least one for each family member.
The current Ebola Crisis crisis is a great reminder that it’s time to get your stuff together. Are you prepared to deal with longer-term contamination of your public water supply?
You can last weeks without food but will day in a matter of days without water. You need to preserve as many options to find and purify water as possible. This is why knowing where to find water and being able to purify it is so important. My favorite personal filtration tool is the LifeStraw. This small, but mighty, water filter could one day save your life and if you're serious about survival and preparedness you should have at least one.