Bottled Water Contamination l Survival Water Filter

Americans choose to drink bottled water thinking it is safer than their municipal water.  Unfortunately, we now know this this may not be the case. New research that warns us of bottled water  contamination in the form of thousands of thousands of pieces of plastic.

In other words,  trying to avoid the type of contamination found in the water storage in Flint, Michigan, could lead you to a whole different kind of contamination.


 Bottled Water Contamination

The testing, initiated by Orb Media found plastic particles in bottled water, including polypropylene, nylon and polyethylene terephthalate (PET).

Dangerous Water

Clean water is becoming an increasing concern. Families across the country have been affected by the hurricanes that have hit leaving contaminated water in their wake. Also, there is great concern about the levels of arsenic and fluoride in our water.  Every day hundreds of Boil Water Notices are given due to municipal water sources becoming contaminated.

Bottled Water Contamination

An Alternative To Bottled Water

Luckily, there are alternatives to risking bottled water contamination. A good survival water filter with advanced capabilities can provide you and your family with clean drinking water.

What Makes A Good Survival Water Filter?

A good survival water filter has the ability to filter and purify water from the following contaminants:

    • Dirt and sand particles
    • Pathogenic bacteria
    • Toxic heavy metals such as lead and mercury
    • Parasites
    • Harmful or unwanted chemicals

A Gravity Fed Filter Is Best

How often power is lost during emergencies?  A survival  water filter that isn’t reliant on an electric or gas-powered source of filtration is your best bet.  Because a gravity fed filter allows dirty water go into the top of the system and come out the bottom clean and safe to drink, no electricity is needed!


Our Family Chose The Berkey

After much research, my husband and I chose the *this post contains affiliate links Big Berkey Water Filter. In addition, the Berkey Arsenic and Fluoride Filters offer up extra protection as a survival water filter. 

Water from the Berkey tastes great. It’s safe to mix my son’s medications with. It’s lightweight and very easy to put together.  Finally,   I don’t have to worry about any bottled water contamination.

PRO TIP: If, like me, you like to carry water with you to drink through out the day, check into the Berkey Filtered Water Bottle.

Buying A Berkey

We had to save up in order to afford a Berkey.  We were able to save money buying emergency gear and roll that savings into a higher grade of water purifier.  However,  our Berkey has been worth every single penny.

Join our Simply Preparing Deals Group on Facebook!

The CDC Wants You To Prepare For Nuclear Attack

With what feels like retro vibes from the 1950’s, the CDC (Center for Disease Control) has announced a January 16th presentation to teach the public how to  prepare for nuclear attack. Am I the only one hearing the theme to the Twilight Zone playing in the background?

Steps To Take To Prepare For A Nuclear Strike

Though nuclear detonation is unlikely, it could have devastating effects, and there would be limited time to take the steps necessary to protect our families.  This makes preparing before hand vital.

First, forget every Hollywood movie you’ve ever seen on the topic of nuclear war. The apocalyptic wasteland throughout the country stuff.   Unless you are at Ground Zero of a nuclear strike, there are steps you can take to survive.  But, you’ve got to know what to do immediately after an attack.  The biggest loss of life could come from simply not knowing what to do after a strike.

Who Is At The Greatest Risk Of A Nuclear Strike?

Do you live in a large city like Washington, D.C.?  New York?  Los Angeles?  Are you near a large military base?   These are the types of places more likely to be the target of a nuclear strike.

Be Prepared To Shelter In Place

If you have a basement, that is where you will want to be.  If not, then stay in the most central part of your home,  located away from the direction that the wind is blowing if possible.

Seal off all windows, doors, vents and chimneys. Duct tape, garbage bags and tarps will be your friends.  Store plenty.  Turn off heating and air conditioners that pull in outside air into the home.  Unseal your home after the fall out cloud has passed.

What If You Are Caught Outside?

  • Find something to cover your mouth and nose, that you can still breath through.  Having one of  *this post contains affiliate links these on hand, or in your EDC bag would be excellent.
  • Move to a shelter, basement, or other underground area, preferably located away from the direction that the wind is blowing.
  • Decontaminate if possible by showering and changing clothes before you enter the shelter.

No Lights. No Water.  Now What?

Plan as though there will be no utilities after a nuclear strike.  Do you have at least a 14 day supply (three weeks would be better!) of water and food?   How about ways to keep warm or cool depending on the weather?    How will you see when it gets dark?  Do not drink water from open water supplies.

Stock Up On Emergency Food

Consider a supply of foods that don’t require cooking, or refrigeration.  If you’d like to kick it up a notch, invest in a butane stove and freeze dried meals that only need hot water to finish off.  Do not eat local fresh food.

What Goes In Must Come Out

Products such as the *this post contains affiliate links Luggable Loo Portable Toilet allow you a place to relieve yourself, and a way to dispose of your offerings.  BTW, if you have pets you’ll need to have a way for them to relieve themselves as well.

A Checklist to Survive a Nuclear Attack

News From The Outside

An emergency radio is going to be a must, in order to receive the latest updates after a nuclear attack.   This Kaito Emergency Radio allows you to charge it using solar, battery, crank, and through a wall plug.  You can also charge cell phones with it.

Potassium Iodide

You can learn more of the whys and hows of this product in this post.   Remember, only the IOSAT brand is approved to protect your thyroid gland.  As talks heats up about the potential of a nuclear war, I expect IOSAT to either go up in price or become really hard to get.  Now would be the time to stock up.

Have A Good First Aid Kit On Hand

Be prepared to handle your family’s medical needs after a nuclear attack, including a supply of any prescription medications they may be on.  A comprehensive first aid kit will come in handy too.  Think about adding a few compression bandages and a book on first aid medicine as well.

Protecting Your Lungs From Potential Nuclear Fallout

With it’s NBC protection rating, an Israeli gas mask will protect your lungs in case you needed to leave your shelter before the ‘all clear’ was given.

Another option, without as great of protection,  would include putting a wet cloth or towel over your mouth and nose.

If you are concerned about needing to leave your shelter early,  you may want to stock a few disposable Tyvek suits and protective gloves.

Knowledge Is Power.  Preparation Brings Peace.

Take the time to make these preparations now, not because nuclear war is imminent, but because there is no reason not to have the basic preps for any emergency on hand anyway.

When people are knowledgeable about emergencies like a nuclear strike,  they are able to act in a calmer and more efficient manner.  If you are interested in learning more about how to survive a nuclear attack, I highly recommend the book, Nuclear War Survival Skills: Lifesaving Nuclear Facts and Self -Help Instructions.  



Water Storage and Flint, Michigan.

Water storage has been on my mind since the state of Michigan’s crisis with safe drinking water that began several months ago.  Flint’s tap water became contaminated with too much lead after the city switched it’s water supply in 2014 to save money while under state financial management.

Ensuring residents have safe water to drink has been a struggle. You can’t boil lead out of water.  People have been told to not drink the water until it has been determined to be safe.  Guard members have finally been called in to assist the police and volunteers to hand out bottled water, filters and water testing kits.

Then to really add insult to injury, the residents of Flint are still being required to pay their water bills.  You know, for water that is too dangerous to drink.  Think toxic waste dangerous.  Swell.  All I can say is thank goodness for celebrities.

I keep thinking of how much less stressful things might have been if residents would have had a supply of water storage instead of having to scramble and depend on the government.  As a matter of fact, it’s being reported that Michigan officials knew last year that Flint’s water might be poisoned, but chose to keep that possibility to themselves.  Sweet, eh?   The FDA is conduction a full review of the situation.

water storage

I’ve written about emergency water storage on the blog and Barb created this information filled post to help you calculate your family’s water storage needs.  It’s a good time to review both posts.

Here are a few more things to consider when storing water.

*Don’t use empty milk jugs for water storage.  The plastic is too thin and will break down within a few months.  Bacteria from the milk can become lodged in the plastic of the jug and then transferred to your water.

*Do not store your water near gasoline, kerosene, pesticides or similar substances.

*If you have a pool, you have water you have water for cleaning and bathing, but NOT for drinking.  While pool water has been chlorinated, it most likely has other chemical in it that are not safe for drinking.

*Properly stored water does NOT go bad. However, it may taste funky.  To solve this issue, just pour the water from one container to another several times, back and forth.  Or store things such as Kool-Aide, lemon or lime juice, to help with the taste of your water.
The time to prepare for an emergency is now.  Not after things fall apart.   Do your research.  Make your plan.  When you are prepared you don’t have to worry about any crisis down the road.

How is your water storage coming along?   What techniques work best for you when storing water?

Photo credit: rakerman via VisualHunt / CC BY

How To Disinfect Water With Pool Shock

Bleach is a common item in a preppers stockpile. While bleach has many important uses in an emergency situation, it has drawbacks: it expires quickly and it takes up a lot of space.

According to the Clorox website, the shelf life of regular Clorox Bleach (do not buy scented or splash-less or anything else for prepping) is:

The active ingredient in liquid bleach, sodium hypochlorite, is very sensitive to high heat and freezing, but under normal home storage conditions, it should still perform well for nine to twelve months. So if your storage conditions were either of these, then you will have irreversibly created salt and water.

Next question is intended use. The active does decline over time and to meet our EPA disinfecting requirements, you are probably on-the-edge; so I might add a little more than the 3/4 cup Clorox® Regular-Bleach per gallon of water for any disinfecting projects. For general cleaning, you should be fine since a little liquid bleach goes a long way.

Even with this drawback, I believe that storing bleach is an important part of emergency planning. You just have to constantly be vigilant about rotating through it. Some of the reasons to stock bleach include:

Pool shock, or Calcium Hypochlorite granules, is a better solution for long term storage of bleach and portability. You can use the granules to disinfect larger amounts of water, like the emergency water in your rain barrel. Calcium Hypochlorite stores for years without losing is effectiveness. A 1 lb bag that you can buy in most pool stores can disinfect 10,000 gallons of water and typically costs $7-$12 depending on the percentage of calcium hypochlorite in the mixure. The pool shock that you can buy in places like Walmart and Target typically have 52% percent calcium hypochlorite, you can get bags with 68% calcium hypochlorite sometimes, or if you live by a Leslie’s Pool Supply you can find 99% bags called Chlor-brite and/or order the Nava brand from our Amazon affiliate link.

*Reminder: According to the EPA boiling is the surest method to make water safe to drink and kill disease-causing microorganisms like Giardia lambliaand Cryptosporidium, which are frequently found in rivers and lakes. But boiling isn’t always possible so in those instances you are going to want to know how to chemically disinfect water.

disinfect water with pool shock

How To Disinfect Water With Pool Shock

Using calcium hypochlorite granules is a 2 step process. First you make the stock chlorine and then you mix it in the drinking water. Think of it as first making a bottle of bleach and then using that in the water.

Add and dissolve one heaping teaspoon of high-test granular calcium hypochlorite (approximately ¼ ounce) for each two gallons of water, or 5 milliliters (approximately 7 grams) per 7.5 liters of water.

The mixture will produce a stock chlorine solution of approximately 500 milligrams per liter, since the calcium hypochlorite has available chlorine equal to 70 percent of its weight.

To disinfect water, add the chlorine solution in the ratio of one part of chlorine solution to each 100 parts of water to be treated. This is roughly equal to adding 1 pint (16 ounces) of stock chlorine to each 12.5 gallons of water or (approximately ½ liter to 50 liters of water) to be disinfected.

To remove any objectionable chlorine odor, aerate the disinfected water by pouring it back and forth from one clean container to another. -directions from

One issue that arises when storing pool shock is that fumes do build up. You need to respect that this is a powerful chemical and you will need to be careful when opening it. Make sure whichever method you choose for storing this, you have it clearly labeled that there can be dangerous fumes upon opening it. 

Some suggestions for storing your pool shock. Leave the 1lb bags in their original packaging:

  • Vacuum seal the package with your food saver. This would probably be the best way to place it in a bug out bag.
  • Place in mason jar and vacuum seal the lid.
  • Place in 3 or 5 lb plastic food buckets (like the kind you would store rice or beans) but store the pool shock by itself.
  • Place in a clamp down glass jar with rubber ring.

No matter how you store calcium hypochlorite you should vent it at least once a year wearing protective gear and please, please, please remember to label it as though your children would come across it. And of course, keep it out of reach of children in the first place.


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