How Much Water Should You Store For Your Family

  • 119
  •  
  • 232
  •  
  •  
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

How much water should you store for your family? I know I have mentioned many times before how much water we all need to store, but sometimes we need a little reminder to fill those empty water jugs sitting on the shelves that we may have purchased. You know the ones that we keep saying, “oh yeah, I need to fill those.” I totally get it.

As I’ve said many times before, I recommend 4-gallons of water per person per day. One of the easiest ways to store water is to buy one WaterBrick for each member of the family, this equals one day’s worth of water for one person. They are 3.5 gallons (not the 4-gallons I recommend) but it’s easy to plan using these and I will explain how below.

The WaterBricks that are 3.5-gallons are very close to 4-gallons and so easy to calculate how many you need. This is the water preserver I recommend: 55 Gallon Water Preserver Concentrate 5 Year Emergency Disaster Preparedness, Survival Kits, Emergency Water Storage, Earthquake, Hurricane, Safety

Let’s say you have four people in your family and you want to store, give or take, 4-gallons person per day. We need water to hydrate ourselves, water to cook meals, wash dishes with and for personal hygiene. I realize there may be several scenarios, but here’s the deal, I would rather have excess water than having less water than my family needs.

How Much Water Should You Store

WaterBricks:

Remember, always store all containers on 2 by 4’s to keep them off the concrete, you don’t want them absorbing unsafe chemicals.

WaterBrick 1833-0001 Stackable Water and Food Storage Container, 3.5 gals of Liquid, 27 lb of Dry Food Products, Blue

Here’s the approximate calculation for SEVEN days using 3.5 gallons instead of four gallons:

  • One person=Seven 3.5-gallon Waterbricks
  • Two people=Fourteen 3.5-gallon WaterBricks
  • Three people=Twenty one 3.5-gallon Waterbricks
  • Four people: Twenty Eight 3.5-gallon WaterBricks

Pros: stackable, spout accessory optional, handles that are easy to carry

Cons: somewhat pricey

55-Gallon Water Barrels:

Augason Farms Emergency Water Storage Supply Kit You may be able to purchase these locally if not, this is a good company and it has everything you need. Remember always store all containers on 2 by 4’s to keep them off the concrete, you don’t want them absorbing unsafe chemicals.

I just saw these barrels for sale at a local grocery store for $39.99.  You still need the pump and a bung to tighten the cap, but this is a great price. I have seen them at Walmart for the same price. You may be able to order them online and have them shipped to the store near you.

A family of four using 4-gallons per day per person would use just a little less than one 55-gallon barrel in THREE days. I would rather plan for more water than have less than needed. Just remember to get a pump for the barrel and a bung to open the cap on top.

  • If you want to plan on one-gallon person per day then you would have enough water for 55 days.
  • If you want to plan on one-gallon person per day for two people then you would have enough water for 27.5 days.
  • If you want to plan on one-gallon person per day for three people then you would have enough water for 18.33 days.
  • If you want to plan on one-gallon person per day for four people then you would have enough water for 13.75 days.

Pros: fairly cheap

Cons: hard to pump out the water, and hard to store the large containers

Blue Cans:

The cans are 12-ounces and the cases hold 24 cans which equal 2.25 gallons per box. They are expensive because they have the best water that lasts 50 years, even at 145 degrees. I call my cases my “set and forget” water. Yes, they are expensive, but it’s worth it to me to have some of this long-lasting and convenient to use approach to water storage. They are cheaper if you live where you can pick them up rather than having them shipped. Here are the locations and the website Blue Water Cans They need zero water purifier or preserver.

As of today, the cheapest place to buy these is at Brownell’s. Sign up for their emails and you can watch for the sales or reduced shipping costs.

Remember always store all containers on 2 by 4’s to keep them off the concrete, you don’t want them absorbing unsafe chemicals.

Pros: long shelf life, easy to stack, can store up to 145 degrees

Cons: expensive

One Gallon Jugs:

If you store water in one-gallon containers this is quite easy to calculate. With this scenario, you can take the days desired and multiply the gallons needed.

  • If you want to plan on one-gallon person per day then you would have enough water for one day.
  • If you want to plan on one-gallon person per day for three days you will need three one-gallon jugs.
  • If you want to plan on one-gallon person per day for seven days then you will need seven one-gallon jugs.
  • If you want to plan on one-gallon person per day for thirty days you will need thirty one-gallon jugs.

Remember always store all containers on 2 by 4’s to keep them off the concrete, you don’t want them absorbing unsafe chemicals.

Pros: practically free, if you reuse your water or milk jugs (please note I do not recommend these, but if this is what budget warrants, store the water where they will not damage the floor when or if they leak). You can use this water for personal hygiene or wash your laundry when needed.

Cons: short shelf life, they can crack, hard to really clean

Stay Hydrated Service Project

I saw something on the TV about the heat this summer and asking people to share a bottle or two with the homeless families living in our community. My granddaughter mentioned she had just participated in a program at her school that was a service project where the kids took one-gallon baggies and filled them.

We all need a minimum amount of one-gallon of water per person per day. I recommend four gallons per person per day, but this was a humanitarian project. One gallon baggie for each homeless person was filled with the items listed below. The group drove around with the director to find some homeless people to hand out the bags to as many people as possible. It’s not quite the one-gallon per person, but they can hopefully refill the bottle to keep themselves hydrated.

This is what they put in the bags:

Bottle of water

Fruit cups

Granola bars

Toothbrush and toothpaste

Comb

Small package of tissues

Mints and gum

A card typed with addresses to different homeless shelters, animal shelters, and hospitals

What a great idea to teach the youth to help others in need.

Final Word

I think sometimes we just need a little reminder to get prepared for the unexpected. Here’s the deal, this is why I wrote this post, how much water do you need to store for your family. You can do this, my friends, store some water today, yes today. Just do it, you can thank me later. Linda

American Red Cross 

6 thoughts on “How Much Water Should You Store For Your Family

  • April 5, 2019 at 8:18 am
    Permalink

    Good article; however, I don’t care for the idea of water being stored for decades in aluminum cans given the many negative articles in regards to using aluminum for food. May be fine for water? but can’t imagine it lasting for 50 years. Storing water for hygiene and washing needs is a great idea but containers need to be labeled as such so no one makes a mistake. Have read that soda bottles are good storage units for food and water. Since I am now 79 no need to worry about 50 yr. storage. 🙂

    Reply
    • April 5, 2019 at 12:39 pm
      Permalink

      Hi Ramona, I understand your concern about the water in aluminum cans. They have a coating on the inside. I quote: What is the can liner made of? In accordance with the FDA requirements and California Proposition 65, Blue Can Water cans have a Non-BPA epoxy coating on the inside to protect the contents from the metal. (Aged water in the can have been tested BPA-Free by an FDA certified lab) Blue Can Pure Water is always at a neutral PH to prevent any corrosion of the epoxy coating inside the container. This is why I love this water. I will use it strictly for drinking. You may want to look at the website, it’s an amazing way to store water. Linda

      Reply
    • April 6, 2019 at 6:45 am
      Permalink

      Hi, Linda
      Thank you for the information regarding the canned water. I didn’t think you would give your stamp of approval on something not safe – just couldn’t make the connection between 50 yrs. and aluminum then remembered some food is stored in cans and have a very long shelf life. Food doesn’t last as long due to the ingredients as pure water will. I look forward to reading your site and you have many wonderful ideas that I have and will be adding to my collection. Thanks, Ramona

      Reply
      • April 6, 2019 at 7:10 am
        Permalink

        Hi Ramona, you are so right, I really have to check things out before I will recommend them. I love recommendations from my readers because then I can review those items as well. We all have great ideas to share with one another. Happy Saturday, Linda

        Reply
  • April 5, 2019 at 9:28 am
    Permalink

    Hi, Linda… as you know, I’m the perfect example of why storing water is so important. I’ve been without water for two weeks now and having plenty of stored water has made it possible for me to make it through this with little more than inconvenience.

    I had such a wonderful thing happen this morning, I just have to share it with you! I told you I still owe my mechanic for the major work he did on my car, so I have to wait until I finish paying him off before I can get to fixing the plumbing. I went to the shop this morning to give him another payment and, as usual, we visited for a while. I told him about the plumbing problems and being without water and, even though I protested, he is insisting on repairing them! Can you believe that? I mean, he’s been my mechanic for many years and we’ve become friends, visiting at his shop, but not the kind of friends that get together at each other’s homes and the like. I’m actually stunned by his generosity!

    I hope you and Mark are doing well. Take care and big hugs, Mare

    Reply
    • April 5, 2019 at 12:41 pm
      Permalink

      OH, Mare, this is the best news ever! I tell you there are so many good people in the world, and your mechanic is one of them. This comment makes my day! Hugs, Linda

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *