Win a 55 Gallon Water Barrel

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Here we go again with another Friday Giveaway Blast!  This week the prize is a fantastic 55 Gallon Ultimate Water Barrel Kit from Emergency Essentials.  I know for a fact that this is something that many of you covet and now you have an opportunity to win one for free!

You can never have enough extra water on hand.  I discovered that when I personally experienced 12 days without running water due to a water leak near the main coming into my house.  Believe me, all of my stored water came in handy.  In addition to bottled drinking water, I had a 55 gallon water barrel (which, by the way, was one of my first prepping purchases way back when), frozen jugs of water filling the empty space in my freezer, and a rain barrel.

Gear Review: Ultimate 55 Gallon Water Barrel - Backdoor Survival

At the time, I could not find my packed away solar showers but other than having to use my No-Rinse Bath Wipes to bathe, the inconvenience was just that, an inconvenience.

The Ultimate Water Barrel Kit

Let me me tell you about this water barrel kit.  First of all, it is all inclusive and includes the following items:

55-Gallon BPA-free Water Drum
Barrel Buddy Bung Tool
2 Bung Seal Caps
Emergency Siphon Kit
Aquamira Water Treatment Kit

You may not know his but traditionally, water storage barrels are blue. The reason for this is that the blue color limits light exposure and biological growth (bacteria and algae) and also signifies that what is stored in the container is safe for human consumption.

Whereas I have stored my Emergency Essentials barrel outdoors, it is located at the NW corner of my home and under eaves so it is protected from direct sun. You will want to do something similar when placing your barrel outdoors.

Something I like about this barrel is that it has level markings on the side. If I shine a bright flashlight against it’s side, I can detect the remaining water level.  Very handy, indeed.

Gear Review: Ultimate 55 Gallon Water Barrel - Backdoor Survival

Another thing I really like about this kit is that the included Emergency Siphon Kit is universal, meaning that it can be used to siphon water out of other containers (such as buckets).  It is not custom fitted to the bung opening like some.

A Note About Storing Water Barrels

Did you know that water should not be stored on bare cement including the cement on the floor of your basement or garage?

The reason for this is that plastics absorb flavors and odors from chemicals and liquids spilled on the floor and also from the chemicals used to create the concrete.  What you need to do is store your water on a piece of wood that sits between the floor and the concrete.  A repurposed wood pallet would be ideal.

Wherever you chose to store your water barrel be mindful that a filled barrel is very heavy weighing approximately 470 pounds.

The Giveaway

Here is the part you have been waiting for!  Backdoor Survival affiliate sponsor and supporter, Emergency Essentials has provided an Ultimate 55 Gallon Water Barrel Combo for one lucky reader.

To enter the giveaway, you need to utilize the Rafflecopter form below.  Select one or more of the options after signing in using your email account or Facebook, the choice is yours.  The best way to start is by clicking on “Free Entry for Everyone”.  After that, each option you select represents an additional entry.  There are a number of different options so pick and choose or select them all.

The deadline is 6:00 PM Pacific next Tuesday with the winner notified by email and announced on the Rafflecopter in the article.  Please note that the winner must claim their prize within 48 hours or an alternate will be selected.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Note:  If you purchase this kit now and then later win the giveaway, Emergency Essentials will refund your purchase price.  How can you lose?

The Final Word

I want to thank Emergency Essentials for providing the 55 gallon water barrel for this giveaway.  I actually have the winner’s prize sitting in my garage, boxed and ready to go.  All I need is a winner!

Going forward, I hope you will continue to visit Emergency Essentials and consider a purchase from their fantastic selection of freeze dried food including Mountain House, as well as their huge selection of prepping, survival and outdoor of equipment.

Good luck!

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

If you enjoyed this article, consider voting for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!  In addition, SUBSCRIBE to email updates  and receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-book The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

Spotlight:  Ultimate 55 Gallon Water Barrel Combo

Ultimate 55 Gallon Water Barrel - Backdoor Survival

As of this writing, the price is $109.95 which is a great deal. Everyone should have at least one.  Remember, if storing in your garage or on pavers, place the filled barrel on a wooden platform and not directly on the concrete.

Bargain Bin:  Today is all about water!

No Rinse Cleansing & Deodorizing Bathing Wipes:  One wipe is more than enough for a complete “bath”.  These are a good backup when traditional showers are not available such as the week or weeks following a disaster.  Also good for the sick room as well as camping, boating, hiking and such.  Here is my review.

Fluidmaster 400CR Toilet Fill Valve and Flapper Repair Kit:  Speaking od water, this is one of those items you don’t think of stockpiling but believe me, we now have a couple in reserve for emergency purposes.  Why fuss with adjusting a tank valve when you can replace the whole thing for less than $12 and 10 minutes of your time?

AquaPod:   Have you considered storing water in your bathtub?  The AquaPod is a bladder that you can use in your bathtub to store water if you know that a storm, flood, or hurricane is brewing. (I call these “disruptive events”.)

LifeStraw Personal Water FilterThe Amazon Top Ten Most Wanted Survival and Outdoor Items   Backdoor Survival:  The LifeStraw is considered the most advanced, compact, ultra light personal water filter available. It contains no chemicals or iodinated resin, no batteries and no moving parts to break or wear out. It weighs only 2oz.  making it perfect for the prepper. For more information, see my LifeStraw review.

Suncast RB50D 50-Gallon Rain Barrel:  A rain barrel is a great way to collect water for, well, a rainy day.  This is the rain barrel I own.  The instructions indicate that it must be dumped regularly to prevent algae formation but since I will be using this “free” water in the garden, it will get replenished regularly by Mother Nature.  That said,  I am definitely going to keep an eye on things.

Potable Aqua Water Treatment Tablets: Potable Aqua Water Purification Tablets make questionable water bacteriologically suitable to drink. Easy to use and the water is ready to drink in 30 minutes. One 50 tablet bottle treats 25 quarts of water.

NALGENE BPA-Free Water Bottle:  These $8 water bottles have served me well.  I fill them up with water from my Royal Berkey and keep one bedside, one at my desk and another in the bathroom.  Keep in mind that price-wise, some colors will be more expensive so if color does not matter, go with the cheapest (currently the green version).

DryTec Calcium Hypochlorite, 1-Pound:  This is 68% Calcium Hypochlorite.  As of this writing, the price is under $10 with free shipping.  I purchased Ultima Pool ShockThe Sunday Survival Buzz #128   Backdoor Survival which is 73% Calcium Hypochlorite.  For more information, read How to Use Pool Shock to Purify Water.

Sawyer Products Mini Water Filtration System:  Fans of the Sawyer water filtration systems are evangelistic in their praise.  This is an ongoing favorite on the Amazon Top 10 Most Wished for Items.

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Shop Emergency Essentials Sales for Fantastic Deals!

For over 25 years Emergency Essentials has been providing the highest quality preparedness products at great prices.  Plus, each month they feature sales that quite honestly are fantastic.  This month note the great sale prices two of my favorites, the Mobile Washer (Hand Operated Washing Machine) now only $14.95 and the Tote-able Toilet Seat and Lid, now only $11.79.

Preptember

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Comments

Win a 55 Gallon Water Barrel — 265 Comments

    • according to Department of Water Hygiene “If the water is covered and of good quality to start with, in principle it can last a thousand years,”

      “Old bottled water isn’t dangerous to drink but it can taste bad,” says Krogh, who thinks this is one of the reasons for expiration dates on water bottles

      the reason why the plastic bottled water tastes funny after awhile is because the water, which is the universal solvent, will start to absorb some of the molecules from the plastic

      • I’ve researched water storage for quite a while, and this kit has all the important elements at a great price – the best solution I’ve seen other than an expensive large water tank storage system! I would love to win this!

      • Even past the expiration, you can refresh it by pouring from one container to another back and forth til it’s regained the air it needs to become fresh. This will depend on the length of storage , so just keep tasting till it tastes is palatable to you.

  1. These are easy to disguise even though they are this nice blue color. :)I’m with you Gaye, I love the easy measure to know how much water is remaining.

  2. Having enough water is one of my biggest concerns. This barrel would make storing very helpful. The risks of traveling to the water source, the weight of bringing it back and how much water one needs makes this a top priority for us. Thanks Gaye and Emergency Essentials for the information and give-a-way!!! Keep Looking UP

  3. I saw a number of questions asking about shelf life for water. You should cycle your stored water every 6 months. Packaged bottled water can be longer.

    • Hi Richard,

      I store mine vacuum-sealed in mason jars in a dark closet. I use them often to make herbal remedies and body products so I wanted an easy way to reseal them with the same lid. I use a Meal-Saver with jar lid attachments. It’s my understanding that storing herbs this way extends the shelf life. You may be able to do the same thing with oxygen absorbers. I haven’t tried that.

    • Since the time record keeping was started, for the most part, nature says to go from season to season…..which I take to mean when stored properly, 6 months to a year though as the time gets longer, the herbs lose potency, with some exceptions where using fresh is best. Those you buy in the grocery stores, 6 -12 months in cool dark spaces. Bet you didn’t know that those herbs and spice you cook with are medicinal. 😉

  4. I saw another commenter ask about coldness storage, but how about if you keep water storage in the garage and it freezes. How much room to leave in a container to prevent bursting?

  5. What a great giveaway. Thank you for the opportunity to win it. My question is off topic but I’d really like to know, out of all the blog posts you’ve written, do you have a favorite? Good luck everyone.

    • I too want to know how to store water barrel if it is kept in non-climate controlled area like garage or crawl space.
      Thank you for opportunity to win one!

      • Hi Mary Anne, We live in Honolulu, so freezing is not an issue for us. We keep a barrel in the back of the carport, where it never gets direct sunlight, sitting on a scrap piece of countertop granite. I’d avoid a wooden pallet here because of rot and termite issues, but a plastic or metal pallet should be fine.

        We covered the barrel with two heavy duty lawn trash bags, primarily to keep it clean, secondarily to keep indirect sunlight off it. If a barrel receives direct sunlight, the black bags will act to absorb light and heat up the water, so I’d be inclined in that situation not to use them. A white cover should be OK though.

        We used a white, drinking water grade hose to fill it from an outside garden faucet (municipal water supply). Drinking grade hoses are widely used by RV owners for filling their water tanks, and you can get them in at least a couple different lengths from Amazon. At best, a standard garden hose will make water taste lousy, and at worst may add harmful chemicals.

        We also used a Sharpie to mark the top of the barrel with the date we filled it, and what we added to prevent algae. In our case that was fresh Clorox chlorine bleach.

        We also keep some 5 gallon water fountain jugs from Home Depot in the lower kitchen cabinets.

        We don’t keep any in the crawl space, but if we did, I would bag them for cleanness.

        I’m not sure what we would do if we had to keep water outside in an area which freezes. If we absolutely had to, we might try draining some of the water in the fall to allow expansion room, but I would definitely worry about rupturing the barrel anyway. Maybe someone else here has experience with this and can add their experience.

        Even if partially draining worked, the water would be unavailable as long as it was frozen, so I’m not sure what purpose would be served by keeping it. Even smaller jugs would take days to thaw if brought indoors, and it would be pretty difficult to move any which were bigger than 5 gallons.

        A reasonable compromise might be keeping a barrel outside for warm weather back up, draining it for the winter, and some jugs indoors for year round primary water storage. Two, three, or five gallon jugs can be stored in a variety of places, and are light enough to move. 5 gallons though is still around 40 pounds, and that can be pretty heavy for many people.

  6. How to store pre-cut kindling and small sized wood safely from termites and other
    bugs and rot ready for the next power outage. We had a nice stack but termites got into it and moisture even though out of the rain. You need smaller pieces for rocket
    and similar camp stoves at the ready. There may not be any dry wood when you need it.

    • Be be,
      We have juice barrels from a local company, my sister and her husband own a lumber yard, we store our wood in these barrels, they are metal. We haven’t had any problems from termites and the wood kindling has been stored for over three years. These barrels have tight fitting lids, with a metal ring that goes around the outside to lock the lid down.

  7. Thanks for all the useful information in this. I did not know that the barrels should no be stored directly on concrete. Will definitely make sure of that change when we add our barrels. Right now we are using primarily bottled water as extra storage. We are in a rather unique situation since we live in a government owned mobile home on government land as caretakers. Special circumstances require different approaches to prepping but we are trying to do what we can and hope to be able to get as much accomplished as possible within the limits we have. Suggestions?

    • Hi Judy S, For you to successfully answer that question, I think you first need to decide what you might need cash for, and how long you think you will need to use cash. One week at home, six weeks fleeing out of state, the end of civilization as we know it?

      You might approach the question of “How Much?” by figuring out what you spend in total in the average week -cash, ATM, credit cards, checks, whatever- and multiply that number by the number of weeks you want to be prepared for. Adjust for whatever unusual expenses you think you might incur during an emergency, and for whatever normal expenses you would forgo.

      Clearly, you do not need to sock away that amount all at once: it is an ideal. Getting started is the important thing. You can work towards the ideal, possibly over a long time. The first couple hundred dollars will provide a nice feeling for many people, though.

      If you have sufficient food stored, you might still want cash for fresh groceries if they are available. Possibly also for ice for coolers, and things you run out of, but are available. If you think you might bug out by car, then sufficient money for plenty of gasoline along the way, and maybe restaurant food and emergency car repairs.

      If you bug out, say in advance of a hurricane, will you stay at hotels/motels/campgrounds, or with friends/family? If you have to pay for housing you will need a lot more cash if your credit cards and ATM cards don’t work.

      We live in Hawaii, and other than friend’s houses or camping, the most likely bug out location might well be the Mainland. I bank with a national bank, so my bank accounts and credit should be accessible in anything less than TEOTWAWKI. My wife banks with a local, so her accounts may not be available.

      People who banked with small locals discovered after Hurricane Katrina that some of those banks and S&Ls were closed for weeks by the storm, and their accounts could not be accessed. They had to borrow money from family or friends, and that put a lot of stress on some of them. That seems like an argument for banking with a national.

      A consideration for someone in our situation might be having enough cash to pay for full fare First Class airplane tickets to the Mainland. We are tightwads, so the reason for First Class tickets would be because that might be all that was available. Still, if the airlines are selling tickets, chances are that the banking system is intact.

      In any case, some cash is critically important. The bigger the amount you decide on, the more you could keep in $100 bills for big purchases like hotels or plane tickets, but you definitely should first have plenty in small bills for small purchases. You don’t want have to buy a lot of things in order to buy a small thing from someone who says they can’t make change, nor to have to say “Keep the change”.

      Coins: I toss my spare change in a jar, and usually have $20-$100 in it. That seems like more than enough for an emergency. We keep some dollar bills in our cash stash, so if we had to say “keep the change” for less than a buck in a major emergency, I would not be at all bothered. If the emergency is so bad that stores can’t make small change, we have bigger things to worry about.

  8. How often does the water need to be rotated out? and do you have to add bleach or other treatments to already treated municipal water sources?

    • you do not need to add anything to clean treated water, the only time you should need to is if this is stale stagnant water and you don’t have water treatment tablets
      always boil water always filter water and above all have treatment for Cholera

      it has been shown more deaths are not from the earthquake but afterwards from Waterborne Diseases like Cholera diarrhea Cholera is highly treatable, but because dehydration can happen quickly, it’s important to get cholera treatment right away.

      Hydration is the mainstay of treatment for cholera. Depending on how severe the diarrhea is, treatment will consist of oral or intravenous solutions to replace lost fluids
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oral_rehydration_therapy

  9. I too want to know how to store water barrel in non-climate controlled area like a basement or crawl space.
    Thank you for the opportunity to win a barrel!

    • A basement has a fairly constant temperature so should stay cool unless you’re using it as living space, then keep a room which is unheated and use for storage. Same with a crawl space only the temperature may not be as stable. the way to find out is use a thermometer and take daily readings till you feel comfortable about the steadiness of the temps. In a crawlspace, just beware of critters which might reach whatever is stored there. I know people who use coolers to store root veggies, they just check them regularly for any possible infestation.

  10. You mentioned that you went 12 days without running water. How much water did you use during that time? Was there any difficulty with obtaining enough to keep your family comfortable?

    • My biggest mistake was in not storing water. We had the means to store water, but because we expected the major emergency to be a hurricane, which gives a couple days notice to fill collapsible jugs, we didn’t keep water on hand.

      Then we got hit with an earthquake. No warning. The municipal electric plants shut down, leaving the municipal water system pumps without power. No water, except what was in the big holding tanks in the mountains, and the water board pleading with people to conserve, because if those tanks emptied, there would be no water for drinking or fighting fires.

      So we bought 5 gallon water fountain jugs, and later on a 55 gallon water barrel.

      We made a big mistake, but were lucky enough to get away with it.

  11. How long will the water I have stored in 2 liter bottles last- it’s “city” water. I love this barrel and have been wanting one for some time. Also want to say I love Emergency Essentials, especially the monthly deals! Thanks so much for this awesome give away!!

  12. I keep my barrels stored on the ground, I was given two by a neighbor who got them for free. This would be an excellent addition to my water reserve.
    Thanks for the opportunity at these great give aways Gaye.

  13. How safe do you think we are from terrorist attacks? Seems difficult to get answers to this risk, and I was wondering if you were privy to any information regular people don’t have access to.

    • Hi April,

      My guess: As a nation, we are highly at risk. As individuals, very, very few of us need worry about direct effects.

      Were we all affected by the 9-11 attacks? Of course, but very few of 330,000,000 directly so. I had reservations into NY on 9-12 (Cancelled.) but even if I had been going in on the morning of 9-11, I would not have been in any danger. Even the scores of thousands who worked in the financial district, but not in the WTC, escaped. They were certainly affected, but even most in the danger zone did get out.

      The Washington Sniper attacks? Many were affected in the sense that no one knew when or where the next shooting would take place, so tens or hundreds of thousands were affected by the worry. Still, very few relative to the population at risk actually knew anyone who got shot, much less were themselves shot.

      Same thing with the Boston Marathon bombing: terrible as it was, and even given the genuine stress of not knowing where the bombers had fled to, relative to the population of Boston, few people were directly affected.

      Lots of people were indirectly affected, and in important ways. That is part of the purpose of terrorism: make people nervous. Force them to change their lives in response. The terrorists have been successful at that.

      However, even if one frequents a high profile potential target like downtown Manhattan or the Mall of America, the chances of being in exactly the wrong place there at exactly the wrong time, is exceedingly remote for any given person.

      It’s a bit like car accident deaths. Are we at risk? As a population, car accident deaths are an inevitability. As individuals, the chances are pretty remote unless one is routinely a sloppy driver or a drug/alcohol abuser. Even most of them get away with it.

      Could we be affected by an extremely widespread attack like EMP or a major, successful hack of critical infrastructure? Yes. Businesses and governments around the world are working to prevent or ameliorate the effects, but at some point they may fail. That is one of the reasons we prepare for problems.

      We prepare reasonably well so that we don’t have to worry. In our case, preparing primarily for hurricanes, secondarily for earthquakes, leaves us pretty well prepared for the less likely possibilities.

      So, while we are aware that we might be among the unlucky few individuals directly affected by terrorism, we understand those personal risks are very small, and we are well enough prepared that we don’t worry much: We are prepared.

  14. Can the barrel be stored outside along side of house? My garage is too full of other preps. One side of hse is pretty much shade most of the day.

  15. I am pretty pleased with my prepping, but the one thing I do lack is more of a water supply. I have bottled and jugs of water for a while, but I do need a longer term and renewal water source and this raid barrel seems like the best method for a single person to easily use. Thank you for the opportunity to vie for this great survival tool. PinkPrepper

  16. As I go through the prepping process, water is what I keep coming back to. When you really break down how much we use in daily life, you really can’t prepare too much.

  17. What a wonderful giveaway! I order from Mountain House almost weekly, have an order on the way as I write. Keep up the good work, love reading your blog.

  18. I want to know what essential oil formula you use for blood pressure control and what pharmasuiticle you were able to eliminate.

      • I was going to ask a similar question so is good to know you will be answering it soon. Also, is there any essential oil that can work at least in part as a thyroid substitute? I have no thyroid gland and should prescription drugs become unavailable would like to have something that would at least help in that regard. Thanks.

        • Mary, I am in a similar situation as you, I have a thyroid gland but it is not functioning much. I have been looking into Myrtle Oil which is supposed to help regulate thyroid hormone but I don’t know if it will be effective if yours is completely gone. If you do find anything out I’d appreciate it if you’d pass it along. I cant get my doc to write my script in a way that lets me stockpile extra. hubs heart dr wrote his Rx for double the strength and then hubs cuts the pills in half so each monthly refill we get one month to set aside for later.

          • Meds are an important topic. The solution that works for me is not necessisarily right for anyone else. Here it is. My insurance will allow me to refil 2-3 days in advance. So I am careful to take advantage of that and save 2 pills a month. I am not worried about expiration dates. My purpose is to stockpile enough medication to slowly taper off in a SHTF situation. A pill cutter is important for tapering. This will not be good for my health but it is safer than cold turkey. Must say again this is a plan for my situation. The best idea is like you said, a doctor willing to prescribe extra.

            • Karen S.,
              I am allowed to fill mine up to 5 days early and I do take advantage of that and a pill cutter is my friend too. One of the other tricks I do now is about every 4 days I’ll cut a pill in half and only do a half dose. So far I have about a month supply that I could use post SHTF. And like you said, I would have to start tapering.

  19. would love to add another of these. work great but didn’t know they couldn’t be store on concrete directly. will have to change that!

  20. Maybe you could do an article on redundancy in prepping. It’s an important principe not a lot of people follow through on.
    Jody S.

  21. My question is regarding your use of E.O.’s and your husbands hypertension. What were the oils/blends used and in what form and frequency? As well as, how significant of a drop in both systolic and diastolic pressures was there?

  22. How can you make REALLY OLD dried beans useable under emergency circumstances. I have soaked for 24 hours then cooked for 12 hours or more with still somewhat crunchy and hard to digest results. Have had no success with solar or wonder bag approaches. My next try will be to soak, cook a while, put through a pureer and continue cooking. Has anyone worked with grinding dry beans before cooking? We want beans or bean mush to eat as a significant source of protein. Fuel consumption is a major problem.

    • This is something I am interested in as well. I have heard you can make bean flour out of old beans, but what do you use it for? In place of regular flour? Any recipes?

    • I normally soak beans for 3 days and change the water every 12 hours. Never had a problem with old beans. Another thing I hear about that has never caused a problem is old brown rice. I have had brown rice up to 6 years old with no special storage and it was fine.

  23. I agree about an article on redundancy. Since I have been prepping for a while, I find I am overlapping in several areas. Is it really necessary? For example, same items in our go bag and our shelter in place storage. Thanks!

    • Consider this…if you had to leave your home fast, how long would it take for you to grab that “stuff” from around the house? Would it cost you later? Redundancy may seem overdoing, but having it in a go bag and leaving immediately may give you the edge needed so you’re not part of the “mob” but out ahead. Since I have experienced large crowds both calm and enjoying AND watching as a large group of people turn ugly. I choose to have duplicates. It’s about considering and preparing for the worst and praying it never comes.

      • Dee, I agree with your thoughts on redundancy. It means not running around the house trying to pull things together from where they are normally kept. I have can opener, knives, tarps, hats, gloves, water bottles, and more just for the BOB. It is probably time to rotate the water and rice. I also have fire starting stuff in several bags including my purse.

  24. My husband and I have been wanting to do a rain barrel system for a while, this would be so great to start us off! Do you have a particular way you like to link multiple barrels?

  25. I have been wanting to get some of these 55 gallon water barrels for a while now. Sure would love to win this one!!

    • Hi Steven, I have read about it from time to time, but never in the context of someone who did any experiments with analyzing the water after some time.

      While we keep our barrel on a piece of kitchen counter granite, I think pretty much any good barrier should do the job. Maybe a layer of plastic, then lay down sheets of aluminum foil, then another of plastic would do the trick. Any scrap sheet metal should do the job, or a used pallet.

  26. I am so excited about this giveaway! You always review the best products! I am seriously so blessed I came across your blog. You are heaven sent! 🙂

  27. Its been raining here for about the past week. I was just thinking last night that I could have filled an emergency barrel or 2 with all this water. Thank you for the advice on storing barrels off the ground and that plastic water bottles could be kept indefinitely (if you don’t mind the taste of plastic – a small price to pay for drinking water).

  28. My rain water barrels collect water from the roof. I’ll use this water for flushing toilets and bathing, not so much for drinking unless my water distiller takes the impurities out.

  29. I had 2 water barrels that I bought back in 98 or 99. When we had to make a major move across the country one of the casualties was the barrels. I have regretted that for the past 9 years. Also, those two barrels cost me a total of $50. Prices sure have gone up!

  30. Although I thouroughly read each blog post, I don’t usually leave comments, but just wanted to say thank you for all these helpful tips! I have printed almost each one out and they have all helped so much! Water storage is obviously one of the most imperative prepping skills needed and it is also one area I need to be more familiar with so thank you for all your tips regarding the topic. This seems like a great product and would help any prepper out immediately. Keep up the good posts, look forward to more as always! 🙂

  31. Have you ever made your own “Pilot” crackers, and if so, can we get the recipe and your method for storing. Thanks.

  32. Homemade shampoo ideas would be appreciated. Peppermint smells good, but it irritates and dries my scalp so I cannot use it.

  33. I use (12 so far) the 6 gallon square “water totes” to store water. I also have an old water well that is still open and a water collection tube that you drop in the well and a flapper valve opens to fill it and you pull it back up. I just got a Big Berkey so I’m fairly set for water. The 55 gallon barrel would finish it off.

  34. Wow, I could store lots of water in one of these. With all the rain we are having I would have it full in a day. Would love to have one

  35. Just wanted to say that, in some states, it is illegal to collect rain water. Yes, that’s for real :-/ Please check your local laws.

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  36. Do you have any info. on places to get training in skills like shoemaking/repair,
    gunsmithing, or other useful skills that might provide income if things get worse? I think my local community college has EMT classes that could help with medical skills.

  37. Can I drink water collected from gutters off my roof? Is there a good way to cycle fresh water in without emptying and refilling regularly, 50 gallons is a lot to dump every few months.

    • Rain barrel water must be boiled and treated before drinking especially from an ordinary shingle roof. There is so much sediment from the shingles plus possible contamination from bird poop. Rain itself can actually pick up chemicals while falling. I would pre filter with a coffee filter held in a wire strainer and then boil.

    • There are filters which can be attached to the downspouts before the water enters the rain barrel, then filter the water when you pull it from the barrel. There are various methods for filtering, according to the equipment you have. Think about using the water stored in your garden, that’s also gonna need water whether a disaster or not.

  38. I am still looking at getting solar panels but they are just to expensive at this point. Perhaps you might know of somewhere to obtain panels that are more reaosnable in cost?

  39. Which of the survival food companies use non GMO, Organic, free range, certified no hormone or chemical product? I have asked many and they do not reply. I did get a response from someone that stated they use food that can’t be sold anywhere else and it is grown with pesticides and herbicides. Please put some facts together on this subject.

  40. I’m constantly trying to pair down my first aid kit but as a nurse, I wish I could include more. Essential Oils often don’t make the cut but if I included one or two what would you suggest? I’m usually not without tea tree oil since it’s so multi-purpose. Thanks.

    • Big thing is to keep in mind some may be allergic, so as a nurse, would you agree it’s best to ask before administering? Even then, some may not know they are allergic, but at least asking helps when they know. Tea Tree and Eucalyptus are not in my kit. There are many options just as there are many medications because not all work for all. I keep lavender and oregano oil with a small bottle of olive oil for disfusing as needed.

  41. I’m wondering if I’m making the best use of my limited prepping funds, so my question would be: What are the absolute most important things to own…ie, what should you buy first and foremost? And, once those are purchased, what are the secondary items?

    • I think water should be number one. Any water is better than none. Two gallon jugs, 5 gallon water fountain jugs, whatever.

      You might be likelier to want something else, but there are few things you would need more than water.

      Then food, which could very reasonably consist of your absolutely standard every day canned goods, rice, and pasta. That would be essentially free as you will eat it in the normal course of life. Just eat the oldest first so it never goes out of date. A propane camp stove (a single burner type will do fine) and fuel, and if in a cold climate, some way to stay warm in winter. A good, basic first aid kit, including supplies for treating serious cuts and burns. Light i.e. flashlights, lantern, and batteries. A battery operated radio.

      You might want some means of defense: pepper spray or a used baseball bat would be cheap. Your biggest kitchen knife with a pointed end would be free, but only if you are willing to actually use it. Guns are expensive, and if you aren’t willing to learn how and when to use them and not use them, willing to learn the laws, and spend the money it takes to be reasonably proficient and stay that way, you should probably explore other options.

      SO: water, your normal food and the means to heat/cook it, heat if needed, 1st aid, light, a radio for news. Plenty of batteries. And some cash in small bills would be very nice as well.

  42. Great gift,and a blessing who ever wins,remember to pay it forward,and help a neighbor to learn about prepping!

  43. I built a small pallet for each water barrel, then put caster wheels on the bottom. Though it is heavy, I can move my water barrels around when I need to, and they are off the cement.

  44. We are all preparing for some sort of event. Has anyone prepared by getting involved with their local civic government or school board?

    • Where I live and in many places, the training is called CERT. Check with your local emergency management dept of your city/town.

  45. Gaye thank you for another awesome Friday give away. You have done such a wonderful job of focusing on things that could mean life or death in a severe crisis. My question is to elevate the importance of sanitation for people who have no yard. I have left my house in the country to live with my husband in the city. Trying very hard to get him on board with my balcony composting bathroom plans. I actually have it all worked out from studying many articles on the subject but I need some woodworking help from my husband. Then we have to disguise the various buckets and storage tubs. My husband already told me we are not allowed to have garbage cans on the balcony but they never said anything about plastic tubs. You can compost in almost anything. I am trying not to get graphic but seriously I read an article describing what happens in cities after a major disaster and it was a horrifying eye opener. For me sanitation comes after water but before food in importance.

  46. Gaye: I get the rafflecopter and fill it out but I can’t find an enter box or anything to click on to send it in. Can you help?

    • With Rafflecopter, you sign in then click on the down arrows next to each option. In the bottom right hand corner of each option,there is a shaded box (mine is blue) that will say something like “enter” or “I follow” or “I commented” or something like that. In the left hand corner there will be the words “Cancel” to cancel your entry.

      If you do not see these, then there is something going on with the device you are using or there is a firewall blocking access (this happens in many corporate environments). My suggestion is you restart your device to see if that helps or go to a different computer. Alas, there are so many combinations that it is difficult for me to troubleshoot.

      I will send you an e-mail with a screen shot of what it should look like.

    • I was having trouble with rafflecopter on my phone but suddenly realized all I had to do was turn my phone sideways and then I could see the buttons as well as the checkbox that shows the entry. Don’t know if this pertains to your situation.

    • yes water over a long time will taste (funny ) but will be safe to drink ,make sure you store water in food grade plastic ,is a good idea to rotate water every 6-12 months but not that important if you use big water container use a air pump to put oxygen into the water just like (fish tank pump)also if SHTF Fill your bath with water if power is out the pressure that is still in the pipes should fill your bath half way and water will be like Gold in days to come
      its everyman for him self and women don’t be shy about trying to stay alive 🙂

  47. I repurpose soft drink bottles and fruit juice containers for extra water storage. I do add a few drops of bleach to each. I box them and stack it. I do try to swap it out periodically but if the shtf I can always boil and/or use for toilet water.

  48. I really like this prize. Winning this would be incentive enough for me to purchase more of these water barrels for each of the members of my immediate family. I’ll happily make preppers of them yet!

  49. You most likely have been asked this question many times… if so, please give your most recent opinion. Thank you…!

    In your personal opinion, what do you think would be the first and most likely major event to happen in our future?

  50. With the X class solar flare/CME this week and N Korea & Iran threatening attacks, I would like to know where I can purchase a Faraday cage or if anyone has been able to build an effective one? The EMP scenario is the one thing I haven’t been able to prep for, but feel an urgency to do so.

    • Hi Carolyn, I think that depends to some extent on where you are expecting to get home from, what kind of territory/neighborhoods you need to go through, your local climate, and how you expect to get home.

      Assuming you expect to walk, weight is also extremely important, but the contents of a pack which is heavier than you want to carry can be culled as circumstances at the time suggest. If you are bicycling, it may still be an issue, but less. My GHB backpack runs about 13 pounds, including boots and socks which I would expect to put on, but without water.

      Basics for me include comfortable, well broken in walking shoes or boots, heavy socks, and light liner socks. You need the liners to prevent blisters. Also a small 1st Aid kit, which includes plenty of moleskin to treat -and ideally prevent- blisters, plus a small pair of scissors to cut the moleskin to size. Petroleum jelly or lotion to grease up between your toes can help a lot to stay comfortable, and some for your inner thighs as well under some circumstances, as a really bad rash can get going surprisingly fast, and be extremely debilitating. Some bandaids.

      Another basic is water. We keep commercially bottled water (the cheapest from CostCo or Sam’s Club) in each vehicle at all times, drink it from time to time, and after six months or so replace it with fresh. We keep the bottles separate from the backpacks in case one leaks. We can put them in the packs if we need to hike home, and also carry stainless steel water bottles which we can fill.

      If there is a possibility of getting surface water from a ditch, stream, lake, or even a swimming pool, then a filter like a LifeStraw or one of the Katadyn filters could be a lifesaver. It is hard to carry enough water for a long walk in hot weather, so before leaving a vehicle I’d drink all I could, and put all I could in the pack. In other words, we keep more in the vehicles than we could easily carry.

      Which reminds me: Toilet paper, in a ZipLock bag, or a couple of the small packs of Kleenex.

      Comfortable walking clothes are important if you do not routinely wear them to work or for running errands. So is a hat. If you think you might have to climb a fence or through rubble you should consider gloves. Probably a windbreaker, maybe a light weight sweater. Depends on your climate.

      A couple light weight disposable ponchos or Mylar blankets are something to consider, as is one of the light synthetic blankets. You might want sunscreen or bug repellent.

      A map and a small flashlight may be useful. One of the really small but high quality lights like a Coast HP1 (c. $10 on Amazon, free shipping if you have Amazon Prime), which runs on a single AA battery, could be extremely useful, as could a couple spare batteries. They throw an amazing amount of light for such a small light. I keep one in the watch pocket of my shorts all the time, another in a shoulder bag I use a lot and leave in my truck, and another in my GHB. They are tiny, light, and reliable.

      What else to consider? A Swiss Army knife with a can opener which you have practiced with. Doesn’t need to be a big one: A Victorinox Spartan or Climber is fine.

      A good loud whistle to attract attention.

      Pepper spray, if you attract the wrong attention. Or, if you are inclined and local laws allow, a very small handgun. You really need to know how to use it properly, safely, and legally though, including a concealed carry permit in most states, and be willing to actually shoot someone who needs shooting. This is an extremely personal decision, which only you can make.

      Cash, in small bills. You might be able to buy water or food along the way, or something you didn’t realize you would need.

      Food: We like Emergency Rations aka Lifeboat rations. They are a cookie-like bar, packed for 5 year shelf life in varying hot and cold temps, so they stay edible while left in a vehicle. You can get them through Gaye’s Amazon link. Plug “Emergency Ration” into the search field, and search ‘All Departments’. They actually taste pretty good.

      Some of the individual packs of WetOnes are handy for washing hands before eating, and for cleaning small injuries.

      An auxiliary battery pack and batteries for your phone. The Rayovac 7-Hour Power Back Up for iPhones, Android, and Micro-USB Mobile Phones is currently less than $12 on Amazon, runs on 4 AA batteries (same size as the little flashlight) and works extremely well. We have several, use them a lot for camping, and I can recommend them highly for maintaining communication.

      A paper list of contact phone numbers could come in handy if your phone is damaged or lost, but other people’s phones work. So could a very small notebook and a pencil.

      Contents lists tend to include paracord and some duct tape. Both can be handy. I’d get MilSpec paracord, as the stuff made for commercial use apparently is of pretty variable quality. Amazon again: “paracord milspec” will get you there. You don’t need a lot. Ten feet, 20 feet max, should be plenty.

      I’m sure I have forgotten things, but that should be a decent start. I’d start with commercially bottled water, footgear, hat, clothes, a map, and build on that. You don’t need to do it all at once.

      Have some fun with it!

  51. Your website is my #1 go-to place for information. I have learned SO MUCH from you and really appreciate all the time you spend educating us and making information and resources available!! Thank you!

  52. I am interested in starting an herb garden but have questions about what herbs I should start with, growing tips and techniques for herbs, what to do about herbs that aren’t perennial where I live (do you bring them inside?), herbal teas…the list goes on and on!

    • Grow the herbs you cook with. Get to know how they affect you and your family. Then do a search “health benefits of ____” You’ll be surprised at how much medicinal qualities are in your food/herbs and spices. Just a caution, it can be addicting. 😉 I started with sage, rosemary and thyme.

  53. I have money in the stock market but thinking of pulling out. I am hearing a lot about market crash coming soon, acutally alot of bad stuff coming soon. Any advice about whether to stay in or ditch the stock market.

  54. I generally keep around 30 to 40 gallons of water, not all in one gallon containers. What is a good “refresh” cycle for water? How often should it be cycled, in other words?

    • I ‘refresh’ mine every 6 months by pouring from one container to another, to aerate it. Some people say 1 year is a good time… but water is water and is “Good” forever.

  55. what do you personally feel to be the most imminent threat(s) we could be facing? (as I believe you have referred to in the past as a disruptive event) I know each of us could face personal ‘events’ such as job loss, illness/injury, etc. But I’d really like to know what you perceive to be our greatest threat(s) as a nation. I highly value your insight and would really like to know. thanks

  56. What would be the best deep home well hand pump to use? Our well is 160 feet deep. Run by electricity of course. What hand pump to use??

  57. We’ve got a 5-barrel daisy-chained rain barrel system set up at our BOL and we LOVE it. It get’s dirty as heck during the high-pollen days in the MidAtlantic, but provides plenty of water for our garden. We pre-filter before we put it in the Berkey to create drinking water.

    One thing though – we do have to disconnect the roof downspouts from the rain barrels before the winter freeze discends, lest we face split rain barrels in the middle of winter. We were surprised how much vigilance was required to keep a roof-capture rainwater system intact and functioning in our first year, And the cleaning! Good lord! the cleaning!

    Rain barrels are not a “set it and forget it” option. Be warned. 😉

    • I am planning to get some plastic kiddie pools and fit screens to them. Then put them out when it rains and then process the water right away by boiling or filtering. Then store in clean bottles. I know the pools are not food grade plastic but the water will not be in them very long and it will be purified. I also plan to put some of the water in larger containers to be boiled later for bathing dishes and laundry. Any comments?

  58. Yes these water barrels has been on the list. And it seems to be all my questions have been answered. I would suggest having a weight belt for heavy lifting. I found out the hard way this last week and now on bed rest for weeks. That means no gardening, no canning, no sewing or long walks, ect. ect. I have learned my limitations.

  59. It was announced tonight, the governors of Washington and Oregon are going to announce tomorrow that we are in drought conditions. So storing water now will help especially if you going to be growing a garden. My plan as of tomorrow…attach a hose when I turn the hot water on, the cold water will flow into a water storage container or be taken and poured on the garden plants. Better to prepare now when we are getting SOME rain than wait till they begin the rationing. BTW: I will be putting some silver in my containers instead of chlorine. Silver dollars kept in the water barrels as the pioneers traveled across this country kept their water drinkable. It works for me too. 🙂 Simple and so worth having some silver around. Perhaps many didn’t know that’s why having a ‘silver spoon’ when born was desired. or a silver cup 😉

  60. I have checked every post since the contest closed for the solar charger and I do
    not see the winner list. Yes, I checked the “copters”. Please go over how to do this
    for those of us who are having problems finding it. Please don’t just say “go to copter”. Where is that “copter” to go to exactly. this one is not on the Friday
    after the close. That would be yesterday and all that is on there is a new contest
    for a 55 gal. barrel.
    Please-this is frustrating.

  61. I am FINALLY getting my BOB together. I have a 2L water pouch that fits into it, of course. My questions are…Should I keep the bladder full of water, and if so, should it be treated. How long should I keep that water in the bladder before draining snd cleaning it then refilling it? Should I keep it I filled with a water source on the ready to fill it? Thanks for any help!

    • Sorry, I meant…should I keep it EMPTY with a water source available and ready to fill it? Thanks for any help! And yes, I would LOVE to win the water barrel!!

  62. Being “retiree” age, what is the one thing(s) you would recommend for GenX people? And also what what you recommend for Millennials? We are GenX parents. We have tried to instill independence in our kids, which is contrary to normal “conditioning” from society these days. Also, we have NO retirement as of right now. We withdrew what we had and built a house on land we purchased. Our plan is to be debt-free and self-sufficient before retirement BUT we do need to have some savings/retirement AND what happens if our health fails us? My Father-in-law has Alzheimers and it is destroying my in-laws savings/retirement. I guess that’s more than a question, but that’s where we’re coming from.

  63. What a great give away. What I’d like to know besides the obvious is how do you go about storing shoes, boots,clothing for the family. I have thought about how would I be able to clothe and have shoes /boots for my family if there was a shtf situation for a long time. I only a finite amount of storage space in the house. I have thought about vac-packing underwear,socks,etc and storing in sealed totes but how long would those things last that way? Water is a prime concern for me. I have bottles and jugs but that barrel would be a boon for me.
    Thank you

    • Totes are great for clothes & shoes, they’ll last for years if you don’t have a growing family. Otherwise I’d refresh the packs every 6 months. I put mine in a regular cardboard box and a BAY LEAF in with my clothes and it keeps bugs out!

      • Thank you Carol, Most of the family I’m prepping for are adults but with the grandkids,grandnieces,grandnephews (now and future;) ) I’ve been think on how could I keep things for them.Your suggestion of the Bay Leaf is great. Do you put one or more in the tote or do you package them up with the clothes and then into totes?

    • For clothing, shoes/boots–I have those one-way valve plastic bags. All one does it zip the clothing in, then roll the bag like a sleeping bag to push the air out. I started doing with when going camping since I live where rain can happen anytime. Just seemed natural to do this for any bags I make up. One or 2 leaves per bag are enough. Just remember to change out the bay leaves about every 3 years. I keep warm weather bags and cold weather bags to be used rapidly should the need arises during spring and fall.

  64. Great giveaway! I live next to a creek and have a pump-type water filter, but this would come in very handy!

  65. It’s so good to see that one of the most important survival factors among so many is that of “water”. (Close behind water, the ability to keep warm?) Not being any kind of expert regarding water, it does seem worthy to consider that water filtration and purification would also be very important. Especially in times of catastrophic events, considering likely airborne contaminants such as smoke particulates (from any source) and volcanic ash particulates. Somehow, “acid rain” emerges from memory. Just a thought…

  66. what a great contest. just the perfect thing for many of us to add to our preps.

    thanks for having the drawing.

    • Jim, as to the shelf life of jams, jellies, I am no expert by far, but I have heard it said amongst the old timers that the only way to ever hurt anybody with a jar of preserves is to hit them in the head with the jar itself. lol. They used to not even be sealed with lids but a wax. Children were then treated to chewing the bits of wax that had some preserves stuck to it as a sort of substitute for gum.

    • I use cat litter jugs to store tap water for non drinking purposes such as laundry. The plastic is not good safe and they cannot be stacked so I have them lined up and down the hallway. They look a little goofy but they are not in the way. The lids are not water tight so I am careful to keep them upright. I believe in storing water any way we can. My drinking water is in cleaned soda bottles.

      • i was thinking more along the lines of gardening for the time being until i get a water barrel. also for washing face and flushing toilets. i have collected many empty buckets and have filled two so far. i have a tile roof with aluminum runners where the roof comes together. unless anyone else can figure what else to use them for. some have canned goods or beans double wrapped since the seal on the lids aren’t that good

  67. I’d like to know a bit more about gardening, so many different methods. Not really sure where to start…finally decided this was the year and I’m just doing a traditional garden.

  68. My question would be do you do any home canning as part of your preps and if so what are your favorite recipes? And thank you for arranging another great giveaway.

  69. This be cool to get, as my brother won’t get into survival stuff unless I get him the stuff to do it. He finally is starting to put together some what of a bag just incase the SHTF too lol

  70. In the event of a TEOTWAWKI event what easy or common herbal/natural solutions have you found that can help various medical conditions. For example diabeties, heart condition, pain management, arthritius etc. And, besides black pepper, what common items are good to stop bleeding?

    • First, consider, though we commonly use black pepper. In a grid down collapse, pepper will become a highly prized herb. Why? Because it doesn’t grow in the US. AND the peppercorns it comes from will only keep for about 2 years before losing potency. There are many plants which help with pain management along with other skill you can learn. One of the best for stopping blood, my guess is you already have in your stores…sugar. Heart condition, it depends on what the condition is. Diabetes–the most commonly used natural remedies still come from outside the US, so the same holds as with black pepper. I have come across one which may work, I’m currently working with it to see how effective it is.
      There are plants which can help, sorry I can’t give more info here. It would make this comment section too long. BUT there is hope…keep me in your prayers that I can soon get the book out that answers many of these questions. 🙂

    • OMG I really hope Gaye answers this question. I am always prepping on a tight budget but I think exploring what could be done on a large budget would be illuminating. For example I would create buried storage cached in several woodland locations. Each would have boots, beans and bullets. Along with a firearm, hunting knife, fire starting methods, fishing gear, rope, tarps, dry clothes, flashlight with batteries stored separately, more beans and bullets, rice, water, bottle, pot, and a backpack to put it all in. And maps. My point is with a large budget you can build in lots of redundancy which could save your life. You can also prep your home and a secondary location in a rural area. Thanks for letting me share. The posts generated by the Friday giveaway have been highly motivational and thought-provoking.

      • I have been pondering all of the questions. First I am going to have to download them all (not the easiest thing to do) then organize them. There are a lot of water-relted questions that should be addressable in one article.

        The $XXX per dollars per month question would make a great followup to 12 Months of Prepping. Perhaps a $50, $100 and $400 a month option. Like I said, pondering.
        40

  71. Just wondering if anyone relates to this? I started my food preps several years ago and amassed at least a year of grains beans and canned food. I didn’t store it using ideal methods and the conditions were not ideal either because my house gets very hot in the summer. So I am looking at a three to five year shelf life not the thirty year ideal. Furthermore I have found I don’t really want to eat this food. But now it is time to actually eat my storage food and start over with better storage methods. Some of the methods I have used are to pack grains or beans in freezer bags, press the air out, and stack in five gallon buckets. Other times I have simply layered the packaging from the store in five gallon buckets. Then I strarted storing food in quart mason jars with oxygen absorbers and storing the jars in plastic totes from Walmart. These are not the ideal methods but I have been creative. For example several of my totes contain white beans, tiny pasta, canned tomatoes, chicken broth and other stable ingredients to make pasta and bean soup. Anyway, I’ve got a lot of food storage cooking and re-prepping to make this right.

      • Hi Gaye. I do like all forms of grains and beans cooked with spices. But I am lazy and my taste buds are lazy. So I would rather eat Chinese takeout or frozen Mac and cheese or anything I don’t have to cook myself. That is what I discovered after prepping a ton of food. Maybe I’ll just try to cook it once or twice a week.

    • I don’t prep for 25 or more years either. I am prepping so it will give me time to learn how to live off the land (gardening, foraging,hunting, etc), so you have described how my stores look with the exception that I place a sock full of salt, tied with a twist tie, in each container along with several bay leaves (depending on the size of the storage container. No matter how long the stores last, you will need salt for the mineral content, so why not keep some with what you store. BTW: salt absorbs moisture instead of it being absorbed into your food stores. Bay leaves and peppercorns keeps the pests away. Since I live in the Pacific Northwest, I know this works about moisture. If you have a house which gets hot, perhaps you might consider finding places in your house in which you could make a trapdoor to your crawlspace, then put some coolers down there and place those items most subject to heat in them. those trapdoors also can be an escape if it is ever needed. though hoping that need never arises, again, its about being prepared. 😉

  72. $$$ question. How does one prep when the only money you have is for like $15.00 a month. Between rent and utilities that is all I have left on a disability income. Seriously

    • Make a list of what you want to get. Prioritize each item according to need and what you already have. Then go by Gaye’s 12 months of prepping with what you have. If/when you see a deal, be ready to adapt your plans. Also let people know you are looking for something special whether you talk to the of prepping or not. Sometimes even though they may not understand, they may let you know of a deal. If it comes down to it, just a couple extra cans of this or that can make a difference. It will just be a slow process. I too, am limited with funds. Sometimes you have to think a little out of the box but it’s possible. 🙂

    • I feel your pain, when I first started prepping that was just about my budget. I started by going to a store we have around here called Aldi. I don’t know if there is one near you but you can get staples much cheaper than wallyworld or the grocery store. My ‘prep list’ looked like this: bag of rice 3 lbs $1.49. Bag of beans 4 lbs $3.69. Box of pasta 2 lbs $1.49. Case of bottled water $1.99. A canister of salt 1 lb $.39. Bag of flour 5 lbs $1.29. a Bag of sugar 4 lbs $1.29. Bottle of cooking oil $2.39 and a Box of green tea bags for $1.19. It was right around $15 and All this was besides my regular groceries and went into a special location. It isn’t exactly Jenny Craig but I was just starting out and my main concern was my family not going hungry. This list contains over 36,000 calories which comes to over 2400 calories per dollar. Another bang for the buck I have found is when the 6 pack of ramen noodles goes on sale for $1. that is over 2,000 calories per dollar. hope this helps some.

      • yes thank you gives me a better idea. and yes we do have an Aldi about two blocks from me. along with a dollar tree I have done some from there too.

  73. This is probably gonna sound like a dumb question but I was always told that the only dumb questions are the ones no one asks. So here goes: What would you recommend putting in a bug out bag for a person who is physically disabled and confined to a wheel chair? I am personally in this situation so my BOB is empty as I can’t figure out what to put in it because all the recommendations I have read about talk about weight, and other considerations. My BOB will have to hang from the back of my chair.

    • You don’t say whether you are semi mobile or totally confined. This may make a difference. First, figure how much weight your chair can handle with you in it and w/o you in it. I know heavy weight hanging from my chair…if I get out, it will tip backwards. Can you handle this? Also the back of your chair isn’t the only place you can carry while in the chair.
      Although it looks like a hobo purse, I regularly carry a diaper bag full of all I would need to get me back home (EDC). If you are talking about a BOB, consider going as lean as possible since I assume you have medications and other possible medical needs you also may need. For sure, I would go to a garden center and buy 2 pair of gloves. Ask for gloves which would be used to pull out blackberry bushes and rose bushes. These will help keep your hands warm and protected no matter the conditions you may run into. Of course, I’m assuming you’re using a manual wheelchair. If a powerchair, I would still carry according to your needs. I’ll have to check and see what I have in mine. If you let Gaye know more, then perhaps we can help both us and others who might be disAbled. 😉

      • oops, upon proofing my reply, I didn’t explain, my diaper/hobo bag is carried in front, hooked to my chair with paracord bindings and caribiners. I can send Gaye a pic for when she answers some of these questions above.

      • Dee I am not in a wheelchair yet but do think about how to bug out. I am limited on weight I can carry. can’t walk very far before my back gives out. been looking into exercises for those over 50 as I am 59. think I lost my core strength while in a chair after breaking an ankle. my thoughts have been how to carry? could I bring with me all I have Prepped thus far? even looked into an adult three wheeler as transport.with a basket and a trailer for transporting things i need. i have no money to enforce it for safety like you could for a car. really need a small car just would feel safer. I really think this would be a great topic for Gaye to address.

  74. Having a well system with a pump now over 21 years old and down about 500 feet I am getting more into making sure there is stored water around for drinking and cleaning. I can use water from the rain barrel to flush toilets now that it is spring. Having this much water on hand will be great as it may take the well person some time to get here and pull the pump and do the repairs.

  75. Leslie, since you have a well i’d like to ask you a question. We have a well on our property that was there when we bought the place. We know virtually nothing about it. I know it has a hand pump and it doesn’t hold it’s prime. we have to take a bucket of water out and dump down the top and then it will start pumping. We don’t know how deep it is or what quality the water is. Do you do any testing on your water or do you filter it? If you do test it, what do you test it for and how often and what test kit do you use? thanks

  76. wish I had known about all this when I was 20’s and 30’s. Having had times when no water as paid or had electric bill not paid and turned off but had a well that worked on electricity. I could have stored for bad times. Life would have been so much better.

  77. Post earthquake, how many of gallons of water should I store to last minimum two weeks for a family of four?

    Hope to win!

    • At a minimum, 1 gallon per person, per day – this allows for some light hygiene. Double that if you want to take a sponge bath and do some cooking and such.

  78. This is non water related question. I am always concerned about power outages. Are there any economical methods to produce energy without connecting to the local power company? (By the way, love this water barrel.) Thank you. 🙂

  79. My current water savings technique. 6 5gallon containers and a 100 gallon aquaponics tank (not counting the water in the grow beds.) I would love to start collecting rain water but it would have to be on the sly – the city says all rain water is theirs.

  80. Great giveaway and would like to win it. I am working on making sure I enough water, etc. stored for my dog. Big thirsty thing. Ditto his food.

  81. I have had Deep Brain Stimulation for Essential Tremor. As a result I have probes in the right and left side of my brain and a battery pack in my chest. I want to know what would happen to me if an EMP occurs. I can just see me sitting with tin foil on my head like in Mel Gibson’s movie.

  82. What a wonderful giveaway. I so need one. I hope I stand a chance to win. Just started prepping and wouldn’t miss your new letter for the world..It has given me so much information. Keep up your excellent work. There are those of us out there that need and use this important information… Thanks so much….God Bless….

  83. Water will be one of the greatest downfalls for the ill, or non, prepared. This item would go a long way towards assuring survival in any situation. Great giveaway!

  84. Re: water…you write the following:

    “Bargain Bin: Today is all about water!

    No Rinse Cleansing & Deodorizing Bathing Wipes…”

    My comment is that it seems we all should be very careful not to flush wet wipes. If so, then it follows that we should also be extremely careful not to flush Bathing Wipes of any kind.

    Though my comment is the teensiest bit off-topic, if the information in the article and video linked below is accurate (I personally have no way to confirm or discredit the article, but it sure looks legitimate) it sure looks like we should be extra careful not to be flushing Bathing Wipes as well:

    http://www.thameswater.co.uk/media/press-releases/17205.htm

  85. Hey, Peggy (at 2:29pm on March 16, 2015)…
    I understand how you need one of these nifty water barrels so… because I do,too!
    Tell you what, if I win it… I will share mine with you. For ease of access for you, I will give you the top half after I cut it into two parts! Sharing is caring, huh? (lol)

    Just kidding… as we shouldn’t forget that humor will be hard to find survival necessity in times of a catastrophic event!

  86. We recently moved to a place where we can actually have something like this! thanks for the chance to win it!

  87. Can you store the 55gal barrels on straight concrete or do those need to be elevated? I keep our regular gallon and 4 gallon (think the big containers that go in the water cooler bases) on a shelf.

    • And that was extremely silly. I saw the answer to my question under the picture. Way to go me! What would the shelf life be for water stored in the 55gal barrels? I rotate our gallon jugs out every 6 months or so, reusing the water either in the washing machine or for watering seedlings come spring.

  88. What an amazing product. I love the fact that there are water levels so that I can easily see the amount of remaining water.

  89. Just a thought – we have an above ground swimming pool- soft side 4′ deep 7′ x 11′ oval. Wondering about leaving it up year round and covering it with the fabric they use to cover between rows of plants (it lets water through but won’t let weeds grow) I could buy several feet of it an sew them together to make a cover large enough. I realize we would have to keep the water moving to get air into it and such but thought it might be a useful thing to have in an emergency to flush toilets etc.
    Any thoughts on this?

  90. I purchased one of these type barrels to store water that flows onto my garden. It has been tucked partially into the hillside, but one side faces the morning sun for about three hours each day. It has held up far better than the plumbing connected to it. These barrels are great.

  91. What are the concerns when capturing and storing rain water? How long can it be stored? Should it be boiled? Etc.

  92. Have you used a Sun Oven? If so, what is your evaluation of it? What are the items you have cooked in it that please you most?

  93. Hello my question is what is your biggest “prep”. As in what is your biggest focus. Is it medical? ammo? guns? food? Anything such as that. Also I want to know why you feel this needs to be the biggest prep? Thank you.

  94. There is a Mexican cheese plant locally… have gotten a few barrels from them… BUT we ALWAYS need more… Thanks for UR great information!

  95. I purchase one gallon of water every time I do my shopping. Do I have to throw them out by the expiration date or is the water okay to use after that date?

    • The winner will be posted on the Rafflecopter once he or she has been selected and verified. The winner will also be sent an email. This usually does not happen until the Friday after the giveaway ends.

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