Water purification and storage is one of our most important preps, but unfortunately, there are a number of myths in circulation that will cause problems for people. Here are a few that you need to be aware off.
1, It is a myth that you need to boil your water to make it safe to drink. Water boils at 212 degrees. However, getting your water to a temperature of 150 degrees pasteurizes it. Boiling Water Verses Pasteurization to Make Safe Drinking Water
2, Running water is safe to drink. Don’t believe this one. Remember it came from somewhere and there could be a dead animal between you and the source. If you don’t have the means to treat your water and have to choose between running and stagnant water always choose the former. But if you have the means always treat it.
3, Eating snow is a good way to rehydrate safely. False, eating snow can result in hypothermia and even lead to dehydration because of the energy your body has to expend to melt the snow. Always try to melt snow before you consume it. If the snow is not fresh, stay away from it or at least make sure, you treat it as you would any other water.
4, People from third world countries do not need treated water because they get “used to their water” and “develop immunity to the diseases that are in the water”. In fact, while their bodies can develop some resistance to e-coli; they do not necessarily develop immunity to cholera, hepatitis, dysentery, guinea worm or typhoid or other diseases.
5, Water can expire. False, if you put treated water from a municipal water system into a clean container, it will still be good when you get it out regardless of the length of time it is stored. Water that is stored for a long period can develop a stale taste. One thing you can do to make water that has been stored for long periods taste better is to aerate it, by mixing it up or pouring it from one jug to another to add oxygen. If the container is damaged in anyway, treat it as you would any suspect water.
6, Since I have chemical water purifiers, I don’t need a water filter. Chemical water purifiers like Chlorine Dioxide will kill 99.9% of all microorganisms (like protozoa, bacteria, and viruses) in your water. Chlorine bleach is also a decent water purifier as long as it is fresh (less than a year old) and unscented. Purifying Water with Chlorine Bleach and Pool Chlorine. Remember that chemical water purifiers will not remove chemicals and other contaminants from your water. Using a purifier and filter together is a good combination to make sure your water is safe for drinking.
7, I have a swimming pool in my backyard, that is our water storage. While swimming pool water can be used for irrigation and cleaning, it has problems when it comes to drinking it. First, you are assuming that no animal waste, nuclear waste, or other contaminants will get into the pool water. Second, you use chemicals in the pool and normally have a pump running to circulate the water. The pump will quite running as soon as the power fails and the chemical are questionable. Is Swimming Pool Water Safe to Drink?
8, Sand and homemade water filters work. False, I have played with the idea of making homemade filters for water purification at various times. However, I have never made one that I would trust to effectively treat water enough to drink. They can remove dirt and sediment from water effectively and improve the quality of the water, however I would want to treat the water by a second method prior to drinking.
Learn about water purification, it is one of the most important subjects that you should study. If you look at the categories located on the right hand side of this page you will find one called water purification. This will lead you to number of post on water purification and lots of information on water filters and chemicals.