For many people, clean water has never really been a concern. Most people take for granted their water supply, they get their water from the tap or from bottled water, which usually means it’s safe to drink.
In a bugout situation or environmental crisis that disrupts the water supply, you can’t carry around a year’s supply of water bottles or rely on your tap. You have to find a way to acquire potable water wherever you happen to be. No matter how clear it may appear, almost no water you find outside is safe to drink.
It’s often full of contaminates that can make you sick, or even kill you. The first method of water purification is using tablets. Potable Aqua water tablets have been used by organizations all around the world, and they work quite well.
One bottle of tablets contains 50, and each tablet purifies half a liter of water. So if you fill up a 1 liter bottle with river water, it’ll take two tablets to purify. After dropping the tablets in your water, allow around 35 minutes for the purification process to fully work.
Then, your water should be good to drink. You can’t use this method to purify salt water, however. It only gets rid of biological concerns. The next method, and possibly the best, is the LifeStraw.
LifeStraws are being used around the world in underdeveloped countries to supply clean water, because they’re easy to use and last a long time. I suggest having a few of these around in each of your bugout bags. To use them, you simply use it like a straw in any freshwater source.
The filters in it will filter out any biological hazards or debris, including bacteria and parasites. The water that passes through all of the filters is completely potable, and comes out the end that you suck on.
Once you’re finished drinking, simply blow through the straw to clean it out of any lodged debris. One Lifestraw can filter up to 1000 liters of water, which should last at least a year, if not more.
Finally, you can always just boil the water. For this you’ll obviously need a campfire and a pot to boil it in. This method is the least preferred on its own, because it’s not guaranteed to kill off all biological threats.
However, if you boil and treat your water with tablets, it’s even more effective. Boiling water is more time consuming than the other methods, because you have to wait for the water to heat up and then cool off. It’s best to use a simple filtration device and get the water you need immediately.