If you are a regular reader here, then chances are you might have enough water already.
But it’s always fun to do the math anyway.
When prepping for disasters or shortages, it can be very easy to look at what seems to be a sizable stash of food or water and say wow, I’ve really stocked up well!
But have you really?
Let’s crunch some numbers.
As far as drinking water goes, the general consensus advice is to have eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day.
Now that is not a hard and fast rule and I am not advocating that everybody should follow it as the ideal option for their health. But we’ll use that as a general starting point for calculating emergency supply drinking water needs.
A typical bottle of water comes in at 16.9 ounces, meaning you would need four bottles a day to approximate the general advice of eight 8-ounce glasses.
That means, for one person, a typical case of water (24 bottles) will last six days.
If you want to have a 30-day supply (which should likely be your minimum amount on hand) you will need five cases just for yourself.
Now multiply that number by the number of people in your household and you have a good idea of how many cases of bottled water you want to have on hand.
Family of four? You’ll want at least 20 cases for a 30-day supply, following the eight 8-ounce glasses a day standard.
Now picture a stack of 20 cases of water in your closet, basement, or wherever you want to store them.
That’s a heckuva stack.
And it’s a stack that most people don’t have.
So, if the you-know-what ever hits the fan, or even hints at hitting the fan, you can rest assured there will be massive crowds of people at the stores looking for whatever droplets of water they might have left.
Unless they read this article or we otherwise get the word out, of course.
In any case, you really want to make sure you are not in that crowd.
Now, let’s get back to that stack of 20 cases of water. It’s important to note that this only covers drinking water. This does not take into effect how much water you’ll need for bathing, cleaning, perhaps to flush your toilet if there is no plumbing, etc.
To lessen some of those water needs, you can stock up on hand wipes and washcloth wipes so you can wash your hands and/or “bathe” yourself without using water, when appropriate.
You might also look into a “portable toilet”, the kind used for camping, in the event there is no plumbing and you can’t use your regular toilet without bottled water to flush it.
These will not eliminate your non-drinking water needs entirely, but they will eliminate a significant amount of them. They will also save you some valuable storage space, not to mention being pretty tidy to use.
The hand wipes and washcloths at least. I can’t vouch for the tidiness of the portable toilets.
Still tidier than pooping in a plastic bag or out in the yard, though, so there’s that.
You can find hand wipes at most stores like Target or Wal-Mart or online. I’ve only seen washcloth wipes online but perhaps some stores carry them as well.
You can likely find a good selection of portable toilets with odor eliminating bags at your local outdoors store near the camping equipment. Or online as well.
I suppose the moral of the story is, it’s really hard to have too much water on hand and even what might look to be a lot might not be enough. So go ahead and check out how much you really have.
Good or bad, it’s good to find out and prepare yourself.
And then once you do, you might want to consider adding a case or two (or much more) of bottled water on your next trip out to the store and get while the getting is still good.
The moment anything spooks the population, you now know from your COVID experience that those shelves will be emptied in a matter of minutes, not days. If you’re waiting in line for water or food then, chances are you’ll come away empty-handed.
So get prepared now to make sure you don’t have to wait in line later.