Water Purification Tips You Need To Know
Several types of disasters can cause you and your family to need clean water. While many people store water for such instances, those supplies may not last long in the event the disaster lasts longer than expected. Here are a few water purification tips to help you be prepared for disasters, and other emergencies, regardless of how many bottles of it you may have stocked up on.
If you and your family are in a remote location and you run out of water, these water purification tips could be a lifesaver, you may come across a stream or a lake and think you are saved, and while that may have been true several years ago, today it is sadly not the case. There are several reasons you should always purify any water you find, no matter if it is in a lake or coming out of a ground spring.
Follow these tips when looking for water outdoors:
- Running water (streams, springs, etc.) are better choices than still water in a pond or lake. Be advised that even though water is running through a clear, beautiful stream or creek, it could still be infected with bacteria like giardia. Giardia comes from animal droppings that gets into water and can be fatal, especially to the elderly and very young.
- Avoid using water that has algae growing in it. Where there are algae there are also microbes that can make you and your family sick.
- Avoid water that has any hint of color in it. Sometimes you may see water with an iridescent tint when the sunlight hits it. This is likely chemical pollution.
- Never choose water, even for purification, from a swamp or marshy area if at all possible. Reptiles likely live in these areas, causing the water to contain things like salmonella.
You can also tie a clear, plastic bag around a tree branch if it has green leaves, and wait for the condensation to build inside the bag, but make sure to also boil this collected water as well.
Once you find a decent water source, your next step is purification. While many people are used to commercial water filters, you should know there some excellent and safe ways to purify water for drinking and cooking purposes. The best method is to boil water for at least twenty minutes, and then add it to a clean container. Do not use the same container you gathered the unclean water in to store your purified water. This is the most important reason you should have a bag packed for these kinds of emergencies, and that bag should contain a waterproof container filled with matches for starting a fire.
A Great Water Purification Method:
Making a water purification filter while in the middle of nowhere can be easily done using birch bark, sand, grass and charcoal. You can use charred pieces of wood as long as there is no white ash on them. Cut a piece of birch bark into a square, and roll it into a cone shape. Place pebbles at the bottom of the cone and add charcoal, grass and sand in layers until the cone is full. Pour water through the cone, making sure the tip of the cone is over your clean container. Once filtered, boiling the water is the best way to kill any bacteria that made it through the filter. Another filtering method is to pour water through a couple of clean, white socks before boiling it.