How Long Can You Survive Without Water?

We take water for granted. Open the tap or twist off the cap on a bottle and rehydration is almost instant. But that's during normal times when there is no drought, the water supply hasn't been poisoned, and the infrastructure hasn't been destroyed in a natural or man-made disaster. But wait, bad things like that only happen in the movies, right? 

Actually, history should have taught us that life is full of surprises, and often those surprises include dry faucets and undrinkable water. A few hours without water is generally not a big deal. But in these chaotic times, the threat of long-term supply disruptions is a real concern. For over a year we've seen what appear to be deliberate attacks on our infrastructure and food production facilities. Just like week we witnessed a train derailment in Ohio that turned rivers and streams into chemical hot spots. And NATO's aggression in eastern Europe is putting all of us at risk of nuclear war. America has never been in greater danger than it is right now.  The Cold War was a lot of posturing and big talk, but today insane people control arsenals that could kill us all, and I think they're crazy enough to use them.

I haven't said that to scare you. I've said it to hopefully make you realize that today is the day when you need to prepare for the worst. We always think we have time to think it over and then gather up supplies some time in the future. The fact that nothing horribly bad has happened in the past lulls us into thinking time is on our side. But when catastrophes strike, they usually give us no warning. 

There have been many articles written about prepping, listing all the things you might possibly need in a SHTF moment. The lists are so long they can intimidating. What if you don't have the money to buy everything you need? What if you live in a small apartment and don't have the space? You have to make your own decisions on what is important to you. While making that decision for myself, I realized that the number one thing I can't survive without is water. Without water, it won't matter if I have a satellite phone or a 25-year supply of freeze-dried peas. According to Scientific American magazine, depending on the situation, you can only survive around three days without water. On a hot day you could be dead in a few hours. So I think your number 1 survival priority should be your water supply. 

In addition to storing water in bottles and jugs, I suggest you obtain a method to filter water sourced from your neighborhood. You need to think about where you could find water if the city system went dry. Is there a river or stream nearby? How about a pond? You may even have to dip water out of a hole in your backyard. Collecting rainwater off your roof is also an option if you set up a collection system in advance. All of these sources of untreated water have the potential to make you very sick. Some of the nasty things you could find include bacteria, giardia, cryptosporidium, heavy metals, and chemicals. Even if you're thirsty, you need to get the junk out before you take a gulp.

Water filtration tablets are available in sporting goods stores and also in the camping department at Walmart. The tablets will kill bacteria and some parasites but they don't work against cryptosporidium and they won't turn muddy water clear. But they are better than nothing. 

A better choice is to have a water filtration system on-hand. A basic Brita or Pur pitcher can't handle pond water. Most filters designed for homes rely on the water being treated through a city system before being poured through the filter. In a pinch you could filter questionable water in a basic pitcher filter, but the filter element will clog quickly and they won't trap some of the things that could make you sick. What you need is a filter that's designed for untreated water. For that, I've purchased an Epic Nano water filter pitcher. I already have an Epic Pure filter pitcher which removes fluoride. But Epic says their Nano filter is better suited for water sourced from outdoors. According to Epic, the Nano removes up to 99.999% of all contaminants, including bacteria, giardia, cryptosporidium, and viruses. Their test data proves the filter also removes heavy metals and a wide range of chemicals. My plan is this: first I'll filter water that I pull out of a local stream using a mesh screen and a coffee filter to remove the larger solids. If the water is especially murky I'll let it sit for a couple of hours so the sediment can settle out before running it through the coffee filters. Then I'll filter the water in my Nano pitcher followed by a run through my Pure pitcher. The end result should be as tasty as bottled water but hopefully even safer. 

Let me be clear that I can't certify that my method will produce totally pure drinking water from creek water. There are a lot of variables to consider. But in the absence of any other source of water, my triple-filtration method will keep you alive longer than no water at all. 

I highly recommend you buy an Epic Nano filter at the very least. Don't activate it yet. Put it on a shelf with your other survival gear. Then if you can afford it, also buy an Epic Pure filter which you can begin using right away with your tap water. Should you find yourself in a survival scenario with no safe water, you can then bring out the Nano filter and follow it up with the Pure filter as I described above (screen/coffee filter/Nano/Pure).

Click Here to learn more about Epic filters and to order today. You may also want to consider the filters sold by Lifestraw. They have a range of systems available but I haven't personally used them so I can't endorse them. 

Hope for the best but prepare for the worst. But don't be distracted by trendy exciting things some preppers might say you need. Without water, nothing else matters.

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