Having a source of clean drinking water is a top priority in an emergency situation. Nowadays, we take clean water for granted, but anyone who has experienced or witnessed a natural disaster knows how important it is to have a water supply on hand.
It’s a good idea to plan ahead how much water you’ll need to meet your families needs (see the link to American Red Cross guidelines below). This will help you narrow down your search and help you the right size emergency water storage container to accommodate your family’s needs. Investing a little time and money now could save you a lot of headaches down the road.
- Here Are the Best Water Storage Containers in 2019
- 1. Stackable Containers (Recommended for Most People)
- 2. RomoTech 50 Gallon Translucent Tank (Best Mid-Sized)
- 3. RomoTech Horizontal 125 Gallon Reservoir (Best Large Tank)
- 4. DATREX Emergency Drinking Water Pouches
- 5. WaterBOB Drinking Water Bladders
- 6. Augason Farms Water Storage Barrels
- 7. Blue Can Premium Canned Drinking Water
- 8. Coleman Water Jug (Good for Camping)
- 9. Reliance Aqua-Trainer 7 Water Containers (Best Seller)
One of my favorite quotes about water is…
On this page, I cover all your emergency water storage options and the best devices to store water in long term. Let’s cover some basics.
What is the Shelf Life of Water?
Water doesn’t necessarily have an expiration date, but it can get contaminated. The shelf life of water depends on how it’s stored. There are many types of storage devices. Below, I’ll show you some quality storage containers for different types of emergencies. Some of them provide a shelf life of 50+ years!
How Much Emergency Water Per Person Should I Store?
The National Guard and American Red Cross emergency water guidelines recommend 64 ounces of water per day per person. This number increases significantly during hot days or if you’re heavily active. Water storage devices are cheap, so it’s a good idea to have one handy in-case an emergency situation should arise.
What Size Water Storage Tank Should I Buy?
The optimal size water tank for you depends on the size of your family and how long you want to be covered for. If you do decide on a smaller tank, I recommend having a reliable water filter handy.
How Should Water be Stored?
You want to make sure your water doesn’t freeze or get too hot. If you can, the ideal place to store your water is in the basement of your home. If your water does freeze, it can cause damage to the holding tank and make it undrinkable. Even if the water in the tank doesn’t freeze all the way through, if the nozzle freezes, it makes it impossible for the water to flow out.
Ideally, you want to store your water in a UV-resistant food safe container. Double check that your storage device is BPA free, this will ensure your water stays fresh and safe for the long haul.
I will cover all your water storage options below including pouches, bladders, storage barrels, jugs, and other options. I hope this list helps you find a container that meets your needs.
Here Are the Best Water Storage Containers in 2019
1. Stackable Containers (Recommended for Most People)
If you’re looking for a long-term emergency water storage containers, these 5-gallon jugs are PERFECT!
The stackable design allows you to add to your supply and take a jug with you on the go. So, for example, if you’re heading out hunting or fishing for a day you can just throw one of these in the back of the truck. You can also easily move a jug to the kitchen or living area during an emergency situation without having to keep going back to the garage or basement.
I attached a link to above to where you can buy these containers on Amazon. If you do what to buy Aquamira water treatment you can find it on Amazon here.
How High Can They Be Stacked?
Around 4 high, but I’ve heard of people stacking them even higher. It probably depends on how many you have on the base layer as well.
If They Aren’t Marked BPA Free, Are They Actually?
Yes, HDPE plastic is naturally BPA free, so you’ll have nothing to worry about with either of these products below.
Here are two companies I recommend. You can read reviews about both products to see which you prefer. They should come with dust plugs, gasket caps, lock rings, Spigot, and Wrench to tighten the cap
Option 1: Samson Stackers Blue Jugs (6 Pack)
Option 2: Saragota Farms Stackables (Multiple Sizes)
2. RomoTech 50 Gallon Translucent Tank (Best Mid-Sized)
As far as emergency preparedness water storage tanks go, this one is top-notch and hard to beat. The 55-gallon BPA free tank is handy and versatile (also good for camping trips).
Along with holding a significant amount of water, it is somewhat portable (weighs 25 pounds empty), stackable, and translucent (see-through) with graduation marks (in liters and gallons), so you’ll know precisely how much water is remaining.
It has molded channels for saddle straps if that is something you are looking for.
The company also sells this tank design varying sizes including 30 gallons, 50 gallons, and 100 gallons)
3. RomoTech Horizontal 125 Gallon Reservoir (Best Large Tank)
I have never personally used this tank by RomoTech, but it seems to have good reviews. The company sells the tank in three sizes including 125 gallon, 325 gallons, and 550 gallons.
The tank is translucent, so you can easily see how much water is remaining. The container is made from food-grade polyethylene.
4. DATREX Emergency Drinking Water Pouches
Emergency drinking water pouches are great because there is no oxygen contact or transfer from air to water. This means there is no chance of bacterial contamination. They are also a great long term emergency water storage option because they have a shelf life of up to 5 years.
They are great for survival and emergency situations. They can withstand harsh temperatures ranging from negative 40 to 210 degrees Fahrenheit, which means they will not burst even if they are frozen. They are also BPA free, so you can be assured your water is pure and safe to drink.
Water pouches aren’t the cheapest emergency water storage option; however, they are very convenient and can be easily placed into a backpack, car, survival pack, or first aid kit. You can buy as many as you need, with case sizes of 12,18,64, or 128 at a time.
The water used to fill these pouches comes from Oxnard California and carries a USCG certification.
Water Pouches are convenient, but they are more expensive than other options on this list. They should be used in conjunction with other options below, not as a standalone water source unless you can afford that…
5. WaterBOB Drinking Water Bladders
WaterBOB drinking water storage bladders provide an effective way to store water during emergencies.
You can choose from assorted sizes, including 100 gallons, 200 gallons, and 300 gallons.
These water bladders are easily filled from a sink or bathtub faucet. They fill very quickly and come with a convenient pump, so you can easily fill smaller water containers and bottles.
It is recommended to lay the WaterBOB liner in your bathtub, attach the filling socket to the faucet and fill to max capacity.
The bladders are made from FDA approved food grade materials and are BPA free, so you can rest assured your water is not contaminated.
They are designed to keep water safe for up to 12 weeks, and they are disposable!
6. Augason Farms Water Storage Barrels
Augason Farms 55 gallon water storage barrels make storing water long term a breeze. They are perfect for an emergency water storage solution. The durable BPA free container is built to last under strict quality standards.
You can expect treated water to have a shelf life of around 4 years when stored in one of these barrels. The treated water shelf life is not affected by partially filling the bottle, and is effective against viruses, cysts, and bacteria. When used correctly the water will still taste great.
They have two 2 inch barrel plug fittings, a 6-inch siphon hose, and hand pump for easy drainage and filling.
Note: How long water is safe to drink depends how and at what temperature it is stored, Augason Farms notes that water is best stored in a dark and dry place at temperatures between 55 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
7. Blue Can Premium Canned Drinking Water
There are 24 cans per case and can has 12 ounces of water, which means each case provides about 2.25 gallons of water.
The cans are hermetically sealed after they go through a 12 step water purification process, including reverse osmosis, UV light treatment, and other processes.
The ecofriendly packaging is BPA free and contains no chlorine or fluoride, ensuring your water is pure and safe to drink.
You can get Blue Can drinking water here. It is very cheap and easy to store, so you can keep emergency cans in the office, around your home, in the car, or other places you think might be convenient.
Unlike a lot of other canned beverages, Blue Canned drinking water can be frozen without having to worry about the can exploding.
8. Coleman Water Jug (Good for Camping)
If you’re a camper, prepper, hunter, or farmer, this jug is probably exactly what you’re looking for. This 5-gallon water storage jug is ideal to use to fill other containers or as a hand washing station.
The carrying handle makes it a great portable water container. The carrying handle, along with the easy to access spigot, makes this a good water just for camping.
Like the other products on this list, it is made with high-quality BPA free materials, ensuring your water is safe to drink.
You can get the Coleman 5 gallon jug here. The fast flow spigot design makes accessing water quick without having to tip the jug.
The Spigot is also drip resistant, so you won’t have to worry about the water slowing draining out of the jug over time.
I’ve personally used this jug for camping trips for the past 12 years! It’s probably one of the longest lasting pieces of camping gear I’ve used without upgrading or needing to replace. It’s been filled up and taken dives off of the back of my truck and it still lives! I love this little jug and I highly recommend it!
9. Reliance Aqua-Trainer 7 Water Containers (Best Seller)
Reliance Products makes some high quality and cheap water storage containers that store up to 7 gallons of water.
Their space-saving design makes them great to stack on each other for long term storage. The dimension of each container is 15-5/8” by 11-1/2” deep. These containers are BPA free, ensuring your drinking water will be free of toxins that can be present with other plastic water storage containers.
It also comes with a spigot so you can easily control water release and fill other bottles without wasting water. This also makes them great water storage containers for camping. The spigot makes filling other containers or washing hands a breeze.
Pick up a Reliance water container here. The company backs these portable water containers with a 5-year warranty against defects, so if for any reason something goes wrong, you can send it back for a full refund.
When hurricanes, floods, or other emergencies arise, once safe water sources maybe become tainted by pollutants. Having an emergency drinking water storage system will ensure you’ll have plenty of clean water should the need for one arise.
While others are rushing to the store to buy water, only to find empty shelves, you’ll have a long term water storage system ready.
Thanks for visiting my site, I hope you learned a lot about storing water long term, and some of the different ways to store drinking water.
If you have questions, comments, or want to see a product added to our list, leave a comment below.
Corporal Wabo is a former Infantry Squad Leader with 3rd Bn 4th Marines. As an outdoor enthusiast, he has been testing outdoor and tactical style gear for over 20 years. He started this website while transitioning out of the Marines, and since has recruited several other Marines to help him work on the Marine Approved website. On this website, we only write about things within our range of expertise like tactical gear, survival gear, hiking supplies, etc. Check out the “About Us” tab to meet the team.