Finding Sources of Water Post-Disaster

The Prepper’s Guide to Finding Sources of Water

Alternative Post-Disaster Water SourcesAt some point, you may find yourself running out of stored water and finding sources of water to fill your needs will be crucial. To ensure that you have what you need to survive, it’s vital that you know how to find water. In our article, Storing Water: How Much is Needed to Survive? we discuss how to determine how much water you need, and how you can store it so that it’s safe to drink. Now we’re going to talk about a few places to find water besides in your cellar or pantry.

Know Your Local Terrain


This may seem like a no-brainer but you’d be surprised how many people don’t know what’s available in their immediate environments.

Know where water can be found around you and what type of water it is. Here are some examples:

  • Retention ponds are built to catch rainwater. This may be an option for purification and drinking. Know the difference between retention ponds and waste ponds, though.
  • Rivers and streams may be pure or they may become contaminated by pollution or by the disaster. Still, they’re viable and finding sources of water like these may mean the difference between life and death.They can be a source of drinking water when purified or non-potable as-is.
  • Rain water is always a source of potable water. Use buckets to catch it directly and from your downspouts and you can suspend a tarp and catch the rainwater that way. Even in everyday life, rainwater is a great source of free water that you can use to water your plants, bathe, wash your clothes, or even drink after it’s been purified.
  • Brackish water or salt water isn’t drinkable without significant purification and is best left alone. If necessary, you can use it for flushing toilets.
  • Well water is a great backup source of water. If at all possible, drill a well or look for a property with a well when you buy a home. Even if you need to boil it or purify it, it’s a sustainable supply of drinking water.

It’s important that your entire family knows about finding sources of water in case of emergency. Go on a family hike or water scouting trip and make these fun outings, because the best way to get to know your environment is to interact with it!

To learn how to purify your water so that it’s drinkable, skip to our article on Top 5 Water Purification Methods or Download our comprehensive water guide.

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