How much drinking water storage do you have? When did you last replenish/recycle your drinking water storage? Regardless of the claims made by the company that provided the water “preservative” you used in order to secure a shelf-life for your water, it is recommended that you cycle through your water storage and replenish it every 6-12 months.
Notice that I am strictly discussing drinking water storage and not general use water that will not be consumed internally. General water storage can be cycled through at longer intervals if desired.
Naturally, people always wonder why this cycling out is recommended…especially those of us with large quantities stored. (It’s no cheap endeavor.) Here are some reasons why I do it yearly:
- Cycling out my water ensures the integrity of my water. I like to save money everywhere I can, but on matters of sustaining life and ensuring critical functionality in crises I will not scrimp. Over the last few years, I have come across a handful of individuals who thought that their water storage was in perfectly consumable condition only to discover their storage had turned to non-potable quality. Some of the bung seals had cracked due to improper application, a non-secured seal, or poor protection from environmental elements. Another culprit was unauthorized access by a curious household member. This person had opened up the container and closed it, essentially cross-contaminating the water and not informing anyone. Tisk, tisk, tisk.
Use the water you are cycling out to run through your water purifier/filter & drink it, water the garden, wash the car, rinse off garden tools, hydrate & wash the pets, or re-allocate that water as general-use storage and fill a new drinking water storage container to build up your supply!
- “Take care of your tools & they’ll take care of you.” This is a no-brainer and the primary reason that many of us like to “rough-it” every once in a while. I like spontaneous camp outs in the back yard or somewhere locally to test out gear and ensure its deliverability. This also gives others within my family (or group) a chance to learn, test, and socialize. Most importantly, it has helped me refine gear or methods for future applications. I have discovered gear that I will not purchase again and recommend that others avoid acquiring. I have also discovered products that required more frequent inspection, such as my Coleman grill/stove combo. One of the O-rings had to be replaced and I had not noticed it after I had previously used then stored it. Lesson learned.
- Habits are formed through repeated action. My wife and I have three wonderful children who are eager to see & do almost anything that they observe us doing. Our boy Joshua absolutely loves helping me break-down tools to clean, inspect, and oil them, so do our two daughters. It’s more than neat to then watch them internalize those principles and do the same to their toys and tools. We all enjoy the same excitement when we get together in the kitchen or go pick fruits/vegetables from the yard. Beyond the individual discipline that I need by forming healthy habits, these behaviors become a legacy-mindset to our posterity & like-minded friends. I learn directly from observing others as well. One of the greatest joys of life is the bonding that emerges as individuals participate in collective learning experiences.
Clearly, the reasons for cycling out my drinking water storage are based on principles that extend far beyond that commodity. I approach Self-Reliance with the idea that principles & laws found in nature extend into all aspects of Life. Our challenge is to adapt & apply those guiding lights to the particular project(s) we presently pursue…and then share them.