Prepping: SHTF: Prepping essentials: How to store 100 gallons of water for your emergency stockpile


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[This may be a little bit over the top and a bit too EARLY. But there are some valid points here. Don't go too crazy. We're not quite at SHTF level. But I can say, from personal experience that being without water can be worse than anything else. Though, don't kill yourself preparing for it. We're not quite yet in such a bad state worldwide. But keep it in mind for the future. This is more applicable to South Africa. Jan]

When disaster strikes, the public water system can shut down. Having an emergency water supply means you’ll have access to clean water for drinking, hygiene and sanitation post-SHTF. (h/t to

If you want to keep your water supply clean during an emergency situation, you can store it in a WaterBOB.

What is a WaterBOB?

A WaterBOB is a large, heavy-duty plastic water storage container that’s placed in your bathtub so you can fill it up with clean water. Your bathtub itself will support the bag as it fills with liquid.

A WaterBOB can store up to 100 gallons of water and it comes with a siphon pump for dispensing. The WaterBOB is made of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) food-grade 10 mil plastic bag.

A mil is one-thousandth of an inch (.001). Mils measure the thickness of low-density liners which can range from 0.7 to 6.0 mils. Standard kitchen bags are usually 0.9 mil while contractor bags often start at 3.0 mil.

Benefits of using a WaterBOB

Even if you already have a bathtub, there are several advantages to using a WaterBOB:

It keeps your water supply clean

Ideally, you should be cleaning your bathtub regularly. But if you use the tub frequently, it means it’s often exposed to dirt as you bathe in it.

Using a food-grade WaterBOB means your water supply is kept clean, especially if you plan on using some of it for food prep.

It will make your water supply last longer

Water left standing in your bathtub for several weeks, particularly if you didn’t have a chance to clean your tub before filling it, will get dirty and moldy within days.

If you have a WaterBOB, your water supply will stay clean and last longer. And if you conserve the water, it might last you several weeks or more, depending on the number of people in your family or survival group.

Even a clean tub has a drain. What if a child accidentally drains the water in it? If you have a WaterBOB, you don’t have to worry about anyone draining or wasting your water supply after SHTF.

It makes it easier to access your supply

Imagine you’re weathering a long-term survival scenario and you’ve used up almost all of the water in your WaterBOB.

The plastic container will be easier to lift and you can quickly drain it using the siphon, unlike if you have an open tub and you have to dredge up the last of your weeks-old water supply in it.

It’s a worthy investment

Paying almost $40 for a WaterBOB may seem expensive, but it’s a worthy investment for your emergency supply. After all, the product is a food-grade and high-quality container for your water supply.

It’s also much cheaper compared to food-grade 55-gallon barrels that cost $50 or more, but with only about half the storage capacity.

Other water storage options

Not everyone has a bathtub at home. If you need storage for your SHTF water supply but you don’t have a bathtub for a WaterBOB, here are alternatives to consider:


WaterBricks are sturdy plastic bricks in 1.6 and 3.5-gallon containers. The plastic bricks are also compatible with an optional spigot for easy water dispensing.

WaterBricks can be stacked like interlocking bricks and are a suitable option if you need containers that are easy to transport. (Related: Prepping 101: Emergency water storage for beginners.)

Wheeled water tank

Wheeled water tanks come with a pull handle, making it easier to transport and refill larger containers of water when SHTF. These water tanks may be a better option if you have plans to bug out.

Water cisterns

Water cisterns are large water tanks available in different sizes for both above and below ground systems. Cisterns can store a huge amount of water in a relatively small area, which makes them a great option for your bug-out location.

Some above-ground tanks can be stored in a garage or basement and they take up very little floor space compared to water barrels. When winter rolls around, you don’t have to worry about your water cisterns freezing in your garage.

Like WaterBOBs, water cisterns cost more but they’re worth investing in if you have the budget for it.

Consider getting a WaterBOB before SHTF so you can easily store 100 gallons of water for your emergency stockpile. If you prefer something smaller, use WaterBricks for storage instead.

Go to to read more articles about how to store clean water for your emergency stockpile before SHTF.


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