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Home Forums General Discussion Have a question about water tanks

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    My husband and I recently purchased an off-grid property where we are living full time.  We have decided that the best way to handle the water situation currently is to haul it ourselves.  We have two 2500 gallon holding tanks and we transport the water in two 275 gallon tanks.  I am just wondering if there is anything we need to do to keep the tanks/water fresh.  Should we be adding anything to the tanks to keep the water fresh?  Thanks in advance for any suggestions!


    Do your best to keep the water going into the tank clean, after that, you can use chlorine bleach (plain bleach, not the ultra, not the scented ones), here is what I found on line:


    1)  Clear water is a sign of pure water. Always drain long-standing pipes for 30 seconds to one minute before drinking! (Cheap remote motels?)

    2)  1 Gallon water is disinfected by 8-16 drops of regular household bleach (visually about 1/4 of a teaspoon) – double that for cloudy water. Shake and let stand 30 minutes. One teaspoon will disinfect 5 gallons. Immediately after treating, water must initially have a slight smell of chlorine. If it does not – repeat the process.

    3)  Household bleach is relatively harmless. The smell or waft of chlorine is not bad: it indicates that water is treated and germ free. Once treated and disinfected, the chlorine smell will go away in a few days.

    4)  Regularly used water from large tanks may be treated once or twice a month with 1 Oz. bleach per 200 gallons or 5 Oz. bleach per 1000 gallons. 

    5)  Long-standing water in tanks will be disinfected w/ 1 pint household bleach per 1000 gallons. (2500 gal tanks are fine with 3 pints.) 

    6)  Bleach effectively kills bacteria and viruses, stops smells and then breaks down. It’s effective germ killing alkaline property is completely neutralized very quickly. It does not stay chemically active in tanks for more than a few days. Most germs require sunlight to grow. Store water in the dark.

    7)  If water is relatively clear: but has a noticeable smell of chlorine: it is drinkable, disinfected, and harmless. Humans need 2 quarts per day.

    Another way, though more expensive, is to use FOOD GRADE hydrogen peroxide, NEVER use the kind you get in the store that is for external use only, they put in additives to stabilize it and those are not meant for consumption. You might have to look around a bit, you can find it in health food stores, some pharmacies might carry it, but chances are your best bet is to find it online.

    This is a couple you can look at:
    The One Minute Miracle Inc. 35% H2o2 Hydrogen Peroxide Food Grade Certified 16 oz with 1 Dropper
    FOUR 16 OZ (4 pints) 35% Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide PLUS FREE Dropper bottle.

    You want to make sure it’s 35%, not something more diluted, and never the 3% found in the local stores, don’t buy this from a beauty supply either, it has the same problem as the 3% from the stores, they stabilize it with ingredients that aren’t meant for consumption.

    This is what we do, we have a couple of water tanks, a 1550 gallon black poly tank and a 300 gallon tank, we mostly use the 300 gallon tank for now. The water going into these is clean to begin with, once or twice a year I add some bleach to the tank just to keep things clean, it’s fine to bathe in and wash dishes in, but for drinking and cooking, we run the water through a Berkey Light Water Filter System, it works great, it doesn’t require water pressure or power.


    Hope this helps,


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