Weekly assignment — Calculate water needs

This week’s assignment is going to be a bit of a pain in the butt. However, it will serve to open your eyes a bit. I want you to keep track of all the water your family uses for the next several days. Drinking, cooking, washing dishes, laundry, bathing, even toilet flushing.

Get a notebook and use one page each day. If you aren’t sure of the capacities of your water using appliances, estimate 27 gallons per load of laundry and 5 gallons per load of dishes in the dishwasher.

Don’t do anything differently from your normal routines. Use water like you normally would, just keep track of it. I think you’ll be surprised at how much water your family uses on a daily basis without even thinking about it.

FEMA and other agencies recommend you store at least one gallon of water per person per day. Now granted, you won’t likely be using your dishwasher or washing machine during a crisis. But, that one gallon probably won’t get you very far once you see the results of the water usage tracking you’ll do this week. Use these results to plan accordingly for your needs.

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Jim Cobb

Jim Cobb has been a student of survivalism and emergency preparedness for almost thirty years. As a young child, he drove his parents nuts with stockpiling supplies in the basement every time he heard there was a tornado watch in his area. Of course, being a child, those supplies consisted of his teddy bear, a few blankets and pillows, and random canned goods he grabbed from the kitchen cabinets. Later, he was the first (and likely only) child in his fifth grade class to have bought his very own copy of Life After Doomsday by Bruce Clayton. Today, he is a freelance writer whose work has been published in national magazines such as Boy’s Life and Complete Survivalist Magazine. He is a voracious reader with a keen interest in all stories with post-apocalyptic settings. He maintains the Library at the End of the World blog and is also the Content Director for SurvivalWeekly.com. He currently resides in a fortified bunker in the upper Midwest, accompanied by his lovely wife and their three adolescent Weapons of Mass Destruction. Jim's first book, Prepper's Home Defense, was published late 2012 and his second book, tentatively titled The Prepper's Complete Guide to Disaster Readiness, will be out in mid-2013, both coming from Ulysses Press.

2 thoughts on “Weekly assignment — Calculate water needs”

  1. a great way to store water is a 275 gallon tote , it is enough water for a family of 4 for a week without having to ration to seriously…..

    1. Great idea! The only downside some people might have is having a place to put it. Given the weight of all that water, once full it isn’t going anywhere.

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