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K.G. man offers water-use suggestions page 2
After frequent power outages, King George County man came up with a plan to always have water on hand

Date published: 9/2/2012


A 5-gallon bucket of water is heavy, so if you do not have someone in the house who can easily handle the weight, fill your buckets partway, to a weight that suits you. You probably can get a satisfactory flush using a lighter-weight 3-gallon bucket of water.

Either way, you will have taken care of one of the nastiest consequences of losing electric power--and running water, if you're on a well. (Alternative: See The Boy Scout Handbook for how to dig a latrine.)


Here is how to have water on hand for drinking, brushing your teeth and light bathing when you lose power. Buy a number of gallon plastic jugs of distilled water. Distilled water can be safely stored unopened for years without deterioration, whereas well water, municipal water or gallon jugs of commercial drinking water cannot.

Put the bottles where they will not be subjected to extremely high temperatures and cannot freeze. Open only one bottle at a time as the need arises when the power has gone off.

Once the power is restored, do not return an opened bottle to storage. Go ahead and use its remainder and replenish your supply of bottles.


For years, Overman has gotten free 5-gallon buckets from fast-food chains. These places get sliced pickles in food-grade buckets and typically toss the containers in the trash. Overman saves them from the landfill, helps the store owner save money by reducing his disposal costs, then recycles the buckets by using them as water containers.

More information is available at his website, freebuck ets.webstarts.com.

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