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Flooded and no water.


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With the resent floods the main that services my house washed out of the ditch bank it was buried in and broke.

I'm up to my eyeballs in water, but don't have water.

This isn't going to happen again. I have a pond.

So, what I need is a way to purify water to drink.

What's the best thing/method to do this for a family of 4 adults?

I've seen some fitlers online but don't know which ones work and which ones will make me poop for days.

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Given what was in the flood waters this time, I'm not convinced any filter would take it out...

Remember, all of those various fluids from the drowned cars and trucks ended up in the mix with all of the biological material... and I'm not sure some of that stuff can be extracted from the water by conventional methods, once it's well and truly mixed up.

Your best bet would be a large water storage tank, rather than a filter of any kind, I think.

J.

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So the water levels of the flood never carried over into it at all? You're lucky if it didn't.

By the way... I should mention that you can cut the power to your water heater and drain it for fresh water, if needed.

Just remember to let it refill before you turn it back on, once things are back to normal, or you'll be needing new heating elements.

J.

Edited by Jamie
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I bought a MSR Hyperflow water filter for backpacking. It's supposed to filter everything but chemicals. A cartridge is good for a 1000 liters, which I guess would go quick with a family of 4. You'd have to only use it to filter drinking and cooking water.

It's really small and light, costs just under $100, and would be a great addidion to your bug-out bag when you're not using it. It also filters water really fast. One of the fasted on the market. All the others I tried took forever to filter a gallon of water, and your arm felt like it was going to fall off when you finally got there.

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So the water levels of the flood never carried over into it at all? You're lucky if it didn't.

By the way... I should mention that you can cut the power to your water heater and drain it for fresh water, if needed.

Just remember to let it refill before you turn it back on, once things are back to normal, or you'll be needing new heating elements.

J.

No, I live in the hills and most of Tennessee would be under water before that pond.

The water heater is a great idea for water.

The first thing I did when I found out the water was off, was to shut off the breaker to the water heater. I've had to replace the elements before when the water line broke. As I said I'm on a hill so it actually drained my water heater when the line lost pressure. I guess I need to fix that too.

I'll need a backflow preventer and an pressure expansion tank so my water heater doesn't blow up...

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Assuming you have power (or a coleman stove or similar), and if there are really no chemical surface contaminants in there, just filter big stuff out of it with most anything, like a shirt even, and boil it.

It only has to get to boil for 30 seconds or so, not the 3-5 min some say.

- OS

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Concerning your hot water heater:

To avoid burning an element out -

Turn the elec. off to it if you are concerned about the water getting low it.

Then before you turn it back on, make sure the water intake to the hot water heater is on then turn your hot water taps on in the shower and sinks and keep them running. This will draw water into the take and cause it to fill. After you have run the taps for a few minutes, leave them on but turn down the flow to low, and then turn the elec. on for the hot water heater. You want the elements to under water to avoid burning them out.

It is a good idea to flush your hot water heater one or two times a year to get the sediment out. The sediment will shorten the life of the lower element in the hot water heater. To flush just screw a hose to the faucet at the bottom of the hot water heater and turn the faucet on for 5 min.

To save water in your hot water heater for emergency use-

Turn the main intake valve into your house off. This is to avoid water being sucked out at the main water line as the preasure falls, and to keep the water in your pipes in your house. Then use the water from cold water tap that is lowest in your house. Then draw water from the bottom of your hot water heater where there is a faucet. This may have sediment so you can let the water settle before drinking.

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Concerning your hot water heater:

To avoid burning an element out -

Turn the elec. off to it if you are concerned about the water getting low it.

Then before you turn it back on, make sure the water intake to the hot water heater is on then turn your hot water taps on in the shower and sinks and keep them running. This will draw water into the take and cause it to fill. After you have run the taps for a few minutes, leave them on but turn down the flow to low, and then turn the elec. on for the hot water heater. You want the elements to under water to avoid burning them out.

It is a good idea to flush your hot water heater one or two times a year to get the sediment out. The sediment will shorten the life of the lower element in the hot water heater. To flush just screw a hose to the faucet at the bottom of the hot water heater and turn the faucet on for 5 min.

To save water in your hot water heater for emergency use-

Turn the main intake valve into your house off. This is to avoid water being sucked out at the main water line as the preasure falls, and to keep the water in your pipes in your house. Then use the water from cold water tap that is lowest in your house. Then draw water from the bottom of your hot water heater where there is a faucet. This may have sediment so you can let the water settle before drinking.

I guess my question is; Why would you want to heat hot water?

LOL Ron

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I'll need a backflow preventer and an pressure expansion tank so my water heater doesn't blow up...

Yeah, I should've mentioned that if you have an older tank - or even a new one that doesn't have it - you'd need a check valve to keep it from draining. The last one I bought already had one, supposedly to make it more energy-efficient.

The expansion tank I don't get though... it's the pop-off valve that's supposed to keep the thing from blowing up. Stopping the water from draining shouldn't do a thing.

J.

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The expansion tank I don't get though... it's the pop-off valve that's supposed to keep the thing from blowing up. Stopping the water from draining shouldn't do a thing.

Water expands when heated. This extra volume of water needs to go somewhere. Before the widespread usage of backflow preventers, check valves and pressure reducing valves, this expanded water simply pushed the cold water back into the city water main. These devices prohibit the flow of water from your house back into the public water system.

If your water heater has a check valve, I bet it has an internal expansion tank.

You don't want the pop-off valve going off all the time.

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If your water heater has a check valve, I bet it has an internal expansion tank.

Nope. The tanks these days aren't designed to fill completely. There's an air space ( compressible ) kept at the top of the tank to act as an expansion chamber.

The pop off valve is only supposed to prevent an explosion if something odd happens and the water is pushed past the boiling point.

Take a look at the diagram here:

Water-Heaters.jpg

Notice how the outlet tube ( the one on the left ) extends down into the tank? That traps air in the top of the tank. Unless there's a leak, the water level will never get more than a couple of inches or so above the end of the tube, leaving a 6 or 8 inch air space.

( There should be a similar arrangement on the pop off valve, but it isn't shown here for some reason. )

J.

Edited by Jamie
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I keep a few cases of bottled water in the basement, and rotate them as I use them. Should be enough to avert all but the most unthinkable disasters.

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You can filter water through cloth first, then gravel in a bucket with holes in it, then pea gravel, then sand, etc. Once you get all the solids out you can either treat it chemically or boil/distill it.

Many of the things found in flood water can be removed, it's just a matter of having the right method of treatment. Not likely to find systems that meet the treatment needs of flood waters contaminated with automotive fluids sitting around your neighborhood though.

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  • 2 months later...

Aquaman67:

Hope the water situation is resolved by now-just saw your post.

Some one may have mentioned these water filters already. I apologize if I am redundant. Have used these water filters and have been extensively used in most third world countries that the Southern Baptist International Mission board has a presence (hope the Baptist thing doesn't bum you out). I have 2 sets in my gear, most affordable and functionally proven I could find after researching the web and personal word of mouth recommendations. Check this website out for most specs:

Monolithic Marketplace — Water Filter

OR contact Ron Mathis at:

justwater4u@yahoo.com

Exceptional service and product.

A sand pre-filter might increase the longevity of the filter.

Gnut

"Ne Obliviscaris"

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Tie off the bottom of the leg of one side of a pair of watterproof pants. Hang it with the bottom of the leg situated right over a container to collect the water. Fill the pants leg with charcoal (not treated with lighter fluid). You may wish to put a layer or two of cloth at the bottom of the pants legs to keep charcoal particles out of your somewhat clean water. Pour water through this to remove most of the larger impurities.

After this I would boil the water for ten minutes (2 minutes should actually be more than enough because the iodine or bleach should get the rest).

Finally, add iodine tablets or bleach to finish your purification process.

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l

After this I would boil the water for ten minutes (2 minutes should actually be more than enough because the iodine or bleach should get the rest)...

It's become pretty much accepted anymore that just getting water to a boil at all is enough, since all water borne pathogens are killed before actual boiling temp is reached.

- OS

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  • 3 weeks later...

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