How To Collect Water During TEOTWAWKI

collect water

Learning how to collect water and store it is a very important skill.  It will help you survive when there is no running water coming from the faucet or you are stuck in the wild without water.  There are many places to find water, but you need to know where to look.  One thing to remember when collecting water is that we need at least one gallon per day per person to survive.

Best Places to Collect Water

collect water

The first location to find water is within your home.  There are a few places that you store water that you may not even realize.  The first place to collect water is from your water heater (if you have an on demand water heater there will be no storage of water).  A water heater will normally have between 40-70 gallons.  This could last you up to two months depending on how many people you are providing water for.  The second place that has clean water is toilet tanks (this is the back tank not the bowl). Usually one tank will hold 1.5 to 3.5 gallons.  If you have two bathrooms you may be able to get 3 to 7 gallons out of them, and 4.5 to 10.5 gallons with three bathrooms.

If you feel a disaster is inevitable it would be a good idea to fill up your bath tub.  The waterBOB is a great tool to help you do this.  It is a bathtub liner with a siphon pump.  The waterBOB will keep water from draining and makes it easier to actually get the water.  There are three other places you may be able to collect water.  These places are a pool, a spa and a water bed.  You will want to filter this water, but it will be a good to have until you find a different water source or the water is flowing from the faucets again. Below you can buy the waterBOB for a very reasonable price from Amazon.


It is also good to know where the lakes, streams, rivers, and springs are, close to your home.  In these locations it is easy to collect water, but they may dry up quickly as many other people will be collecting water from the same places.  When collecting water from these sources make sure to purify it.  I will talk in depth about purifying water in one of my other posts.  Probably one of the best options for collecting water is to have a well.  These can be quite expensive initially as a company must drill the well and install the pumps and equipment to collect water.  When well is completed you should have a constant water supply, unless the aquifer dries up.  So in the long run a well is the most efficient water collection method.

Collecting water from falling rain is another great way to acquire water.  One of the best ways to collect water from rain is to have gutters which lead the water into a cistern.  If you live in a dry place make sure to put out as many containers as possible to catch the water. Even though rain is most likely safe to drink, you will want to purify the water just to be safe.  The only problem with rain is that it may not come often and is somewhat unpredictable. Make sure to take advantage of rain as a water supply.  Along the same lines of water collection is snow.  After a snow storm collecting water from the runoff will be very easy.  The other good thing about snow is that it may stick around for a while so it could be quite easy to get a lot of water and store it.

If there is a lot of dew on the ground make sure to make the most of it.  You can collect dew by tying pieces of cloth to your legs then walking in the plants and weeds until the cloth is soaked.  At this point just wring out the cloth into some type of container.  You can do this over and over to collect some much needed water.  This water also must be purified.

Collect water when there is none

Another viable option when water is sparse is a solar still. I haven’t actually worked with these, but they seem to work well as many people have used them. The first type of solar still is homemade. All that is needed to build it is a plastic sheet a cup or pan to catch the water and some rocks.  Here are the steps:

1)      Dig a hole roughly 4ft round by 2ft deep.  The hole should be in the shape of a cone.

2)      Put the pot or cup in the bottom of the hole.

3)      Lay the plastic sheeting across the hole.

4)      Put rocks on top of the plastic on the outer edges of the hole to make sure it is secure and will not fall in the hole.

5)      Put one rock on the plastic sheeting in the center of the hole.  The plastic sheeting will now be in a conical shape.  Make sure the plastic does not rest on the sloped sides of the hole.

6)      The very center of the plastic sheeting should be about 6 inches from the pot or cup.

7)      The water vapor in the air will accumulate on the plastic sheet, will form into droplets and run into the pot or cup.


You should get about 1 pint per day using this method.  The water is most likely safe to drink but should be boiled or purified using another method.  The second type of solar still I have seen is one by Aquamate.  It is inflatable and uses the sun to purify and collect water from a source.  If you have a water source like the ocean, lake or a river this may be perfect.  All you have to do is inflate it and leave it floating in the water at a sunny location.  They say it will make between 1-4 pints per day.  Check it out at Amazon from the picture below.

collect watercollect

Here are some other helpful links regarding water:

How to Store Water

How to Purify Water

Hopefully this gives you some idea about how to collect water if the world as we know it ends or if you are just lost and trying to survive in the wilderness.  As in most things these techniques should be practiced to make sure they work for you.  We hope we never have to do this to beat the end, but having the ability to collect water may save your life.

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I am Josh the owner of Beat The End. I am a prepper and trying to be more self sufficient. The most likely thing I am preparing for is an economic meltdown/civil unrest. I am a hunter, fisherman and outdoors man. I have also made a part of the website to explain and inform to my readers the importance of liberty and freedom and libertarianism. If you would like to see the political part of the site please go to

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