Another Water Storage Question : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Just wanted to know if using 33 gallon trash cans (new, of course) would be safe for storing short term (1 month) drinking water. Is food grade plastic really necessary?

-- Lurker (, May 06, 1999


Are you talking about metal or plastic cans? If metal, I don't think a lot of zinc would be healthy. Some non-food grade plastic will leach certain chemicals that you don't want to ingest. You can always purify water via solar still, various chemicals(iodine or chlorine are cheapest), microfiltration, and finish off with activated charcoal to remove most dissovled gunk. Please note that some brands of trash bags ARE food grade plastic and make excellent liners for trash cans or pillow cases!

The major point however is that sterile water is a great breeding ground for all sorts of nasties (no existing competition). The chlorine in tap water will gas off over a few days (that's why pet stores want you to let the tap water sit at least over night before you add it to the aquarium) and things can grow.

You don't want your water container to pass light or allow gases to transfer to the water, that is why aluminized mylar bladders are nice, they do both.

-- Ken Seger (, May 06, 1999.

Thanks Ken... I was talking about plastic trash barrels (you know, like Rubbermaid) I was going to be using chlorine to sanitize. Maybe I should pick up some of those mylar food grade drum liners just to be safe.

-- Lurker (, May 06, 1999.

Try calling United States Plastics 419-228-2242. They sell FDA approved, round bottom, 55 gal (and other sizes)in 4 or 10 mil. thickness at about $2.50 each and up. Might be cheaper and still very effective. Good luck! (they told me their minimum order is $5).

-- Kristi (, May 06, 1999.

Lurker; Have you thought of using used water heaters for water storage ??? I have three tanks now and getting them free from different places,just to get them out of their way.

By spending some time taking the fittings off and the heating elements out and taking the tank down to the cars wash,using the high pressure sprayer and a hot rinse. I have storage tanks used for water storage.

All I have to do is label which ones are for water and which ones for kerosene/diesel fuel... Think a bout it. They're free !!!!!!


-- Furie (, May 06, 1999.

Furie, I was considering the trash cans because when all is said and done, I can use them for, what else, trash. (or leaves in the fall). Hot water heaters laying around would not be my first choice..

-- Lurker (, May 07, 1999.

Trash barrels and trash bags are impregnated with chemicals to stop bad smells. They are not safe for food, water, or anything that would introduce said chemicals into you!

-- Shivani Arjuna (S, June 08, 1999.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ