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Thread: Are Raindrops safe to drink????

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    mrina is offline
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    Are Raindrops safe to drink????

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    Senior Member Array mrina's Avatar
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    Rain Water
    For the average person, the best source of replacement drinking water will probably be rain water. Although this is an excellent source of safe drinking water, it is unpredictable in regards to timing and quantity. However, for most people, this is probably the cleanest source of replenishment drinking water they will have access to on a regular but intermittent basis.

    Regardless of where you live in the world, if you can catch the rain water BEFORE it comes in contact with anything, then it is safe to drink without any special treatments. Even when you take acid rain into consideration, this is still a true statement. However, if there is a nuclear, chemical, or biological war at some point in the future, then rain water may not be safe to drink for some period of time. You will have to use your own judgment in that situation. One of the portable commercial water filters described below would be appropriate in those types of unusual and hazardous situations.

    If the air contains smog, pollen, or any other unpleasant stuff, then the rain will usually clean that stuff out of the air during the first 20 to 30 minutes of a good rain shower. Therefore, when it begins to rain you should wait about 30 minutes and then start collecting the clean rain water in a container. low on water and you are forced to collect the rain water during the first few minutes when it starts to rain, then you should process that water through one of the filters described below.)

    Be creative. Think about what you have available that you can put outside to catch and hold rain water, or channel rain water through a partially open window into a big pot. Remember that it usually rains one-inch or less each time it rains. You need a large surface area to collect enough rain water to drink. A drinking cup or glass will not be enough. Even a 5-gallon cook pot is too small to just put outside by itself because it will only collect one-inch of water in the bottom of the pot.

    Something like a child's inflatable swimming pool would be ideal, if your family already owns one. A 6-foot diameter pool would collect about 17 gallons of water if it rained one-inch. An 8-foot diameter pool would collect about 31 gallons of water if it rained one-inch. (Note: One gallon of water = 231 cubic inches of water.)

    Or you could secure a clean 10' by 12' tarpaulin (or a clean thick sheet of plastic) in a manner where it slopes downward into a "V" shape towards a large 5-gallon pot (or other large container). Tarpaulins are commonly called tarps. With this size tarp you could collect about 70 gallons of water if it rains one-inch in your area (if you keep emptying and replacing your 5-gallon pot). However, you will need to secure your tarp very carefully because it is frequently very windy during a rain storm. Determine the primary direction in which the wind is blowing and then secure your tarp facing the wind at an upwards angle so the wind will blow a lot of the rain onto the surface of your tarp where it can collect and be channeled down into your water storage container.

    In many areas it usually rains LESS than one-inch each time it rains, so it would probably be a good idea to use several tarps to collect rain water when it does rain. Many different tarp sizes are available, but for collecting rain water a tarp between 6' by 8' up to about 10' by 12' would be ideal. Smaller tarps don't cover enough area nor do they have very many other practical uses. Larger tarps are too heavy and they also have a limited number of other useful applications.

    If you are trying to decide between an inflatable swimming pool or a good tarp, then the tarp would be the better choice. It is usually less expensive, more durable, easier to transport between locations, easier to set up and take down, requires less storage space when not in use, and it will provide an overhead shelter if you need to do some unexpected camping. When camping, the two most useful items are a good hunting knife and a high quality tarp.

    Another option for collecting rain water would be to put clean bed sheets outside your windows. Let them get drenched in the rain, and then bring them inside and ring the water out of them by hand into a pot. Then stick them back out into the rain again. This is NOT the best method, but it will provide some drinking water.

    If you live in a tall apartment building with a flat roof, then you might consider collecting rain water on the roof of your building using the large tarp or heavy-duty plastic sheet described above.

    If you live in a house, you could collect the rain water from your roof gutters at the end of the down spouts. However, since the rain water has already been in contact with your roof, you will need to process it. The easiest way to collect roof rain water is to remove a few feet from the bottom of the gutter downspout and then put a large plastic container (or water barrel) directly beneath the shortened gutter downspout. The first few minutes of rain will wash a lot of stuff off your roof and down your gutter, so don't position the water collection container below the downspout until after it has rained about twenty-minutes.

    If you are camping, then you will probably be sleeping under a weatherproof tarp, or you will have a rain fly above your tent. By using a little creative thinking, you can frequently set things up so the rain water runs off your shelter into a big pot or other container. This requires a little ingenuity on your part depending on what you have available, but I mention it because some of you will figure out a way to make this idea work for you.

    Regardless of which method you use to collect the rain water, you will need to save the majority of your rain water until the next time it rains. Once again, if you have anticipated the possibility and seriousness of this type of unexpected emergency, then you should already have a reserve supply of clean, empty two-liter soda bottles or empty one-gallon plastic water jugs in which to store and save your rain water.

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    mrina..good post.....

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    Senior Member Array sunnyajmal's Avatar
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    useful information...thnx for sharing mrina...

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