How do I treat the tap water I am planning to store?
Follow the steps below to properly treat the tap water you are storing for emergency use.

1. Flush the tap for one minute. This will ensure that any residual metals have been flushed from the home plumbing and that you are getting chlorinated water from the main.

2. Add ¼ teaspoon (8 drops) of chlorine bleach for each gallon the container holds. NOTE: do not use scented, color safe, laundry bleach, powdered bleach, or swimming pool chlorine - these contain additional chemicals that are poisonous.

3. Fill the container with tap water leaving as little headspace as possible.

4. Cap the container and tape the lid to keep out dust and dirt.

5. Place the container in a black garbage bag and close. This controls dust and prevents algal growth.

6. Mark the date you filled the bottle on a piece of tape and attach it to the bag. This will allow you to know when it's time to change the water you have stored.

The filled water containers should be stored in a cool, dark place and should not be exposed to sunlight or fumes of petroleum products and pesticides/herbicides. Remember to check the containers periodically to ensure that the plastic has not cracked or developed leaks. If the containers have cracked or are leaking, replace them.

Show All Answers

1. How much water should I store?
2. Is bottled water from the grocery store suitable for storing?
3. More Water For Emergencies FAQs
4. Is it safe to store tap water for use during emergencies?
5. What type of container should I use to store the water?
6. How do I treat the tap water I am planning to store?
7. How often should I change my stored water?
8. I've used up my emergency water supply. Now what?
9. ACWD has issued a "boil water notice." What does this mean?
10. Can I purify my water with household bleach?
11. Are there any other important drinking water guidelines I should follow after a major earthquake?