Here at Emergency Essentials, we love to hear back from customers when they’ve had a chance to put our products to the test. Cyndi recently submitted this review of our 55-gallon water barrel. She had so much good information to share we wanted to be sure you all got to see it!

Product: 55-gallon Water Barrel (WS B700)
Rating: 5 stars
Date: 3 July 2012

This will be long, but there is valuable info within the telling which I think may help others. I got 2 of these [55-gallon waterbarrels] last year, & wondered at the time if we would ever use them.
Our area is now recovering from a State of Emergency following a derecho storm (land hurricane), which took out power in our county & surrounding towns & adjacent counties. We had no advance warning. Almost everything has been closed, so very little gas/food/supplies/batteries to be found.
Hotel rooms were snapped up immediately because millions were without power. Whatever we each had on hand has been all most people have had for their families, so ask yourself how you would fare if this were to happen to you *right now*?
How much water/food/batteries/pet food/meds do you have for a week or so? Emergency personnel botched a water delivery on top of area water issues due to the storm damage, so tons of people were having to line up @ local fire stations with buckets or whatever they could Replace, get them filled, take them home, use them & return for more water refills & stand in line all over again in 100-degree heat. We had our water barrels, and were fine :)

TIPS: DO make sure you buy the emergency water siphon hose, the water treatment solutions, and what I did was tape the bung wrench to the barrel on a piece of long twine so we wouldn't lose them, or have to search in the dark during a power outage. Glad I did. I also took a piece of paper & dated it with when I filled it up with water & how I treated it, so that if we needed it in 3 or 5 years, we wouldn't be too afraid to use it because we'd wonder if we did it right, or if it had been stored too long. I also taped the empty package of treatment solution (and instructions) to the barrel, so we could reassure ourselves later & not wonder. Someone else suggested getting pH strips; great idea, I'm doing that now & also getting new siphon hoses & treatment solutions for when I re-fill our barrels. You might want to get extras to have on hand for refills or mistakes, as well.
DO put your barrel(s) up on a strong, wheeled dolly before filling it, because you won't be able to move it after that. Pick your spot carefully, imagining where might be the best spot in an emergency (and not in the way the rest of the time). DO cover the lid with something, plastic taped down over the top & sides, perhaps. It will get dusty & grimy, and you want it to be clean when you will be drinking from it. That will also hopefully prevent kids from playing with it and contaminating it unbeknownst to you. Guess who that happened to? Glad I had 2 barrels.
DO remember that you will also need portable containers to siphon the water into, such as gallon jugs. 1 just isn't enough when many people need them, & you have so many varied uses such as bathing/drinking/commode/pets/cleaning. Designated buckets or jugs are a good idea. Here is what took place: when we were ready for the water, I used the bung wrench on the lid & removed it, then unpackaged the siphon hose & followed directions. It was a bit awkward & took time, but what you do is feed one end of the hose into the barrel, and one into your bucket or jug, then pump the hose in the barrel up & down, over & over again to get the water to start trickling out, then keep it going. So you'll be bored for awhile, but you'll eventually have your bucket filled nicely. [Editor’s note: The siphon hose we sell now works better than this one, so you shouldn’t have as much trouble getting the water to flow.]
I no longer feel like a sheepish survivalist with a family full of naysayers & I'm strutting my stuff this week, lol. Great investment, saved us from a lot of misery for the 4 days we were without power. Remember to allow for extra jugs of water if you plan to use commodes in your home--seriously, you will need a lot of water for that to work. Remember your pets need water too, and no 5-star hotel shower ever felt as terrific as a jug of water over my head in 100-degree heat. Best to everyone, & Good luck!
-Cyndi, VA

Cyndi, thanks for such a thorough review! You have some really great tips that are sure to help other readers.

Our mission as a company is to help people prepare. We’re always happy to hear that items you've purchased from us have served you well when you need them most.

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4 comments

Judy

Judy

Look in the water storage section of EE's catalog. They sell plastic caps to snap onto bung openings to keep the bungs clean. They are very handy when using water from a barrel or filling one up. And .. if that isn't enough, they are very inexpensive!

chipmunk

chipmunk

thanks,Cyndi,for the practical information about using the water barrel. Some of those things I never considered, like needing a bunch of containers to put the water in from the barrel. Oh, yeah… wish I'd thought of that!

Sue

Sue

YOU ARE SO WELCOME. HUGS, sUE

lfhpueblo

lfhpueblo

Smart woman having water on hand. We don't have quite that much. We have about 40 gallons on hand, but slowly we are working on getting more.

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