How To Use a Long-Term Water Storage Drum

The following container types are recommended for use with Water Preserver for guaranteed 5-year storage life

  • Standard water storage containers, meeting the criteria of 1A and 1B below.
  • All containers and drums marked with a 'DOT-34' or 'UN' specification.

Standard Water Storage Containers

  • Construction: New (unused, or used only for food or water storage since new), blow molded, rigid, all plastic container made of virgin polyethylene resin.
  • Food Grade Materials: Containers must meet the requirements of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for items intended for use in contact with food.
  • Closure: Container closures must be heavy-duty threaded plugs or caps sufficient to prevent leakage. Important: The closure must not be vented, and must use a gasket of FDA-approved material to form an air-tight seal. CAUTION: Use only solid caps, plugs or bungs. Do not use pumps, faucets, spigots, etc. as closures--they are NOT airtight.

Un & Dot-34 Type Containers

  • Look for a 'DOT-34' or 'UN' marking. The manufacturer will permanently emboss the container bottom, or side, with these specification markings. These are heavy-duty containers that can withstand abuse and outside storage.
  • In addition to specifications for a standard water container, the DOT-34 or UN specification requires that the containers are tested by the manufacturer, and meet or exceed requirements for the following: Impact, Vibration, Leakage, Static Pressure, and Compression. The containers must also provide ultraviolet (UV) light protection for their contents for the life of the container.

Directions for Filling up a Water Container or Drum

Note:  It is a violation of federal law to use water preserver in a manner inconsistent with its labeling or directions for use.  Read bottle label carefully. 

Emergency Water Preparation

  1. Remove safety seal from Water Preserver cap. Do not use if safety seal is broken or missing.
  2. Prepare containers for filling by rinsing out with regular clear tap water.
  3. Add 8 drops Water Preserver to an empty container for each gallon of water. (Note: Add 16 drops per gallon if water is cloudy or questionable). Examples: 2 1/2-gallon container x 8 drops per gallon = 20 drops. 30-gallon container x 8 drops per gallon = 240 drops. See Filling & Storage Tips below.
  4. Fill container with regular clear tap water to approximately 3 inches below cap.
  5. Cap tightly. (For drums, use bung wrench.)
  6. After capping, invert or slosh container several times to wet the inside top and cap area. (Note: An optional procedure with large, heavy containers is to complete this step after adding the Water Preserver ™ and only 1-2 gallons of water, then remove the cap and finish filling with water and re-cap container.)
  7. Write the date of the water preparation on the outside of the container.

Container Filling Tips

  • 55-Gallon Drums - For ease of use, the dropper tip may be carefully removed and the entire contents of a 55-gallon size bottle of Water Preserver™ emptied into the drum.
  • Smaller Containers - Follow instructions for Emergency Water Preparation above.
  • Always cap containers tightly. Use a bung wrench for drums.

Water Storage Tips

  • Do not open container until water is needed. Once container is opened, water may be used like fresh tap water, as needed, over a period of days or weeks.
  • If a water storage container is opened, the water must be re-treated with Water Preserver™ according to package directions prior to beginning another long-term storage cycle. Opening and closing a water container during the storage period (before it's needed) can introduce airborne and other types of contamination.
  • Never store emergency drinking water near stored gasoline, kerosene, pesticides or similar substances that can contaminate water.

Product Use, Storage and Disposal

  • Don't wait. During an emergency is no time to think about storing water. Water Preserver promotes emergency readiness and survival, so remember to prepare your emergency water as soon as possible after your Water Preserver purchase.
  • Water Preserver, in its concentrated form, slowly loses strength with age and when exposed to heat and sunlight. STORE AWAY FROM HEAT AND SUNLIGHT. Do not use after the date marked on bottom of bottle.
  • Keep in a locked storage area, away from children.
  • Dispose of any unused Water Preserver Concentrate by flushing down toilet or sink.
  • Dispose of empty container in trash. Do not reuse container.

Water Storage Life

Laboratory tests have shown that water prepared and stored using Water Preserver™, as directed, will remain safe for drinking for a minimum 5 years. This product is registered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and State Agencies.

Re-Filling Water Storage Containers Safely

The following is a guideline for safely re-filling water storage containers after a period of storage (or if the cleanliness of a container is unknown or questionable). These guidelines apply only to containers recommended for water storage.

Inspect the Container:

  • Empty old water from the drum or other container and inspect for contamination.
  • Using a flashlight if necessary, visually inspect inside of the container and check for any sign of algae, residues or discoloration.
  • Feel the inside surface with your finger and check for any slime on the inside surface.

Inspect and/or Replace the Closures:

  • Drums: Inspect all bungs, caps and gaskets and ensure they are in good condition.
  • Look for worn, cut, deformed or brittle gaskets and replace them before reusing the container.

Disinfect the Container:

Disinfection is recommended when re-filling any container after storage, or if the cleanliness of a new container is not known. If any of the conditions above are present, the container must be disinfected in the following manner:

  • Prepare a solution of 1/2 cup of plain liquid household bleach for each 1 gallon of water. Pour a quantity of the solution into the container. Use approx. 1/2 cup or more of the solution per gallon of container volume. (e.g. use about 1 gallon of solution in a 55-gal. drum.)
  • Replace all bung plugs and caps tightly, and then rotate container in all directions to wet all inside surfaces. Let stand for 30 minutes or more.
  • Empty container and rinse thoroughly 2-3 times with clean water.
  • Re-inspect the container. Repeat above steps if any residues remain.


  • Follow the entire standard filling procedure, precautions, and container specification guidelines included in the Water Preserver package.

Source: All information above is from 7C's Safety & Environmental Inc. (the manufacturer of Water Preserver) website under technical bulletins.

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