Endless Sun Solar

Integral Passive Solar Water Heaters – A Primer

Integral Passive Solar Water Heaters – Intro Before we discuss integral passive solar water heaters (IPSWH), let us talk a bit about solar systems. Increasing energy costs have focused attention on energy efficiency and alternative sources. Renewable sources of energy appeal to the preparedness minded. It helps Preppers disconnect from an energy delivery system that is vulnerable to failure when necessary. It also allows Preppers to be in control of their own energy instead of relying on some distant corporation or government bureaucracy. Solar energy plays an important role on many homesteads, bug out locations and is especially important with many cultures overseas because it is readily available and free. It can also be used for cooling as well as heating. As long as the sun is shining the Prepper can collect, store and use its energy. Solar water heating systems fall in to two categories; active and passive. Active systems are more expensive and technical. Simply explained, they rely on auxiliary power to run fans and pumps. Passive solar systems are typically more simple and cost less. The only moving part in the most simple systems is the sun. Talk about reliability. There are two class of passive solar water heaters. In one systems heat is collected and stored are separate. These are called thermosiphon flat-plate systems. The the other class collection and storage are combined. IPSWH fall in to this latter class, and hold some advantages over the former. They tend to be more simple, more economical to build and maintain, and more resistant to freezing. Integral Passive Solar Water Heaters – Principles of Operations Integral passive solar water heaters (IPSWH) centered around some sort of tank, or series of tanks. A common, and inexpensive source for these tanks are discarded water heaters. The tank is painted black, in order to maximize the amount of heat from the sun...

Water Storage Infographic

Today we’re pleased to present an infographic from Food Insurance on water storage.  This water storage infographic will show you what types of containers are safe to store water in, where you can safely store those water containers and how to treat questionable water sources to improve its...

Got Water?

Caught this in the news over the weekend.  Would your water preps be in order if the following happened to you today? Hundreds of thousands of people in West Virginia were still without clean tap water for a third day Saturday following a chemical spill, with an official at a water company saying that it could still be days before drinkable water returns to homes.The company told residents in nine counties to not drink their tap water or use it to bathe or wash dishes or clothes after a foaming agent used in coal processing escaped from a Freedom Industries plant in Charleston and seeped into the Elk River. The only allowed use of the water was for flushing toilets. The order applies to about 300,000 people. via Tap water may be out for days after W.Va. chemical spill | Fox News Water is essential to life.  You should never have less than three days of water on hand in your home, at work or in your car (and should have significantly more at home).  For the folks in this West Virginia community they can still purchase water from outside the affected area…but what if that wasn’t an option?  Make sure that you have water reserves on site, as well as both near term and long term water resupply plans with adequate resources to purify.  At the Jackson home we have water stored, the ability to harvest rainwater, an intermittent stream and pond a hundred feet from our back porch and a spring fed lake on family property very close by…along with the ability to purify hundreds of thousands of gallons before we would have to rely on boiling or distillation (if water was polluted). FacebookPinterestGoogleRedditTwitterTumblrEmailPrintPocketMoreLinkedInLike this:Like...

Water In Survival Situations

Andrew’s Note:  Today’s survival lesson is an extract from Chapter VII, Water of FM 21-76-1, the U.S. Army manual on Survival, Evasion & Recovery June 1999, Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.  This extract provides information on requirements, procurement, preparation and storage of water in survival situations.    Water Requirements Drink extra water. Minimum 2 quarts per day to maintain fluid level. Exertion, heat, injury, or an illness increases water loss. Note: Pale [clear] yellow urine indicates adequate hydration.  Water Procurement DO NOT drink— Urine. [Don’t worry Bear Grylls…this doesn’t apply to you] Fish juices. Blood. Sea water. Alcohol. Melted water from new sea ice. Water sources:Surface water (streams, lakes, and springs). Precipitation (rain, snow, dew, sleet) (FigureVII-1). Subsurface (wells and cisterns). Ground water (when no surface water is available) (Figure VII-2). Abundance of lush green vegetation. Drainages and low-lying areas. “V” intersecting game trails often point to water. Presence of swarming insects indicates water is near. Bird flight in the early morning or late afternoon might indicate the direction to water. Snow or ice. DO NOT eat ice or snow. Lowers body temperature. Induces dehydration. Causes minor cold injury to lips and mouth. Melt with fire. Stir frequently to prevent damaging container. Speed the process by adding hot rocks or water. Water Generator, Figure VII-3 Melt with body heat. Use waterproof container. Place between layers of clothing. DO NOT place next to the skin. Use a water generator (Figure VII-3). Open seas. Water available in survival kits. Precipitation. Drink as much as possible. Catch rain in spray shields and life raft covers. Collect dew off raft. Old sea ice or icebergs (Table VII-1). Tropical areas. All open sources previously mentioned. Vegetation. Plants with hollow sections can collect moisture. Leaning Tree. Cloth absorbs rain running down tree and drips into container (Figure VII-4). Banana plants. Water trees (avoid milky sap). Tap before...

Top 10 Preparedness Uses of Garbage Bags

Today Prepography is pleased to present garbage… garbage bags that is…as in the top 10 preparedness uses of garbage bags.  Garbage bags can be used by preppers for dozens of purposes besides rubbish disposal.  I like the heavy duty, Contractor Grade Garbage Bags because they’re larger and more durable than the typical kitchen variety.  In the Jackson household often buy our heavy duty garbage bags through school fundraisers but they’re also available from the big box and local hardware stores as well as online. Top 10 Preparedness Uses of Trash Bags: Poncho:  It’s not very stylish but there have been a few of times when I’ve used my knife to make a poncho out of a garbage bag in order to stay dry.  Simply cut holes for your head and your arms and you’re ready to go.  Be careful not to cut the holes too large and if the poncho seems too baggy tie a belt or piece of 550 cord around your waist.  This isn’t something you’d want to use in a warm environment because you’d get wet anyway from perspiration but if a garbage bag can get between you and a cold rain it might be worth making such an awful fashion statement. Shelter:  Cutting your garbage bag open (to give you more surface area) and adding it to the top and sides of an improvised shelter like a brush shelter, lean to or fallen tree shelter will make it more weatherproof and offer better insulation.  If you are small enough or your garbage bag is big enough you can also use it to build improvised shelters using the poncho hooch designs I’ve previously presented also using 550 cord.  If you have 100 Mile An Hour Tape (also known as Duct Tape) you could also join two or more garbage bags together to weatherproof your shelter.  Another option is...

The Worth of Water – Today’s Quote

We never know the worth of water till the well is dry. English Proverb FacebookPinterestGoogleRedditTwitterTumblrEmailPrintPocketMoreLinkedInLike this:Like...

Water or WARter – Today’s Quote

Water is the essence of life.  But drinkable, fresh water is at a premium.  Rising populations, poor water use and shortages in key areas are all major factors. NATO Review Magazine via Water or WARter Video? FacebookPinterestGoogleRedditTwitterTumblrEmailPrintPocketMoreLinkedInLike this:Like...

Cold Weather Canteen Tips – Top 10

Keeping hydrated in cold weather is just as important as keeping hydrated in hot weather but presents the additional challenge of making sure your water source stays liquid.  Here are the Top 10 Cold Weather Canteen Tips The only place better to store water than inside your canteen is inside your body…drink plenty of water as staying hydrated helps your body regulate temperature better. If possible, select a canteen that allows for some expansion when freezing without breaking. When freezing can’t be avoided leave room for expansion by filling your canteen about 2/3 full. Carry your canteen as close to your body as possible to keep it from freezing.  Canteen can be carried inside your jacket or between your layers of clothing. If you can’t carry your canteen close to your body then wrap it in insulating layers of spare clothing being careful not to let your only spare clothes get wet. Carry your canteen upside if you think it might freeze.  Water freezes from the top down…and you’ll still be able to drink if the bottom of the canteen starts to freeze but the neck hasn’t. If possible select an insulated canteen for extreme cold weather situations.  A canteen like the USGI ARCTIC Canteen is designed to keep from freezing at -40 degrees Fahrenheit for 6 hours.  It’s essentially a one-quart stainless steel vacuum bottle. If your canteen does freeze don’t thaw it over a direct flame unless the instructions specifically recommend it…this will damage or ruin most canteens. Store your canteen in your sleeping bag overnight to keep it from freezing. If possible, fill your canteen with warm (not boiling) water before putting it in your sleeping bag…it’ll keep your feet warm. If there are any alumni from the Northern Warfare Training Center out there…maybe they can add to my cold weather canteen tips. FacebookPinterestGoogleRedditTwitterTumblrEmailPrintPocketMoreLinkedInLike this:Like...

Building a Bug Out Bag – Part III, Water

This entry is part 3 of 11 in the series Building A Full Spectrum Preparedness Bug Out BagIn Building a Bug Out Bag Part I we discussed why building a Bug Out Bag is important and what type of bag to select.  In Part II we discussed the Transportation Items to consider for your Bug Out Bag.  Today we’ll discuss Water preparedness and Water items to consider including when building a Bug Out Bag.  Remember, this is your last ditch, carry on your back, walk away from trouble Bug Out Bag…not what you hope you can get to your bug out location if your car, SUV, or semi-submersible speedboat makes it. Water: Water is the one thing that you won’t be able to carry three days worth with you if you are forced to resort to bugging out by foot.  Three days worth of water would weigh over 25 lbs per person at one gallon per day or 12.4 gallons if you’re planning on just a half gallon per day.  You should carry as much water as you can comfortably carry though.  You can buy survival water boxes and pouches, but as long as there’s a functioning tap and you have canteens (or 1 to 2 liter soda bottles that you’ve washed out with soap and water) there’s no need to buy ‘survival water.’  Make sure to rotate your stored tap water frequently (no less than twice a year and more often if it is subjected to high temperatures).  You can also pack bottled water but the disposable bottles aren’t very durable so make sure that you carry a more durable water container or canteen to fill up as you bug out…preferably one that’s unbreakable or even capable of boiling water in. Because you can’t carry enough water to sustain yourself for the full three days you must carry...

Water in Full Spectrum Preparedness

Today we introduce the first of a 10 article series that we’ll publish over the next 3 weeks introducing each of the 10 Foundations of Full Spectrum Preparedness in more detail.  In these articles we’ll start fleshing out the Fundamentals of Full Spectrum Preparedness.  Essentially, this series will discuss each Fundamental’s place in our Full Spectrum Preparedness cognitive model and briefly discuss how each Fundamental interacts with the other nine.  These articles are about the concepts, in later articles we’ll provide practical tactics, techniques and procedures for each Fundamental.  We begin with this discussion of Water in Full Spectrum Preparedness: Why is Water Preparedness Important It’s often been said that you can only live three days without water…that’s not true.  I’ve read accounts of lost hikers dying from dehydration in as little as an afternoon and accounts of others living for up to a week (in optimum conditions) without water.  That said, water is critical to maintaining life and therefore water preparedness is a critical element to your survival.  Water is elemental (pun intended) to sanitation and food preparation as well as life itself. The most basic use of water of course is for drinking/food preparation.  There are two basic ways to make water potable (with many variations).  Water can be treated (chemically, heated or UV), or filtered.  We’ll discuss individual techniques in later articles, but those are the basic options. Because water isn’t something you can do without… you should plan for a minimum of three water sources if the tap suddenly stops working. Stored for immediate needs.  1/2 to 3 Gallons per person A primary water source that’s as convenient as possible to your living area for situations your stored water can’t handle A secondary source if the primary dries up or otherwise becomes unavailable Aspects of Water Preparedness As we discussed in our article, Introduction to Full Spectrum...

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