Good things to have in case your water heater breaks

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Broken Water Heater
It's good to be a prepper when the water heater breaks

No hot water in the house?
A water heater can be a source of water in an emergency. A
broken water heater is an annoying problem! When the water
heater breaks it's a major inconvenience to your modern life. You
use your water heater every day to take a shower, wash hands,
and do the dishes and laundry. Do you know what to do when
your water heater breaks? You'll be glad you're a prepper because
you're ready to handle this personal crisis.

Preparedness is great for everyday emergencies and below you'll
see how it's good to be a prepper when the water heater breaks...

When the water heater breaks down
No hot water in the house? No worries! If your water heater
breaks down, you'll be glad you're a prepper, because likely you
will have prepper supplies on hand to help you get through this
personal emergency!

Here are ten things preppers have on hand in case the water
heater breaks down:

#1: Steramine tablets.
Steramine tablets are the "just add water" sanitizing solution.
Steramine comes in handy if your water heater breaks to help you
sanitize your dishes. Even if you can boil water it's always best
to give a final sanitation rinse the way restaurants do.

Many preppers
stock bleach for an emergency, but are unaware
that it expires. One way that Steramine is better than bleach is
that it's a space saver. One bottle of Steramine contains the
power to make 150 gallons of cleaning solution. Can you imagine
storing that much bleach? If you buy six bottles of Steramine you
can make 900 gallons of sanitizing solution and it will take only
as much space as a jug of bleach.

#2: Dish washing tubs.
Without your water heater, you won't have hot running water
from your faucet and your dishwasher won't have hot water
either. Having camp basin or rubber dish washing tubs can help
do the dishes without hot running water.

#3 Paper plates.
You never can have enough paper plates on hand. They can help
you if contagion ever enters your home, such as with the
Coronavirus, but they also will help make your life easier so you
don't have to do the dishes which may waste precious, life-saving

#4: Plastic cups.
Plastic cups are another necessary item to limit contagion and to
help you get through an emergency. Save yourself the trouble of
doing the dishes and wasting water. Having plastic cups on hand
could save your life in an emergency.

#5: Plastic utensils.
Again, it's not fun doing dishes by hand. To make things easier,
you should have a stockpile of disposable cups, plates and
utensils ready for meals. In a long term scenario you will
eventually run out, but it's certainly a helpful way to minimize
the effects that a broken water heater has on your every day life.

#6: Bottled water.
It's good to have bottled water on hand for emergencies. It's also
a good idea to rotate your bottled water every six months, so you
may as well crack open some bottles when your water heater
fails to help save on washing glasses.

Having bottled water on hand is paramount in prepping, but you
should also have a water storage tank and a means to filter your
water. Eco-minded Preppers who want to reduce consumption of
plastics rely on their
Big Berkey water filter. It also saves money
because you don't need to rely on bottled water for your everyday
needs of going to work, school or outdoor activity.

#7: Solar Shower.
Without your water heater you won't be able to take a shower
unless you're a clever prepper. There are many ways to create an
off grid shower, but the easiest is to get a solar camping shower.
solar shower, pictured right, has 3-gallon capacity. It's
designed to heat water fast in the warm sun and even has water
temperature gauge.

You can go a few days without a shower. The Amish bathe about
once a week (just before church service so they smell better).
Still, having a shower is a wonderful way to bring normalcy into
your life.

#8: Wonderwash.
Consumer reports says hot water isn't necessary to do laundry.
That's because, they say, washing machines and detergents have
changed. They also say you'll save money using cold water. While
it's true that you'll save money and that most laundry detergents
will work with cold water, there are times when you'll need to
sanitize using hot water and that's when it's convenient to have
WonderWash, pictured right will help you wash a 5-lbs.-load
super clean in just a couple of minutes. WonderWash uses far
less water than even hand washing, and it uses no electricity
either. A caveat is that you'll need to warm water on your stove,
but it's still a good option to have on hand.

Reasons to wash with warm water:

  • Towels. The bath towels and hand towels your family uses
    have a continual problem with bacteria and viruses. During
    pandemic, all members of your family should use different
    towels. This is especially true of Coronavirus which seems to
    thrive in wet areas. Having a supply of paper towels on hand
    can help reduce the wash load.

  • Bed linens. Dust mites and problems such as bed bugs,
    crabs and lice are also partially resolved with proper
    cleansing in warm and hot water.

  • Illness. When a family member is sick, it's important to
    wash your laundry in warm water to sanitize for vomit as
    well as the diarrhea.

  • Fecal matter and urine. You'll find kids, especially those
    who still wear diapers or in training, will also soil their
    exterior clothing with urine and fecal matter. You'll need
    warm and hot water to sanitize such clothing.

  • Menses. Many homesteaders use menstrual clothes and
    these require a sanitizing, though you can sanitize with
    bleach instead of a warm water rinse.

  • Your laundry detergent. Depending on your type of laundry
    detergent you may need warm water. Some of the traditional
    types of laundry detergent have enzymes that are sluggish
    in cold water. Oxi-Clean works best in warm water, for
    example. You can get around this by dissolving the Oxi-
    clean in warm water.

In short, cold water is good for getting stains out of your clothing,
and hot water is for sanitizing. Be sure to get the stains out first
with cold water as hot water can shrink, fade and damage some

One of the most inconvenient things about not having a water
heater is that you can't sanitize your clothes.

You turn laundry by hand which is economically sound, and great
for environment. When you put warm or hot water into the drum,
fit the lid in place and seal the machine, the air inside the drum
will absorb the heat of the water and expand. When the air
expands it creates pressure inside the drum. The pressure forces
the detergent into and through the fabric about 100 times faster
than you could by hand or machine.
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your water heater.

#9: Hand sanitizers.
Washing your hands with warm soapy water is the best way to
wash your hands, but a close second is having a hand sanitizer.
You don't need to buy the toxic kind from China. If you're a
prepper, you can
make your own hand sanitizers using essential

#10: Wet Wipes.
Preppers are ready for anything, including the little stuff, like dirt
and germs that can make you sick. That's why the stockpile wet
wipes. Two good ones are Wet Ones and Fresh Bath.

  • Wet ones. Wherever you go, dirt and germs are already
    there, so whether you're on the road or facing a crisis at
    home without hot water, you can rely on the Wet Ones to
    keep clean. Antibacterial Hand Wipe Travel Packs and pocket-
    sized Singles along for the ride, dirt and bacteria doesn't
    stand a chance. Wet Ones wipes kill 99.99% of bacteria, but
    they're gentle on your hands. The moisturizing Aloe inside
    each wipe helps keep your skin soft and refreshed.

  • Fresh Bath. No hot water or time for a bath? Bath wipes for
    outdoor activities are good to have on hand for an
    emergency at home. Freshen up at home, on the road or in
    the backcountry with Fresh Bath Wipes from Adventure
    Medical Kits. Fresh Bath wipes are moistened with micellized
    vitamins A and B with aloe vera cleanser that neutralizes
    odor while being gentle on the skin.

Those are just some of the reasons why it's good to be prepared.
Preppers can take the heat, even if their water heater cant.

Broken Water Heater Causes
No hot water, there are few reasons why this could happen:

  • Breaker: Weak breaker or tripped circuit breaker can cause
    your water heater to stop working. Check the circuit breaker

  • Pilot light is out. Any number of reasons could cause the
    pilot light to go out.

  • Failed heating element. An electric water heater uses
    elements to warm the water ~ sometimes it's a result of
    minerals and sediment that collects at the bottom of the
    water heater tank.

  • Faulty thermostat. A poorly installed the electrical line can
    cause a faulty thermostat on your water heater.

  • Frayed wiring. Always a danger, frayed wiring can cause a
    short circuit when a hot wire contacts a conductor with a
    different voltage. When high current flows and causes
    resistive heating it can cause a fire.

  • Water leak. Did you know that a water leak could cause a
    fire? Any electrical wiring present near the water look could
    pose a fire threat from shorted wires.

How to Get Water from Your Water Heater
Do you know how to get water from your water heater? Think of
water heaters as an extra water source for a long-term
emergency. It's an important skill during an emergency to know
how to extract the water for your survival.

Here's how to get water from your water heater:

  • Step one (shut off the power): Check to see that the
    power is off to your water heater, which it may already be in
    an emergency. You may have a gas or an electric water
    heater. Look for the switch to turn it off or cut off the power
    at the circuit breaker.

  • Step two (limit or prevent tainted water): If you have
    concerns about a tainted water supply, be sure to turn off he
    valve that supplies water to the tank. Look for the valve at
    the top of the tank near the pipe that supplies water to the

  • Step three (drain the water): Look at the bottom of the
    tank for the drain and valve. Your water tank may have a
    connection for a garden hose so that you can drain the water
    for your use into a container. Garden hoses have lead, so if
    you can purchase a lead-free hose for the water heater you'll
    be better off.

  • Step four (filter the water): Your water should be safe, but
    it's always best to filter. In a radiation emergency you can
    get a Seychelle water filter. For other circumstances a Big
    Berkey water filter should suffice.

One final reminder about your water heater: Be sure to secure
your water heater to the wall. A water heater is special to
preppers because it's an additional source of water for a long-
term emergency. Take care of it!
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Above, safety tips for working on your water heater from Eric

Happy endings...
Drain your water heater once a year to remove sediment from the
tank that can cause it to work harder. You'll save money and get
peace of mind in averting water damage.

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