When you think of the best water storage containers, a common barrel is usually what comes to mind. However, there are plenty of other options that you may not have realized. There are plastic water tanks, expandable water bladders and even stackable containers that conveniently fit in standard sized closets. For an even wider selection, you can also opt for innovative water bags that are made of food-grade material.
When it comes to sifting through all the best water storage containers, it can be overwhelming to know what to look for. It should be noted that all containers have good points and bad points. When it came to our list of the best water storage containers, there were several factors we took into consideration. For ease of access, we primarily stuck to retailers on Amazon so that when you make your selection, you can have it delivered to your door in no time. Before we get into our list, let's got over exactly how we narrowed down our selection.
PRODUCT COMPARISON TABLE
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How We Chose Our Ratings
Regardless of the type of water storage vessel, all products suitable for your short or long-term needs should have the following features:
Made of durable, non-toxic material
Shopping for the best water storage containers means that you buy one and only ever one water storage container. In order to ensure that your purchase lasts, you need to shop for one that is made out of a durable, non-toxic material. It is important to have a non-toxic material because ultimately, the water in your container will likely end up in your body. If your water will be sitting for an extended period of time, then you have to make sure that the material does not break down and release toxins in your water.
Easy to clean
The best water storage containers are the ones that can be cleaned easily. You want to make sure that you container does not have any difficult nooks and crannies where dirt and an accumulation of bacteria can grow.
Easy to transport
This is a feature that can easily be overlooked sometimes. However, it is important to consider whether or not your container can be transported because you may need to do this a time or two. Our selection offers a wide range of options that make transportation of your water container a breeze.
Positive online reviews
What others have to say about the best water storage containers played a big role in our selection. After all, if other consumers loved their water storage container, then we are sure you will too!
Manufacturer provides excellent customer service
Having a great water storage container is an investment for many. Because of this, it is important that you are able to get all your questions answered whenever you need assistance. The options that we have selected for our list provide exceptional manufacturer customer service. From getting in touch with a representative to getting your product serviced, these products and the manufacturers that distribute them deliver.
Stores large amounts of water
Of course, if you are looking through the best water storage containers, you want one that can hold large quantities of water. Having one that does so will enable you to stay prepared in an emergency situation.
Our last requirement on our list was a no brainer. The options we have selected are ones where they have been tested and are tried and true to prevent leakage. If you will be storing large quantities of water for long periods of time, then you will want to make sure that the water stays in the container and will not seep out of it.
Now that you have a better understanding of how we selected the best water storage containers on the market, let’s splash into the details of why you might want to invest in one of the water containers on our list.
Why You Should Consider a Water Storage Container
Water barrels are one of the most popular containers for long-term water storage. Water storage is essential for a variety of reasons. For some, water storage serves as a backup water source. For others, water storage is for the purpose of being ready in a survival situation. While water storage containers are great, there are some downsides. For example, you can't carry them with you if you must evacuate your home. Also, you may run out of water if you have a barrel and no other source of water (stackables, water "bladders," storage tanks, etc.).
How to Effectively Use a Water Storage Container
There are a couple of things you need to know in order to effectively use your water storage container. You will need to start by knowing how much water to store. Typically, you'll need to store one gallon of water a day for each person in your home or business.
When storing water, you will also want to differentiate. It’s a good idea to use a few different water storage containers when creating your stockpile. Some varieties include jugs or bottles. Having smaller containers can be helpful in the event that you have to evacuate your home.
You also need to be sure that you are storing water in a food-grade container. Even tanks and barrels should be made of a material that is pristine and free of chemicals. Your family will be drinking water from them at some point, most probably in a natural disaster or another emergency. It is imperative in any situation that the water they are drinking is clean.
If you are going to be stacking water containers, then you will want to use the appropriate kind. You could start by shopping for only stackable water barrels that have grooves on the bottom. Also, these barrels are usually smaller than the standard 50-gallon drum barrels.
How to Keep Your Water Clean
Some water sources will require you to filter and purify first. Especially if the water will be sitting for a long period of time. If your water source requires filtering and purification, remember that chlorine dioxide kills most bacteria, protozoa, and viruses. You can use it to treat the water you collect from streams or other sources. Water purifiers will not remove chemicals or dirt, so you should use a filter then purifier if you collect water for drinking.
Make sure you buy a combination water barrel for your home if you're new to water storage and choose the barrel option. A full barrel set will have everything you need to store water for emergencies. A set includes water purifiers, a bung wrench, replacement bung, and siphon hose.To learn more about proper water storage, check out what some survival and emergency experts say about the best storage options for emergency water. These guides go into detail to explain how you can make the most of them.
Top 10 Emergency Water Storage Containers
The best water containers for emergencies and storage depend on your space requirements and family size. Using one or more containers is the best bet for most people, so we’ve included several product types in this list.
We didn't include any water bottles on this list but instead looked at storage containers that hold at least several gallons of water at a time. Without further delay, let’s splash into our top picks!
AquaTank Water Storage 300 Gallons
- "THE BEST THING SINCE SLICED BREAD FOR THE RV OWNER" Sick and tired of stretching hoses while you're out boondocking?...
- "DECEPTIVELY TOUGH!" Our AQUATANK-2 systems have state-of-the-art material that is thinner and lighter than any rubber...
- "NO WEIRD TASTE" BPA's are not good... they can interfere with your natural hormone functions and they make your water...
The AquaTank is one of the most unusual water storage devices available. It a pillow-like shell that you fill with water. It's perfect for home, camping or vacations, and you can transport it anywhere without problems.
Filling this water pillow is fairly easy. You will need to use a garden hose thread connection to fill it up. When it comes to removing the water, the bottom external thread makes it easier than ever. In terms of capacity, there are several options available for you to choose from. There is a 15 gallon, a 30 gallon, a 60 gallon, a 150 gallon, and a 300 gallon. Of course, the dimensions of the "pillow" increase the more water you add. A 15-gallon AquaTank is 24" wide x 36" long x 8" high, while a tank filled with 300 pounds of water measures 54"wide x 144" long x 12" high.
The material used for the AquaTank is a durable rubber bladder. Although it looks deceptive, it is incredibly durable. Just be sure that you keep it away from nails or other sharp objects, as they can puncture the shell. Because it is made out of a rubber shell, many may question the taste of the water. However, customers have consistently raved that the water stored in AquaTanks won’t have any plastic taste or odor. The BPA free interior lining material used is 100% food grade TPU and sanitarily stores your water.
Online reviewers recommend the AquaTank for boondocking trips, emergency storage, and long road trips. Although you can use it for long term storage, users suggest that it is best used for short term storage, this way, you can be certain your water remains clean.
Overall, customers who have purchased the AquaTank Water Storage Bladder consider it to be one of the best water storage containers. Customers love that communication between the manufacturer is accessible and that the product lives up to all that it advertises.
Freegrace Collapsible Water Bucket
- ✔ 16L(With Lid) size: 9.44 x 11.8 inch(1.1 Pounds/500g),Capacity:976 Cu.In; The only bucket with LID and comfortable...
- ✔ MULTI-PURPOSE COLLAPSIBLE BUCKET: Looking for an easy and practical way to hold water for washing hands, dishes or...
- ✔ LIGHTWEIGHT & SELF-SUPPORTING: unlike lesser quality buckets, our bucket is extremely light, easily foldable and...
This next option is a great one to go with if you are looking for short term water storage. The Freegrace Collapsible Water Bucket allows you to store and carry smaller quantities of water on all your adventures. This folding, collapsible bucket is mainly used for picnics and camping, but it could be used for emergencies while traveling too. You can also use it if you're strapped for space at home.
The bucket may not look like much when it's collapsed. In fact, it has the appearance of a folded laundry basket. However, once it stands upright, you can fill it with water without fear of leaks. What makes the Freegrace Collapsible Water Bucket great is the fact that it is lightweight and tear-resistant. It is made out of BPA free nontoxic 500D tarpaulin material. It is double stitched and sealed at the seams so that you never have to deal with leakage. For travelers with a sense of style, you can find this collapsible bucket in a variety of colors, designs, and sizes. The capacity sizing range from 2.6 to 6.1 gallons. One customer with a 23-liter bucket writes that it "holds water like a champ." Customers also use these multipurpose buckets to sterilize medical equipment, wash laundry or clean dishes on the go. Lastly, because this bucket features durable handles and a lid, you can carry around your water supply with ease.
Emergency Essentials 55 Gallon Drum
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This simple 55-gallon water storage drums is a mainstay of many homes and follows the traditional design of how to store water. Using this barrel is pretty simple and straightforward. Simply fill it with water, seal it, and store it. Also, this drum has two bung holes and plugs. One hole uses coarse threads, and the other uses fine threads.
The Emergency Essentials water barrel is made out of a heavy duty thick, high molecular polyethylene resin. The blue color is intentional because it decreases the level of light that infiltrates the barrel. The dark color also restricts bacterial and algae growth. This product has been both FDA approved and is BPA free ensuring that the water you store in it is up to the latest safety guidelines.
The one downside to the durable blue plastic barrel is the initial scent when it arrives. Many customers have noted a distinct smell when unwrapping it. The good news is, customers have proved this odor is easy to get rid of. You simply need to follow the included cleaning instructions.
To clean, rinse the barrel with water then pour in a bit of bleach. Roll the barrel around, rinse and let it dry naturally. Once it’s clean, you’re ready to store emergency water.
Overall, this product is simple, straightforward, and perfect for families who are looking for a basic water storage solution.
Horizontal Water Tank from Norwesco
This next storage option is great if you are looking for a long term water storage solution for your home. This standalone Polypropylene water tank can be used for emergency storage or as short-term storage to take water from one residence to another. It is manufactured to meet FDA specifications for safety but is not specifically food-grade.
If you plan on using it to store drinking water, you must make sure to thoroughly clean it before storage. Once properly clean, you should have no safety or taste problem with stored water. To fill it, use a garden hose or other hose to fill it. Unfortunately, you will need to buy fittings separately. This tank has a bulkhead on the side that provides a ¾ inch female NPT without a plug. There is a five-inch opening, and a black lid seals the container.
Norwesco water tanks have a three-year warranty, so if you do have an issue, you can easily contact the manufacturer for support. Overall, those who have purchased this water tank love that it is lightweight, sturdy, and portable.
Reliance Gallon Container
- Rigid, 7-gallon rectangular water container with molded contour grip
- Space-saving design for easy storing and stacking when empty. Spigot cap is reversible for safe storage and transport
- New and improved screw-on vent; hideaway spigot for on-demand water dispensing
The Reliance Aqua Tainer is another great option to go with if you are looking to store small quantities of water. The Reliance Aqua Tainer is a seven-gallon container with an ergonomic contour grip handle. It is made out of a BPA free polyethylene (#2) and the durable construction allows you to store it both indoors and outdoors. It has a convenient hideaway spigot and a screw-on vent to prevent leaks.
You can easily store and stack the Reliance container with the rest of your supplies when it's empty. The square shape does not make it awkward to store at all. If there are issues with the container, then you will be covered under the manufacturer’s five-year warranty. However, this warranty only covers against factory defects.
Overall, users like the sturdy, built-in spigot and the easy to transport seven-gallon size. The unusual shape is pretty neat too because it prevents the container from tipping over when you set it down.
As with any product, there are some downsides. Negative reviews concern leaks and broken valves/spigots. The mixed reviews concerning spigots may indicate some consumers got containers from a bad batch, or they may be using the spigot incorrectly.
Augason Farms Emergency Water Storage Supply Kit
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The Augason Farms BPA-free 55-gallon water barrel will get you through any natural or man-made disasters. What makes this one of the best water storage containers is the fact that you won’t need to buy any additional hoses or supplies. Everything you need comes with your order.
This water tank comes with an entire kit. The kit consists of a hand pump, siphon hose to add or remove water, a lid opened and water treatment drops. The barrel is made of tough plastic and won’t leak. The material used is a BPA free food grade polyethylene that meets strict EPA guidelines.
The plug fittings help fill and drain the barrel more easily. Use the siphon hose and hand pump to add five gallons of water to the container in a minute. The kit has a bucket lid opener to let you open the barrel without a struggle. The water treatment bottles included in the kit will purify up to 60 gallons of water.
For long term storage, this is one of the best water storage containers to go with. The shelf life for water stored in this barrel is projected to be four years. However, it may be more or less depending on storage conditions.
If you use the water barrel and kit according to directions, the water will taste pure and be safe per EPA regulations. For the best quality, be sure to store water in a dark area. Some ideal locations include the garage or basement. You will also want to keep the temperature between 55 and 70 degrees.
Overall, customers love the ease of use that this water barrel provides. It is easy to store, easy to use, and perfect if you are looking for a long term storage solution.
Water Storage Tank – 260 Gallons
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If you are looking for a high capacity, food-safe storage tank, then the 260 Gallon Emergency Water Storage Tank by Sure Water is a great option to go with. This water storage tank can hold 260 gallons of water. This is perfect if you are looking for an emergency reserve. It is seamless and molded as a single piece. It comes with a coupling, water purification devices, and food safe drinking hoses.
The material used is a polyethylene composite. This storage container touts its credibility because it received a safety certification from the National Sanitation Foundation or NSF. Whatever amount you store, you can be sure that it will stay clean and pure for the duration of its storage.
There are two valves to retrieve and rotate water. You won't need to worry about moving this water tank to your basement or another area of your home, as it easily fits through doorways too. However, moving it around can be a pain. When it is empty, it weighs about 70 pounds. To circumvent this, you will want to be sure to set it up in a location that will be rather permanent.
Overall, this is one of the best water storage containers because it is incredibly durable. One user commented that the tank is well-designed, durable and lasted throughout the outages from Hurricane Sandy, which hit the East Coast in 2012.
Five Gallon Containers, Stackable
If you are getting started in water storage but are not sure how much you want to store or for how long, then a stackable might be for you. The Saratoga Farms' five-gallon stackables have flat tops and bottoms and nestle together to save space. Their construction makes them the ideal option to go with if you are not sure about how much storage you need. Also, if you need to move your water around, you'll be able to pick up one five-gallon container at a time instead of moving an entire barrel. Easily do this by the durable built-in handles that come in each container.
These stackable containers are made from BPA-free polyethylene and will stay in shape even if you move it from place to place often. Use as many of these stackables as you need for emergency water storage, camping, boating or road trips.
Saratoga Trading Company has a five-month money back guarantee on these food-grade containers and will give you a refund if you're not satisfied.
These stackables don’t take up a lot of space. They fit well in any basement or garage. Users recommend that you stack no more than four containers on top of each other for long. You’ll need to drill a vent hole under the cap at the rear of each container to pour in water, so if you want something ready for use out of the box, you might want to try another stackable brand.
WaterBrick Storage Containers
- ✔ LARGE 20 GALLON CAPACITY: It works really well for mobile homes, campgrounds, and recreational vehicles to transport...
- ✔ PORTABLE: Integrated handles & 3 large wheels contribute to convenience in transportation. It promotes ease of...
- ✔ AIR RELEASE VENT & LEVEL INDICATOR: Air release button vent air pressure to avoid splash when dumping. Also its vent...
This next option is one of the best water storage containers for a variety of reasons. For starters, not many water storage containers can transport water the way this one does. The Vingli Tote Tank features three wheels and an integrated handle that allow you to virtually wheel your water where you need it to go.
The tank itself is made out of a high density polyethylene. This strong solid plastic is practically resistant to any breaks or leaks. If you are going on an RV adventure or camping, this is one of the best water storage containers because it can stand up to constant movement. It also stores well in any adventure because it can stand upright or lay flat.
Customers love that this 20 gallon water storage container is super easy to use. The vent system allows you to fill and drain the container rather easily. Also, when you hit the air release button, there is a vent air pressure that decreases splash when water is released.
Overall, customers are thoroughly satisfied with how this water tank operates. You can easily bring it with you on all your adventures. And of course, if you prefer, you can use it as a basic water storage solution for your everyday life.
- BPA FREE MATERIAL: Comes with 4 environmental friendly 5L water containers, made of transparent, soft polymer, durable...
- SPACE-SAVING AND PORTABLE: Collapsible and ultra light, fold it up when empty into smaller size for easy storage and...
- WIDE APPLICATION: Portable water tank is a movable water tank, ideal for water and other drinks storage for your...
This next option is a perfect fit for people who are looking for portable water storage options. This durable, non-toxic water carrying bag is made of clear plastic. The large spout makes pouring and filling the container easy. Its unique construction allows it to hold saltwater, freshwater, and tap water.
The material used is a BPA free nontoxic food grade clear plastic. One container holds ten liters and can serve well in any short term adventure. The seal and screw cap prevents water from leaking, even during transport.
While this water container is somewhat unusual, you can use this water storage container a variety of settings. It lends well if you’re on the road or in any situation where you don’t have much room for tanks, drums or stackable containers.
For campers, backpackers or anyone who may need water in a temporary emergency, these food-grade collapsible bags fold flat when not in use. Cleaning is a breeze as well. Rinse the bag out with filtered water and then put a teaspoon of bleach in the bag. You will want the bleach to sit for a few minutes. Then, shake it out to make sure the bag is clean. Let the bag dry out completely. Once cleaned, you can store water for both short or long-term use.
Customers who have purchased this leave reviews that are mostly positive or mixed. Customers have consistently expressed that there is no plastic taste to water stored in these bags. The bags are tough and won't leak, even when holding up to 22 pounds of water, writes one user.
When you are shopping around for the best water storage containers for your home, there are a couple of things you want to keep in mind. Our hand buyers guide highlights what you should keep in mind.
The best water containers give you a portability option. If you need a water storage container to take with you on trips and camping adventures, then you will want to look for something that was built for that. One with a bearable carrying capacity or wheels could work well.
If portability is not so much a concern, then you should aim to shop around for the best water storage containers that you can keep stored in your home or garage. Every situation is unique, and you may be looking for a standalone barrel or tank for your basement while a friend may need something that he can take on the road and use in case of an accident or emergency.
The size of your water storage unit should also be considered when you're shopping for the best water storage containers. Using a variety of containers might be best for you if you travel a lot. You may need a water bladder or bucket on the road and a barrel at home. Regardless of the emergency storage you choose, always follow the manufacturer's directions for proper use and cleaning.
Short term and long term storage
Knowing how long you need to store your water for can also play a part in your choice when you are shopping for the best water storage containers. If you are looking for a long lasting storage option, then a stackable container or water barrel should do the trick. For short term storage, jugs, and inflatables might be a better fit.
Final Thoughts on Best Water Storage Containers
Stockpiling plastic bottles is the most obvious way to store emergency water, but there are other options. Barrels, storage tanks, and water bladders are just a few of the containers that can store water in case of disaster. Whether you're at home or on the road, the right container will get you through an emergency.
The best water storage containers are ones that serve your needs and make your life a whole lot easier. Now that you have a better sense of what the perfect water storage container can do for you, you are that much closer to buying the right one for your home. Hopefully, our list has helped narrow down your choices so that you can be well on your way to fresh, clean, water.