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How To Boil Water For Survival

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Learn how to boil water and make it safe to drink in survival situations! If boiling water is the only option, you’ll have two techniques to try and make filthy water drinkable!

RELATED: 5 Emergency Water Storage Tips For Preppers Like You

Boil Water for Drinking | 2 Easy & Simple Ways

Boiling Water to Survive

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If you have no water filtration system or iodine tablets on your survival kit or bug-out bag, you can still purify water through boiling. The easiest way to do that is to have a steel container or a stainless steel Klean Kanteen.

The process of boiling kills pathogenic bacteria, protozoa, and viruses and makes water safe to drink. If the water is too cloudy, you can do a basic filtration before boiling. Bring water to a boil for at least one to two minutes.

There are two easy yet effective ways of boiling water when you’re out in the woods. The first is the common and the most used method of boiling water where you just have to put a steel container directly into the fire.

The second way of boiling water is the so-called hot-rock boiling technique. It’s a simple and ancient cooking method where you simply put hot rocks into the water and wait for it to boil.

How to Boil Water Using A Stainless Steel Kanteen

What You’ll Need:

  • Stainless Steel Klean Kanteen (a regular steel pot or container will work equally)
  • Water
  • Wood/tinder
  • Firestarter

Step 1: Start a Fire

Create fire using tinder or woods you have on hand. Make sure you have enough woods to fuel your fire so it will last until the water boils completely.



Step 2: Add the Water to Your Container

Now it’s time to fill your steel Kanteen with water and set it on fire. If you are purifying water for a larger group, it’s best to use a larger steel container.

This Klean Kanteen also comes in a 64 oz bottle which can hold approximately 2 liters of water.

Step 3: Bring to Boil

Bring your water to a rolling boil or wait for at least one to two minutes. After boiling, you can put the bottle away from the fire. Be very careful because your steel bottle will get super hot.

The best way to get it out of the fire is by using a stick that was bent in half. Wrap it around the lid and slowly pull it out and place it in a platform away from moving objects.

Tip: The water is going to take a couple of hours to cool off. One trick you can do is to put the lid back on and tie it with a rope. Place your bottle into a creek or any type of water source.

Make sure the bottle is drenched all the way through. This technique will help the water to cool faster.

RELATED: Non-Potable Water | Types and How to Spot Them | What You Need To Know

How to Boil Water Using the Hot-Rock Boiling Technique

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What You’ll Need:

  • Rocks
  • Water
  • Water Bucket

Step 1: Heat the Rocks

Place rocks into the fire and let them sit there for a couple of minutes until they’re blistering hot.

Step 2: Add the Hot Rocks Into the Water

Fill your bucket with water. Before adding the hot rocks into the water, tap the ash off from the rocks. You don’t want tons of ashes in your water. Now, add the rocks into the water one at a time.

Distribute the rocks evenly and bring the water to a rolling boil to ensure purification. By this time, your water should be drinkable.

You’ll notice the ash debris in your water but don’t worry. Charcoal won’t hurt you. As long as you tap off and remove the white ashes from the rocks before adding them into the water, then you’ll be fine.

Watch this video by Howcast for a demonstration of the hot-rock boiling technique:

If boiling water for purification is your last resort, then knowing the simple ways to do it efficiently could increase your chance of survival.

Remember these methods so the next time you’re out in the woods with no water filter or chemical tablets, you won’t worry about dehydration!

Which among the two ways of boiling water have you tried outdoors? Share your experience with us in the comments section below!

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