Week #1 – SHTF Plan Prepping

Jan 8, 2012 by

When discussing a SHTF plan, I thought instead of focusing on one item each week, I’d cover what I had done that week to prepare.  So, let’s get started with Week # 1.

What Did I Do To Prep This Week?

a. Water

Organized the 17 gallons of water in my basement storage area.  Water is obviously a key component of any SHTF plan so I’ve planned to be very conservative.  In addition, I need to account for more than 5 people.  The conserative planning says a gallon per person per day we should be covered for about 3 days.

Add to the that the 20-50 gallons held in the hot water heater, we add another 6-7 days.  After turning off the gas, all we need to do is have containers to place near the drain of the hot water heater.  Then we simply open a nearby faucet to release the pressure as we have additional drinking water.

We could also utilize the 3-5 gallons in each toilet tank for cleaning, etc (also drinkable).  Simply scoop out with a ladle or cup and away we go.

b. Batteries

In preparation for TEOTWAWKI, I starting stocking up on batteries of several types as well.  132 AA batteries, 24 C batteries, and 12 D batteries.  This is only a start as I believe we’ll certainly need more of the larger batteries (C’s and D’s).  I’ll be using radios, lighting and other gadgets that will require these larger batteries.  The local big-box store has sales on batteries every few months and I’ll be planning on picking up additional ones as I go.

c. Storage Containers

I’ve also cleared out a plastic storage container in preparation for moving food items there for safe, dry keeping.  I’ll be gathering more of these in the coming days as the storage closet grows.  A clean, dry and cold location is key for storage of any perishables you plan to stock.

My next task is getting the toys/other storage out of the closet so I can make it strictly for storing emergency items.

Final Thoughts

I’ll be outlining the various other areas I’ve been prepping for in the coming weeks.  However, in the meantime, any thoughts or comments you’d like to leave below regarding the items above, I’d certainly love to hear them.  There are many different ways to build a SHTF plan.

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m just a suburban dad trying to prep his family for the coming economic and social collapse by executing a solid SHTF plan.

Remember, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” – Benjamin Franklin



  1. DarrenTGibson

    Great post. Have you ever considered purchasing solar rechargeable batteries. I sometimes have doubts on the life of batteries if stored for too long.

    • Darren – totally agree. I have looked at the solar rechargeables but haven’t pulled the trigger yet. To counter the expiration issue I’ve been trying to rotate the batteries as we need them in the house – we certainly go through the AAs.

      Any recs on the solar rechargeables? Thanks for the comment. Any opinions on the site, please feel free to share (email or comments).

      • Greg

        Last year, I made a solar recharger for 12VDC car batteries. It’s awesome and fully charges a battery in about 5 hours. I’m going to reconstruct 1 whole panel, in order to recharge smaller household batteries (AA’s, C’s, D’s & 9’s). I found my kid’s old walkie talkies (you KNOW those eat batteries!) 🙂

    • mensa141

      Look into Sanyo Eneloop rechargeable AAA and AA batteries and the sleeves that you can get so the AA batteries can fit C and D holders. I have the Eneloops in all kinds of devices throughout my house. When they get weak I simply recharge. The only non-rechargeable batteries that I use are for the applications that I believe are leaving my home.

  2. gat31

    Sounds like a good start. Never tried the solar batteries, but l do know the aa’s and aaa’a will last about a year before they die very quickly.Might be worth investing in a crank light. l got one for christmas that has a light, radio, and a spot for plugging in your phone to charge as well.
    As for storage containers, totes are good, but if you can find a walgreens or something that has those blue totes they have supplies come in or even a restaurant that has 5 gal buckets and lids (like pickles) those will have many purposes (like water)as well as dry storage.

    • Thanks for the comment Gat. Agree on the AA/AAA as I’ve experienced the same. I have a few crank lights but they are more flashlights than anything else. I’ll do a search on that crank light with the phone charging port as that sounds great.

      I’m hoping to get things moving a bit quicker as things seem to be escalating in the Middle East and back home. While I feel prepared, you can always be MORE prepared. Thanks again for the comment. Any others on the site, please feel free to share them.

  3. gat31

    Hey Mike not sure which part of the country you live in, but do you have any bee farms around? l’m lucky in the fact that l do and l found a square 275 gallon container for 20 bucks as opposed to 159 at tractor supply. It has a open/close valve at the bottom and a lid for the top. It’s food grade since it usually holds honey, and just add bleach to the water once it is filled and it will keep forever and still be safe to drink. Garbage cans with the heavy duty bags in it set up at the end of a down spout when it rains is also good for flushing water, clothes and dish washing.Since l’m in Florida, we use this method a lot during hurricanes to have water until power gets back on. Rain water is good for hand washing, plants, or whatever without using your drinking water. Just a suggestion. Not sure of the space you have for storage in and out of the house.

    • Hi Gat. That sounds like a great solution and even better that you can test it out – although I’m sure you don’t want to test it often. ; )

      We’re in the northeast so I’d have to hunt around for the bee farms but I will certainly look into it. We’ve got quite a bit of outside storage area with limited inside. I do like the garbage can/bag idea as I’ve played with that once before.

      Thanks again for the comments.

  4. commonsenseguy

    During the coming shift, where do you plan to be?

    Are you helping those around you prepare? Your neighbors? Your friends? People who are close to you?

    I see this all the time. You got yours and everyone else be damned. Just once, I would like to go to a preparedness site and see how we could all help one another. This will never happen however, because part of the “dying of the old paradigm” is the belief that we will all rip each other to shreds. Knowing human nature, I do not doubt this to be true.

    But does it have to be?

    The reason why “know it all” preppers are going to fare even worse than the average person is that they are not set up to adapt to conditions as they change. They overwhelmingly assume that they have the situation mastered, they’re too smart or too evolved to fail, they get it where nobody else does, and they’re going to sit back in comfort while all the idiots who don’t see the light die off.

    They typically build a bunker, stockpile it with food, assume a few weapons are going to be all that’s needed to hold off hordes of hungry people without any problem, and they typically have no plan beyond that for themselves. They’ll just wait out the storm and wait for normalcy to find them when the dust clears.

    How long is that going to be? Do we know? Have we thought that far out?

    Those building greenhouses assume those greenhouses will be respectfully left alone or will remain cleverly hidden until the storm subsides and the same normalcy finds their owners. It’s the same basic mentality: “I’ve got the challenge mastered. You other idiots don’t.”

    While this thinking may fare well to get people through a hurricane, how is a new world going to be built on it?

    To usher in the new age, far more likely than an event is a process. Gradual (accelerated or not) erosion of life as we used to know it. What gets people through it is a dependence on their adapting to change – not vice versa.

    People build their bunkers and greenhouses and assume the coming changes will adapt to them, to ensure they don’t find themselves unprepared for anything. It isn’t going to happen that way.

    Those forming survival groups will fare the worst. To see why, one need only look at the place they call “the job.” There you have a group of people working together toward a common goal – a perfect model of the survival group – except it’s only active 40 hours per week – and this group functions without a rapidly transitioning world around them, with a fully stable infrastructure in place.

    Even in those ideal conditions, what did their group end up being? A cesspool of political verbal killings, power struggles, runaway inefficiency, abuse, and drastic mission failure as personal power trips eclipse any concern with there being a mission at all.

    Nobody knows what’s coming, or if they do, they’re not talking. The most realistic approach is to prepare as best we can for whatever may come, as a short term solution, but prepare equally to rebuild after that.

    Will there be CME’s? Glaciers? Earthquakes, superstorms, volcanoes? What if it’s too hot, too cold, too radioactive, too dry, or too wet to grow food? Relocation will be imperative. Who is ready to do that? We love to think that a one-act play, chock full of our infinite wisdom and cleverness, is the end-all, be-all to survival, and our insight will be so impressive that it cannot possibly fall short of keeping us alive. It just doesn’t work that way.

    For the most part, if you can predict it, you can forget it. A humble attitude of “I really have no clue” keeps people looking attentively at options, at the current situation, and at solutions. Reality will not mold itself around our endless wisdom, insight, or anything else. Because we never prepared for situation X does not mean situation X isn’t coming. In a rapidly changing world, we have to be prepared to be equally rapdily changing.

    Most of us can’t even map out a budget without having it fall apart in a matter of days because of surprise expenses. Imagine that situation amplified exponentially by a world tearing itself down while rebuilding itself anew somewhere else.

    What saved our lives yesterday may end it today. The minute we see ourselves as masters and teachers, we have signed our death warrants. Getting through every moment of the coming years in the mindset of an apprentice, a student, one who knows effectively nothing, will keep our personal radar engaged and activated, where solutions will be found because they’re actively being searched for out there in the world.

    When all you do is show others how it’s done, the only thing “it” will amount to is dying.

    On that cheery thought.

    Good luck.

    • Interesting thoughts. However, I plan to help my family and friends as I’ve been trying to convince them to prepare for some time now. You mention how we should help one another (which I agree with) but then later say that survival groups will not work. What then do you propose? Thanks for reading.

  5. Mother Mel

    Thanks Mike for this site:) I am always looking for tips to be prepared. If you’re not a believer of the bible that tells us we should be prepared for unforseen events. Then maybe you believe in History. History has shown us again and again that things happen. Most everyone of middle class means experience some sort of event in their lives, that make prepping for events beyond our control, a wise choice. The S could HTF and it be so unexpected no one would survive. In that case all of our efforts would be for nothing. But we preppers have one thing non preppers have… some piece of mind. Knowing we could survive and want too is better than the alternative, giving up and quitting.

    • Thanks Mel. History is a great predictor of the future.

      My goal for this blog is get people aware and at least start prepping. Thanks for the comment and your feedback!

  6. I have a set of wind turbines also that produce 12v or 24v I have also purchased a power invertor to power essentials such as fridge, freezer and lighting as well. These are linked to car batteries and charge when there is any wind. Most of our lighting is now LED lighting which reduces power consumption. We also have a big wood burner installed which is capable of heating the house in the coldest winters. We have also invested in two 20k litre life jerry cans as well. Which are fantastic filters and filter any thing out of a water source. Also anyone thinking about prepping on a large scale you may think about friends and family getting involved and pooling resources and skill sets needed through out the disaster. A larger number of people standing together helping each other are a formidable force.

    We have started in the last year taking the kids camping but reducing the equipment we take on each adventure, so they get used to looking for items we could use instead of. It’s amazing the uses different people will use every day items for.

    Look forward to reading more of your great articles soon!!


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