Admittedly I am not an environmentalist. I believe in being a good steward of the space I occupy in this wacky universe, but I worry more about saving my own butt and wallet.
Here is a way to do all three.
The more frozen stuff in your freezer, the more efficiently it runs. Few people actually use much of their available freezer space. As someone who never eats frozen dinners and seldom eats ice cream, my freezer is typically home to nothing more than a couple of bottles of vodka for when company comes over, or when a nervous guest on my Urban Survival show needs a stiff belt in order to relax. That’s a lot of unused space, which forces the freezer to work harder than necessary to keep the few items inside frozen.
You want to store water and you want to save energy, and it doesn’t matter whether you are motivated by concern for the polar bears or for your wallet. By filling the empty space in your freezer with frozen water you reduce the area your freezer has to keep cold. Thus, your freezer does not have to work as hard and uses less energy. You also now have a cache of ice.
If the power goes out, the frozen bottles will help maintain the temperature of your freezer a bit longer—anywhere from a couple of hours to a whole day, depending on how well insulated your unit is.
If you are bugging out, use the frozen bottles to keep a cooler cold. Once the bottles have started to melt, you can drink the water, just like you would if you were staying home. This works well for regular old camping trips, too.
Saved space completes the trifecta for you. If you are a dazzling Urbanite, space is at a premium—and you’ve just found a constructive use for wasted space. You’re also saving energy, and you’ve freed up precious shelf or closet space you were using to store water.
The Best Bottles
I have been using this method in my own household for roughly a decade. Over the years I have tried a number of different-size water bottles. Mostly I used two-liter soda bottles, but their size can be a bit much, and since they are round instead of square, you don’t get the maximum possible volume out of them. This is not a plug for the company, but I found Fiji’s1-liter and 1.5-liter bottles to work the best. They take up the most space and stack the best.
There is not a lot to storing water in your freezer, but there are two important things to remember. First, don’t top off the bottle completely. Leave a little room. If you have ever left a soda in a freezer, you are well aware of what can happen to a container when water turns to ice: it expands. Second, ensure that the cap is on tight. A loose cap will leak and make a mess.
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