Last Updated on November 22, 2020
Whether you need to store water for just a few days, or you want to store large amounts for emergencies, you’ll need a good container to hold the water. Low-quality containers can leach chemicals into your water, making it unhealthy and poor tasting. But a good water container should keep your water fresh and crisp for an extended time.
There are many water storage containers available, and they vary greatly in capacity, durability, and price. We wanted to know which ones we could trust with our drinking water, so we ordered as many as we could and tried them all.
To spare you the headache of testing all these water containers as well, we’ve written up the following 10 reviews comparing what we learned about these water storage containers during our testing. Hopefully, it will save you some time and help you pick the right container for your needs.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
|Best Overall||Freegrace Premium||
|Best Value||WaterStorageCube Collapsible||
|Premium Choice||WaterPrepared Water Barrel||
|Arrow Plastic 00744 Slimline||
|Reliance Products 9410-03||
The 10 Best Water Storage Containers – Reviews 2021
1. Freegrace Premium Portable Folding Water Container – Best Overall
Available in sizes that can hold up to six gallons, the Freegrace Premium Portable Folding Water Container was our favorite out of all the containers we tested. It folds completely flat when it’s empty, making it easy to store or transport.
Instead of a bottle or jug, this is really a water bucket. It’s soft but very strong and durable, made from 500D Tarpaulin with double-stitched and sealed seams. And you can count on it to be 100% BPA-free, so it’s completely safe to drink from.
Most of this product is very well thought out. When you go to pour water, a small loop at the bottom gives you some leverage so the bag doesn’t collapse. You can even get a with a lid, but we were disappointed to find out that the lid doesn’t seal. It would be great if the lid sealed in some way and could hold the water in during transport.
2. WaterStorageCube Collapsible Water Container – Best Value
Affordable and space-saving with a large capacity, the WaterStorageCube Collapsible Water Container is one of the best water storage containers for the money. It can hold up to 5.3 gallons, depending on the size you get. When it’s folded down, it’s just 2.5 inches high! That’s small enough to tuck into any backpack, briefcase, or even purse.
This container is made from plastic, but it’s food-grade plastic that’s environmentally friendly and non-toxic. It’s BPA-free and has no PVC or DEHP either. In our testing, we never noticed any plastic smell or taste in the water that was stored in this container. And since it’s a one-piece design with no seams, it’s a very durable container that you can count on not to let you down.
When it’s time to pour your drinks, an on/off spigot makes it easy. However, there’s no air vent on this container, so eventually, your water flow will slow down until you release the pressure by removing the cap. But this is our only real complaint about this container, so we still think it’s a winner.
3. WaterPrepared Water Barrel Container – Premium Choice
With a massive capacity of 55 gallons, the WaterPrepared Water Barrel Container is the perfect solution for long-term water storage. It’s made from a very durable high-density polyethylene material that can handle immense pressures for decades without degrading or failing. It’s also UV-resistant to protect your water inside. Even more importantly, it’s FDA-compliant, using food-safe materials that are completely BPA-free.
If 55 gallons isn’t enough for you, then you can store several of these together. They have a stackable design that lets you save space while safely storing hundreds of gallons of water. When it’s time to use the water, an easy-pour spigot lets you get the water without any hassle. However, installing it was a bit of a pain and an exercise in patience.
With such an impressive capacity and the ability to keep your water safely stored for decades, it’s easy to see why the WaterPrepared water barrel container is our premium choice recommendation.
4. Arrow Plastic 00744 Slimline Water Container
Sometimes, you don’t need to store large quantities of water for long periods. Maybe you just need to keep a few gallons handy in the fridge where it’s easy to access for drinking. In that case, check out the Arrow Plastic Slimline Beverage Container. It’s available with a capacity of up to 2.5 gallons, which should be plenty for most households.
To make it more convenient when you need to get water, there is an easy pour spigot on the front of this water container. Push the lever and you’ll have water, no need to remove the whole container. We also liked the very large opening on the top. It made it much easier to fill and clean for us. And the slimline design fits easily in any fridge without taking up too much space.
But it wasn’t all great with this container and we did have a few complaints. Since there’s no air vent, your water flow gets slower until it stops, and you have to release the pressure. This is an easily remedied issue at the factory, but an annoyance for all users. It’s also not the most durable container and isn’t suitable for transporting water.
5. Reliance Products 9410-03 Rigid Water Container
The Reliance Products Aqua-Tainer Rigid Water Container is a square container with a handle at the top for carrying. Its square shape isn’t the most space-conscious, but it does allow multiple containers to be stacked on top of each other. But you can only do that when they’re empty.
We liked the larger seven-gallon capacity of the Aqua-Tainer. Likewise, the five-year warranty is a nice touch that gives us a lot of confidence in this container. Very few water containers come with any warranty, much less a five-year one. That said, this container will degrade in direct sunlight, which is a definite disappointment. We’d like to take this water container camping, but since it can’t handle the sun, it’s not a great choice for anything outdoors.
6. igloo corporation 42154 Water Container
With a six-gallon capacity, this water container from Igloo holds enough water to keep a single person hydrated for about a week. It’s got a flexible pouring spout built-in that makes it easy to transfer your water to pots and pans or other containers. When not in use, the pouring spout tucks away inside the container to keep it small and storable.
This container is FDA-approved. However, it’s not BPA-free. This could be a deal-breaker for some people who are very worried about intaking chemicals. We also weren’t thrilled with the vent plug, which has no way to lock. Since it can’t be locked, you can’t stop water from splashing out the vent hole and you can’t store this container on its side. If this problem were fixed, the Igloo water container would probably earn a much higher position on our list.
7. Reliance Products 5000-13 Fold a Carrier
The Fold a Carrier from Reliance Products is a good concept with mediocre execution. It folds completely flat when it’s empty so that it can be stored. It’s supposed to inflate when filled and stand on its own, but this doesn’t work. Instead, it just flops over and takes a tumble, no matter how we set it.
The cap of this container is a leak-proof spigot that lets you easily pour water. But the water always had a very strong plastic taste, even after many washes. It is BPA-free, so your water is safe, but we still didn’t enjoy the chemical taste. We did like the five-year warranty though, which is a great addition on a container that’s already affordably priced.
8. AquaBrick Water Storage Container
Extremely durable but with several flaws holding it back, the AquaBrick Water Storage Container is one we wanted to like. It can withstand a full-grown man standing on it without getting damaged, up to 250 pounds. That’s pretty impressive. They’re also airtight, watertight, and UV-resistant, so they’ll keep your water safe no matter where they’re stored. But it can only store three gallons, so you may need to keep a few.
We liked the spigot attachment that makes it easy to pour water without lifting the container. But the spigot always leaked, so we never got to enjoy this convenience. The lid also isn’t threaded right, so we had to play with it repeatedly every time we wanted to close it. For a container this expensive, that’s more flaws than we can deal with.
9. REDCAMP Portable Water Container
Made from food-grade, non-toxic polypropylene plastic, the Redcamp Portable Water Container is a durable product with a few flaws preventing it from reaching its full potential. It’s strong enough to support up to 132 pounds, so you can trust it to protect your water. You can get it with a capacity of up to 5.3 gallons, depending on your water needs.
We were happy with this container at first, but then we noticed that the ground was wet underneath it. Luckily, the container wasn’t leaking, but the spout was. Even when we replaced it the same problem persisted, so it’s common with this product. It also left a strong plastic taste in the water that nobody was thrilled about.
10. API Kirk Samson Stacker Water Storage Container
The API Kirk Samson Stacker Containers can be stacked on top of each other to save space, even when they’re full. They’re very strong and durable containers, but they’re missing some important features. For instance, they have threads for a spigot, but no spigot is included. There’s also no air vent to allow for better pouring. It also can’t be laid on its side with any stability because of how rounded the corners are, it will just tip over. This makes it hard to pour with since the spigot is best used when it’s on its side if you choose to install a spigot at all since one isn’t included. In the end, it’s missing too much for us. We’d like to see a spigot or air vent for this container to move up a few spots.
Now that we’ve compared some of the best and most popular water storage containers on the market, you may be wondering how to decide which one is right for you. After testing out so many of them, we think we have a pretty good idea of what to look for in a water container for any situation. In this short buyer’s guide, we’re going to try to help you understand which of these containers will best meet your needs.
One of the first things you need to consider when choosing a water storage container is how much water you need to hold. If you just want a container to hold water inside your fridge and keep it cold for dispensing, then a container that’s between one and three gallons should be sufficient.
On the other hand, if you’re storing water for an emergency, then there’s no telling how much water you might want to store. In that case, you might look for the largest container that you can still move, such as a 55-gallon drum container.
Of course, a 55-gallon drum won’t fit in your fridge and 3 gallons won’t do much in an emergency So, it’s important that you determine what you want to use the container for so you can decide how large of a capacity you need.
Most of these water storage containers are made from some kind of plastic. Plastic can be made very strong and it’s not susceptible to a lot of natural elements that other materials are. But plastic has gotten a bad rap lately, particularly when it comes to holding our water. Chemicals like BPA have become buzzwords because of the impact they may play on our health.
To avoid any possible negative health effects caused by chemicals in plastic, we recommend looking for a water container that is FDA-approved and BPA-free. This will ensure that you’re not taking in those unhealthy chemicals when you’re drinking your water.
Once again, it’s important to make decisions based on what you want to use the container for. If you want to be able to take it with you to places such as camping or even as spare water in the car, then you may prioritize different things than someone who wants to store water at home for emergencies.
A collapsible container is a great bet for camping because it takes up considerably less space when not in use. But it wouldn’t be a good choice for emergency storage since it’s not as durable.
Not all water containers are created equal and we wanted to know which ones were at the top of the quality hierarchy. Our reviews shared what we learned through our extensive testing, but in the end, only three of these containers have earned our recommendations.
Our favorite overall was the Freegrace Premium Portable Folding Water Container. It features heavy-duty construction, made from 500D tarpaulin with double-stitched and sealed seams. Plus, it’s BPA-free, folds flat for storage, and has a stout capacity of up to six gallons.
If you’re looking for the best value, we suggest the WaterStorageCube Collapsible Water Container. It’s got a one-piece design with no seams to break, an easy pour spigot, it collapses flat for storage, and it’s completely BPA-free. Best of all, it manages all of this at an affordable price.
If you don’t mind spending a bit more for a larger capacity and a more durable container, our premium choice recommendation is the WaterPrepared Water Barrel Container. It can hold 55-gallons in its UV-resistant shell that’s completely BPA-free and even features a stackable design to conserve space.
David Slone runs the TapIt Water blog. He first learned about water filtration and the impact it has on the world in college. Ever since that day he has worked towards making the world a better place. He writes to inform you about water filtration, the consequences of plastics, bottled water, and how we can do things better.
He loves to spend time with his beloved wife, 3 kids, and dog when he’s not writing.
- 1 A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
- 2 The 10 Best Water Storage Containers – Reviews 2021
- 2.1 1. Freegrace Premium Portable Folding Water Container – Best Overall
- 2.2 2. WaterStorageCube Collapsible Water Container – Best Value
- 2.3 3. WaterPrepared Water Barrel Container – Premium Choice
- 2.4 4. Arrow Plastic 00744 Slimline Water Container
- 2.5 5. Reliance Products 9410-03 Rigid Water Container
- 2.6 6. igloo corporation 42154 Water Container
- 2.7 7. Reliance Products 5000-13 Fold a Carrier
- 2.8 8. AquaBrick Water Storage Container
- 2.9 9. REDCAMP Portable Water Container
- 2.10 10. API Kirk Samson Stacker Water Storage Container
- 3 Buyer’s Guide
- 4 Conclusion