Self Sufficiency

How To Make Seawater Drinkable Using Plastic Bottle



Man drinking water hot day | How To Make Seawater Drinkable Using Plastic Bottle | Featured

Being lost at sea and risk dying of dehydration is the world’s greatest irony. Therefore, learning how to make seawater drinkable is a vital skill every survivalist needs.

Here is a detailed six-step guide.

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

How to Make Seawater Drinkable In Six Easy Steps

Click here to jump to the instructographic.

Things You’ll Need

  • A large plastic bottle with a lid
  • Seawater
  • A standard can of soda

Tools You’ll Need

  • A pocket knife

Step 1. Cut Off the Bottom End of the Plastic Bottle

Firstly, look for a firm, solid surface to make cutting easier. Next, hold your plastic bottle horizontally on the solid surface and cut off its bottom end. Be keen only to cut as low as you can as you need a large part of the plastic bottle.

Note: The less plastic you cut off, the more room you will have to catch drinkable water


  • Your plastic bottle must have a cork for it to work
  • If you are lost at sea, the floor of your boat will make a sturdy surface to make cutting the plastic bottle easier
  • On the other hand, finding a solid surface on land shouldn’t be hard at all

Step 2. Cut Off the Top Of the Soda Can

Now, run your pocket knife through the top of the soda can. To make cutting easier, insert the end of your knife into the side of the can. Once inserted, run it through the can to make a near-perfect circle.

Like with the plastic bottle, the lesser you cut off, the more room you will have to hold the seawater.

Note: Be cautious with the cut soda can to avoid injuring yourself.

Step 3. Make an Inner Gutter with the Plastic Bottle

Next, roll the cut end of the plastic bottle inwards to form a trough. Watch out as the plastic edge can also cause cuts which is the last thing you need in a survival situation.

Roll the plastic bottle a few inches inwards. Essentially, the gutter should go roughly halfway up the soda can once you insert it in the next step.

RELATED: How To Collect Dew Water For Survival

Step 4. Fill the Soda Can with Seawater

Photo by Ingrid Pakats /

First, try setting over the plastic bottle over the soda can to see how far up the gutter goes. Adjust it accordingly if it is not to your desired height.

Once satisfied with the gutter height, fill up the soda can with seawater and then set up the plastic bottle over it again.

Step 5. Set Up for Evaporation

Once everything is to your liking and in place, position the set up such that it is exposed to the most sun possible. This will fasten the evaporation process, which will mean you get drinkable water faster.

Step 6. Collect Drinkable Water In the Gutter

At this point, you cannot hasten the evaporation process. Therefore, allow the gutter to fill up three-quarter way with the condensed water, take a drink and then repeat the process.

Take advantage of the hot sun during the day and condense as much sew water as you can. This will, however, work if you have more bottles where you can store the collected water.

Here’s an infographic guide. Don’t forget to download, save, or share this handy infographic for reference:

How to use a Plastic Bottle to make Seawater Drinkable
There you go, preppers. Drinking seawater is never an option to avoid harming your kidneys and further dehydration. Therefore, knowing how to make the seawater drinkable is a survival skill that makes the difference between life and death as you wait for rescue.

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