A Gallon of Water Shower

Have you ever not had hot water one morning and wanted to take a shower? All you need to do is heat up a 1/2 gallon of water in a good sized pot or tea kettle. You need an empty and clean one gallon milk jug with the type of lid that screws on and not snaps on.


Heat up an ordinary sized nail by holding it with pliers over your stove element, gas stove or wood stove fire. I put seven holes in the lid by poking through with the heated nail. Six around the perimeter but not close to the threads and one in the center. If you have only a really small nail than a few more holes will be needed. The most important thing is that you have to fill your gallon milk jug 1/2 full with cold water first. Then fill up the rest with your really hot water.

Now the best method is the "Navy Shower Method". By tipping the jug, wet your hair first and then shampoo. Leave shampoo in hair and wet the rest of your body by repeatedly tipping the jug (to let air in so it will release the water). Now with a bar of soap and a wet rag work a good lather up and scrub yourself well.

Now with the remainder of the water in the jug (which should still have 2/3 left), start by rinsing your hair first. Keep rinsing with the remainder of the water to completely rinse off. Every time I have been able to take a complete shower with one gallon of hot water and felt very clean.

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January 23, 20090 found this helpful

This is a great idea for a shower! Here in hurricane country (and also while tent camping) this would prove to be a good idea to keep in mind. I've read that you can also paint a plastic milk jug black, set it in the sun for most of the day, and it will be good and hot for that much needed shower later in the day.


Thanks for sharing your tip!

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By Happyhelper (Guest Post)
February 28, 20090 found this helpful

This sounds like a great way to conserve our natural resources! You have encouraged me!

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November 16, 20090 found this helpful

Thanks for all the wonderful ideas; I'll be trying them. Here, due to the heavily mineraled 'n orange water, I stopped using the hot water heater. About a gallon of water is heated in the microwave oven. Then it sits on the side of the tub and mixed w/cold tap water; using a qt-sized container (from recycled yogurt or cottage cheese), water is slowly poured over hair then the rest.


Used is a 2-n-1 shampoo for dry hair, which rinses off quickly. If the well is running 'fine' a wash cloth is used; if it's sluggish, it's not and less water is used, from 1-3 gal.

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February 18, 20140 found this helpful

What really good ideas! My problem is that the water always changes quickly from hot to freezing cold, then when I turn it back to hot it gets suddenly "burning" hot, then I turn it back to try to make it less hot and it goes straight to freezing cold again, and so on and on through my whole miserable shower. I'm going to start right away using a big plastic jug with hot (but not burning hot) water in it to get my hair washed to begin with, then to wash the rest of me. I'll have a second jug of hot water ready for the rinsing. It has to work better than what I have to go through now. It can't possibly be worse!


I do already fill up a 1-gallon plastic jug with water until it gets hot before I start my shower, and I save that water to use for other purposes.

I recommend, by the way, for older people (like myself) to get a short plastic stepladder with a seat to put in the tub to comfortably sit on while taking a shower. The stepladder I have is inexpensive, and it works great if you turn it around so the steps are toward the back of the tub, giving you plenty of leg room in front of the faucet. I fold up a hand towel to put on the "seat" of the ladder, to make it more comfortable. This particular ladder is apparently only sold at Home Depot, and at this time it's $9.97. (If you get one and don't like it for this purpose, you can always use it as a handy ladder in the house!) It's called "Easy Reach 2-Step Project Stool." Here's the URL, so you can take a look:


Thanks so much for the ideas!

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