Monday, June 17, 2024
HomeSHTF6 Methods to Use IBC Totes on a Homestead

6 Methods to Use IBC Totes on a Homestead

I’m seeing IBC totes sitting round homesteads and houses increasingly more. Persons are discovering the numerous makes use of these totes have. I’ve used two of them on my property for years, and I can attest to the truth that they’re an extremely helpful piece of kit to maintain round.

Homesteaders, preppers, and even pastime gardeners can profit from having a couple of IBC totes. How precisely can they be used? Following are a number of the methods I’ve used these totes and the methods I’ve seen others use them.

#1 – Watering Animals

We just lately skilled an influence outage of two days, and although we had been high quality, I did should resort to a few of my saved water in the home to maintain the chickens, canine, cat, honeybees, pig, and goats blissful. It was nerve wracking realizing that if the outage had been any longer than these two days, I might have needed to begin getting actually artistic actually quick if I needed all of my animals to have the ability to drink. I ought to have accomplished a greater job at calculating my water wants.

one of my IBC totes used for watering animals

After the outage, I hooked one in all my IBC totes up as a rain catchment system to my hen coop roof. Each time it rains, it fills the tank. With a full tank, no electrical energy, and 0 rain in any way, I may most likely get this water to final for fairly shut to 2 weeks (with out the pig).

That’s a reasonably spectacular buffer time to offer you and your homestead time to determine what you’ll want to do as soon as the ability goes out.

#2 – Watering a Backyard

Until you reside within the suburbs, I’ve seldom seen a backyard that was inside easy accessibility of a backyard hose. Even you probably have a backyard near a backyard hose, if you’re on municipal water, you’re paying each time you flip the hose on. If you’re pulling water from a nicely, you might be depleting your floor water. That’s high quality you probably have loads of water and there may be not a drought, but when a drought strikes (the identical time your backyard desperately wants water), do you need to deplete your groundwater additional? Oftentimes, folks the place I’m at should resort to rain barrels to maintain their gardens watered, or they simply let nature do its factor.

I’ve two backyard beds: one {that a} collection of hoses can handle to achieve, and one other manner down on the backside of the hill that will take me a 401k funding in hoses to achieve. Whereas I don’t thoughts hauling water all the way down to the decrease backyard, the inconvenience of it makes it in order that decrease backyard by no means does in addition to the higher one does.

That is one thing that I’ve contemplated fairly a bit: ought to I arrange extra IBC totes with rainwater catchment methods, and place them down by the decrease backyard?

If you are able to do this at your home, not solely will you produce extra in your backyard, however you’ll save your self a variety of time and vitality besides.

#3 – Enhance Homestead Effectivity

One of many issues that Joel Salatin actually taught me is that the farmer must at all times preserve each palms full. Don’t stroll all the way down to the backyard with just one bucket in your palms when you may simply carry two. Time is cash, and the identical precept applies to farmers. The extra you will get accomplished when you’re awake, the extra environment friendly your homestead will run.

Reasonably than having to run round your homestead backwards and forwards with buckets of water in all places, consider the time and vitality that could possibly be saved by protecting what you want as near the place you want it as attainable.

Right here is my favourite Joel Salatin e book:

How are you going to preserve your water as near the place it must be (your backyard or animals) as attainable? IBC totes could be the reply.

#4 – Improvised Animal Shelter

I got here throughout a second IBC tote by way of a pal of mine. I traded some firewood for it after which dragged this new-to-me IBC tote all the way down to the place I preserve my pig, with the intentions of doing the identical factor I’d accomplished for my chickens – organising a gutter-fed rain barrel.

I by no means obtained round to it.

A collection of unhealthy rainstorms did give me an concept although after my goats weren’t in a position to get into shelter in time. I made an advert hoc paddock shelter for the little guys. I took my angle grinder and minimize out a sq. of the metallic grid surrounding the tote, after which used the angle grinder to chop a giant sq. via the plastic container.

Voila! An on the spot animal shelter!

Improvised shelter using IBC totes
Beware: free vary chickens will scratch out all of your straw.

It really works nice, and it’s pretty mild as nicely. The child goats specifically liked it. All it’s important to do is toss a bit of little bit of straw into the underside and also you’ve obtained a pleasant, comfortable paddock shelter to your goats. It does appear to work higher for goats and sheep although. Each time the pig was within the paddock with this, she completely refused to enter it.

#5 – Goat or Sheep Transport

I’ve by no means used IBC totes for this function, however a pal of mine has. They really gave me the thought for the improvised shelter talked about above. The pal’s daughter was concerned in FFA and wanted to get some sheep to a contest. The dad didn’t have any sort of horse trailer or something of the like although.

What he had was a pickup truck and an IBC tote. He used an angle grinder to chop out a sq. of the metallic grid (as I did), however then he went a step additional by eradicating the complete internal plastic tank. Whether or not that’s really obligatory or not is as much as you, however the finish consequence was a pleasant crate to take the lambs to the present.

The sq. piece of metallic which was minimize out was put aside and tied again into place as a makeshift door.

#6 – Water Storage for the Household

Whereas I believe there are a few caveats that have to be made right here, you may simply arrange one in all these large barrels as a supply of water storage to your family. Let’s say you set this up outdoors hooked as much as one in all your gutters as a type of water assortment.

Positive, it may be used to water your vegetation, however your secret purpose of this arrange is to maintain your loved ones in water post-disaster. Word: you’ll want to make it possible for your water is clear earlier than you drink it. Plan to filter it earlier than consuming it! The opposite manner you should utilize saved water in IBC totes, without having to filter the water, is to make use of it as grey water, washing your physique, flushing a bathroom, and many others. This is able to make it easier to protect your saved water for extra vital makes use of – ingesting and cooking.

If you’re utilizing an IBC tote for this function, and even water for animals, I might extremely suggest shopping for a canopy for one to guard the water from the solar and restrict the expansion of algae.

5 Locations to Purchase IBC Totes

Now that you understand how nice IBC totes could be, you’re most likely questioning the place you could find one. I’ve appeared round for this stuff for years, and right here is the place I’ve discovered to be one of the best locations to search for these large containers…


Craigslist might be the right location to start out your searching for an IBC tote. It’s the place I bought my first one. I’ve discovered that $100 is a reasonably normal value right here.

I don’t even keep in mind what I used to be initially on the lookout for (was it that taxidermy squirrel assortment?), however after I noticed one I knew it could be nice for protecting my animals watered ought to the ability exit at our home for an prolonged time period.

Word: by no means buy an IBC tote that was beforehand used to haul poisonous chemical compounds. I made positive that all of mine I ever acquired had a meals historical past, not a pesticide historical past or another type of industrial use that will doubtlessly go away harmful residue on the innards. To be completely secure, it is best to most likely purchase a brand new IBC tote for those who intend to make use of one to gather water for human use.


You may actually discover absolutely anything on Amazon – IBC totes included. You’re going to want a very huge mailbox, and the UPS man goes to hate you, however these can be found for buy on-line via Amazon.

They may value you extra on Amazon, however… that’s the value you pay for comfort.

Residence Enchancment Shops

I’ve really seen these on the market at dwelling enchancment shops earlier than, although it appears to be hit and miss. In the event you sort of like your mailman, and don’t need your mail to mysteriously begin to go lacking, maybe it is best to take a look at choosing up one in all these containers from right here slightly than Amazon.

Meals Factories

That is really the place one in all my tanks originated. It had beforehand been used to move a sugar answer to a meals manufacturing unit for the creation of some sort of processed meals. The farmer (whom I purchased it from) purchased it from the manufacturing unit, rinsed it out very well, after which used it to water his cows.

In the event you dwell close to a manufacturing unit recognized for producing some sort of meals, this most actually could also be one thing to think about. They’re sure to have a number of of those simply hanging round out again that they’d be more than pleased to eliminate. Determining who to get into contact with about taking a few of them off the manufacturing unit’s palms can be the tough half.

IBC Tote Equipment

There are a couple of different items of substances you’re going to should have if you wish to make your setup with these work.

A Cowl

As I beforehand talked about, for those who’re going to frequently be utilizing your container for water storage, it is a superb product to spend money on. It retains algae from blooming in your container. You may DIY this with a giant tarp from Harbor Freight and a few straps, however this is among the quicker, simpler, and prettier technique of doing it.

A Hose Adapter

You will need to have one in all these. There’s no manner round it. If you will arrange one in all these big water containers for water assortment, you’re going to be completely unsuccessful until you’ve connected one in all these. They allow you to hook up a normal backyard hose in an effort to then direct the water wherever you need it to go.



  • PLEASE Fastidiously Examine your Valve earlier than ordering… IF You HAVE a Huge CONCAVE Groove in your Valve behind the threads this adapter MAY NOT match in your valve and you shouldn’t attempt to use the threads, as a result of they’re for a mud cap.

IBC tote hose adapter
My IBC tote hose adapter

What Concerning the Prime?

In the event you’re aiming to make use of one in all these containers for rainwater assortment, a quite common query is what it is best to do to funnel the water into the highest. Right here’s the tactic I take advantage of. On the high of my container was a lid with a gap within the high of it. The lid screwed onto the container, making this the right base for my intentions.

IBC tote cover
The lid cowl

I grabbed a small piece of {hardware} fabric, held it over the opening, after which screwed the highest again on high of it. I then directed the rainwater from my gutter in direction of this opening with a versatile spout. The {hardware} fabric helps to filter out as a lot grime as attainable and the versatile spout made it in order that I didn’t should work with any pain-in-the-butt guttering.

IBC tote modifications

One Different Modification

I drilled in an overflow valve. I hadn’t accomplished this initially, and because the container was overflowing as a result of heavy rain, all of the water was seeping proper into the hen coop. My overflow valve helped to direct that water away as soon as the container crammed up. Initially, I really had this overflow filling up one other gigantic water container.

I additionally wish to level out that I don’t preserve my tank full throughout the winter. It will get loads chilly sufficient to freeze that whole tank strong the place I dwell, and I’ve no intentions of breaking my setup just because I didn’t let my water out when pre-winter.

It’s a tradeoff and calculated threat on my half which I’m prepared to take although. Whether or not it’s a good suggestion or not, who is aware of. However it’s what I do.

All the way down to the Final Drop

IBC totes have many makes use of for the homestead or prepper, they usually’re simple to acquire. Whether or not you’re seeking to enhance your effectivity, higher home your animals, or just are on the lookout for a way of water storage, these tanks can show to be of nice profit in quite a lot of methods.

What are your ideas although? Are there different elements to think about right here that we missed? Are there different makes use of that you can imagine for these tanks? Tell us within the feedback!


Most Popular