How to Make Homemade Chlorine Bleach

by Erich

One of the main components that you’ll want to have around the house (or apartment) during a SHTF situation is chlorine bleach. Not only can it be used for cleaning water (although boiling is hands down more effective and healthier) it is excellent for keeping things sanitary.

Unfortunately, the average shelf life of liquid bleach (being stored between 50 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit) is around 6 months. After that, bleach will lose 20% of it’s strength at around the year mark and then 20% each year after that. So if you’re not vigilant about keeping it rotated, chances are when you need it for disinfecting water or to keep things clean you’ll be fresh out of bleach and luck.

There is a better option. What if you could make your own fresh chlorine bleach that could be used for both keeping things sanitary and will disinfect water? Here’s how:

How to Make Chlorine Bleach

Before we go into how to make it, I just wanted to point out the differences between this homemade chlorine bleach and your standard household Chlorox variety.

First off, liquid chlorine bleach is a solution made from mostly water and 3-6% Sodium Hypochlorite. This homemade variety is made from Calcium Hypochlorite which you can easily find as “pool shock” at your pool-supplier store or Walmart. Both are used throughout the world for water purification and are the main chemicals in standard household cleaning products.

The Benefit of Calcium Hypochlorite

The major benefit of using Calcium Hypochlorite over Sodium Hypochlorite is shelf life. Calcium Hypochlorite (pool shock) is sold in a solid granular form and has a 10 year shelf life when stored in a cool, dark place. This will easily meet your long-term storage needs.

The other benefit is the amount of available chlorine. The concentration of chlorine is much higher with Calcium Hypochlorite. For example, a small 1-pound bag of calcium hypochlorite can disinfect up to 10,000 gallons of drinking water. That’s around 5 gallons/day for one person for 5 1/2 years! Not bad for only 1 lb of granules.

Making Chlorine Bleach

To make a chlorine bleach solution using calcium hypochlorite, here are some formulas I got from the Army Technical Bulletin entitled, “SANITARY CONTROL AND SURVEILLANCE OF FIELD WATER SUPPLIES” (TB MED 577).

From the Army manual, to make a concentrated chlorine solution that you can use for disinfecting water (or to be used in maintaining a clean and sanitary living environment), you’ll want to use calcium hypochlorite that has around 70% available chlorine.

If you’re buying pool shock, on the back of the bag it will tell you what percentage of chlorine is available. The one I use is called “Zappit 73 Pool Shock, it is pure calcium hyphochlorite that contains up to 73% available chlorine and sells for around $5 for a 1lb bag.

To make the homemade chlorine bleach solution, you’ll need to do the following:

  • Mix 2 level Tablespoons of Calcium Hypochlorite to 3 cups of water.

After you’ve made your stock of chlorine solution, you’ll want to follow the formula from the Army Technical Bulletin in determining how much of the above stock chlorine solution you’ll need for your desired number of gallons of water to be disinfected. *Note: I’ve updated the formula to calculate the same concentration that household bleach has. If you have questions, fire me an email and I’ll be more than happy to explain the math.

mL of stock chlorine required = (desired concentration (mg/L)*number of gallons to be treated)/18.12

The desired concentration refers to how much chlorine in mg/L you want the disinfected water to have. A recommended amount is 7 mg/L of concentration. This equates to adding 8 drops of household liquid bleach to 1 gallon of water (the recommended amount when disinfecting water with household bleach).

Given these amounts, if you wanted to disinfect 1 gallon of water with the homemade chlorine solution, the formula would be as follows:


This equates to .38mL or 8 drops of the concentrated solution per gallon of water. Just like normal household bleach!

So the 3 step process is as follows:

  1. Place 8 drops of homemade chlorine bleach in 1 gallon of water
  2. Let stand for 30 min
  3. If water is still cloudy, repeat steps until clear; otherwise it is ready to drink

Keep in mind, that once the homemade chlorine bleach is made it will follow the same shelf-life limitations as standard household liquid bleach. So be sure to only make amounts you will be using within that time frame.

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Comment by Kristina
2011-06-21 18:56:18

Men who know how to make bleach are hot. If they know how to clean with it, even better.

Comment by Matt in Oklahoma
2011-06-21 20:09:18

Have you ever drank the water when using this method or any pool shock method?

Comment by Matt in Oklahoma
2011-06-21 20:18:36

No that statement was HOT! Better hang on EJ looks like you have a following!

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2011-06-22 20:33:34

Man, who would’ve known..?


Yes I have drank water using both liquid chlorine bleach (the store bought kind) as well as the homemade variety using calcium hypochlorite for a disinfectant. Was there a specific question you had in mind?

Comment by Matt in Oklahoma
2011-06-23 16:07:29

I use the liquid bleach.
I have just never met anyone who has made the cholrine from the pool shock and actully drank it. I hear alot of things with survivalist touting it but no one seems to actually do it. I wonder what the “inert” ingrediants are and what they do. I have actually not stored it because of this, I have some because we have a small cheapie pool but I have not considered it a part of my serious prepartions because no one seemed to actually use it to include the FEMA folks who put out a bulletin a long time ago about it.
I’m pretty picky about using and storing stuff for my survival. I run all my stuff thru pretty rigorous testing first.

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2011-06-23 20:23:53

Hey Matt,

I’m there with ya man. I am very adamant about researching and testing all my survival plans as well.

As for your great question about safety. Here is the MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) for one of the pool shocks I use (i assume it’s the same for most other calcium hypochlorite flakes as well but it’s best to double check your brand):

If you read toward the bottom of the MSDS there’s a section entitled: 16. Other Information. In that you’ll see the following:

“Other Information:
NSF Drinking Water Treatment Chemicals Listing – PPG calcium hypochlorite is certified for maximum use at 14 mg/L under NSF/ANSI Standard 60.”

Since I use the formula in my post above (which is 7mg/L of chlorine), I’m well within safety limits.

Great questions though and I appreciate you keeping me honest. I hope this changes your mind for using pool shock.

Also be aware that I store this mostly for keeping my living space sanitary during a SHTF scenario and will be using boiling and water filtration as my primary purification method. Chlorine for water drinking is a back up.

Comment by DPM
2011-06-23 18:40:08

Have you ever been swimming in a chlorinated pool? Chances are you drank some water treated with calcium hypochlorite then – it’s hard to avoid ingesting at least a little water when swimming. Plus, you need to weigh the benefits relative to the risks. At some point your only choice may be drinking from a tainted water supply or using a little pool-shock treatment to clean it up. It’s pretty clear which is the more risky choice.

One question about storing pool-shock -anybody have a safe way to do it? I’m leery of storing it indoors, even someplace where it’s not likely to get wet.

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2011-06-23 20:28:52


You are correct in being cautious about pool shock since it is an oxidizer. Referencing the MSDS for Zappit 73, it details storage considerations:

Store in a cool, dry, well-ventilated place. Keep in original container. Keep container closed when not in use. Keep away from heat, sparks, flames, direct sunlight, and other sources of heat, including lighted tobacco products. Use only a clean (new, if possible), dry scoop made of metal or plastic each time product is taken from the container. Do not add this product to any dispensing device containing remnants of any other product. Such use may cause violent reaction leading to fire or explosion. Add this product only to water. Never add water to product. Always add the product to large quantities of water. May cause fire or explosion if mixed with other chemicals. Fire may result if contaminated with acids, organic materials and other easily combustible materials such as oil, kerosene, gasoline, paint products wood and paper. Do not reuse container. Residual material remaining in empty container can react to cause fire. Thoroughly flush empty container with water then destroy by placing in trash collection. Do not contaminate water, food, or feed by storage or disposal of this product.”

Comment by Matt in Oklahoma
2011-06-24 08:11:02

DPM, Yep been swimming, swallowed some. I can say the same for the farm ponds, rivers, lakes and other waterways to include ones overseas that I trained and Soldiered in. Swallowing it and drinking it are 2 different things. Most didnt hurt me, none killed me but one of those “swallows” during waterborne training put me out for 3 days too while my guts flowed out. I lost one of my Soldiers to bacterial menegitus too from a bad water source.
Swallowing aint the same and i’m trying to weight out the advantages/disadvantages over just boiling the water or filtering it with the other sources I store and adding other safer chemicals like ones I carry from aquamire in my GMHB and BOB. I know the pool shock is cheap and does a gazillion gallons but EJ is the first guy I have ever heard that has actually drank the water used from pool shock from literally thousands of “survivalist” that are on forums. I ask all of them, nothing personal here, don’t take my word for it though, just type in “Matt in Oklahoma” along with “pool shock” where you find me and read away. Not one single “yes” answer to any of my posts asking this.
I’m not trying to sharpshoot no one, just researching because there are alot of mall commandos out here that think they have done stuff to include the ones that put out them bulletins from FEMA and State Emergency Sources that have never tried pool shock and to include the guys who built the “desert solar still” in the Army Survival Manual that has never worked other than in theory. Now some have made there way to tv too.
I agree with your risky choice statement however until I see clear methods this one isnt going to be a part of my preparations. I use, try and test everything because it is my responsibility to do this for my family. It’s a good article and I copied and pasted it into my digital library and have put it on my list of “to try things”. If SHTF happened I would go with it as it seems that it has been given it alot of thought.
The shock I store for the pool is in the garage away from anything it can corrode with the vapors and any accidental spillage and in a cardboard box so it can “breathe”.

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2011-06-24 09:26:23

Hey Matt,

I’m not sure if you caught the comment above (under the one where you mention “I’m pretty picky about using and storing stuff for my survival. I run all my stuff thru pretty rigorous testing first.”). In it I have a link to the MSDS sheet for the pool shock that states it is safe for drinking water treatment that I thought you might find interesting and might change your mind.

Thanks for the great comments.

Comment by Matt in Oklahoma
2011-06-24 19:45:03

Thanks, I’m gonna give it a whirl and test it soon.

Comment by David Nash
2011-06-25 10:34:55

I have drank some, but just as a test. Every 6 months I rotate my stock, and when trying to get the ratio’s right I drank a little out of each 5 gallon can. The idea is to have a LITTLE chlorine taste – like your tap water, but not a strong flavor. You can reduce the amount of chlorine in the water by aerating it if you have to use it before the majority of the chlorine dissipates out. (YMMV)

2011-06-25 13:45:23

That’s correct.

Comment by Don
2011-06-26 08:44:39

I have (78%) calcium hypochlorite sold by a pool store in a 17 lb container. How much must be added to a gallon of water to get a solution equal to a gallon of bleach sold off the walmart shelf? I’m not talking about just disinfecting water and I know what they sell is not a full gallon. I want to treat the result of the mixture as though it was off the shelf. What’s the rate I use?

2011-07-10 22:09:57

Hey Don,

Sorry for the late reply on this. 10 tablespoons is close and would definitely work as a concentrated solution for cleaning and disinfecting water, but if you want exact numbers, the equation is as follows:

grams calcium hypochlorite = (desired mg/L chlorine x gallons to be treated x 3.785 L/gal)/(1,000 mg/mL x (%chlorine in HTH/100)

Given this equation if you figure the standard household bleach contains a 5% or 50,000 mg/L chlorine solution, it would be the following:

(50000 x 1 x 3.785)/(1000 x .78) = 242 grams of your calcium hypochlorite per gallon of water would make an equivalent amount as one gallon of household bleach.

Since this is a weight (we’re dealing with solids here) and not volume, it’s best to use a kitchen scale (digital being ideal). At that point if you want exact tablespoons you’ll need to figure how much grams of your calcium hypochlorite would fit in a level tablespoon. Then you can have that as your personal formula for future reference.

Hope that helps.

Comment by Don
2011-07-08 09:02:58

about 10 tablespoons?

Comment by Jason
2011-07-09 21:17:00

This is a little more serious than I like to get into. I am not a “survivalist” as was mentioned in an above comment, I am into woodcraft, as what most would call the “hillbillies” would refer to it as. But I DO know, as you’ve said, boiling water is the way to go, and of course removing the visible stuff is a huge help. Even though all this “end of the world”, no government or luxuries and all that isn’t my cup of tea, I do like the water subject. So here’s my point, now I’m done talking about myself. I have a healthy group of hermit crabs for pets, but before buying them was making sure Fort Wayne doesn’t have fluoride in the water and if it did, how to remove it. I read a few interesting articles that stated that boiling fluoride water actually concentrates it. Well, that’s not very heartening when you think about it, in terms of survival, woodcraft or just plain I’m thirsty and I’m in the middle of nowhere. What kind of crap is in the water that actually concentrates when boiled that require that extra oomph from the bleach?

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2011-07-10 22:33:59

Hey Jason,

You are correct in that boiling water will only concentrate the flouride concentration (since you are removing water). While boiling is an excellent form of water purification, it does not remove chemical additives or pollutants. Neither does bleach. It is however ideal for killing off biological contaminants such as cryptosporidium, giardia, and so forth.

If you are concerned with chemical impurities then you’ll need to use an effective chemical filter such as the Berkey filters which will not only filter out biological contaminants but chemical as well (they also sell filter “extensions” that filter out flouride and arsenic).

If you’re “woodcrafting” it, then the only other option is distillation (just think of the solar still). Just pour some of your water that you want purified around and in your still and with time and sunlight you will have distilled water without the chemicals.

Comment by Jason
2011-07-11 21:00:07

Okay, that’s simple enough. Described in those words, you’ve made it seem so simple I feel dumb XD Of course the living organisms die in excess heat! Oh well, we all have stupid days. Thanks, yet again.

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2012-01-23 03:56:09

Hi Frank,

The 242 (~1/2 lb) grams is specific to the commentor’s %concentrate of Calcium Hypochlorite. Keep in mind this is to make 1 gallon of concentrated Bleach solution. In other words, you wouldn’t be drinking this solution.

What’s the % of calcium hypochlorite that you have?

Comment by Templar
2011-09-06 18:14:39

I have been researching this extensively and while I can’t find Trichloro-s-trianzinetrione being used as a bleach agent or a sanitizing agent, I’m curious how the calculations work for making bleach and sanitizing water when the Chlorine content of the tabs is 90%.

I found that Chlor Floc uses dichloro-s-triazinetrione.

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated as I understand Trichloro has a great shelf life.

Comment by HM2(FMF)
2011-10-30 23:48:16

Just a word from an old marine corpsman… When in the field, medical handles water sanitation. S.OP. was the treatment of the ‘water bulls’ (I think they were like 250 gal) with granular calcium hypochlorite. Made it into a slurry in a canteen cup, poured into the top, tested later for chlorine. Drank lots of it. If too much was used, tends to give diarrhea, but obviously, if the 1st MarDiv used it… I would feel more comfortable using lab grade (technical, or even reagent grade) as opposed to pool shock… Pass on the undefined inert ingredients…

This stuff is a really powerful oxidant. Contact with greases and oils is to be avoided. Unless you had some say Vaseline, and mixed some Ca(ClO)2 in, and utilized the resultant fire… YMMV…

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2011-10-31 08:26:21


Thanks for the great words of wisdom.

– Erich

Comment by Alex
2012-01-08 14:34:59

This article and discussion has been fantastic. I’ve really gained a lot of knowledge including the formula posted here for determining amount of calcium hypochlorite needed. Many water filter systems use a charcoal filter to filter out chemicals. I’m wondering if this also filters out fluoride?

In terms of distillation, there have been tests done which surprisingly prove that chemicals are NOT filtered out of the water post distillation. There are some cases where distillation needs to be done multiple times to ensure chemicals don’t still remain. Here is a simple youtube video experiment showing this:

Also I thought I would help add value here by showing how to actually make bleach from scratch if you don’t already have pool shock. I have never tried this, but think it could be very useful and it appears to be very simple with non-lab equip:

I look forward to any positive responses.


Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2012-01-15 19:35:47

Very nice link Alex. Thanks! I’ll definitely be trying this one out.

Comment by frank
2012-01-21 12:08:14

Oh, man, are you sure it is 242 grams per gal.? I want to start mixing my own instead of buying it pre-mixed. I use a lot before painting. Thank you. ps… you dudes are very smart. Frank.

Comment by frank
2012-01-29 19:03:23

Yes, I know. To drink that mix would be to end my needs for anything, lol! About 65% available chlorine mostly. Plain old pool shock. There are other products such as sodium dichloro-5-triazinetrone, that is pool shock and has a algaecide mixed in it as well. If the algaecides would be in this pool shock for long term effect, it most likely isn’t what I would be looking for for pre-painting. Because I use this before painting, it needs to kill anything that will interfere with my paints ability to stick to the surface I am painting. So, my question is, would calcium hypochlorite or the other types be better for pre-painting? And if the 242 grams per gallon of fresh water is the right mixture, this is what I will use. I was kind-of taken by the 1/2 lbs per gallon. I didn’t expect it to be that much. Hey, thank you so much by the way. I was looking in my e-mail for your answer, but it never did come in. I re-found this site after losing it. Sincerely, Frank.

Comment by BigUglyOne
2012-01-30 05:57:48

Here’s a question; How many grams (or any other unit of measure) of dry pool shock per gallon of water would it take to sanitize that gallon of water, skipping the whole “make bleach first, then add to water to sanitize” ?? Skipping the middleman, as it were.

Comment by frank
2012-02-08 10:40:51


Comment by Chris
2012-03-01 07:06:35

I bought the stuff from Wal-Mart and it’s not as strong in Chlorine 48.6% as the stuff you are talking about. So I’ll try again and buy the stronger versions, since you have all the measurements already mentioned here.

Now what I’d like to know is when I mix this up based on about 10 Tablespoons per gallon of water, is will this work just like Clorox bleach when washing white cloths?

I make my own laundry detergent and various other household things at a fraction of what it would cost to buy it in the store. I’d also like to make my own bleach, no more than a gallon at a time since it does start loosing strength over time. There will also be times when I’ll go through a lot of bleach, such as cleaning my drive way and the out side of my house, so I’d love to be able to do it this way.

Please get back with me and let me know and I’ll go get the stronger stuff and take back this Wal-Mart version.

2012-03-01 08:05:29

Hi Chris,

If you’re making the stock chlorine solution per the directions above (using pool shock that has around 70% available chlorine) it should yield you the same amount of concentrate that standard household bleach has.

I’ve never used it to wash clothes but I would assume that it would perform the same way (not sure if the sodium vs. calcium hypochlorite would have any affect on clothing) since the amount of chlorine in the solution is the same.

I’d love for you to try it out and let us know how it turns out!

Comment by Chris
2012-03-01 17:05:10

Good deal, I’m going to give this a try. I will tell you that the people at the pool supply store are clueless about this. I went by there yesterday and ask them about it and the guy treated me like I was missing a few marbles.

I do know if you get the chlorine to strong in a swimming pool that it will take the color out of your clothes. So that in itself tells me this will work. I also know if you happen to splash Clorox on your clothing it will take the color out as well as with some clothing it will eat a hole in it. That being said it will be very important to not get this misture to strong and to never pour any type of bleach straight on any clothing.

Off to the store to get this right this time and in a few days after I’ve washed the whites I’ll let you know how it turns out.

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2012-03-01 17:40:33

Look forward to your updates!

Comment by Chris
2012-03-02 05:18:21

I now can’t find the Zappit 73 or any thing close to it in the town that I live in.

I then went online and now I’m totally confused. Not sure which of these products I do need.

Super Zappit 73 – Quick Dissolve comes in 1 pound bags
Zappit Shock 73 – Smallest is a 25 pound bucket
Super Zappit Shock 73 – Comes in a 25 pound bucket

Needless to say the bottom two are way more than I want to order at one time, until I’m sure of what I’m doing. From what I’ve read this stuff has a shelf life of 10 years as long as it is stored properly. so if this does what I need it to do then 25 pounds would be okay afterwards, but don’t want to order that much to begin with.

I also located another brand via ebay that claims to be 73 percent and I can order as little as six 1 pound bags of it for 22 dollars.

So if you can tell me which one of these Zappit’s I need, that would be much appreciated as it has got me all confused.

By the way I clicked on the link in the Zappit you have listed above and that place doesn’t have it listed any longer.

Thanks for you help and hopefully we’ll get this figured out.

Comment by frank
2012-03-15 23:49:51

Soduim hypochlorite is what most household bleach is made from I have been told. 5-6% in fact. And all I can find is the calcium pool shock. What the following is I haven’t a clue! Question…. does anyone know what the difference is? ….. Sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione 63% copper 0.26% other ingredients 36%. Sodium is better? Question… does anyone know where I can get the sodium hypochloride pool shock, if there is such a thing? I went to a chemical company supplier, but they will not sell to me. Thanks. Frank.

2012-04-02 23:14:32

Sodium hypochlorite is a very unstable solid that is not typically sold OTC due to the dangers inherent in it.

Regarding purifying water, there really is no one better than the other since it’s the available chlorine (not the sodium or calcium) that does the purifying. As far as calcium hypochlorite goes, you probably have drunk a bunch of it in your water already in your lifetime since many areas of the U.S. use it to purify local tap water.

Comment by Dale
2012-03-18 19:20:23

By using your calculations, it appears you only need about 134 ounces of your homemade bleach to sanitize 10,000 gallons of water. That is just over 1gallon of homemade bleach. Are my calculations wrong? Thanks for the help.

Comment by Dale
2012-04-02 20:52:54

It appears that by my calculations 2/3 of a cup of 73% calcium hypochlorite (pool shock) granules will make 1gallon of your homemade bleach. That is 10 2/3 tablespoons of 73% calcium hypochlorite granules. Please let me know if this is correct as I am going to sanitize several hundred gallons of RO water made for mobile car washing-a good cheap source of very low dissolved solids water (about 8 ppm) that once sanitized with homemade bleach can be filtered through my Berkey filters, a cheap carbon filter that removes chlorine, or my Zero water pitcher to make fairly pure water. Appreciate the help.

2012-04-02 23:10:02

Hi Dale,

Yes, 10.7 Tablespoons (around 2/3 cup) of ~70% calcium hypochlorite will make a gallon of bleach.

By the way, what is RO water (reverse osmosis?)?

Comment by Casey
2012-05-07 15:01:14

What are the negative effects of Calcium Hypochlorite on the environment? Are there biodegradable alternatives?

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2012-05-08 22:19:44

I’m not sure there is an environmental impact since it is used throughout our nation (U.S) and abroad for purifying public drinking water. The non-chemical alternative is pre-filtering and boiling.

Comment by Dale
2012-05-07 20:20:02

Yes, RO is reverse osmosis and though what I am getting is for mobile car washers and they claim not for drinking (they aren’t certified for drinking water) it is the same as any other RO water and only 8 cents a gallon. Sanitization with bleach and then filtering through any filter that removes chlorine should make it about the cleanest water you can drink. Four dollars per 50 gallons of good drinking water seems cheap enough.

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2012-05-08 22:23:09

That’s a fantastic idea Dale. Do you have a good link to one of the mobile car washers you recommend (or use)?

Comment by Joe
2012-08-04 12:34:09

I have recently purchased a 1550 gallon storage tank for storing potable water. Should this tank be sanitized before water storage? If so, I have calculations of 3.5 cups of bleach @ 5.25% hypochlorite solution per 55 gallon container and let stand for 30 min, then drain container and air dry….

For 1550 gallons = 99 cups of bleach @ 5.25% hypochlorite solution = 792 fluid ounces.

I don’t see the need in air drying since water is going to be used….

Since the container is now sanitized, then I could add water and disinfect…

I had purchased some Calcium Hypochlorite at 47.6% concentration…

Using the formula for grams hypochlorite = (50000 x 1 x 3.785) / (1000 x .476) = 397.58 grams per gallon

Since it takes 1/4 cup of bleach @5.25% solution for each 55 gallons used, then it would take 56.36 fluid ounces of bleach to disinfect 1550 gallons of water…

So given a 47.6% calcium hypochlorite concentration:

Are the calculations below correct for grams needed, of calcium hypochlorite, for 1550 gallons of water to make it potable for storage???

(56.36 oz / 128 oz) x (397.58 grams / X) = 902.958 grams of Calcium Hypochlorite.

Comment by Mr. Don
2012-08-19 14:06:13

Sorry I’m late with this: The purpose of my original question back in June of 2011 was to find a way to defeat the chlorine erosion factors associated with any brand of common bleach purchased off the shelf. I forget the the rate of decay (which the manufacturer freely gives over the phone), but it was substantial enough for me to search for a remedy to meet my needs. First of all calcium hypochlorite is stable and I think this means that in a solid form it lasts a longer time. Other forms of this product including sodium hypochlorite will not last as long. There are other reasons not to store other types of chemicals. 17 pounds as I remember was somewhere around $65 from the pool store. Probably because of the high % of chlorine. I once was able to purchase 82% from the same store. Is the ability to make 34 gallons of bleach anytime I want in the next 5 to 10 years worth a little less than 2$ per gallon? That is why I asked the original question. It may not be available to buy at any price, anywhere! Just maybe.

Comment by joe
2012-08-23 01:17:35

Formula should have read:

(128 oz / 56.36 oz) x (397.58 grams / X) = 175.06 grams of Calcium Hypochlorite.

Since, 28 grams = 1 oz

175.06 / 28 = 6.25 oz. of Calcium Hypochlorite.

Could anyone verify if the equations and results are correct for potable water storage of 1550 gallons?

Comment by Rich
2012-09-05 12:36:32

I contribute to the local animal shelter ( no kill environment ) and one of their needs is bleach! They go through a lot of it and are always asking people to contribute (1) bleach and (2) paper towels.

I thought if we could use the Calcium Hypochlorite to make large batches of bleach for disinfectant at the animal shelter. Any ideas on how to mix it up and in what quantities?

I can get the Zappit 73 Pool Shock from the local WalMart and start with that. Any suggestions, hints or advice would be greatly appreciated.

Rich / Gary, Indiana

Comment by Dale
2012-10-08 22:47:05

Find an RO water business that sells RO drinking water and mobile car wash RO water. They will use the same equipment for both and it is the same final product. Just ask them. They drink the mobile car wash RO water but that side of the business is not certified to sell it as drinking water. Twenty cents or eight cents a gallon-a piece of paper is the only difference.

Comment by Tactical Intelligence
2012-10-08 22:51:09


Great tip man! thanks!

Comment by emeka
2012-11-06 19:19:03

This article would be very useful to those who would like to make their own bleach at home. i actually wrote on a similar topic sometime ago check it here

Comment by lordrod
2012-11-29 07:17:05

expenditure in granulated calciun hypoclorite in stock barrels of pvc are 2 years. why you say that expenditure is 10 years?? why such a difference?????

Comment by iris
2012-12-30 12:43:09

One day I plan to purchase a solar panel to see if I can run a dehumidifier. The water in the air, polluted or not, can’t be any worse then on the earth or rivers. If I placed one close to running water, small or large, or just on the ground itself, surely, the dehumidifier will pull in the water. I noticed that the water that I do pour out from the bacement humidifier is extremely clear. Some natives have complained of the “orange/brown” tunes of their water sources. I drank river water for years most of the orange is from clay/rust sources. However, there is the omeba thing to consider. I hated city water to an extreme when I first started to drink it. Yuk! Water from spit, blood, feces and what have you!?! with clorine and meds added to it…rite? Let us know if any of you have had success with solar and humidifiers.

Comment by Chris
2012-12-30 16:13:11

I never received the email confirmation to subscribe and receive the E-book. I checked junk mail and it wasn’t there either. The system will not allow me to send a second request. please help with this. Thanks

Comment by Dale
2013-02-06 23:11:23

Did you find some cheap RO water?

Comment by Tony
2013-02-14 11:07:29

I am a ny state IIb-ww treatment plant water system operator . I have a ny state water license .If you look up water testing and specificly” free chlorine ” or free chlorine resduals you will see that If you have the proper free chlorine resdual you will have NO oder or taste and if you do have oder or taste you “do not have enough” “free chlorine ” or chlorine in your water! Yes it sounds wrong but look it up ! And if you put enough chlorine in your water to have a taste or oder beyond that you will be drinking chlorine and not water . If 8 drops of cl2 in 1 gallon of water has a smell then add one more drop because the chlorine wasn’t enough to react with the contaminates in the water. But if the water is good, you won’t smell or taste the cl2 .But like I have stated, LOOK IT UP ! “Dont” take my word for it .When a pool is at the right cl2 level you dont smell cl2 , Its when you smell cl2 you dont have enough cl2 in your pool !

Comment by Westchem
2013-02-16 06:39:48

Excellent article! Bleach refers to number of chemicals which remove color, whiten or disinfect by oxidation. Chlorine based bleach can be easily prepared at homes. They are useful for cleaning purposes.
Chemical Manufacturers

Comment by anonymous
2013-04-15 13:12:20

i don’t mean to challenge the content of this discussion but just really want to know the real deal:
It seems that the calculations formula out in the internet are all inconsistent. Most of what i read are saying: to make 2 gallons of bleach, use 1 teaspoon of calcium hypoclorite granules. (to me, that’s like saying to make 1 gallon of bleach, use about half a teaspoon)

The instruction here says about 10 tablespoons of the granule to make 1 gallon bleach.

The discrepancy is so huge that I would like to ask clarification if I got something confused.

Please help me to clarify this.

Thank you so much and great job on a very important topic.

Comment by bbrev
2013-04-24 12:27:46

Just found this forum. Want to if possible mix a calcium hypochlorite 63% or 78% if available powder in a 6 gallon hose end garden sprayer holding 30 ounces and marked in gallon divisions of powder and water to add to bottle to spray 1-6 gallons.(eg-if 1T/gallon powder required add 1 T powder and fill to 1 gallon mark with water and spray until bottle empty).
Want to spray algae to 3rd level of vinyl siding of house, let sit for awhile then rinse off.
Have determined that 1 part bleach and 3 parts water sprayed on will accomplish this, maybe with a little dish detergent added. The hose end spray bottle holds 5 oz water for each division-less water to mark if powder dissolved. Probably need to spray a few gallons of mix.
My calculations may be wrong but I thought if 5 oz water in bottle + 123 oz water added by hose sprayed 1 gallon into jug if sprayed until jar empty (5 +123 =128oz =1gal), the ratio would be 1:24 rough ratio. So I need to know how much powder per gallon to add to jar to make a 1:3 ratio and if it is possible to dissolve that much is the amount of water required. If I take the 10T per gallon, it looks like I would need 8 times the strength or 80 T powder, which seems an awful lot.
This seems long and complicated to me, and it has been 50 years since I studied or made these types of calculations, but I hoped someone here would know enopugh to tell me if it is possible to dissolve enough powder and how much in order to spray a 1:3 bleach water concentration with this sprayer.
I could mix it in a gallon tank sprayer 1 Quart:3 Quarts but that wont reach up very high.
Can anyone help me???

Comment by bbrev
2013-05-02 13:28:27

I shall try an easier one. Have Leslies Pools ‘Power Powder Plus’ pool shock 73% with 70% available chorine. I tried dissolving 2 Tablespoons in 10.6 ounces water to see what least amount water would be to dissolve a quantity of powder. But what I got was a milky liquid and after it sits a clear liquid is on top and a sediment layer on bottom. How do I get the stuff to dissolve and make a clear bleach liquid? If I use 24 ounces water will I get a clear bleach liquid of 5-6% commercial strength?

Comment by RJSoftware
2013-07-13 02:38:42

It may have weapons/poison capability also. Chlorine gas, explosive conditions, toxic. Has weapon potential. Good to keep around.


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Comment by Mitch
2014-02-11 16:17:41

Just remember, calcium hypochlorite is called calcium for a reason. It’s made from calcium instead of sodium salts and requires a stronger detergent, to soften the calcium minerals, caused by the solution..

If you don’t have a strong enough, water softener ingredient, in your detergent, yellowing can occur. I would believe, for the most part, the main effect of the whitening, would still happen though.

Also, real Chlorine Bleach contains dissolved Sodium Hydroxide. This, stabilizes, and keeps the bleach in water solution. If you don’t include a stabilizer, the bleach solution could die off, within 24 hours of being prepared.

I think your idea, could be very effective, however, it needs a few little improvements, to be fully practical.

It’d be nice, if there was a way to obtain, pure, sodium hypochlorite.

Comment by Mitch
2014-02-11 16:19:44

You need stabilizers, and you need to get rid of the calcium solution, with a good water softening agent. The white “cloudy stuff” is, just calcium carbonate, or liquefied limestone.

I wonder, if distilled water, along with Table Salt & Baking Soda, would fix this…

Comment by Mitch
2014-02-11 16:20:42

You need stabilizers, and you need to get rid of the calcium solution, with a good water softening agent. The white “cloudy stuff” is, just calcium carbonate, or liquefied limestone.

I wonder, if distilled water, along with Table Salt & Baking Soda, would fix this…

Comment by Mitch
2014-02-11 16:21:23

Dammit, I tried to post my post, right below another, comment, and it didn’t work 🙁

Comment by /yeah
2014-03-31 02:44:12

Mixing vinegar and hydrogen peroxide form a compound called Peracetic acid
I understand it is used to disinfect water and highly corrosive ?

Comment by Lauren
2014-04-29 14:46:41

LOL Amen, sister!

Comment by Robert Stein
2014-10-23 05:15:27

Thanks for the tip about using pool shock.

Question: What about having sand and charcoal around with a 55 gallon bucket. How safe would it be to filter water using multiple layers of sand and charcoal? I’ve heard people talk about it and I believe it was on a discover channel disaster reality show. Thoughts are appreciated.

Comment by RJ
2015-01-03 20:38:45

Chlorine will not kill giardia. If you suspect that giardia is a possible contaminate in your water – (rocky mountain stream water as an example due to elk and beaver carrying giardia) you will need iodine tabs to kill that off. A major source of giardia infections nationwide are public swimming pools treated with chlorine.

Comment by Erol
2015-01-13 02:07:26

Hi There thanks for the usefull article, I use sodium hypocloride to wash houses so the moss and mould can be removed. I buy the in 20 liter and the label says 150 gms./Ltr sodium hypochlorite. 4.5 gms. Sodium Hydroxide. What amount should I use to reach this mixture.

Thanks in advance

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Comment by glenda
2015-05-19 14:52:45

i am quite astonished that there is that amount of powder per gallon of household cleaning bleach. 10 tablespoons, these packs i received seem like it would take nearly a full pack of dry powder to do one gallon of household bleach 10 tablespoons seems like a lot and since its nearly $6 a pack, that is quite worrisome to me. would be cheaper to purchase the already made bleach. i have not measured it out to be sure but the orig post i found to make bleach from the powder seemed like it was more like 3 tablespoons per gallon of water. i will make one and see but sure seems like a waste of money, to me now, instead of a way to store survival needs, as well as have cheaper bleach on hand at anytime. will post when i measure out the powder.

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Comment by Ben
2015-06-20 10:29:17

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Comment by Paul
2015-07-16 17:37:28

I *really* wish there were a way to print or save this article to my harddrive, but I can find no option to do so. I need that formulae on hand.

Comment by azyogi
2015-09-02 01:20:48

Once you have killed the bad sick germs (pathogens) the chlorine is done with it’s work. To rid your drinking water of excess chlorine add air, pour back and forth between two glasses, this adds air displacing the chlorine. Give the chlorine plenty of contact time to kill the pathogens, that will depend on temperature, clarity and other factors.

Comment by Jen
2015-09-05 17:56:12

Can you tell me what the shelf life would be once treated with the homemade solution? Thanks

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Comment by prsmith
2015-09-20 01:40:32

Your water will taste better but should be boiled or chlorinated before drinking. Boiling is preferred as it kills all bugs and it drives off any volitle organic compounds. there are other chemicals that will not evaporate from the water so be careful of your water source.

Comment by Toni Green
2015-10-05 12:03:40

I was looking for recipe the whole weekend. Eventually have found your blog. I am so glad that I have the opportunity to read your posts. Homemade chlorine is a great solutions. It is cheap and effective. I am going to try it immediately. Thank you!

Comment by Jill
2016-01-21 19:30:11

Check out MMS, MMS2. I don’t think we ever have to sick again. Who knew?!

Comment by Robert
2016-03-17 06:20:51

purchase test strips for pools or a kit, wait 30 plus minutes and test the water if you have a chlorine residual greater than 0.2 it should be good to drink. time is actually 20 minutes to your closest customer and a minimum of 0.2 ppm to the furthest customer (miles away after filtration)

Comment by Peggy
2016-06-02 08:20:38

I would like to use this in my pool. Not good with all these formulas . I have a 30,000 gal pool. How much should I make. Bleach is so expensive. Thanks

Comment by Aaron
2016-09-14 19:48:51

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Comment by JoEllen
2016-10-18 03:56:45

Is the 2 tablespoons to 3 cups water the same concentration that household bleach is? Thanks, Jo

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Comment by Frank
2017-01-02 19:14:54

From my memories, drinking pool water gave me diarrhea! So if it is the same, i guess i would get dehydrated …

Comment by jr
2017-02-16 04:26:23

i looked for this brand and type of pool shock. only in box stores . the shock sold in sw fl where i live is not the chemical described. but i did find that some stores now carry a Clorox dry chlorine bleach but be careful they sell one plain and another perfumed which you do not want. i also went to the clorox website and got a discount coupon and email verification that the natural scent is just chlorine. what started me looking for this. a year ago my section with city water had 3 boil water notices in a month and contacting the county public health office i was told in a 76 week period ther was 53 breaks. and the system less than 25 yrs old great gov run system and of course theirs tornado’s and hurricanes to have supplies in

Comment by jr
2017-02-16 04:28:15

sorry typo the main breaks was a 6 week period

Comment by Haluz
2017-03-07 22:10:03

Hi, nice article, chlorite and calcium hypochlorite are not only absolutely unique disinfectant, but also cure .. You might think I’m crazy, but I’m not alone as a cure by drinking a solution of chlorine dioxide, or, calcium hypochlorite directly put into the empty capsules , with a drink at least 0.5 liters of pure water, this is the most powerful medicine that I have ever tried in my life .. people are treated with the results, and the pharmaceutical industry is beginning to panic.

Comment by Ol Crusty
2017-03-21 19:55:21

Speaking from 20 years in the military being sent to the worst hell-holes on the planet, coffee filters and pool shock will make almost any mud puddle drinkable. May not taste the best, but will keep you hydrated. Best way to store is to keep the bags in empty cat litter buckets (which are great for storing most everything except food)

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Comment by Steve stack
2017-05-31 03:17:17

A question i have regarding drain unclogging using mustard gas ex: chlorine and ammonia, could i use the same chlorinated bleach solution with ammonia to make mustard gas to clear my bathtub drain from backing up? Would the chemical compound be any different in this bleach then household brand considering you used calcium hypchlorite instead?

Comment by Pratik
2017-06-17 05:28:26

How to made a house hold bleaching in liquid form ?

Comment by reader
2017-07-11 22:59:28

thx for the article, but FORMULA IS WAY OFF for making bleach solution, and it’s being copied to other places with same incorrect formula. I dont know who the original err crept in but trying to help others if you can fix your article.

please reread TBMED577 appendix I. it says in several places their chlorine solution is 1 level TEASPOON to 1.5 cups water
or 2 level teaspoons (not Tablespoons!) to 3 cups water

tsp stands for teaspoon. Tbl means Tablespoon (usually capitalized.

a Tbl = 3 tsp. so the people following your artcle will have a solution 3 times stronger than what the army document formulas are based on.

Best regards.

Comment by Tim
2017-07-18 18:29:38

Check out Jim Humble and how to use calcium hypochlorite for health.zs

Comment by robert
2017-08-11 20:36:26

if you use 2 tablespoons of calcium hypochlorite (73%) in 24 ounces of water what is the percentage of available chlorine.

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2017-08-25 22:35:12

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2017-08-25 22:37:12

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Comment by 2paw
2017-10-06 00:47:49

To all the naysayers, 2 level TBL (tablespoons) of 70% available chlorine to 24 ounces of water is the correct amount and yields a chlorine bleach that is about 6.4% (64000 ppm). I’ve done the math and actual experiments measuring the final dosages in distilled water to show the above amounts are correct (remember to correct for molecular weights). Carefully reread the TB MED 577. The 1 rounded tsp. to 1 1/2 cups water is on the low side for 5% bleach and they tell you to keep testing your water and adding drops until you get to 2 ppm for drinking water or 5 ppm for suspected entaomeba, giardia, or cryptospordium contamination (common in surface water).
Best suggestion, get a pool and spa test kit (liquid, not the strips) and add your mixture to it to get the required ppm RESIDUAL chlorine.
If you have time, I would like to see your math and compare it to mine.

Comment by 2paw
2017-10-06 00:51:32

If all you can find is 54% (HTH) pool shock, use 1 TBL. + 1 tsp. per 12 ounces water (soda can amount) or 2 TBL.+ 2 tsp per 24 ounces water

Comment by Morteza Zarepour
2018-03-03 06:19:49

We have an important problem in production of Bleaching liquid by using water and sodium hypochlorite.
After productiin, Products inflate. Maybe this phenomena related to release of chlorine or oxygen gases and unstability of final products.
Can you help us and offer any compound to formulation for prevent of inflation of bleaching liquid or increasing stability of products??

Thank you very much

Comment by Lito Davila
2018-09-05 14:08:20

Extreme Safety should be cautioned when considering storage of material around ammonia or vinegar.

I would think everyone would know that “bleach” reacts with both, yet on occasion, there are those that don’t know this, and since vinegar is a material also used extensively in prepping, Don’t Store Them Together. Simple?

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Comment by MC Mishra
2019-12-08 12:36:59

Calculation to mix (7mg/L)/18.12, where 18.12 figure is not clear! Explain detail calculation.

Comment by Chlorinator
2020-03-14 01:08:44

Hi, since Clorox bleach and TP and a few other things are completely sold out in-store and most online, I was thinking I could make my own bleach for sanitary reasons. I accidentally came upon this article and am wondering about it, because I saw another site that said if you use calcium hypochlorite along with sodium hypochlorite, it will give it a longer shelf life, which explains what you said about just using the calcium hypochlorite. But, my question is if using the 2 together, instead of the later, if you get better cleaning properties? I ask because of the different compounds the 2 together, will make.

Also, I was reading where you mentioned the MSDS sheet says 14mg/L and yours is 7mg/L but yet the CDC says it’s only safe at 4mg/L, for drinking, so I am confused…

I am not looking to use it for drinking anyway, just for cleaning since I am almost out of Clorox bleach and need it. I had C. diff a back in Nov/2019 and this is the only thing to kill it in the toilet.

Thanks for any input you may have.

Comment by Dwayne
2020-03-17 18:59:52

Personally, I use solid iodine solution to make a supersaturated iodine solution that in the ratio of 7.8mL to 1 L gives an effective safe drinking water. The reason for using solid iodine is that it will never loose potency. Either using bleach or calcium hypochlorite or iodine I’ve read its good to neutralize the excess oxidizer using vitamin C which is ascorbic acid which gets reduced to hydroxy ascorbic acid which is body safe. I believe too much bleach will give one diarrhea and/or have a bad taste/smell which is the reason to want to neutralize it.

Comment by Joellen M Jarrett
2020-03-23 11:54:33

I have seen conflicting instructions regarding which Pool Shock to use. Is it safe to use sodium dichloro-s-triasinetrione to make bleach for cleaning/disinfecting?

Comment by mike
2020-03-29 21:53:38

can i use liquid pool chlorine as a disinfectant. if so what would be the mix.

Comment by Army Navy vet
2020-04-01 22:59:01

(for future users)

FYI, at least while I was in, the US Navy supplemented our drinking water supply with desalinated sea water treated with chlorine. The only real difference here is in brand names or lack thereof. The trick is to use the minimum required amount. More is absolutely not better.

Just remember for taste purposes, it’s better to let the water ‘breathe’ a bit before drinking.

Comment by Army Navy vet
2020-04-01 23:09:33

Personally, considering all the treatment water goes through before it’s added to the supply for drinking water, most city water (assuming EPA suggestions and rules are followed) is still going to be far better than the murky purple with black mold chunk death-water you’ll eventually start getting from your dehumidifier. Seriously, I’ve had badly sourced water like that, and getting cholera while deployed in Mosul, Iraq was absolutely not fun, but could have been far worse had we been given blackwater to drink.

Remember, all water was mixed with spit, urine, and feces at some point in history, even the water evaporate in the air.

Comment by Greg
2020-04-06 23:54:23

What is the formula to make one gallon of standard household chlorine bleach from 99% pure Calcium Hypochlorite?

Comment by Deb
2020-04-24 14:02:25

FYI, link to MSDS above is broken.

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Comment by Chlorine Tablets
2020-07-27 12:01:58

I don’t think so it is a great idea. If the chlorine content is added too much, it is impossible to consume it. It is better to buy chlorine tablets.

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Comment by Max
2020-11-24 16:01:32

I agree & am all in using Calcium Hypochlorite.. the manufacturer of the Ultima brand I got even makes it for city water utility services, so it is definitely ok to use for water! Here’s the brand I chose…

My problem is I still haven’t figured out a good recipe and believe YOUR recipe of 2 Tbsp’s powder for 1 quart water is WAY too strong. I say that because I’ve been using the powder to make bleach for laundry & about 2 Tbsp for a gallon water smells pretty strong (like concentrated Clorox bleach). I realize smell may not be a good test for this stuff, but still think my recipe is closer and I’ve also seen I think it was 2 tsp powder for one gallon water in some posts.

Anyway, my next try will be to bring a fresh made gallon to a pool place that can actually test the damn stuff to learn the real % concentration.

Any comment? Thank you for all your hard work, lots of good info on your site!

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Comment by Dweeb
2021-07-08 00:20:04

Well, I’m adding 1/4 of a Teaspoon of the dry stuff to a 55-gal. drum of water, so, my guess would be:

An amount to small to reliably measure.

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