Fresh Water Sources - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-31-2010, 09:50 PM   #1
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Hi All!

We're in the process of learning how to camp out in our "new-to-us" Bigfoot 19.

We have made some trips to trailer parks. But next month, we plan to do some dry camping.

My question: where do you get fresh water when you dry camp? We'd rather not travel with a full water tank. Trailer parks supply water ... but for dry camping? What do you all do?

Looking forward to learning about your experiences and ideas.

JMP

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Old 03-31-2010, 10:46 PM   #2
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If you know that you are going to be "dry camping" a few gallons in the tank might be considered your reserve. We travel with an empty "spring water" bottle, the kind you see used in office water coolers. If nothing is close to the camp to fill it up with, we use the empty to cover the deposit on a full one.

I think the big part of this is knowing where you will be camping. If there are stores and ice nearby, so is your water.
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Old 04-01-2010, 08:49 AM   #3
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Hi All!

We're in the process of learning how to camp out in our "new-to-us" Bigfoot 19.

We have made some trips to trailer parks. But next month, we plan to do some dry camping.

My question: where do you get fresh water when you dry camp? We'd rather not travel with a full water tank. Trailer parks supply water ... but for dry camping? What do you all do?

Looking forward to learning about your experiences and ideas.

JMP
Wal- Mart sells five gallon collapsible water bags in the sporting goods section. They cost approximately $6.00 and can be stored easily. The local hardware store sells vinyl tubing. Purchase a one foot piece that fits the nozzle on the water bag. This will allow you to easily dump the water into the fill neck of the water tank. As far as where to get water, it obviously depends on where you are located. One source is a gas ststion, BUT take your own water hose. I once, in the distant past, used their hose for convenience and it left a horrible taste in my units water tank, which lasted about one year. Camping World also sells a forty or forty five gallon collapsibl;e water bag that you lay in the bed of a pickup truck. It is another avenue for transporting water.
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Old 04-01-2010, 09:14 AM   #4
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My question: where do you get fresh water when you dry camp?
The US Forest service campgrounds that we have used in Southern California usually have water spigots available for filling your tank.
Not at each campsite though, but located near the roadway dispersed through the campground.

We usually travel with at least 2 gallons in the tank to be able to flush the toilet at any time...
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Old 04-01-2010, 11:34 AM   #5
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Put a gallon jug in the bathroom. Pour in a circle, it flushes just as nicely as a swoosh of water.

Get a coleman or zodi shower pump and a larger water container that the pump end will fit into. I have a 7 gallon Roll Along Aquatainer from Reliance that fills from the top at the campground spigot, rolls along to the side of my rig and I drop the shower pump into it, turn on.. viola.. water gets into the tank!

With a MH, I have lost that ability, the tanks fill with a hose, so now I have to carry about 100 feet of hose to do this. Not elegant, but it works.
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Old 04-01-2010, 02:10 PM   #6
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Trailer Park? Are you saying Rv Parks or Private Campgrounds?


Many times you can pull into private campgrounds, rv parks when you get close to your destination and pay a couple bucks to fill up. We allowed that all the time to rv'ers on the road.

As suggested, many campgrounds have a spigot to fill from.

Also many City's have a water spot to fill from. Though each city is different. Asking at the Chamber Of Commerce should be a source of info for the area.

Gas Station, Truck Stop's (often not close to your final destination, but are a source of a fresh water supply)
Enjoy your new adventures!
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Old 04-01-2010, 02:31 PM   #7
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Call me crazy but I'm not going to add water to my holding tank 1 gallon at a time. Nor, am I going to stand there holding a 2 1/2 or 5 gallon jug while trying to pour the water in the tank.

Here's my solution:


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1 - 12v water pump purchased at Harbor Freight $39 on sale for $29
1 - 5 ft remnant hose cut in half with a female/female adaptor added to the hose piece that had the male end
1 - or more collapsible water jugs
1 - 12v extension cord (not pictured) since I tapped into 12v which goes to the porch light and added a 12v outlet to the side of the trailer.

I had been using a portable Coleman shower which used 4 - D batteries and connected only to the Coleman collapsible jugs, the pump would go into a container with a very large opening. Well, at Quartzsite in February, the pump finally gave out after 9 years. So, I took Mel's suggestion and purchased the 12v pump. This is actually a smarter way to go as you don't need batteries. You've always got 12v with the Tug or trailer. And, you can put the hose into any water container.

Since I knew I was going to be at Quartzsite for 7 or 8 days, at my last gas stop I filled my two 5 gallon collapsible jugs. Until I had to add water to the holding tank the full jugs came in handy as awning leg hold downs.



Call me crazy again, but I don't leave home without a full fresh water tank. My very first trip 9 years ago with my Scamp's holding tank empty, I was in a very nice campground in Monterey and the water was so terrible. I couldn't make coffee or even cook broccholi in it. I vowed never to leave home without my holding tank full and haven't to date.
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Old 04-01-2010, 04:28 PM   #8
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For short trps. Save your empte milk jugs and fill them with water Then freeze them and add them to your cooler. By the time you need to replennish the ice you have several containers of HOME water that you're sure of.
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Old 04-01-2010, 07:11 PM   #9
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There's always this, you can fill it at a hose bib then drive back to your trailer and fill the tank...
Portable RV Fresh Water Tank - 45 gallon
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Old 04-01-2010, 08:03 PM   #10
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Call me crazy but I'm not going to add water to my holding tank 1 gallon at a time. Nor, am I going to stand there holding a 2 1/2 or 5 gallon jug while trying to pour the water in the tank.

Here's my solution:

1 - 12v water pump purchased at Harbor Freight $39 on sale for $29
1 - 5 ft remnant hose cut in half with a female/female adaptor added to the hose piece that had the male end
1 - or more collapsible water jugs
1 - 12v extension cord (not pictured) since I tapped into 12v which goes to the porch light and added a 12v outlet to the side of the trailer.


Since I knew I was going to be at Quartzsite for 7 or 8 days, at my last gas stop I filled my two 5 gallon collapsible jugs. Until I had to add water to the holding tank the full jugs came in handy as awning leg hold downs.



Call me crazy again, but I don't leave home without a full fresh water tank. My very first trip 9 years ago with my Scamp's holding tank empty, I was in a very nice campground in Monterey and the water was so terrible. I couldn't make coffee or even cook broccholi in it. I vowed never to leave home without my holding tank full and haven't to date.



First of all, I am so sorry that we couldn't get the trailer ready in time for Quartzsite. I was really looking forward to putting some name to faces, and it would have been fun to meet you.

I love your suggestion - it does seem to cover most of my bases.

Question: how did your 5 gal collapsable jugs hold down your awning at Quartzsite? I just can't visualize.

I'll definitely look for the 12v pump at Harbor Freight. Great idea!
And ... a short hose should be no problem.
And ... I loved everyone's suggestion regarding a collapsable jug.

How fun ... more stuff to buy!

Regarding leaving home with a full fresh water tank ... our [25 gallon] tank is located in the back of the trailer . I'm under the impression that you want to keep the weight down for both safety reasons and gas consumption. Our plan was to compromise and travel with 6-8 gallons in the fresh water tank, and fill up close to our destination.

Because we'll primarily be going to dog events, we must have plenty of bottled water on hand. Our plans are to use the fresh water tank for washing dishes and ourselves. The bottled water will go to cooking and coffee.

Even so, I really don't want to add and foul tasting water to our tank. So ... thinking out loud ... I better do some research regarding my destination.

What do you all do? Can you/do you taste the water before you put in in your rig?

Thanks!


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Old 04-01-2010, 08:52 PM   #11
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Wal- Mart sells five gallon collapsible water bags in the sporting goods section. They cost approximately $6.00 and can be stored easily. The local hardware store sells vinyl tubing. Purchase a one foot piece that fits the nozzle on the water bag. This will allow you to easily dump the water into the fill neck of the water tank. As far as where to get water, it obviously depends on where you are located. One source is a gas ststion, BUT take your own water hose. I once, in the distant past, used their hose for convenience and it left a horrible taste in my units water tank, which lasted about one year. Camping World also sells a forty or forty five gallon collapsibl;e water bag that you lay in the bed of a pickup truck. It is another avenue for transporting water.

Thanks Larry,

I've been thinking about getting a water jug, but I didn't realize that you could get a collapsible one. The suggestion regarding a one-foot tube combined with your Wal-Mart referral has got to be spot on!

Thanks again!
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Old 04-01-2010, 08:57 PM   #12
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Trailer Park? Are you saying Rv Parks or Private Campgrounds?


Many times you can pull into private campgrounds, rv parks when you get close to your destination and pay a couple bucks to fill up. We allowed that all the time to rv'ers on the road.

As suggested, many campgrounds have a spigot to fill from.

Also many City's have a water spot to fill from. Though each city is different. Asking at the Chamber Of Commerce should be a source of info for the area.

Gas Station, Truck Stop's (often not close to your final destination, but are a source of a fresh water supply)
Enjoy your new adventures!
We will be dry camping on private training grounds. The few that I have been to have absolutely no facilities.

I did wonder if an RV Park would be willing to sell me fresh water as I got closer to my destination. Thank you for answering that question.

The Chamber of Commerce suggestion is also appreciated.

One question regarding the RV park & camp grounds: do you taste the water to make sure it is acceptable? I'd hate to end up with foul tasting water in my tank.

Thanks for your thoughtful response.

JMP
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Old 04-01-2010, 09:01 PM   #13
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There's always this, you can fill it at a hose bib then drive back to your trailer and fill the tank...
Portable RV Fresh Water Tank - 45 gallon



Donna, that brings me back to my blue water sailing days. We use to strap a couple of bladders filled with water on the bow and mid deck. No showers till we reached shore ... only drinking water.

No room for that either on top of my car or the trailer. But good thought!

Thanks,
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Old 04-01-2010, 11:42 PM   #14
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Call me crazy but I'm not going to add water to my holding tank 1 gallon at a time. Nor, am I going to stand there holding a 2 1/2 or 5 gallon jug while trying to pour the water in the tank.

Here's my solution:


Attachment 27127
[attachment=32047:
109_7811.JPG]

1 - 12v water pump purchased at Harbor Freight $39 on sale for $29
1 - 5 ft remnant hose cut in half with a female/female adaptor added to the hose piece that had the male end
1 - or more collapsible water jugs
1 - 12v extension cord (not pictured) since I tapped into 12v which goes to the porch light and added a 12v outlet to the side of the trailer.

I had been using a portable Coleman shower which used 4 - D batteries and connected only to the Coleman collapsible jugs, the pump would go into a container with a very large opening. Well, at Quartzsite in February, the pump finally gave out after 9 years. So, I took Mel's suggestion and purchased the 12v pump. This is actually a smarter way to go as you don't need batteries. You've always got 12v with the Tug or trailer. And, you can put the hose into any water container.
You are crazy! But I actually have a similar setup. Unfortunately I was using an older surflo that died last year so I was reduced to standing and holding the bladders. I was wondering if you ever considered adding one of those fancy inline water filters to your system? I bet your pump would have no problem dealing with the extra restriction?

I wanted to add-in my 2 cents on water quality - In Washington most of the campgrounds have pitcher pumps for fresh water. On several occasions I have noticed that the quality of the water was very questionable. I have ended up pouring that water into my tanks with risk. But you can easily install an inline filter kit (available at most RV stores) just past your pump in your water system. The better filters are rated to clean most parasites as well as chlorine and toxins. I always leave home with full tanks. I don't really notice a difference in the performance of towing either way.

If you are Park Camping I think it would still be a good idea to use a filter. Again they make a kit that connects between your hose and inlet. There are all kinds of scary things that happen to water systems in trailer/RV parks. The one time that filter saves you from a parasite it more than paid for itself.

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Old 04-01-2010, 11:49 PM   #15
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So where are you in California??

And why aren't you signed up for either Lake San Antonio Central CA in May or Burney Falls Northern CA in September??? Or, both!!!!

Yes, water in the back of the trailer can be problematic throwing the trailer weight off. I found that I had no problem as long as I didn't exceed about 55/60 mph and I have my bike on the back to boot. I'm never in a hurry so I just putz along. I now have the generator on the front which seems to have off set the water and bike on the back.

I had a problem with Lily on the Alaska trip, she got the runs. I now carry bottled water for her. A 1/2 dozen or so small bottles. In the past I used a water filter for any water going into my holding tank. I got tired of fooling with them so I don't use them any more. What I do before I fill any water containers is taste the water to see if it taste good, then I fill either the trailer tank or the collapsible jugs. In 9 years I've never gotten sick so I don't worry about anything other than the taste.

As far as using the jugs as hold downs, I just hooked a bunge cord to the handle on the jug and the other end to the awning leg. There is an adjustment knob up about 3 feet that I attached to. 5 gallons weighs quite a bit.



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Old 04-01-2010, 11:59 PM   #16
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Yeap David,

I've thought recently that maybe I should start using a filter once again. What I didn't like was using it for a few days and then storing it for a few weeks or months before using it again. Just seemed to me that it wasn't that great to store a used filter for future use. Maybe I'm wrong but it seemed to me to defeat the purpose.

Not sure I wanted to buy one for every trip.
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Old 04-02-2010, 12:46 AM   #17
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We use a water filter whenever possible, just because ...

We have been using the charcoal cartridge-type from WalMart and have no complaints. We just zipped the filter securely in a plastic bag until the next use. However, in the "when all else fails" department, I happened to re-read the instructions as we added a fresh cartridge to our new city water connection. Oh-oh, it says to store in a cool place (frig, ice chest or ???) when not in use. Sounds like a good idea to keep gunk from growing in there, so now the filter will be traveling in the refrigerator.

We are thinking of upgrading to an on-board, multiple cartridge setup - some of the places we spend time (Quartzsite) have nasty water and we need to protect the pump, plumbing & water heater as much as possible.

Jane - What kind of dog training do you do? Sounds interesting. Have fun and travel safe - L 'n D
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Old 04-02-2010, 09:29 AM   #18
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Great idea now that you two have soooooo much more space.

I had stored my cartridges in a zip lock baggie but the difference is that you two full time so yours is getting more use than mine.
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Old 04-02-2010, 10:58 AM   #19
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Regarding leaving home with a full fresh water tank ... our [25 gallon] tank is located in the back of the trailer . I'm under the impression that you want to keep the weight down for both safety reasons and gas consumption. Our plan was to compromise and travel with 6-8 gallons in the fresh water tank, and fill up close to our destination.
Just a couple of thoughts, that may or may not apply to your situation:

1) There may not be anything wrong with having a full water tank in the rear if it does not change your tongue weight percentage negatively. Of course that is about 200 pounds of water, so it very well may do so, but I just mean that I would probably fill the tank and then check things out with a scale, and then if it seems feasible, a short test drive (carefully and not on a busy road).

200# in the rear of my small Boler probably would make an unacceptable difference, but I don't know your rig.

2) On the idea of traveling with the tank partially full: Again, I don't know your rig, but, keep in mind that depending on the shape of the tank (and whether or not it has internal baffles), a partially full tank could also have its potentially dangerous problems. Like the "free surface effect" on vessels, the "loose" water could cause instability by sloshing or sudden movement.

Now, I'm not saying that 10 gallons in a 25 gallon tank will roll your rig, but only wanted to mention it because it's conceivable that a partially filled tank would be as bad or worse than a full one, and you would not have the benefit of the more water.
The problem is worse the more short and wide your tank is, and would be less with a tall, deep tank that was not wide.

As far as weight and affecting mileage: It would be about like one person.

This is a useful topic

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Old 04-02-2010, 02:37 PM   #20
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Just a couple of thoughts, that may or may not apply to your situation:

1) There may not be anything wrong with having a full water tank in the rear if it does not change your tongue weight percentage negatively. Of course that is about 200 pounds of water, so it very well may do so, but I just mean that I would probably fill the tank and then check things out with a scale, and then if it seems feasible, a short test drive (carefully and not on a busy road).

2) On the idea of traveling with the tank partially full: Again, I don't know your rig, but, keep in mind that depending on the shape of the tank (and whether or not it has internal baffles), a partially full tank could also have its potentially dangerous problems.
The problem is worse the more short and wide your tank is, and would be less with a tall, deep tank that was not wide.

As far as weight and affecting mileage: It would be about like one person.

This is a useful topic

Raya

Thanks Raya - I didn't consider any problems with a water tank filled a third of the way.

One of the things on my short list (thank goodness the full short list is getting shorter): weighing the trailer. There is a public scale down the freeway from my house. Prior to selecting a trailer, I weighed my TV fully packed with people, dogs and equipment. I'm planning to weigh the trailer (which is now mostly outfitted) and the tongue.

I just got a 100-pound pound generator. If the trailer/tongue weight will allow it, I want to add a porch for the generator. The advisability of filling the water tank will become apparent as well.

I agree that this is a useful topic.

I'm happy to see the responses and the turn it has taken into the possible use of filters. Really learning a lot from everyone's excellent postings!



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