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Author Topic: How much fresh water do you need on board?  (Read 2861 times)
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Dave Knight
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« on: August 28, 2010, 03:48:05 PM »

I've been having a discussion with my brother over the size of my on board water supply.
Now granted, it's very subjective and greatly determined by need and application but I have 100 gallons and my brother feels that's about 50% of what I need.
My thoughts are that:
A) I don't plan to boondock too much.
B) There are only two of us who will be on board most of the time.
C) I really don't want to carry 834 extra pounds of weight that I really don't think I need. (water = 8.34 # per gal x 100= 834)
D) All that fresh water will end up at some point as gray or black and much of it in my tanks thus requiring either more frequent dumping or more tank capacity there too.


How much fresh water (maximum) do you guys carry on board and how do you use it? How many people are using it?

-Dave
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« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2010, 03:59:06 PM »

we have 100 gals. Comming from the boating arena we know how to stretch it out,hand wash dishes, 2 gal.  sea showers the like, easily able to go 2 weeks. Although we also don't boondock often, we've never run out.......
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« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2010, 04:04:35 PM »

Hi Dave,

I'd say, as much as you can possibly fit and you may have just enough!! Lol

It really depends on your needs... The average is around 100 gallons...

Good Luck
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« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2010, 04:06:09 PM »

We have 100 gallons but don't always travel with it full.  Best to have the capacity.  If you are going from campground to campground, you can travel with it half full (or is that half empty).  If you expect to be someplace without hookups, fill it and be prepared.  It seems to me that this is a better strategy than needing alter plans do to capacity limits.
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« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2010, 04:08:41 PM »

I had a 90 gal tank. it worked for 2 with very little boondocking.I think the longest we went without hookups was 5 days.   Just because you put in a larger tank does not mean you have to fill it!  HTH  JIm
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« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2010, 06:41:31 PM »

I have 160 gallons of fresh and 100 gallons of grey 65 gallons of black -- we have never run out but the longest we have been out without hookups is 5 days -- We are not the conservative types we like to be clean and comfortable as we travel -- we did however go 12 days and not empty the black water tank because of a VERY slow sewer system one place we stayed.

HTH

YMMV

Melbo
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« Reply #6 on: August 28, 2010, 08:23:01 PM »

5 gallons per person per day.  Determine how many people you will have onboard and how long you want to boondock and multiply by 5.

We have 150. We just spent 8 days in the mountains with 5 people, and one day had an over abundance of extra family members come up, including a potty training
2 year old. On top of that, I made a parking mistake on the way up to camp, and lost an estimated 30 gallons from my overflow lines. So, by the 6th day, we were
running out of waterl. I happened to have some clean plastic 4-gallon buckets and was able to haul about 30 gallons from a nearby campground and pump it into the tanks. 

I still stand by the original estimate I used when I built my tanks. 5 gallons per person per day.

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« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2010, 08:36:07 PM »

theirs really two ways to work it. 2 modes 1 you know your getting in to a dock so you can use water like ,well water. Or mode 2 your boondocking for a while so you know to shut the water off when you brush your teeth....all a state of mind  really not to hard to go 2 weeks on 100....and yes everybody is clean and happy.....................now if you have a daughter well.......................good luck with that..............s............
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Sometimes the more I think about something the less I think about something.    As soon as I save a little money my bus finds out.                                      Why grab a plane when you can take the bus ?                         If I'm wrong 10% of the time how can the "Queen" be right 100%
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« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2010, 08:38:21 PM »

100 gallons, we try to extend it by taking it in the right spirit lol.
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« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2010, 08:43:04 PM »

and of course we never ever drink water
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Sometimes the more I think about something the less I think about something.    As soon as I save a little money my bus finds out.                                      Why grab a plane when you can take the bus ?                         If I'm wrong 10% of the time how can the "Queen" be right 100%
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« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2010, 10:14:48 PM »

I have 130gal fresh, 85gal gray, 45gal black.  Longest we've boon docked is 5 days and still had water left.  Now in the truck, I'll have 210gal fresh, 110gal gray, and 70gal black-cause I can. 
Just remember-I may have a 210gal fresh water tank, but that doesn' mean you have to have more then 50gal or so when travelling.  If you're going to boon dock, then fill it up at the last moment.  Good Luck, TomC
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« Reply #11 on: August 29, 2010, 05:15:05 AM »

We have a 100 gallon tank.  Just my wife and I. If we watch our showers, about 10 days boondocking.  Jack
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« Reply #12 on: August 29, 2010, 06:08:29 AM »

back in the 80's we had a trawler with a 500+   gal water tank. It was great!  Can't say the same for the 800 gal fuel tank!
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Sometimes the more I think about something the less I think about something.    As soon as I save a little money my bus finds out.                                      Why grab a plane when you can take the bus ?                         If I'm wrong 10% of the time how can the "Queen" be right 100%
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« Reply #13 on: August 30, 2010, 02:19:29 AM »

We have 120 gallons and has worked out fine for us on a 5 day boon dock.

That is 4 people X 5 gallons per day= 20 gallons daily X 5 days = 100 gallons used.

See, that darn Craig is always right.... Grin  Works with Jacks numbers too!

My favorite saying for boondocking comes from Kyle:

"If its Brown, it goes down, if its Yellow, let it mellow"

Ya just can't make this stuff up....... Shocked

Cliff
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« Reply #14 on: August 30, 2010, 04:30:56 AM »

We have 100 gallons of fresh water and with 2 adults and a 4 year old taking showers and shallow baths, we used 50 gallons on our last 5 day trip.  We should be good for up to 10 days.  To answer the original question, I think you could stick with the 100 gallon tank and be just fine, especially if you're not going boondocking very often.

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« Reply #15 on: August 30, 2010, 06:11:58 AM »

we are 2 adults and 2 kids.  our 5er had a 50 gallon tank and we would go about 4 to 5 days boon docking with washing dishes.  if we used all paper and plastic then maybe 7 days.  in the bus i have a 110 gallon fresh so we should be good for 10 days or so.  i figure after 10 days it's a good idea to fire her up and run her anyway.
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« Reply #16 on: August 30, 2010, 06:12:39 AM »

We have 85 fresh and we get 5 days out of it.   Our 57 gray is maxxed out at 5-days, so I've got a 24v transfer pump to move some of the gray to the black tank(45).  Need to get that hooked up someday.

We go camping 5 or 6 times a year for long weekends, so boondocking is our normal use.
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« Reply #17 on: August 31, 2010, 02:18:39 AM »

  I Guess how much you need is better asked as how much do you want and how much do you want to carry around. Not too many places ive gone where I cant find some. Ive taken on water at truck stops, gas stations, campgrounds and rest areas. When the floor under the water tank gave way, I couldnt trust filling it up full, so I only took on about 30 gallons. With 4 of us conserving it, it lasted several days. I even got a hot shower out of it. I think its nice to have the capacity in case you want to rough it, but learning to conserve it and not needing to carry 1000 pounds of it up and down hills is a great thing to learn.
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« Reply #18 on: August 31, 2010, 05:59:49 AM »

I've had the unpleasant experience of filling up with what the locals called 'good water' but was well below my standards - even for use as bath water.  Sad

We carry all our drinking water in gallon jugs & use the tank water for almost anything except cooking & drinking. The 4 of us can go almost a week on 30 gal of black - 4 days on 30 gal of grey if we're carefull.

I will have as large a capacity of tankage as space will allow - that will provide me with more options. I'll have the flexability to carry the water I want depending on my needs for the trip.  Cool
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« Reply #19 on: August 31, 2010, 07:23:17 AM »

We lived in a 32-foot fifth-wheel for five years. Travelled all over U.S., Mexico and southern Canada. Had just 65 gallons of fresh and 40 each of black and gray.

Question: Has anybody thought of using the same water TWICE? For example, the water from sinks and showers could be used for toilet flushing? That is the way some of the new "green" houses do it.

And the black water for bathing politicians. Tongue
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« Reply #20 on: September 01, 2010, 04:22:57 PM »

this summer we put in a RO and hp pump (for efficiency) This is our last word in a discushion about various water quality. 2  fixtures and icemaker line, tasty!
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Sometimes the more I think about something the less I think about something.    As soon as I save a little money my bus finds out.                                      Why grab a plane when you can take the bus ?                         If I'm wrong 10% of the time how can the "Queen" be right 100%
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« Reply #21 on: September 02, 2010, 05:56:41 AM »

I have reverse osmosis on my house drinking water / ice maker line, and it cycles about 10 gallons of water down the drain for every gallon that it stores in it's pressure tank.  On a well, who cares - but do you revert that waste water from the reverse osmosis back into the fresh tank or to waste?

I have 100 gallon fresh and 100 gallon gray/black.  I like having the gray/black combined since it seems to make dumping a better experience.  I also can honestly say that I've never filled the fresh tank past half way, never needed to yet.  Nice that's it's there, though.

Brian
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« Reply #22 on: September 02, 2010, 08:14:47 AM »

I thought it was four to one? anyway it works out for us as we're out 2-3 days at a clip between docks. no we don't recycle excess water at this point, although very doable it has a risk if accidentally left on  at the dock while using dock water (Could blow the tank)....so far so good besides why would I want to drink water??? Cool
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Sometimes the more I think about something the less I think about something.    As soon as I save a little money my bus finds out.                                      Why grab a plane when you can take the bus ?                         If I'm wrong 10% of the time how can the "Queen" be right 100%
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« Reply #23 on: September 02, 2010, 05:52:01 PM »

Living in the Chicago area we are spoiled with very very good drinking water.

Like Kyle we too have had some experiances with other sources.Not just bad water but over and under pressure as well.

I have 125g and I plan on adding another 100 in the base of the bed.

We always leave full the weight is not a concern for me. We do not take on any water from any outside sources unless nessessary. We always run off our pump never city pressure. We drink it, make ice,no different than home. This makes the camper very comfortable and convienient for us.

IMO put in as large as a tank as you can you will not regret it,specially if you have very good water that you enjoy on the homefront.

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« Reply #24 on: September 03, 2010, 06:55:16 AM »

we have 100 gal fresh 100 gal black and 48 gal gray, we have been on the road for over 17 years full-time, with no home base. when we know we will be going into a camp ground we keep the tank about a quarter to a third full. when no campgrounds are pland we fill the tank about 90% . we do alot of boondocking, and we carry a 60 gal water bag in our jeep. so when we go to town we can bring back water as we need it. when we are in a area where we can drain gray to ground, we can stay out about 6 weeks before we have to go dump our black tank.  ron
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« Reply #25 on: September 03, 2010, 07:31:12 PM »

Speaking of water quality, if you are ever running on I-40 and going by Yucca AZ. ( just 25 miles from the Ca. border) they have a large beige or brown water tank on the north side of town where you can get 85 gallons of really good water for 25 cents. Smiley Been 6 years since we did that so the price may have gone up. Grin  The water comes from a very deep well from what we were told and is about the best water we have ever found in AZ.
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« Reply #26 on: September 05, 2010, 05:04:00 PM »

 Depends on your mission requirements. Going with smaller tanks gives you more space for other gear. The great thing is,  that you can chose what is best for you. I have huge tanks - 190 fresh, 170 gray/black, 300 fuel. With bus air I have limited storage beneath. Buying already done, I had no choice.  Gray/black is nice and easy to dump "anywhere"- almost. I have air valve dump switch at helm, plus macerator , plus standard dump hose. Living in the "sticks " with bus out back , provides full service backup to home well when water problems arise. Big fuel supply fuels my tractor.
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