I've read about most of the tank practices in these forums, but haven't seen anything about keeping the fresh water tank clean. What do you do to the pot water tank before filling and leaving?
When I was a kid, my father and I would sanitize our pot water tank with dilute bleach and then flush with fresh water. That was a slide-in camper with a small tank, though. What do you do with a 40 gallon TT water tank, though?
I live near Houston, and the year-round heat and humidity encourage all kinds of things to grow.
1/2 cop of regular bleach to 15 gallons of water, drive around to slosh water in tank, run all water taps, let set for awhile then drain repete with baking soda to freshen tank. When dealing with questionable water use 1/4 cup of bleach in tank and a filter pitcher for drinking water. ( Mexico)
If you're using bleach that comes in a gallon jug, multiply the number of gallons of tank capacity by .13 to find how many ounces of bleach you need.
If you're using the new "Ultra" bleach that comes in a 3 QT jug that's supposed to equal a gallon, multiply the number of gallons of tank capacity by .1 to find how many ounces of bleach you need.
For a 40 gal tank, that's 5.2 oz of regular bleach and 4 ounces of "Ultra" bleach. Put that in a gallon container and fill with water to dilute it. Then using a funnel, pour it into the tank filler. Then fill the tank.
Assuming the hot water heater is still empty from winterizing, unbypass it, turn on the pump and open a hot water faucet until bleach smelling water comes out. Do that with other hot water faucets, including the shower. Then go back and do it with all the cold water faucets, including the shower, the toilet, the spray nozzles on the toilet and sink, and the outside faucet if applicable. This gets bleach throughout the pipes. I usually go back and top off the tank after this.
Leave this in the tanks and lines for at least 4 hours of contact time. More is better here. Then open the fresh tank drain, drain the tank, close the drain and refill it. Go back to the hot water faucet and run at least a coupla gallons more than the hot water tank holds through it. Then repeat the process with all the hot and cold faucets and spray hoses, running them longer this time to get as much of the bleach out as possible. Top the fresh tank off again.
Let this water sit an hour or so, then drain the fresh tank again, and close the drain.
When you fill the fresh tank this time, if you're sensitive to chlorine, dilute a pound of baking soda in a gallon of water for every 20 gallons of fresh tank capacity, pre-fill with these gallons, and then top off the tank.
Go back around and do the faucet thing again, starting with enough from a hot to flush the water heater, using plenty of water through each faucet. Let it sit an hour or so and drain the tank again.
Then do the final fill of the tank.
Works for me.
BTW, I usually pull the filter elements out and toss 'em when winterizing, and put new ones in after sanitizing the filters in spring.
*This Message was edited on 29-Jan-03 06:41 PM by RoadKingMoe*
Wow! I just picked up my TT Friday and am going camping in it this weekend. I too live in Houston with the heat, etc. But, what is it that I need to do with the tanks, etc. to prepare us for camping this weekend? Do I need to do what you mentioned in your response to mbwhitley and sanitizing? I think I will need to break that down into bullet points. Other helpful hints are appreciated. I came from a 1982 pop-up, so this TT is all new to me. Thanks for your help.
2 kids & 3 dogs
1999 Ford Explorer V6
2003 Trail Cruiser 21RBH
We usually do that process only when we are dewinterizing or if we feel the need for a particular reason, I.E. smell from the water or if current tank had been in too long with no usage.
Most of the time once a year in the spring.
2000 Allegro Bay Pusher-35'
260 hp, 6.5kw genset, 1 slide
1999 Silverado, 4X4,
5.3L, 3.73, ext cab, long bed
I only do the bleach thing at the beginning of the season. We are used to using bottled water for human and dog consumption (our home well is a little stinky), and we're not afraid of using the tank for all other uses. While I'm sure there are some folks who might disagree, we just don't worry about washing dishes and brushing our teeth with the tank water. So far, no harm done.
I agree with the bleach the comments have suggested. However, to put the bleach into the fresh water tank, it's easier to have your hose connected to the water supply but not turned on, pour the bleach into the hose, insert it into the tank and turn the water on. The bleach will be mixed very well this way.