Home built water tanks

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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby droid_ca » Thu Nov 01, 2012 12:30 am

So after Googling it I found out that it's big in Australia and Europe people actually make roof racks out of it and it holds 18 litter so just under 5 gallons that is'n't too bad so if it were doubled or even trippled then it might be pretty good for a few day trip there was some concern about lead leaching into the water and as far as trailer were concerned they filled the tanks when they got to their destination but the roof-rack ones they were painting black so after a day of driving you could get a hot shower and the basic system was under $100.00 bucks...
So if you want to do this ask the hardware store about if it is safe to drink and make sure you get the right glue as some can make you sick :beer:
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby bobhenry » Thu Nov 01, 2012 6:38 am

droid_ca wrote:
So if you want to do this ask the hardware store about if it is safe to drink and make sure you get the right glue as some can make you sick :beer:


PVC is safe and acceptable for pottable water ! My main delivery line and all of the feeder lines in my remodeled kitchen and bath are PVC. The shut off valves are PVC, the delivery tubes to the fixtures are PVC. The only warning I found on the use of it is to allow the lines to flush a bit to avoid the taste of the cleaner and glue used in cementing the joints.
Growing older but not up !
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby Shadow Catcher » Thu Nov 01, 2012 7:19 am

We have a 10+ gallon water tank in the "headboard" of CR with the water pump right next to it. There is a drain under the trailer and a conventional RV fill about a 1" hose and vent to atmosphere for that up and down altitude thing. In a number of State parks with no on site water hookups I used a 5gal flex water jug with a hose that I can set on top of the tear and have it flow into the water tank through the water filters (one, two or three depending on water source) I also have a 12V water pump that I can pull water out of a steam or lake and push through the water filters (the last one is good for all the potential nastiness such as Gridia). I can by pulling the fill inspect the interior of the water tank and periodically I flush with chlorine.
I looked into using PVC pipe as an additional water storage but gave the idea up as difficult to clean properly given uncertain water sources and difficult to plumb with inlet and outlet plus vent. One case of Montezuma's revenge or beaver fever (Girdia) is enough to convince you of the necessity that cleanliness is very important. I know folks that carry or buy bottled water but with proper water treatment it is not necessary.
RV water tanks are not particularly expensive a 10 gal for $55 a 40 gal for $140 from PPL with inlet and outlet. The also take up less volume, roundular occupies a bigger volume of space.
One last thought OK two, I just winterized Compass Rose using about a half gallon of RV antifreeze (non poisonous). I installed a Valtera valve/T that has a hose that attaches and runs into the gallon of antifreeze and pumps it through the hot and cold piping. If you have PVC pipe it has no give and if it freezes will crack and if that water is UP... The poly pro RV tanks have some give can be drained...
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby Wobbly Wheels » Thu Nov 01, 2012 9:57 am

Well, it's not a very efficient use of space so you won't get as much tank volume into a given space as with...say...square tubing. But it's cheap and easy...
For the volume, multiply the diameter by pi, then by your total length in inches. Use google to convert that volume in cubic inches into gallons or liters. It won't be as precise as filling the pipe to find out, but it will get you in the ballpark as far as how much pipe it will take to get the volume you want.
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby droid_ca » Thu Nov 01, 2012 10:21 am

my thoughts are :I'm going to try it it is cheap enough that if it doesn't work then no major loss but if it does work all is good :D
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby WesGrimes » Thu Nov 01, 2012 11:07 am

Before the housing crash... I was in the jetted bathtub business. Trust me whe. I say that you do not want to see the inside of those PVC pipes after holding water on and off for a year. Think about the build up on your shower walls if you never cleaned them, but only worse. Chlorine helps disinfect, but does not clean the scum stuck to the pipe walls.
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby Wobbly Wheels » Thu Nov 01, 2012 11:53 am

Here's that shot of the pipe markings:
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby droid_ca » Thu Nov 01, 2012 1:03 pm

Thanks Wobbly I'll be sure to look for that when I go to get my pvc...I recall seeing people use pvc to redirect water from streams to go to their homes ..so I'm thinking that it should be pretty safe then, But the cleaning side of it has me a little worried so maybe have to do like a chimney has a T-pipe just so that you could have something to open and be able to give a good scrubbing with some sort of rod... :thinking:
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby Wobbly Wheels » Thu Nov 01, 2012 4:23 pm

PVC is used in residential (cold water) plumbing all the time, where it is expected go for decades without being 'cleaned'.
Normal marine/RV water system protocols should keep the system clean: filling any undrainable areas (pump, traps, etc) with RV antifreeze before freeze-up and shocking the water system with chlorine or bromine when you recommission in the spring. Any charcoal filters will need to be replaced seasonally as well and glass filters will need to be backflushed.
Production (boat) builders commonly use PVC for PE tank fittings and filter manufacturers use it for filter housings.

Since you are planning on being able to use local water to fill your tanks, I'd suggest that any water purification happens BEFORE the water gets to the tank or (as in boats) you separate the tankage so that you can quarantine questionable water before it taints your whole supply.

With some simple maintenance, you should never see deposits in your freshwater system, regardless of time. You'll have to deal with algae if the water sits for months, and mildew if the tank lockers aren't ventilated, but I don't recall ever seeing sanitary issues with PVC water systems in boats. JMHO and all that, tho.
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby WesGrimes » Thu Nov 01, 2012 5:22 pm

This a well documented and studied problem that the home bath fixture industry is well aware of. The problem has to do mostly with the standing water in the pipes. You can never get all of the water out of those pipes, and they WILL bread microorganism. We paid to have test run on these pipes, and found staph and e-coli in the pipes. Lost my share of the company in the 08 crash when the creditors took over :? , but more info can be found at sanijet.com. Just don't go look if you have a jetted tub, and ever want to use it again... Scary stuff.
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby droid_ca » Thu Nov 01, 2012 5:26 pm

Would having a one way trap valve be a good idea to have on the system to help prevent over filing as well to let air in through a vent to prevent chugging :thinking:
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby 48Rob » Thu Nov 01, 2012 5:32 pm

This a well documented and studied problem that the home bath fixture industry is well aware of. The problem has to do mostly with the standing water in the pipes. You can never get all of the water out of those pipes, and they WILL bread microorganism. We paid to have test run on these pipes, and found staph and e-coli in the pipes. Lost my share of the company in the 08 crash when the creditors took over , but more info can be found at sanijet.com. Just don't go look if you have a jetted tub, and ever want to use it again... Scary stuff.


Wes,

Are you talking the fresh water supply system, or the recirculating system that reuses water that flows past peoples naked bodies and is then forced under pressure back into the tub?

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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby Wobbly Wheels » Thu Nov 01, 2012 5:43 pm

A good point Wes.

To further that line of thought: I think temperature would be more a factor in that than anything, no ?
I have just finished refitting a steam bath (yup, in a boat !) and found growth that I didn't see anywhere else onboard. I didn't have to get into the plumbing at all for what I was doing, but the fixture definitely created its own micro climate within the compartment.

I once rented a place over Xmas ago that had a wood-fired hottub (in 100 Mile: not too far from you, droid) and, when it was -20C outside, it was still shirt-sleeves under the deck...despite the plumbing being wrapped. I now shudder to think of what else might have been sharing the hot tub with us !
So thanks for that, Wes: you have forever removed the romanticism of our 'little cabin in the woods'. :lol: :lol:

Seriously though, I don't think we're talking about having water contained in the system long term (outside of camping season). The 'trick' to any seasonal system is to give it a period where it's dried out. Boat and RV potable systems will last indefinitely with minimal contamination issues if kept dry. Given that they are essentially a closed system, any pathogens are those that you introduce yourself. Fortunately, we aren't dealing with temperatures high enough to accelerate growth like in a hot tub or bath (yikes!)
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby Wobbly Wheels » Thu Nov 01, 2012 5:49 pm

droid, "chugging" is from air: a vent will fix that. Run a piece of (1/8"+) tubing from the highest point in the system out of the trailer. The tank needs to replace volume with air that you remove as you use up the water.
If you used a check valve in your fill line because it's an overhead tank, you would still need a vent to let the escaping air go somewhere. Once water comes out the vent, your tank is full.
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Re: Home built water tanks

Postby WesGrimes » Thu Nov 01, 2012 7:12 pm

Wobbly Wheels wrote: I now shudder to think of what else might have been sharing the hot tub with us !
So thanks for that, Wes: you have forever removed the romanticism of our 'little cabin in the woods'. :lol: :lol:

Yep. Ignorance is bliss...
P.S. Jacuzzi suites at motels/hotels did not go out of style, the liabilities on them were so bad that the lodging industry pulled them all out. :shock:

It is the recirculating pipes that are the problem, and not because of people in the water. Our tests on brand new tubs that no one ever bathed in would develop growth. Hot water does speed it up.
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