During an unrelated discussion on a forum, I had a revelation about the fresh water tank.
I forget how we got on the topic, but I found myself saying that I don’t like to use my fresh water tank because the water is musty and I’m pretty sure there is some algae growth in it. I shock it with chlorine twice a year before filling it for my travels between locations, but that doesn’t seem to make a difference.
What the person said in response to that was that if I filled and emptied the tank regularly, that is actually used it on a day to day basis, there would be no time for water to stagnate and grow organisms. So obvious, but that completely escaped me!
So, I’m definitely living off my fresh water tank this winter. I’ll fill it up every time we go above freezing and use the weather forecast as a guide to how much I can use. We’re supposed to go above freezing for a stretch starting Sunday, so I need to make my current half tank last. That means showers every other day and being frugal when I do the dishes. But when we’re on a long stretch of warm where I’ll be able to fill every day, I won’t ration myself.
One of the things I will do when we hit the warmest day of the stretch is to work on the non-repair of the fresh water tank intake. What I did in May of ’09 has held up well enough, but it’s getting harder and harder to fill without getting a significant leak. I catch that leak in a bucket and use it to flush out the black tank, so there’s no waste, but it might be time to bite the bullet and do a proper repair.
For drinking and cooking, I am still using a BPA-free plastic jug, which I love, and which I fill with tap water. I’m so glad the tap water here is as good as it is. I fill up the jug every three or four days and getting water from it is no more effort than getting it from the tap.
The only downside to this plan is that every time I go out and fiddle with the water, a ‘helpful’ person comes by and tells me that I should invest in heat tape and insulation for my hose or that I’m welcome to string hose from their tap to my intake. The first few times this happened was fine, but it’s getting repetitive. I explain the reasons I’m not doing heat tape, such as my having to ration my amperage, but folks of a certain age have a notion about things needing to be done their way even if it’s not the right way for someone else. I did the heat tape thing back in Oliver and, frankly, I found that the expenditure wasn’t justified; I still had issues with the hose freezing. If I felt it to be a good solution I would spring for the $70 or so, but it doesn’t seem worth my while. Living off the fresh water tank is no hardship and now that I’m in the habit of doing it, I’m guaranteed running water to about minus ten, a luxury I never experienced while running heat tape.
With the water pump getting so much use, I wonder if I should be getting a quote for having it replaced. Just in case. 😀
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