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Tom and Robin

Sanitizing Fresh Water Tank

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I know some use peroxide but from the research I did, it would take a lot of peroxide to sanitize the system...like gallons. 

This is what I do.

I sanitize our RV water system every spring when I take the RV out of storage and any time I notice an odor in the RV water system.

It’s really quite simple to do. You can start by draining the water heater. Go to the outside compartment where the water heater is located. The drain plug, or petcock is usually located in the bottom left hand corner. Remove the plug and open the pressure relief valve on top of the water heater to assist in draining.

Caution: Never drain the water heater when it’s hot or under pressure. Next you need to locate the low point water line drains. It may take a while to find them, but I assure you they are there. There will be one for the hot and one for the cold water lines. This is the lowest point in the RV water system. Open these and let the water drain out. Now, find the drain for the fresh water holding tank and drain all of the water from it. At this point you can turn the water pump on for a moment to force any remaining water out. Do not let the pump continue to run once the water stops draining. Next, close all of the drains.

What we have accomplished so far was to evacuate the majority of water from the system. To sanitize the water system use a quarter cup of household bleach for every fifteen gallons of water your fresh water tank holds. Mix the bleach, with water, into a one-gallon container and pour it into the fresh water holding tank. If you can't conveniently do that, fill the filter housing without the filter inside.  You may need to do that more than once. Fill the fresh water tank almost completely full of potable water. Turn the water pump on, open all hot and cold faucets and run the water until you smell the bleach at each faucet. Close the faucets. If it’s possible drive the RV or pull the trailer so the water can move around to assist in cleaning the entire tank. Let it sit for at least 12 hours. Drain the entire system again and re-fill the fresh water tank with potable water. Open all of the faucets and run the water until you no longer smell any bleach. It may be necessary to repeat this process again to eliminate all signs of bleach from the water system. Once this is done it is safe to use your water system.

If you follow these simple steps you can rest assured that the fresh water system in your RV truly is fresh.

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Great advise.   I have a Coachman Encore with the fresh water fill valve low and can not pour anything in it.  Must use hose and connect to system to fill.  Any ideas on how to get the bleach in the system?     In the past the fill port was a open port I could pour the breach in.    Is there a  siphon valve somewhere on the coach I could use or purchase?

 

thanks for any advise 

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Mikelangley,

Welcome to the FMCA Forum.

Just drain your hose and pour your sanitizer in it. Reconnect hose and turn it on. That also sanitizes the hose.

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Mike, as Brett stated using the hose is a good way to sanitize the hose at the same time. 

Before starting remove any whole house filters you may have.  Use 50ppm which is about 1-1/4 cup of Chlorox - not bleach - Chlorox.  Don't use a funnel as it will keep backing up, just slowly pour the Chlorox into the hose with the far end connected to the water inlet.  Fill the tank, shut of the water, run water through each of the faucets until you smell the Chlorine and let it all sit for 4 hours.

If you know you have a sanitized hose then after removing the filter pour the Chlorox into the filter housing and put it back on.

Happy trails.

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As Brett said and I'm one of the people that don't like to waste water, so I use HP 3% (Hydrogen Peroxide).  My water hose is on a reel, so I drag it all out 4 times a year, making sure its empty, then I pour a quart HP 3% in and connect to water, just enough to fill hose and let it sit for 15 minutes...during that time I pour in a quart of HP in fresh water tank that is about 1/4 full and let it sit for 15 minutes.  Linda will turn on the water faucet while I open the faucets inside for 5 minutes and let sit for 10.  We do the same for fresh water tank...there is no reason to flush anything from system and dump, as quite often if we have run out of Listerine (not an advertisement) we use HP 3% as a mouth wash! :lol:

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On my Tiffin Allegro Bus I purchased a spare filter housing just like the ones I have on the coach. I fill the housing with 1.5 cups of beach which is the correct amount for sanitizing my 90 gal fresh water tank. Screw the top on and connect the portable water supply hose at my storage lot to the input and connect my hose reel to the output. Turn the water on and fill the tank to 100% and let it stay for 24 hrs. Open each faucet in the coach to get sanitized water through reach line. After 24 hrs drain and refill with fresh water. Open each faucet to flush each line. Very simple and it works. I used water test kit to verify.

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1 hour ago, manholt said:

fiester.  Welcome to the Forum!

Don't use Bleach...use Clorox instead.   

Sorry, I don't get the joke.

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7 hours ago, manholt said:

Don't use Bleach...use Clorox instead

Isn't this the same as Clorox? So if not what should be utilized Clorox stain lifter :lol:?

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I've used hydrogen peroxide for many years instead of chlorine to sanitize my fresh water system. It doesn't have that nasty chlorine smell and taste after sanitizing.

https://livingtraditionally.com/how-to-use-hydrogen-peroxide-to-purify-water/

1/8 cup, that's 1 oz. of 10% H2O2 (hydrogen peroxide) per gallon of water in the holding tank will oxygenate the water in 15 minutes, if you drink it, it will not be harmful to you in these proportions. I usually treat the water then run it through the system with the onboard pump to each faucet, one at a time to clean out all of the piping in the coach. I also will dip a dish cloth that has been rolled small enough in vinegar, then force the dish cloth into each open faucet, and take the shower head and other aerators and drop those into pure vinegar and let those sit there for about 30 minutes, before taking them back out and re attaching to their respective places. Results is amazing.

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Kay,

I read the article you posted. After you did your procedure do you drain the tank and refill it or just leave the water with the Hydrogen Peroxide in the tank and use the water? I sounds like the water would be drank able with no problem.

Herman 

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15 hours ago, elkhartjim said:

If its Clorox Non-Chlorine Bleach then its Clorox = Hydrogen Peroxide. 

 

But, of course, that's not what he said or indicated.  Good cover, though.

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BillA.  If you read back on October 27, just below Brett...you will find what I use...mostly in the same way as Kay!  There is several other posts over the past 5 years, that we have written in the same way! :)

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Herman, as stated I use most of the water in the holding tank to flush the pipes and faucets. It really isn't necessary to drain the tank completely, but I do use most of it in the flushing process. Incidently, this is also one of the times that I add calgon water softener to the gray tank and calgon and dawn dish liquid to the black tank to help in bacteria control in those.

Now on to non bleach Clorox, this is not hydrogen peroxide, it is sodium hypochlorite, which is derived from sodium chloride (table salt), and of course is also non toxic, but not as palatable as H2O2 (hydrogen peroxide), also will cause the water to have a slight milky white discoloration, leaving a film on glass fixtures if not completely removed from the tank.

I think that I remember Herman stating that you were a sailor in the military, if not please forgive me. If you were then you will recall those days of doing the laundry onboard ship, dragging the laundry behind the ship then rinsing with desalinated water, how clean and great they were and smelled with no discoloration to the navy blues, this is the principal behind non chlorine clorox.

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