Having safe water available for both drinking and daily use is of the utmost importance. Campground water is often full of sediment and impurities and can lead to a host of complications.
Aside from just plain old bad taste, unfiltered water can leave you with parasites, intestinal worms and lead to diseases such as diarrhea and cholera. Disgusted yet? If so, it’s time to get serious about making sure you have access to safe water.
Depending on your budget and skill set, there are many options for your RV to ensure impurities are removed from your water source before they enter your RV.
First things first, make sure the garden hose you are using is a safe for drinking hose. These can be bought just about anywhere hoses are sold. You should look to make sure they are lead free, BPA free and phthalate free. They also are often UV stabilized for longer life and are NSF certified. There are many options to choose from by clicking here.
One of the most simple ways to filter water coming from an outdoor hose source is by using an inline filter. These filters are easy to find, very inexpensive and extremely simple to install. The simple carbon filter works to remove sediment, chlorine and bacteria from the water before it reaches your RV tanks and pipes.
The downside of these is that they can reduce water pressure coming into the RV as sediment builds up and they need to be replaced more often than bigger filter options. The most common type of these filters are made by Camco and can be found at most big box stores. Click here for more information.
Click here to read a review of the Camco filter.
Another option for filtering water before it reaches the RV is a more complex external filtration system like these made by Flo-Pur: www.flowpur.com/html/rv_filters.html This type of filtration system does a better job of removing poor odor and taste from water and the multiple canisters allow for each canister to do a specific job (one for chlorine, one for sediment, etc.) These are more costly but need to be replaced less often and do a better job of filtration.
Reverse osmosis is a very popular method for purifying water in homes, but less common in RVs. It is equally effective, but trickier to set up if you don’t have much plumbing experience. Large scale bottled-water companies even use reverse osmosis to produce their water. The process removes more than 99 percent of dissolved minerals, contaminants and chlorine down to sub-microscopic levels. This type of system is often installed under your sink and filters are changed every one to five years. www.rvwaterfilterstore.com/WCRO.htm
Many people choose to have a filter outside the RV to protect water coming in the lines and tanks and an additional filter for drinking water. The most common and inexpensive option for these is choosing something from the Brita line.
You simply fill the Brita pitcher or individual water bottle and let the filter do its job. All Brita products are BPA free and filter through the science of adsorption. The carbon and ion exchange adsorbs particles in water making it cleaner and better tasting. The downside is that the filter needs to be changed every 40 gallons. www.brita.com
Our favorite type of drinking filtration system is the Berkey line of products. These filters are high-end and will last you much longer than any other filter. A huge upside to the Berkey filters is their sustainability, just clean the filters when the sediment has built up and you can continue using for years to come.
An average filter lasts over 2,000 gallons. Their claim to fame is that ANY type of water can be filtered and deemed safe for drinking. This product is more expensive but will provide safe drinking water whether you are in a campground or parked next to a flowing river. Click here for more information.
Long story short, taking a few steps to filter your water will keep your RV and body safer and healthier in the long run. Almost all water borne illnesses are preventable and the life of your RV lines and tanks depend on you taking these precautions.