Hi folks..... Seeking advice from experienced Motorhomers!!
Lyn and I purchased our first motorhome last November, and are complete newbies. So far, we have mainly done day-trips, since, following advice picked up from reading various articles, we drained the tanks for the winter in order to avoid the risk of damage caused by frost.(Although, living in Cornwall, hard frosts are very few and far between!!).
We have spent one long weekend away, but used bottled water for making tea & coffee, and on-site shower blocks for our ablutions. Having reached a point where we have familiarised ourselves with the workings of the oven, hob, fridge, heating, etc., we are now looking to move on to venturing further afield for longer periods, but obviously need to prepare the water tank prior to refilling it and using it for washing/showering & cooking purposes.
We have purchased suitable sterilising powder recommended by our local outlet for caravan/motorhome supplies, but would welcome any/all advice regarding how far in advance of our first extended trip we should carry out this work, and basically, any other advice which may be relevant and helpful!
Many thanks in advance for any/all advice given....
This is what I do, correctly or not - At the beginning of the season I dissolve half a dozen baby sterilizing tablets in warm water then add them in a quarter full water tank. I also mix some biological washing powder in warm and pour down each plug hole. Drive around for a bit then empty and the rinse out after couple of hours (over night is best).
I use aqua tabs, which are water purification tablets, 2 in each tank full.
They go in if I haven't used the motorhome for a while because of the potential for water sitting in the system somewhere or if I am unsure of the water I am filling the tank with.
They will also clean a dirty tank out if needed.
I don't see the logic in using bottled water myself, just more to carry and store, I use the on-board water for everything but I drain it down if I am not using the motorhome within the next week or so.
If we know the motorhome will be parked up for a while, which isn't very often, we'll put a couple of Milton type tablets directly into the water tank to dissolve in whatever is left in there.
Next time we use the van first job is to drain the contents and refill with fresh letting it all flush through for a little while with the drain valve still open.
We don't drink from the tank and carry a couple of 8 litre plastic bottles of water that we fill wherever suitable for cooking. Drinking water comes from bottles as they're very cheap, well outside the UK anyway
I add Milton fluid to the tank draw it through to the taps and then like suenmike, I go for a drive around, it shakes it all up nicely (or perhaps it is just our farm lane )... I usually do the waste tank at the same time ... and then when back home ... I drain down both and then refill the fresh and open the taps to flush the Milton out ... then just refill fresh tank as and when
I also do the water hoses (I carry my own food grade hose) at the same time ... I use the tank water for cooking/kettle/shower ... but carry bottled for drinking
Just as an addition to the foregoing, do not run any bleaching agent through the hot water boiler and leave it to stand for an extended period, If you do it will start to corrode the heat exchanger, the system must be flushed with fresh water after the prescribed time, this also applies where you have a submerged pump which can be prone to corrosion or seizing if left too long in the bleach mixture.
A couple of times a year fill the tank with water empty a bottle of white vinegar into the tank ,run the tap so as to fill the hot water tank then leave over night or longer if you like ...... then run the taps empty the tank refill fresh water run it through then fresh water again ..... that will clean the inside of the tank and pipes and make the water safe to drink