Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Mike James

Adding an internal water tank

Recommended Posts

Hi, I am looking at adding an internal water tank to my old van so I can have running water while free camping.

Currently I have an external Whale pump in an aqua roll and my existing system is outlined below.

Is it possible for me to add a tank?

Would it need its own pump that I switch to when using the internal tank rather than the external Whale?

Would it be possible to use my Whale to fill it?

Anything else I haven't thought of?

Thanks

WaterSystem.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why when your existing system gives you running water, hot or cold, from the Aquaroll?

Maybe I'm missing something.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, WispMan said:

Why when your existing system gives you running water,     Maybe I'm missing something.

 

I can see his point!   Often when I'm touring, if I stop for only one night I sometimes think it would be nice to have 10 litres of water on board to supply the taps instead of having to unload the Aquaroll, fill it and plug it in.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have a shufti here for some ideas.  https://www. google. co. uk/search?q=caravan+water+systems+diagram&sa=X&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&ved=2ahUKEwjbm4-44vvcAhUBV8AKHf6UCMIQsAR6BAgGEAE&biw=1242&bih=574

 

I think Whale used to do a kit

 

You'll need to fit a couple of diverter valves to make sure you can fill the onboard tank from the external pump and so that the caravan can draw it's supply from either the external aquaroll or the onboard tank. These could either be manual or solenoid/motorised depending on how adventurous you are.

It wont be easy to use the external pump on an internal tank although if the piping was long enough you might be able to do something but I guess it would be easier to have an onboard pump to do the job. With the correct arrangement of valves an inboard pump could deliver water from the inboard tank, outside tank and fill the inboard tank from the outside.

 

Bailey used to do it with their Senator range - see below (obviously the connection to the internal water tank has to be at the bottom or have a pick up tube that reaches the bottom of the tank)

 

You need a float switch or overflow to avoid overfilling the on board tank to avoid flooding the van if the tank is internal rather than underslung

Diagram.jpg

Edited by matelodave

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Jaydug said:

 

I can see his point!   Often when I'm touring, if I stop for only one night I sometimes think it would be nice to have 10 litres of water on board to supply the taps instead of having to unload the Aquaroll, fill it and plug it in.

 

Yes, exactly that. It would give me the freedom to stop at short notice while on a trip and not have to carry a full aqua roll around.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, matelodave said:

Have a shufti here for some ideas.  https://www. google. co. uk/search?q=caravan+water+systems+diagram&sa=X&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&ved=2ahUKEwjbm4-44vvcAhUBV8AKHf6UCMIQsAR6BAgGEAE&biw=1242&bih=574

 

I think Whale used to do a kit

 

You'll need to fit a couple of diverter valves to make sure you can fill the onboard tank from the external pump and so that the caravan can draw it's supply from either the external aquaroll or the onboard tank. These could either be manual or solenoid/motorised depending on how adventurous you are.

It wont be easy to use the external pump on an internal tank although if the piping was long enough you might be able to do something but I guess it would be easier to have an onboard pump to do the job. With the correct arrangement of valves an inboard pump could deliver water from the inboard tank, outside tank and fill the inboard tank from the outside.

 

Bailey used to do it with their Senator range - see below (obviously the connection to the internal water tank has to be at the bottom or have a pick up tube that reaches the bottom of the tank)

 

You need a float switch or overflow to avoid overfilling the on board tank to avoid flooding the van if the tank is internal rather than underslung

 

Thanks for the tips.

 

I'll have a look.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've decided to be both frugal and to keep it simple. I plan on putting  a small wine brewing barrel in the front stoage area  and secure it in the gas bottle holder. I'll run a pipe into the van and draw water with an inline pump. I will probably empty the wine out first.

 

I've installed a switch that will select either the external or internal pump and both will run off the existing pressure switch.

 

Can anyone tell me if my existing Whale connector has a one way valve in it or if I use the inline pump will water just run out of the Whale connector?

 

Also, would I need a check valve on the new pipe work for when I use the external Whale?

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 20/08/2018 at 22:20, Mike James said:

 

Yes, exactly that. It would give me the freedom to stop at short notice while on a trip and not have to carry a full aqua roll around.

 

 

 

It's not usual to carry water with you, but to get it on site - most British caravans with internal tanks are designed to tow with them empty, just as the Aqua-roll is transported empty.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Mike James said:

I've decided to be both frugal and to keep it simple. I plan on putting  a small wine brewing barrel in the front stoage area  and secure it in the gas bottle holder. I'll run a pipe into the van and draw water with an inline pump. I will probably empty the wine out first.

 

I've installed a switch that will select either the external or internal pump and both will run off the existing pressure switch.

 

Can anyone tell me if my existing Whale connector has a one way valve in it or if I use the inline pump will water just run out of the Whale connector?

 

Also, would I need a check valve on the new pipe work for when I use the external Whale?

 

 

Nothing beats complicating things.  Why not just carry a full ten litre water container in the gas locker and when needed, lift it out and simply drop your external pump into it?  

 

That has had to be easier than faffing about with tanks and valves and extra pumps etc and it would need filling no more often than any onboard tank you install.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, happynomad said:

Nothing beats complicating things.  Why not just carry a full ten litre water container in the gas locker and when needed, lift it out and simply drop your external pump into it?  

 

That has had to be easier than faffing about with tanks and valves and extra pumps etc and it would need filling no more often than any onboard tank you install.

My thoughts exactly.

You already have all the kit you need, but I suggest put the water container in the car whilst travelling so as  not to  increase the noseweight. Just lift it out and where the aquaroll would sit. But if you are carrying the Aquaroll, just 1/4 fill it!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Even motor-homers try to empty or reduce their water in their tanks for travelling planning around whether they are going to sites or are intending to go wild  - the weight is the issue. In a caravan I cannot see the need for internal tanks reducing payload and taking up storage space. Some of the simpler solutions to the voiced problem stated above sound much more sensible.

 

The only exception might be winter caravaning to avoid freezing up - but still  towing an internal tank empty.

Edited by Fenester
additional point added

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have an onboard tank and have found that using it is just too much of a faff. It has to be filled from the Aquaroll anyway so it's less complicated to draw water direct from the Aquaroll.   For water whilst on the move, we use a 10 ltr water container, carried in the back of the truck.

12 hours ago, happynomad said:

when needed, lift it out and simply drop your external pump into it?  

The drawback there is that it would mean priming the system each time. Simpler just to have a container with a tap.

Edited by Flying Grandad

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What about the waste water tank ? If you fit a water tank to use while wild camping then the waste water will need a black water tank .

 

Motorhomes are designed in their payload to carrywater in their tanks caravans have next to no payload and owners struggle to keep weight down without carrying water .

 

 

Dave

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, Flying Grandad said:

We have an onboard tank and have found that using it is just too much of a faff. 

Likewise but we have never used it.

 

14 minutes ago, Flying Grandad said:

The drawback there is that it would mean priming the system each time. Simpler just to have a container with a tap. 

Edited 10 minutes ago by Flying Grandad

Agreed.  We carry a 5 litre water bottle.  A fresh one each trip and then simply refill it as necessary.  It does should we stop over for a single night en route to elsewhere.

 

 

Just now, CommanderDave said:

What about the waste water tank ? If you fit a water tank to use while wild camping then the waste water will need a black water tank . 

Grey water tank.  Generally discharged to a hedgerow or ditch if rallying or wild camping where there is no grey waste drainage point.  

 

Black waste (cassette) really should be discharged in a more sanitary manner.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You should not dump any grey water in the environment as they contain chemicals .

 

Even sites will not allow car and caravans to be washed as the chemicals go into the ground .

 

Nothing wrong with wild camping if you respect the environment .

 

 

Dave

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, CommanderDave said:

You should not dump any grey water in the environment as they contain chemicals .

 

Even sites will not allow car and caravans to be washed as the chemicals go into the ground .

 

Nothing wrong with wild camping if you respect the environment .

 

 

Dave

 

Don't wash you car at home then either, most of the water will soak into the ground.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, CommanderDave said:

You should not dump any grey water in the environment as they contain chemicals .

 

Even sites will not allow car and caravans to be washed as the chemicals go into the ground .

 

Nothing wrong with wild camping if you respect the environment .

 

 

Dave

Grey water equals shower, wash basin, kitchen sink.  Nothing particularly injurious to anything there -  and if you think about the advice given during water shortages,.. water your plants with washing up water rather than clean fresh water.  The site I am currently on is perfectly happy for grey water to go through the hedge into a natural pond on his land.  No black water though.  That, quite rightfully, has to go into the Elsan disposal.

 

Caravan and car washing. ..  I suspect water rates are a factor rather than a few centilitres of car shampoo / Bobby Dazzler.    I'd quite happily use somebody else's water supply instead of my own metered water to wash our two cars and caravan :)

 

Now, which environmentally harmful chemicals are you adding to your wash basin and purely out of interest, how do keen / regular rally goers deal with grey water disposal when there are no facilities available?

 

 

 

 

Edited by happynomad
iPad thinking it knows best again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I sometimes think that this reflects the uselessness of fora. Someone ask how to do something and loads of comment comes in with why they shouldn't. The man wants to add a water tank, this is maybe a lifelong ambition or just an exercise in engineering and carrying 10 litres of water in the van (10kg) won't break anything. Personally I've just bought a used Bailey series 5 with fitted tank and think its the most useless addition one could get in a van. It takes up useful locker space. Not supposed to travel with it even partially full, doesn't give continuity of water supply without changeover valve operation etc.     Nevertheless if you want to do this then copy the Bailey system with two 2 way and off  valves and on board pump. You could use solenoid valves, and even Arduino control to effect automatic changeover from aquaroll to internal tank.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
35 minutes ago, Dave8910 said:

I sometimes think that this reflects the uselessness of fora. Someone ask how to do something and loads of comment comes in with why they shouldn't. The man wants to add a water tank, this is maybe a lifelong ambition or just an exercise in engineering and carrying 10 litres of water in the van (10kg) won't break anything. Personally I've just bought a used Bailey series 5 with fitted tank and think its the most useless addition one could get in a van. It takes up useful locker space. Not supposed to travel with it even partially full, doesn't give continuity of water supply without changeover valve operation etc.     Nevertheless if you want to do this then copy the Bailey system with two 2 way and off  valves and on board pump. You could use solenoid valves, and even Arduino control to effect automatic changeover from aquaroll to internal tank.

 

Great. Haha!

 

Hardly a lifelong ambition but might be boredom as I've now fixed everything in my 1992 van and I miss tinkering.

It will hardly get used and I would  only run with it filled or half filled if there's a chance of free camping. My car does have a fairly high tow bar weight anyway and I am nowhere near it.

It's just a case of having some readily available hot or cold water from the taps for a wash and to do the dishes for a single night should the need arise.

Worst case is I would be draining some toothpaste and soapy water into the flora.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Mike James said:

 

Great. Haha!

 

Hardly a lifelong ambition but might be boredom as I've now fixed everything in my 1992 van and I miss tinkering.

It will hardly get used and I would  only run with it filled or half filled if there's a chance of free camping. My car does have a fairly high tow bar weight anyway and I am nowhere near it.

It's just a case of having some readily available hot or cold water from the taps for a wash and to do the dishes for a single night should the need arise.

Worst case is I would be draining some toothpaste and soapy water into the flora.

Fusion cookery ? :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 23/08/2018 at 19:16, happynomad said:

Grey water equals shower, wash basin, kitchen sink.  Nothing particularly injurious to anything there -  and if you think about the advice given during water shortages,.. water your plants with washing up water rather than clean fresh water.  The site I am currently on is perfectly happy for grey water to go through the hedge into a natural pond on his land.  No black water though.  That, quite rightfully, has to go into the Elsan disposal.

 

Caravan and car washing. ..  I suspect water rates are a factor rather than a few centilitres of car shampoo / Bobby Dazzler.    I'd quite happily use somebody else's water supply instead of my own metered water to wash our two cars and caravan :)

 

Now, which environmentally harmful chemicals are you adding to your wash basin and purely out of interest, how do keen / regular rally goers deal with grey water disposal when there are no facilities available?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Soaps and shampoos contain chemicals that your putting in the ground .

 

Your kidding yourself that grey water is perfectly safe .

 

 

Dave

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If the person wants to fit an extra tank then that's their prerogative, if there is enough payload to carry enough water then whats the problem,  my last three vans all had a small 15/20 Lts built in tanks, I added the Fiammi 60Ltr in a the front bed locker and towed with it full, you could fill it from and Aquaroll or a hosepipe, with an adapter, they were 4/5 berths but just me and the wife so in my case we were still within our towing limit. It was very useful to be able to pull onto a pitch knowing you had enough water for a day or so.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 20/08/2018 at 14:09, Mike James said:

Hi, I am looking at adding an internal water tank to my old van so I can have running water while free camping.

Currently I have an external Whale pump in an aqua roll and my existing system is outlined below.

Is it possible for me to add a tank?

Would it need its own pump that I switch to when using the internal tank rather than the external Whale?

Would it be possible to use my Whale to fill it?

Anything else I haven't thought of?

Thanks

 

Below is what I have installed in a number of caravans. Note that the "Tank Fill Pump" needs to be a self priming one if inside the caravan but you could also use a submersible one in the external tank (Aquaroll). The "Water Supply Pump" need not be self priming as it is mounted at the same level as the bottom of the onboard tank. I did not fit a "tank full" indicator lamp as I always filled until I could hear water running from the onboard tank overflow pipe.

Water System With Accumulator and Onboard Tank.jpg

Looking at matelodave's earlier posting I see that Google have pinched the diagram I drew a couple of years ago.

Onboard Tank - Pentland.jpg

I wonder if Google will pinch this one too?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 23/08/2018 at 11:02, Fenester said:

Even motor-homers try to empty or reduce their water in their tanks for travelling planning around whether they are going to sites or are intending to go wild  - the weight is the issue. In a caravan I cannot see the need for internal tanks reducing payload and taking up storage space.

Not all motorhomers empty the freshwater tank when travelling - I certainly do not with our MHs, and any waste water is safely stored in either the grey or black holding tanks.

Likewise with our caravans, we always had water "on tap" during a journey for a brew up or to flush the loo into its own holding tank (our later caravans did not have a dedicated flush tank for the loo but required an external water supply) and let's face it, it is only a minor inconvenience to slip the wastemaster in place if we needed to discharge any washing up water.

Gordon

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Gordon said:

Not all motorhomers empty the freshwater tank when travelling - I certainly do not with our MHs, and any waste water is safely stored in either the grey or black holding tanks.

Likewise with our caravans, we always had water "on tap" during a journey for a brew up or to flush the loo into its own holding tank (our later caravans did not have a dedicated flush tank for the loo but required an external water supply) and let's face it, it is only a minor inconvenience to slip the wastemaster in place if we needed to discharge any washing up water.

Gordon

You forget that for some of us a minor inconvenience is a world ending event for others

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...