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Author Topic: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?  (Read 11448 times)

SargeW

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In preparation for the Alaska trip this question has come up.  This is something I would usually never do.
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ArdraF

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #1 on: October 03, 2011, 06:31:06 PM »
We always keep the fresh tank full because you never know what is up ahead, no matter how well prepared you think you are.  We've never been caught short and, in fact, have given water to people who got caught without any.  Guess I was a Girl Scout for too many years.  Always want to be prepared for emergencies and the unexpected.

ArdraF
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34footer

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2011, 06:35:11 PM »
Full water, spare tire, gas up often, just me and my way.
J
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seilerbird

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2011, 06:54:42 PM »
A full tank of water will not affect your gas mileage at all so I always travel with mine full.

Tom and Margi

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2011, 07:23:46 PM »
We always traveled with our water tank full, particularly on our Alaska trip.  (Tom was an Eagle Scout.)  I don't believe it affected our gas mileage all that much and didn't notice any significant power loss on our trip.
 
Margi

Scott-0168

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2011, 07:48:49 PM »
How long does water stay good anyway?  ;) ;D

Scott
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BigLarry

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2011, 08:47:21 PM »
There are many opportunities to boondock once you get onto the Alaskan Hwy.  We like to keep our tank full so we can keep all our options open.  We only fueled up once in Canada on the way up (Dawson Creek, BC) and once on the way back(Vanderhoof, BC).  The fuel was always cheaper in the US, even Skagway.  I don't remember Hyder, AK.  It's so isolated and so small, I'd be surprised if it would be much cheaper.
Larry and Betty
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Betty Brewer

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2011, 11:46:55 PM »
What Ardra said!

BB
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Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #8 on: October 04, 2011, 08:57:57 AM »
I would consider a half tank to be minimum and we mostly traveled BC & AK with full tanks. But then, we often stayed at undeveloped boondock locations, roadside lay-bys or state/provincial parks with no services.

There is no fuel available in Hyder - all services are across the border in Stewart, BC.
Gary
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Barb

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #9 on: October 04, 2011, 09:04:05 AM »
What Ardra said!

Same for us. Be prepared is always the best way to go. Water and fuel always full. Gray and black empty.
Barb
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CDN_Taxman

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #10 on: October 04, 2011, 09:06:43 AM »
A full tank of water will not affect your gas mileage at all so I always travel with mine full.

Seriously or are you meaning only a neglibile amout. A gallon of water weighs 10 lbs, so my personal tank would weigh an extra 400 lbs if full.

400 lbs over 6,500 lbs is only 6% but it HAS to drag down your mileage somewhat?

Mike
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Marsha/CA

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2011, 12:11:53 PM »
Sarge, we always travel with a full tank of water; or if we have been boondocking plan to fill it asap.   On our trip towards the Maritimes in Canada a couple of years ago, we ran into a problem with the campground water supply.  It was contaminated and we didn't want to drink it or fill our tank with it.  When we pulled it we were at 1/2 tank and were planning on staying for a week.   A couple of days after we pulled in, the campground water was cleared and ready for use.   Had we had a full tank when arriving, I would not have used their water at all, even after it had been cleared; but we were stuck.

Our rig weights 27,000 lbs and 100 gallons of water at 8lbs/gallon weighting 800 lbs is miniscule in the weight of the rig.  I'm almost positive it doesn't effect our mileage....my lead foot however does effect it.   ::)

Marsha~
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AndyinLexington

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2011, 12:17:07 PM »
Have not been to Alaska, but I always keep the water tank full. 
Andy Holmes
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SargeW

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #13 on: October 04, 2011, 12:58:07 PM »
Good info folks, I see a real trend developing here!
Marty--
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ArdraF

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2011, 02:08:18 PM »
Quote
How long does water stay good anyway?

Scott - A lot longer than many people think.  Months for sure.  And you can always add some bleach to the tank if you think it's been sitting too long.  On a trip to Alaska you'd be using it up much faster than it could go bad.  We use ours enough while on the road that we refill on a regular basis.  People who don't use their fresh water are more likely to have problems than those of us who use them.

ArdraF
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COMer

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #15 on: October 04, 2011, 04:25:10 PM »
What Tom probably meant was that the extra weight matters so little that it is not a factor and cannot be measured.  Around here we have a saying that we would use to answer the question.  We live near Lake Erie and we tell people that if you went down to the shore and spit in the lake, that technically, the water level would go up but not enough to notice.
John & Darla
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Lou Schneider

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #16 on: October 04, 2011, 04:46:40 PM »
Quote
A gallon of water weighs 10 lbs, so my personal tank would weigh an extra 400 lbs if full.

Canadian gallons may weigh 10 lbs, but we use the more energy-efficient 8.5 lb gallon here.  So be sure to fill your water tank before you leave the U.S.  ;D
« Last Edit: October 04, 2011, 04:51:02 PM by Lou Schneider »

seilerbird

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #17 on: October 04, 2011, 05:15:12 PM »
What Tom probably meant was that the extra weight matters so little that it is not a factor and cannot be measured.  Around here we have a saying that we would use to answer the question.  We live near Lake Erie and we tell people that if you went down to the shore and spit in the lake, that technically, the water level would go up but not enough to notice.
That is what I meant. If you had to lift up that much water it would take a large amount of energy. To put that much weight into a vehicle rolling on bearings doesn't use much energy at all. People on this forum that have a toad generally report their gas mileage decreases about a half a mile per gallon when towing. A toad generally weighs 2000 to 3000 pounds. I  have a 40 gallon water tank which would weight 350 pounds. My RV weighs 12,000 pounds. The extra weight will not have any affect on my gas mileage.

Len and Jo

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #18 on: October 04, 2011, 07:32:11 PM »
Never thought of traveling with a partial tank.  Always start thinking hard about topping tank off when it gets down to half a tank.  For us in a 'B' with a small tank that means getting serious about refilling every 3-4 days.  Normally not a big deal.
Len & Jo
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taoshum

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #19 on: October 04, 2011, 11:21:57 PM »
There's no shortage of water in AK... they probably have more water than the lower 48...I don't really know though.  There is a real shortage of hose bibs and plumbing hooked to water under pressure.  So unless you have a pump that will fill your tank from a "river", I'd fill the tank every chance you get.  Ranger stations usually have water, under pressure.  Sometimes the gas stations don't.  Marinas usually have water under pressure.  Be sure to have your regulator handy, the pressure could be over  100 psi though.
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CDN_Taxman

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #20 on: October 05, 2011, 11:19:12 AM »
Imperial Gallons vs. US gallons!!!!

http://wiki.answers.com/Q/How_much_does_one_gallon_of_water_weigh

I would hazard a guess that my trailer has a 40 US gallon water tank (pretty sure they don't put Imperial tanks into Canadian RV's!).

And, seeing how my trailer is only 6,500 lbs, I'll reduce the weight however I can!

Mike
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JerArdra

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #21 on: October 05, 2011, 01:18:40 PM »
Remember folks, your right foot is what really determines your gas mileage.

Lou, that was really cute re energy efficient water.  Here is a KUDU for you.

JerryF
JerryF  ;D  ;D

SargeW

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #22 on: October 05, 2011, 03:03:41 PM »
OK, I'm pretty well convinced. At least on the Alaska trip anyways! In the lower 48 I still run about 20% fresh. 
Marty--
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Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #23 on: October 05, 2011, 05:24:10 PM »
Get used to driving with full fuel and full fresh water when in northwestern Canada and Alaska. Especially after 8/31.

Realistically, you won't ever notice an extra 500-800 lbs of weight. The effect on tire rolling resistance is unmeasurable outside the lab.
Gary
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Wendy

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #24 on: October 05, 2011, 05:26:00 PM »
OK, I'm pretty well convinced. At least on the Alaska trip anyways! In the lower 48 I still run about 20% fresh.

Here I was beginning to think we were the odd ones since we only travel with a 1/4 tank of fresh water plus a few gallon jugs in the coach. If we traveled with a full tank, we'd be way overweight. And we're rarely going somewhere that we can't get water when we need it. Of course, there was last year at Quartzsite when the water pump was out when we got there and we had to make do with what we had for 3 days :)
 
Wendy
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Mavarick

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #25 on: October 05, 2011, 07:23:44 PM »
I used to run about ˝ tank until a MH backed over and broke a water line and we were without camp ground water for awhile. We had plenty in the tank but decided I would also keep my tank full like most do.
On another note we picked up this MH last Jan. So about the 3rd time I filled this Horizon up with fresh water I already knew it was going to take about 20 min, then I found out that you really need to open the “manual hand fill” door on the passenger side! When you get distracted and walk off (after about 3 min. in my case) and don’t hear the water coming out the overflow onto the ground things get wet real fast. With the fill door closed the water rushes up the tube, hits the door and promptly starts fighting whether to run into the MH floor around the fridge or just fill up the 2nd lower bay. I can tell you it does a good job of both! I never realized how much water my lower bay could hold….. :(
I now open the door and wait for the tank to fill without distraction. This was my latest (Duh) learning moment!  ::)
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SargeW

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #26 on: October 05, 2011, 07:34:05 PM »
I have always started looking for fuel when we get to around 1/2 tank, just as a normal practice. Will this still apply on the Alaska trip?
Marty--
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SargeW

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #27 on: October 05, 2011, 07:38:53 PM »
Get used to driving with full fuel and full fresh water when in northwestern Canada and Alaska. Especially after 8/31.

Is that due to campgrounds closing at the end of the season?
Marty--
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Barb

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #28 on: October 06, 2011, 07:50:32 AM »
There are many factors that are figured in, with the closing of seasonal business in AK.

The weather for one, and how well the business fared during the season for another.

I would not depend on any business to be opened after Aug 15th. Even if the book says they are opened until Sept. 15th. Including gas stations.

Call ahead, and keep well stocked with supplies.
Barb
2003 NRV Tradewinds LTC
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ArdraF

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #29 on: October 06, 2011, 03:48:57 PM »
Yes, I believe it's a good idea to fill the fuel tank by the time it gets around half full.  The distances in Alaska and Canada are much more than what we're used to and, if a fuel stop closes early for the season, you want to have enough to get to the next one.  Like Barb said, weather and the economic activity both play a large part in whether the businesses up there decide to stay open late or close early.

ArdraF
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SargeW

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Re: How many folks drive with full fresh water tanks enroute to Alaska?
« Reply #30 on: October 06, 2011, 08:13:07 PM »
Due to shuffling some stuff around, we will head into Canada in early July and be back in September sometime.  We should be OK as far as closures go.  Unless the schedule gets goofed up somehow!
Marty--
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