Possibly an odd question

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Chameleonxanth

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Hello Everyone, 

Apologies in advance for the long intro to my question; I probably should have put this in my actual intro.  ;)

In coming years, my family and I are all planning to retire, or begin our adult lives in RVs or trailers, depending on which one of us is involved. I swear, I really think there must be nomadic gene's in our line.

My husband and I want to retire in a large RV; I would like a motorcoach actually, but that doesn't seem likely unless we win the lottery.

Our 27-year-old daughter wants to get a trailer small enough that she can pull it with an SUV but that is self-contained, e.g., bed, bathroom, kitchenette, etc.

Our son, who is now 16, wants to get a Rialta or something similar when he's 18 and take off into the wild blue.

We enjoy talks about connecting with each other over various tech. and circling-up at different sites (preferably those at beaches) for holidays or family get-togethers.

Right now though, we know little to nothing about RV?ing, especially full-time Rv?ing, and have a lot of research to do, which is why I?ve joined this site. 

One of the things that I've been wondering about is long, hot showers in the RV. When bringing an RV in and hooking it up at a site, does the water just keep refilling the tanks or does it come straight from the site to the shower/faucet, bypassing the tanks?

In short, will I be able to take long, hot showers while we are hooked up at a site?

Thank you in advance and again, apologies for the long lead-in. :)
 

Ghostman

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Chameleonxanth said:
One of the things that I've been wondering about is long, hot showers in the RV. When bringing an RV in and hooking it up at a site, does the water just keep refilling the tanks or does it come straight from the site to the shower/faucet, bypassing the tanks? 
In short, will I be able to take long, hot showers while we are hooked up at a site?


Thank you in advance and again, apologies for the long lead-in. :)

If you are hooked up full time the water comes from the campground straight into your faucet. You just turn your water pump off going to the tank and use the CG water pressure.

That depends on your water heater. most water heaters only have 6-10 gallon tanks. this limits the amount of hot water. They do make on demand water heaters now. then you would have endless haot water. they are offered in newer RV's but also can be retro fitted into an existing. they are over $1000 right now though.

 

Optimistic Paranoid

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Short answer:  Yes.

Long Answer:  Most RV's have a gas fired hot water heater of about 6 gallons or so capacity.  When you are at a campground and hooked up to water by a hose, it not only skips your onboard water tank and goes directly to your sink and shower, it also goes directly to your water heater to replenish it automatically as it's used.  So assuming 6 gallons meets your definition of a "long hot shower . . ."

It is also possible to replace the tank type water heater with one of those 'on demand' water heaters, which would effectively give you unlimited hot water.  At which point the capacity of your gray water holding tank might be your limiting factor.
 

Larry N.

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One additional factor on hot water- many (not all) diesel coaches have a hydronic heating system such as Aqua Hot or Oasis, which supplies continuous hot water for as long as you run the water. Engine heat does the job while driving, but a diesel burner and an electric element supply the heat when parked. Obviously you need to be on full hookups to enjoy unlimited hot water, since you are otherwise limited to on-board tank capacities, both fresh water and waste tanks.

Otherwise, the 6 or 10 gallon water heaters are most prevalent, which limit how much hot water you can use before running out of hot water. But it's not quite as bad as it may sound, since the hot water in the tank is VERY hot, and you'll mix a little of it with a lot of cold water, plus it's still heating as you run it, but it can't keep up. You'll also need some recovery time for the tanks before the next person showers.
 

Chameleonxanth

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So, for the most part, while hooked up, I can take hot showers, wash my hair.  :)) Relief.  :)

I assumed it would be very different while not hooked up, but as of now, we are planning to stay mostly at sites for several weeks at a time, with very little boondocking.

This a great; I feel so informed now.

Thank you so much, everyone.  :) 
 

HappyWanderer

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Long, hot showers and RVs are not compatible. You get in the shower, get wet, soap up, rinse off, get out.

You'll learn to conserve resources: water, electricity, storage, etc. All will have limitations.
 

cerd

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There is another option that doesn't seem to have been mentioned. A lot of CGs have facilities with toilets and showers with hot water. I have seen grounds with coin operated showers and others that are unmetered. The last place we were at, I think cost $2.50 for a 15 minute shower, but 75 cents would get you 3 minutes, which was enough to freshen up.
 

Chameleonxanth

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HappyWanderer said:
Long, hot showers and RVs are not compatible. You get in the shower, get wet, soap up, rinse off, get out.

You'll learn to conserve resources: water, electricity, storage, etc. All will have limitations.

Am I misunderstanding what I read about being hooked-up at a site, the water bypassing the tanks?

If it's an issue with the heat, as another poster (sorry, I can't scroll up and get your name from here) mentioned,  the water tends to be very hot and will mix with cold.  -- I kind of take warmish showers, really, so I'm still optimistic.  :)

cerd said:
There is another option that doesn't seem to have been mentioned. A lot of CGs have facilities with toilets and showers with hot water. I have seen grounds with coin operated showers and others that are unmetered. The last place we were at, I think cost $2.50 for a 15 minute shower, but 75 cents would get you 3 minutes, which was enough to freshen up.

I hadn't thought of that.  If all else fails... Thank you.  :)
 

Chameleonxanth

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"The last place we were at, I think cost $2.50 for a 15 minute shower, but 75 cents would get you 3 minutes, which was enough to freshen up."

My hair is pretty long; I'll spend $5 and stay in there for a while.  ;)  :)
 

Isaac-1

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To answer the other part of your question about plumbing hook ups while camping.  In general fresh water hookups go straight to the plumbing in an RV and don't automatically refill the fresh water tank.  The holding tanks, particularly the black tank is kept closed, except when they are dumped after they get somewhat full, this helps prevents solids from building up in the bottom of the tank.  Some people that  want to take long showers may leave the gray tank open to the discharge hose to keep the gray tank from filling up (typically the kitchen sink and the shower are  connected to the gray tank, and toilet is connected to the black tank, the bathroom sink may go to either one).

As to how long the hot water lasts in a tank type heater, a lot depends on the temperature of the incoming cold water, having said my coach has a 6 gallon water heater that is dual powered propane and electric and I have always been able to take at least a 5  minute shower even with incoming cold water just above freezing.  Being dual powered it has  fast recovery, and will heat up cold water in under 30 minutes when both electric and propane are turned on at the same time.    Typical RV shower heads flow at about 2 gallons per minute.
 

Chameleonxanth

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Thank you for this information. :)

Lemme understand this, the water does not come in from the site pre-heated, but must be heated in the RV?

Forgive my "thickness" here please; I am at the know-nothing stage.   
 

darsben

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Chameleonxanth said:
Thank you for this information. :)

Lemme understand this, the water does not come in from the site pre-heated, but must be heated in the RV?

Forgive my "thickness" here please; I am at the know-nothing stage. 
Correct.
Now you can get a long hot rinse  If you first wet yourself down with warmish water. Most RV hoses have a shut off on them so once you are wet down turn off shower and wash all of your body. with a wet wash cloth and soap. Take your time because as you are washing the hot water is reheating.  Once you are soaped up you should have more than enough hot water for a nice long rinse which is what you want. I use this method and never have run out of hot water. It has gotten cooler at the end but never cold
 

Chameleonxanth

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darsben said:
Correct.
Now you can get a long hot rinse  If you first wet yourself down with warmish water. Most RV hoses have a shut off on them so once you are wet down turn off shower and wash all of your body. with a wet wash cloth and soap. Take your time because as you are washing the hot water is reheating.  Once you are soaped up you should have more than enough hot water for a nice long rinse which is what you want. I use this method and never have run out of hot water. It has gotten cooler at the end but never cold

Um, but my hair.  :(  -- Someone else posted about new RV's coming with a continuous heating system and the possibility of retrofitting older ones.  Ima hang onto that hope, for now. 

What you've described though, I have done at home, when not washing my hair, when others have showered before me and I don't have time to wait.  Long ago, now.

You know, I saw a picture of a retro/refurbished Air Stream with a freaking claw-footed-tub in it.  I wonder now if that was a decoration?  Because I could totally wash my hair in a bath.  :)

Thanks again.  I love this site. 
 

Optimistic Paranoid

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Well . . .

There's a type of RV called a 'toy hauler'.  Basically, it contains a large compartment that people can carry motorcycles or off-road machines in.

If you or your husband or some other family member is the type that's handy with tools, that compartment could be modified to hold a full size bathtub and household size water heater.  It would be hard to drain the tub into the gray tank, so you'd have to rig it to drain directly to the dump hook up on your site.

This would limit you to sites with a 'full' hookup, as opposed to sites that only have an electrical and water connection.

Anyway, it's an option.
 

SpencerPJ

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Chameleonxanth said:
In short, will I be able to take long, hot showers while we are hooked up at a site?

If your # concern is if you will be able to take 'Long Hot Showers' , no disrespect mam, but RV life might not be the best retirement plan for you.  Just my opinion  :))
 

Chameleonxanth

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Optimistic Paranoid said:
Well . . .

There's a type of RV called a 'toy hauler'.  Basically, it contains a large compartment that people can carry motorcycles or off-road machines in.

If you or your husband or some other family member is the type that's handy with tools, that compartment could be modified to hold a full size bathtub and household size water heater.  It would be hard to drain the tub into the gray tank, so you'd have to rig it to drain directly to the dump hook up on your site.

This would limit you to sites with a 'full' hookup, as opposed to sites that only have an electrical and water connection.

Anyway, it's an option.

Thank you for this.  :)  Unfortunately, none of us is currently very "handy," but who knows?  We will likely have to become so in the future, at least to some extent, to facilitate our RV life. 
 

Chameleonxanth

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spencerpj said:
If your # concern is if you will be able to take 'Long Hot Showers' , no disrespect mam, but RV life might not be the best retirement plan for you.  Just my opinion  :))

:) No offense taken; I appreciate the validity of your comment and agree that if long, hot showers were my main concern I should probably rethink my future plans. 

However, while I am hopeful about the role showers will play in my future RV life, they are not my main concern. Indeed there are issues of far greater importance that have lead me, and my family, toward this choice.  :)
 

Isaac-1

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Keep in mind most RV showers are on the small side, personally at 6 ft tall and 200 pounds I find the Neo-Angle (5 sided) showers or the newer similar rounded front models to be the most practical.  My coach has a  32 inch neo angle shower in it, which I find functional, but I often wish it were a 34 or even the rare 36 inch.  The down side to neo-angle showers is that the doorway opening can be a bit tight to fit through for larger people, sensitive parts, cold glass/metal and all that.
 

Chameleonxanth

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Isaac-1 said:
Keep in mind most RV showers are on the small side, personally at 6 ft tall and 200 pounds I find the Neo-Angle (5 sided) showers or the newer similar rounded front models to be the most practical.  My coach has a  32 inch neo angle shower in it, which I find functional, but I often wish it were a 34 or even the rare 36 inch.  The down side to neo-angle showers is that the doorway opening can be a bit tight to fit through for larger people, sensitive parts, cold glass/metal and all that.

A solid point.  As I am 5' tall and my husband is 5'8," I think we're okay on this one.  ;) 

"...sensitive parts, cold glass/metal and all that."  Yikes.  :/
 

Optimistic Paranoid

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Chameleonxanth said:
I swear, I really think there must be nomadic gene's in our line.

You know, technically being a nomad is not the same as being a gypsy or a wanderer.  Nomads are not people who move about freely as the whim takes them.  They are people who follow the herds.  It's the HERDS who move about freely as the whim takes THEM.

So, you and your family have an overwhelming urge to follow a herd of buffalo?

(grinning, ducking, and running)

 
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