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Old 11-17-2005, 07:29 PM   #1
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Bought the double water filter system from Vagabond. Should I install so that water is filtered before entering holding tank or when leaving tank/city water system. Also where is the best place to physically mount filters? 36' FDDS
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Old 11-17-2005, 07:29 PM   #2
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Bought the double water filter system from Vagabond. Should I install so that water is filtered before entering holding tank or when leaving tank/city water system. Also where is the best place to physically mount filters? 36' FDDS
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Old 11-18-2005, 04:20 AM   #3
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If you want to go to the trouble install the water filters before the water goes anywhere. That way no matter where ever your souce of water is, it will always be filtered. I created a small wall mount and put it beside the Glenndenning cord retriever. I actually used garden hose to hook it all up and put a fitting on the incoming filter with a 45? for a water hose connection with a quick coupling. Easy, fast, secure & convenient. I know feed the incoming city water hose up through the electrical opening(it is really not as scary as it sounds). I feel certain that the experts will have a great deal to say about the water hose that I used for piping. By the way, it works great.

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Old 11-18-2005, 05:25 AM   #4
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I modified the water filtration system on my coach. The way it came, the water filter was on the output side of the pump or city water system. The existing filter was very restrictive so I replaced it with a Hydro-Life filter that featured better water flow capacity.

Many "experts" suggest placing the filter in the water system line rather than before the water tank. The reasoning for this is that, if you have a good water filter, you may be filtering the chlorine out of your water supply. If the chlorine was taken out the possibility exists that you may get algae or other bugaboos growing in your tank. By filtering after the tank, you get your water filtered anyway before you drink it and the chlorine still makes it into the water tank - hopefully protecting it.

However, I'm not all that fond of that idea. I've seen plenty of posts in the past regarding dirty fresh water tanks. There's a lot of "stuff" that can make it into a campground's water system, especially since many are run off a well. There are a few horror stories out there about RVers who have gotten sand stuffed into their system so bad that things had to be replaced.

So, I replumbed my system to install the Hydro Life filter on the water input side. That way everything gets filtered. After doing so, I have to admit that when I change the water filter there is enough stuff in the filter and housing that I'm glad didn't make it into the tank. This way my system is better protected. I flush the tank often enough and sanitize it every spring and haven't had any issues with any growth. Then again, Wisconsin isn't that warm, winter is long, and we generally travel to the mountains out west (cooler) in summer. If we lived in Arizona I may have a different outlook on this.

As a final step, I installed a Seagull IV water filter underneath the kitchen sink. It's a larger size that filters the cold water going into the sink and ice maker. The Seagull IV is one of those "super filters" (and priced accordingly) that is generally used by the caravans to Mexico. So, I'm confident it'll take care of anything that makes it that far.
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Old 11-18-2005, 11:40 AM   #5
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"Ideal" filtration, IMO, is specific to one's habits. Some have high rate of changeover in tank water, some always connected to city water, some live off tank but w/long hold-over periods. You could customize to specific habits.
The OEM system in new coaches has the hose coupling run to (or around if by-pass valved accordingly) both filters, then to the selector vavle for City/Tank-fill so all water to coach is coarse & carbon filtered unless filters are bypassed. Another approach would be to coarse filter all water to the City/Tank-fill selector, then carbon filter water coming out of tank (leaving tank chlorinated), basically splitting the filters to two locations; it would be cumbersome split the filters and still carbon filter after-tank and city water due to cumbersome valving & valve operation, so by splitting the filters to 2 locations you would likely not carbon filter city water leaving it chlorinated. So the OEM approach is a compromise that makes valving managable, and filters all water to coach whether destined for tank or direct to fixtures. I think it is a good compromise covering a lot of user habits. If the coach is going to sit a long time, you can dump the tank & close the valve (keeps bugs outa the 1.5" opening to tank while sitting).
W/the filters, if you need to chlorinate the tank and/or internal plumbing later, you can drain the system including low points, spin off the carbon filter & pull element, pour your chlorine (bleach or whatever) into canister & reassemble w/out an element, & flush water thru tank/lines. Empty, reflush & re-empty system, then install new carbon element & you're Fresh as a Daisy.
It is a popular misconception that canister type filters reduce disolved salts & minerals (TDS); they do but only by about 5%. So soluble pollutants are still going into your tank or city-fed lines at essentially source levels. Only way to get around that is to add reverse osmosis in line which reduces TDS to <5% of source levels. The only practical way to get enough flow for showers, etc. is to fill tank w/RO water & run off the tank. The new 50psi quiet pump makes that pleasant.
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Old 11-21-2005, 08:50 PM   #6
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E-Mike is correct, as usual! If you have the reverse osmosis system and start with a sanitary tank, it's not likely you will grow anything in it, as a properly maintained ro system will not pass bacteria, mold, spores, etc.

IIWM, I would place the filters ahead of the tank in any case, for reasons already stated.
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Old 11-21-2005, 08:56 PM   #7
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Jerry,

With all the parts you took home, I thought you would have the system installed by now. You can call me if you are having problems or questions. 509-952-3104
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Old 11-22-2005, 08:00 PM   #8
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Hey Vagabondman, how much is the cost of the R&O option when buying Alpine Coach? The reason I'm asking I just bought an external one hear at Quartzite for $325. and plumbed it to run into my holding tank, everything seems to work great. Thanks for any information
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Old 11-27-2005, 05:03 PM   #9
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pdiddley,

'Sorry for the delay - I have been consumed with grandkids the last few days.

You can get the answers to your questions at:

Vagabond Water

To answer your question about retrofiting an Alpine, it depends on the year of your coach. The 2005's + come with the filter system and require a membrane retrofit kit that comes complete with panel mount pressure gauges, tubing, valves and fittings. If you have an older rig, you will need the complete unit as shown on the web page noted above.

I hesitate to go into too much detail here as I don't want to violate the forum rules.

You may e-mail me direct(frankerouse@charter.net) or call me at 509-952-3104 if you like. I am curious to know what you bought for $325. What is the daily output, does it have both sediment and carbon filters, and what size is the membrane? The Vagabond unit is rated at 300 gallons per day and is 2.5" X 21".

Thanks for your interest.
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Old 01-22-2006, 04:03 PM   #10
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Discovered an interesting thing about RO efficiency while in Mexico. Our lot there sees ~25-35 psi from the spigot. Running the RO with the TDS comparator (compares incoming H2O quality to post-RO quality) gave a 700:67 ratio, about 90% removal of disolved solids. On the lot @ Lake Havasu City, AZ I got 700:27 or 96% removal at 65psi. Higher pressure moves more water thru the membrane, but also increases RO membrane effectiveness.
I'm thinking of adding a pressure pump between the city line and the RO membrane to gain the advantage while parked at low pressure parks.
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Old 01-23-2006, 08:16 AM   #11
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HI MIKE,

YEP, YOU'RE RIGHT! THERE IS A DIRECT RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN PRESSURE/TEMPERATURE AND PRODUCT FLOW AND QUALITY. THE PRODUCT FLOW WILL BE A PRETTY LINEAR RELATIONSHIP WITH PRESSURE. THE MEMBRANE IS RATED AT 107PSI AND 77 DEGREES. AT 50 PSI YOU CAN EXPECT ABOUT 50 PERCENT FLOW AND SOME DROP IN EFFICIENCY ( PERCENT REJECTION). THERE IS AN EQUATION THAT GIVES THE RELATIONSHIP WITH TEMPERATURE DROP - "SORRY, I DON'T HAVE THAT WITH ME . THAT'S WHY I PICKED A 300 GPD MEMBRANE. UNDER NORMAL CIRCUMSTANCES IN THE U.S., THERE WILL NOT BE A NEED FOR A PUMP. I FEEL PUMPS ARE NOISEY AND JUST ADD COST AND MAINTENANCE, WHICH THE AVERAGE JOE WANTS TO AVOID. THAT SAID, IF I WERE IN MEXICO WITH MARGINAL PRESSURE, AND, GIVEN THE RELIABILITY OF THEIR WATER PURIFICATION, I WOULD ADD A PUMP TOO. YOU CAN GET A SPARE PUMP FOR YOUR RIG AND USE IT FOR THE RO BOOSTER.

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Old 01-23-2006, 09:15 AM   #12
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Frank, That's about the summary of my analysis as well, i.e. hate adding a pump if not needed cuz I need a) electricity, b) location including fittings, c) possible valving & bypass circuit for both a and b if pump is to be occasional. I'd probably use the Aquatec 8800 pump
For north of the border, usually, the membrane sizing is perfect for our rigs w/out a pressure pump.
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Old 01-23-2006, 06:01 PM   #13
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YEP, THAT PUMP SHOULD WORK FINE - IF YOU CAN STAND THE RELATED INSTALLATION ISSUES. ARE YOU WARM DOWN THERE?
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Old 01-24-2006, 10:05 AM   #14
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Mulege & Loreto (about 635 and 710 miles south of San Diego respectively) vascillated between 65 and 80 degrees during our stay. Some wind, but Mulege lies in an east-west gorge off the Sea of Cortez, so the mostly north-south winds were not a great problem when they visited.
Night temps were in the high 40's to mid 50's. Mexicans had their artic gear on in the mornings. The gringos dress in sweats over shorts & the sweats come off about 10:00 & go back on around sundown. Palm trees, watching the osprey pick off fish from the river (view from my lot), the usual winter nuisances.
I hope that's the "warm down there" you were questioning; otherwise we're gettin kinda personal
Now if I can just get the electric service to stop smoking... I have a new RV panel (50/30/20 amp receptacles/breakers) for my next visit to get rid of the screw-in fuses.
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