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Old 08-07-2010, 09:40 AM   #1
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Question Keeping Fresh Water in Holding Tanks for Extended Time

We have our RV primarily for tailgating at Alabama Football games (Roll Tide!), although we use it for occasional weekend getaways. But living in Alabama we also have the threat of tornadoes and other natural disasters. I read an article recently about using your RV in the event of natural disasters, and it suggested keeping your fresh water holding tank full in case you need to use your RV for shelter. But I haven't seen anything that says how long it is safe to keep the water in the tanks before you should drain, flush, sanitize and refill. Any thoughts?
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Old 08-07-2010, 10:07 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sactrndklr View Post
But I haven't seen anything that says how long it is safe to keep the water in the tanks before you should drain, flush, sanitize and refill. Any thoughts?
sactrndklr, Fresh water holding tanks are not the cleanest things but they will hold water for sanitary and shower use for a reasonable length of time. In the event that an emergency is declared, fill your holding tanks at that time if you have the option to do so.
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Old 08-07-2010, 10:25 AM   #3
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screw your water tanks, you think that an extra 300-400lbs (water weighs little over 8lbs/gallon) is going to do you any good in the event of an F4 tornado???? Not sure about yours, but when a truck passes me when i'm sitting on the shoulder of a highway it rocks the rv, that is a 60-75mph wind gust, an F4 twister is rated at 207-260mph (unless you're in Oklahoma, then that is a daily breeze), your RV is a sitting duck on opening day. Your RV makes trailer house people feel like they live in a concrete mansion. If you are in an area of emergency you treat that RV like a Prius!! GET OUT! don't be the one on the news the next day being hauled off on a stretcher cause they finally found you and the news woman saying that this person is barely alive when they thought their RV weighted down by a full water tank would save their lives and refused to evacuate....

PLEASE DON'T DO THIS, AND WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU SAW SIRENS GO OFF AND YOU HAD TIME TO FILL A 50-100 GALLON WATER TANK?

JUST GRAB YOUR STUFF, FIRE UP THE TOAD AND GET OUT! NO TOAD? FIND A NEIGHBOR!

**caps isn't yelling, just stating a statement**
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Old 08-07-2010, 10:27 AM   #4
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Sanitize, get new filter(s), drain your tank and refill on a regular schedule. Most city water systems are chlorinated which also helps. If you don't trust your tank, carry bottled water for drinking. As far as using your RV for an "escape" in bad weather...like Chris said.
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Old 08-07-2010, 10:36 AM   #5
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Thanks for the replies.
For ChrisNiemann, I never implied going through a tornado in an RV,. But 3 years ago when Prattville was hit by tornadoes, our House was OK and we had water, but no electricity for 5 days. i went to the storage lot, brought my RV home, and we cooked and took showers in it.
I guess I mis-stated the intention... using an RV as an alternate place to live after a natural disaster, and that was the intent of the original article
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Old 08-07-2010, 10:41 AM   #6
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Hey guys .... I'm on the South Carolina Coast and if they call for an evacuation here, it's not going to happen 5 minutes before the Hurricane comes barreling in here. There's normally going to be 48 to 36 hours notice.

There are plenty of sanctuaries away from the coast and given enough time your own RV with all your stuff in it would make for a good refugee shelter until the storm passes. I've evacuated from MYR three times that I can remember however I was directly on the beach at a campground.

I believe that the OP was interested in using the water as a resource and not a weight.

If you are in a tornado warning in your RV, I was, stuff happens much too fast to plan anything and the recommendation there is to lock it up and leave for a hard shelter or a hole in the ground. An RV will splinter.

One other consideration, they also float very well so watch out for flood zones.
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Old 08-07-2010, 11:16 AM   #7
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I have used my motorhome as a method of escape in both Hurricanes Rita & Ike. It got me AWAY from the hurricane and gave me a place to live (with power) until electricity was restored to my house (1 - 2 weeks). When Hurricane Ike hit the Houston area I was fortunate enough to be able to borrow a generator from Don Allen (THANKS again, Don) and keep my refrigerator and freezer running while I stayed in a nearby campground with power (my dogs and I appreciated the AC). I would go to work at my office (without power) then go by and check my house every day. Finally my neighbor called to say the power had been restored so I could go home.
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Old 08-07-2010, 02:07 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sactrndklr View Post
Thanks for the replies.
For ChrisNiemann, I never implied going through a tornado in an RV,. But 3 years ago when Prattville was hit by tornadoes, our House was OK and we had water, but no electricity for 5 days. i went to the storage lot, brought my RV home, and we cooked and took showers in it.
I guess I mis-stated the intention... using an RV as an alternate place to live after a natural disaster, and that was the intent of the original article
I think you articulated your intention quite well.
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Old 08-07-2010, 02:23 PM   #9
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Nice friendly response there Chris.
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Old 08-07-2010, 09:59 PM   #10
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I have used my RV as a place to stay when Ike came through the area, but I was 100 miles away. Guess what. That was not far enough. Every once in a while when we are at at good water source (tasty), I'll pull the drain release, and then re-fill to about 1/3 tank capacity, maybe a little less. That gives us enough when we are traveling for the toilet, washing hands, and if we need to, take a shower or two, using conservation methods. Wet down, turn water off, soap up, turn water on and rinse off.

Speaking of emergencies, if you are on the Gulf Coast, 72 hours, or more, before landfall is when you want to start heading inland. During Rita, I was delayed by four hours. We went 150 miles, in a car, in 15 and 1/2 hours. Talk about grid lock. Everyone seems to wait until the last minute and then they all try to leave town at the same time. It just doesn't work.

I leave the water in the tank until the next time I travel. Usually it is within 6 weeks. But if I had to, I could use the water in there and I would be at peace with my self that the water would be okay.
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Old 08-07-2010, 11:16 PM   #11
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RV places and Walmart sell an drinking water additive which is placed in the tank on fill up and keeps the water fresh for quite a period of time. It will keep water useable for at least 3 months even in summer weather. have used it for years and always keep water in the tank in case of an emgergency/ Just drain and flush tank from time to time and no there isn't any crud coming out of tank and no has gotten sick
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Old 08-08-2010, 07:00 AM   #12
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Lighten up guys. The OP was very clear in his intentions for the RV.

I work in disaster services and an RV is a valuable asset that most can not afford. Although it it is not "storm proof" a MH stocked with caned goods and water can be a life saver.

Treated water will last for several months at least.
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Old 08-08-2010, 07:07 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sactrndklr View Post
Thanks for the replies.
For ChrisNiemann, I never implied going through a tornado in an RV,. But 3 years ago when Prattville was hit by tornadoes, our House was OK and we had water, but no electricity for 5 days. i went to the storage lot, brought my RV home, and we cooked and took showers in it.
I guess I mis-stated the intention... using an RV as an alternate place to live after a natural disaster, and that was the intent of the original article

hehe remember that well , just missed us up on 31 , step daughter was werking at walmart that day , called blabbering bloody murder
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Old 08-08-2010, 07:00 PM   #14
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It seems that most are concerned about a tornatdo or hurricane. Here in the NW they aren't a big concern and when they do we hear about them after the fact. Our big threat is wind (maybe 40/60 mph) or an eathquake which is rare (a distructive one anyway). A tank full of water is much better than our pond or the little seasonal creek. When we get wind, the threat is trees/limbs knocking out the power. No power no water unless you are on city water and not always then. At times some people go days before getting the power back.
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