Will the water to go off or taste bad??

Hi People,
New to this site, so forgive me if I get this wrong.

I am curious to get people's thoughts/experinces with leaving water in a caravan water tank, for a period of time stored underneath the van so that the water doesn't go off or taste bad

I want to place 2 Black plastic 90ltr water tanks under the floor of a 80's model van.

The Van will be in storage over summer along the Murray River but every second weekend we will get it out of storage and park it along the River. I will need to fill the tanks at Christmas time, and will top up the water tanks each time we go and use it.
.... This means some of the water will be in the tanks for upto 2 months!!

From what I have read so far, I know to use food grade pipe/hoses (this will reduce the chance of the plastic taste), but I have not heard a lot about leaving water in the tanks for a period if time.


All advise/suggestions/experiences would be appreciated.

Thanks
Nick
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Reply By: Member - Oldplodder (QLD) - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 13:10

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 13:10
We use our CT on an irregular basis, and often forget to empty the tank.

Find that the water is still OK about 2 to 3 months later.
No bad taste or sign of slime.

It is treated Brisbane water, so most probably will have some chlorine in it when it goes in.

But I would boil it first before I use it for drinking just in case after 2 or 3 months.
AnswerID: 419376

Follow Up By: Fatso - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 19:49

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 19:49
No bad taste or sign of slime.

It is treated Brisbane water,

You gotta be joking eh Oldplodder.
If the water out of my tank tasted like Brisbane water I would change it.
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Reply By: Member - Mark G Gulmarrad - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 13:11

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 13:11
Nick

i find the best thing to do us just drain your tank and let it dry out, there for eliminating any chance of anything growing in your tank.
next time you go to fill the tank just let the water run through it for a minute or so then replace your bungs and away you go.


AnswerID: 419377

Follow Up By: GerryP - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 20:15

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 20:15
The theory is good, but in practice I doubt the tank would fully dry while still connected, at least not for a very long time. Having a nice moist environment may induce growth, even without direct sunlight.

Personally, I tend to top mine up and then (if I remember) change the water before the next trip.

Cheers
Gerry
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Reply By: Member - mazcan - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 13:31

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 13:31
hi ozzinick

you really have 2 choices either keep the tank full to the brim or drain them if you cant top them up before storage period

algae need air and light to grow and does this in a partly filled tank
but wont grow if the tank is left full

or as mentioned drain it and leave bung out then flush and refill
i have left my caravan for months on end with a full tank parked beside my house no problems

but on another accasion left it half full and it grew algae in a short space of time

i wrapped my tank in 3 layers of floor vinyl and this acts as a reliable stone gard and also blocks out light sources
cheers
AnswerID: 419380

Follow Up By: Spade Newsom - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 14:10

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 14:10
Mazcan,

Is this factual, commonly accepted as good practice in the/your caravaning fraternity or just your experience? (Maybe a combination of all three)

I have only ever emptied the tank on the CT and never thought too much otherwise about the science of it.
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Follow Up By: Member - mazcan - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 23:27

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 23:27
hi spade
i have practised what i preached above from 1980 when i bought my first van right through to 2005 when i quit my third van and if you read the other threads herein
you will see others do like wise with good results and its all 3 for me over many years
as i said algae needs -air /space and sunlight to grow a full black poly tank and black poly connecting hoses deprives it of these elements
it only ever grew in my tank when left half full like someone else said you can drain a tank but it does'nt mean the tank is bone dry

and i found out by trial and error that mine alway had water still in it even after i thought i had drained it and thats all algae needs to start growing quiet rapidly

i have also had many years of experience on a farm with the same issues in water tanks and troughs exposed to sunlight and air half full and full
what more can i say
take it or disbeleive it the choice is entirely yours does'nt really bother me i'm easy no sweat
but i dont write stuff on here to mislead anyone and hope it is of use and hopefully
be helpfull to someone if not all
cheers and enjoy a good drop of h2o
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Follow Up By: Spade Newsom - Friday, Jun 04, 2010 at 09:49

Friday, Jun 04, 2010 at 09:49
Mazcan,
I was not trying to be a doubting Thomas. Just genuinely interested in the background of the practice.

When is algae actually bad for you?

I grew up where our drinking water came directly from a dam that was full of slime about 50 acres in area. The inlet point was less than 100 metres from our house. The home tank the was stored had a healthy lining of slime also. The only filtering was for the benift of the water pump and not the consumers. Don't recall it tasting bad as we probably just thought that taste was normal. All the additives gave the water "texture".

I know some algae are toxic but surely most aren't. Otherwise I would be dead.
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Follow Up By: Member - mazcan - Friday, Jun 04, 2010 at 10:19

Friday, Jun 04, 2010 at 10:19
hi spade
now your digging deep
i really dont know the specific reason what or when it becomes toxic but the algae blooms they get in rivers /streams and lakes seems to be the stuff thats toxic as it kills fish and bird life
but it receives run off water from polluted areas all sorts of contaminants a lot more so than a roof catchment
ive drank water like you from static supplies where algae was present and provided you dont stur it up must be ok as like you i'm still alive
but maybe/ could be a bit green -----lol
cheers
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Reply By: Moose - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 13:50

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 13:50
Nick
You got it wrong first go - see your heading :-)
AnswerID: 419383

Reply By: Member -Dodger - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 15:04

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 15:04
Simple solution.
As you have said you will get it out of storage around every second weekend.
When storing the van simply top the tanks right up this way the water will stay fine and ready to roll for your next weekend on the river.
My van is occasionally stored for up to 3 months and I leave the tanks 3x60ltr jobs full without ever having water problems.
As these tanks under the van are black and the connections to van and filler are also black pipe no light ever gets into the tanks.

The other alternative is to take fresh water for drinking only Viz. 10 or 20ltr container and use the van tanks for washing up cleaning etc.


I used to have a handle on life, but it broke.

Cheers Dodg.

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AnswerID: 419389

Reply By: Member - Alastair D (NSW) - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 16:56

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 16:56
As has been said providedthe tanks are air and light tight they should be ok for the short time between use. However be cautious each time you use it for the first time and add some purifier if you are at all suspicious.

The following product is safe and reliable. Once you get algae of bateria into your tank it is a fair effort to get rid of it.

Davey water treatment

This remids me to check our camper as it has been a fair while since used and I have a trip planned shortly!!

alastair
AnswerID: 419405

Reply By: Motherhen - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 19:28

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 19:28
Hi Nick

Water does not go off - but can get algal growth if in the sunlight. Highly unlikely in a dark enclosed caravan tank. We have left ours untouched for two years then just topped up for the next trip. We do not drain our caravan tanks. It is better than our water tanks which have some sunlight through roof openings, and the water sits there for years just getting topped up each winter (unless we run out - but we don't let that happen). Scheme water in cities if often supplemented by bores which access water that may have be lying underground for tens of thousands of years. Water itself does not go off.

Motherhen
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Follow Up By: Member - xrdave (QLD) - Friday, Jun 04, 2010 at 10:18

Friday, Jun 04, 2010 at 10:18
X2
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Follow Up By: tg123 - Friday, Jun 04, 2010 at 10:47

Friday, Jun 04, 2010 at 10:47
Couldn't agree more - lived on rainwater for over 16 yrs in the country and only problem was when small animals or birds sometimes got in the tank. Never drain my camper trailer tanks and water seems good. Just to be safe though I always take a few 10L 'cubes' and use these exclusively for drinking water, hot drinks, cooking and cleaning teeth. Use my water tanks for dishes, washing up, showers etc. Even have two kettles, one for each water type. Main reason for being a bit paranoid is that I know I've got good water quality at home but have no idea really when topping up all over the place. 10L cubes are cheap and readily available. Cheap insurance.

Cheers

TG
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Follow Up By: Motherhen - Friday, Jun 04, 2010 at 14:02

Friday, Jun 04, 2010 at 14:02
We have one caravan tank for drinking water only, so revert to that only if normal fill water doesn't pass the taste test or if we run out of general water, although we only top up any tanks with water we think is OK. If water is a bit sus, but OK for washing etc, i use it straight from the bucket (this also allows any sediment in river water to settle).

Mh
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Reply By: Member - Andrew (QLD) - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 20:23

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 20:23
The 3 guidelines for best quality water:

- Filter water IN
- Filter water OUT
- Keep the tank and system clean

Having said that, not in all cases can we maintain the water in perfect condition. Treatment may be needed.

If you need to keep the water rather than drain after each trip, i would recommend one of the oldest treatment methods: Silver (ions). A good product is Katadyn Micropur Classic which will treat and limit algae growth for 6 months. The powder or liquid would the preferred method based on your dosage.

Just another option.
Andrew
AnswerID: 419427

Reply By: Member - Ups and Downs - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 20:35

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 20:35
What would be different to a tank in the backyard collecting rainwater?

They sit there all year, sometimes full, often not, and maybe not topped up for months.

Why wouldn't the water in the van be OK, as is the water from the tanks?
The van tank would be sealed off better than the backyarder.

Paul
AnswerID: 419431

Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 21:41

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 21:41
Yep, and you probably would not want to know what birds, reptiles and whatever members of the rat and mouse family are called do on and in your roof and gutters that act as a water catchment for said tanks.

Bon appetite

Cheers Pop
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Follow Up By: Motherhen - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 21:55

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 21:55
Hi Paul; my sentiments exactly.

As Pop says, these tanks get all sorts of added flavouring and substances to build up our immune systems. I have family and friends in town who regularly come out and fill there drinking water bottles with what ever has accumulated in our tank rather than drink the chemical treated water in town. Water is only boiled for drinking if used in a cup of coffee or tea.

Mh
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Reply By: Ianw - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 20:56

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 20:56
We only have water stored in black plastic tanks ! We have 2 x 25000 litre tanks which fill up in the winter and last us for the rest of the year. Not a problem, just keep light out and you will get no algae, keep fillers closed and you will get no crawlies. You can get stuff to treat rainwater tanks but we don't bother. Nobodys got sick yet !!!

Ian
AnswerID: 419432

Follow Up By: Member - mazcan - Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 23:51

Thursday, Jun 03, 2010 at 23:51
hi ianw
i have simular size tanks here in bunbury at my house
and use it all year round as i cant stand the poison that comes through the scheme pipes it makes me feel sick if i drink it i take water to perth when i go cant drink their frog pee either

i flush my gutters out 3 times a year if need be
but usually twice is enough my tanks are fibre glass and black inside and no light gets in
i looked in them today with a spot light and theres no algae and every one that comes here and has a cup of tea say its the best cuppa they'd had in a long time whats my secret ---the answer is ---------rain water
i only turn on the scheme water to wash the driveway/patio or dirt off the vehicles together with truck wash
cheers
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