Sierra Nevada Airstreams -> TT Owner's Guide -> Living - Enjoyment of the whispering winds, the zephyrs, the airstreams of the Sierra Nevada and Great Basin areas of the United States.


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In your home you turn on the water tap, take a shower, start the dishwasher or the laundry, water comes on and goes out the drain and all is well and doesn't require a second thought - usually. When you are out in your RV water usage does require some thought, especially if you like dry camping (depending upon your RV tanks only).

One of the most common habits of new RV'rs is to run the water untill it is hot and then fill up the sink to wash the dishes. The next thing you know the gray water tank is full and there is no water left in the fresh water tank. If you are parked in a full facility lot - no big deal and easy to remedy. If you are out on your own then you have a problem. The following tips provide some ideas of how to use water wisely when water is scarce and disposal requires planning.

The most important thing to remembers is to use the majority of your water on rinsing and minimize the amount you use for washing. This is true whether it is dishes, your hair, or yourself.

Tips for dishes

I prefer to heat my washing water on the stove. You are less like to run out of propane than water and you can get the water hot without having to run the faucet until it is the right temperature. This saves water for other purposes such as bathing.

If I have used a big pot to cook in I often use that for the dish washing basin. First clean out the pot with a paper towel, heat the water in the pot, then proceed washing your dishes.

Tips for bathing

These tips are for bathing in RV's with the proper facilities. Bathing while tent camping or in other circumstances without standard bathing facilities is a whole different topic.

Most RV's are equipped with an on/off shower head which, when used effectively, helps conserve water. When you are ready to bathe, run the water just till the temp is right. Briefly run the water over your head and face and then shut off the water. You should be damp over most of your head and body but not soaking wet. Once you have washed your face, turn the water on briefly and rinse. This rinse will further dampen the rest of you. Turn the water off then soap down the rest of your body including soaping or shampooing your head.

When you have scrubbed and shampooed your hair then - with the water still off - squeegee your hair to get the majority of the shampoo out. Start at the forehead and use your hand to shove the shampoo down the back of your head and out of your hair. Turn the water on just briefly then repeat the squeegee process. When you have gotten most of the shampoo out of your hair then it is time for a good final rinse. Turn the water on, starting with your head rinse your hair thoroughly then work down your body. Give a final squirt to the tub to rinse out and use a cloth or paper towel to clean out the tub if needed.

Tooth brushing


“A trick taught me years ago by an old RVer was to keep a spray bottle of soapy water handy. You can use it in the shower when you start drying out before rinsing to re-wet yourself and the wash cloth. In fact, if water is really limited, you can skip the wet down and just use the spray bottle. You can save water with the spray bottle when washing your hands. A few spritzes in the toilet bowl before use minimizes "tracking" and the need for using the toilet sprayer. You can use the sprayer to wash lightly soiled dishes, then rinse them.” - Maurice aka RoadKingMoe on RV.NET

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