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Old 07-25-2011, 12:40 AM   #1
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Rainwater collection for potable water?

As I plan my future project I keep pondering the idea of using the roof as part of a rainwater collection system to fill the potable water tank when needed.I envision a way to channel the runoff into a collection drain with possibly the following setup to get clean water:
- A large screen over the drain opening to filter out large debris such as leaves.
- A smaller micron screen past this to catch even finer particles.
- A diverter pipe (Y) to let the first few minutes of rain flush off most gross contaminents, dirt, etc from the roof before switching to the tank.
- Some type of filter assembly to clean the water before it enters the tank (carbon, charcoal, etc).
- Last step would to treat the water with normal bleach or possibly an installed UV light setup to sanitize it.

Does anyone have a rainwater collection setup on their rig and if so how is it set up? Feedback on this setup greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 07-25-2011, 08:44 AM   #2
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Re: Rainwater collection for potable water?

Thanks. As far as the tank filling there can be an overflow put in so it automatically dumps any excess water once full. Would also close the inlet valve once this happens and the water would be diverted through the "Y" fitting, or cap the drain at the top so it just flows ouf the roof normally.
I guess it depends on my ultimate intended use for the truck and where I would spend most of the time (i.e. availability of fill water vs. boondocking for long periods; dry country vs. area with lots of rainfall, etc).
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Old 07-25-2011, 12:56 PM   #3
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Re: Rainwater collection for potable water?

I have had plans to begin the project you speak of, although I have not been extremely successful on devising on the best gutters and the best way to attach said gutters to my water system. I think it is doable and with a good filter like a Berkly to Katadyne you should have no problems. I use a Katadyne personally for all my drinking water. If worked for river water in Africa when we loved there so it's good enough for our bugs and chemicals here in the USA.
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Old 07-25-2011, 04:44 PM   #4
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Re: Rainwater collection for potable water?

My plans include a full roof rack to hold kayaks, solar panels, etc so that might be an easy way to create the catch system and divert the water. If I don't install roof racks I'd look at welding gutters around the roof to channel the water into the piping system. Just a few ideas.
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Old 07-26-2011, 05:10 PM   #5
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Re: Rainwater collection for potable water?

sounds like an interesting project!

gutters wont need to be huge either. just slope them right and have the catching system figured out good!
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Old 07-30-2011, 09:58 AM   #6
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Re: Rainwater collection for potable water?

All of my skoolies came from the factory with gutters.

I would not be afraid to use rain water for showering. Jacuzzi, dishes, toilet flushing or even hand washing. I would be more concerned about using it as drinking water. Not because it is unsafe, but because it seems like a huge hassle. Realistically, you could prob drink the water without treating it most of the time, the problem is that you cant control the contaminates that are on the roof.
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Old 08-01-2011, 12:05 PM   #7
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Re: Rainwater collection for potable water?

I would definitely filter the water before drinking but here in the "northwet" It would be a nice feature to add for boon-docking.
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Old 08-01-2011, 01:35 PM   #8
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Re: Rainwater collection for potable water?

If you are an imaginative, handy type of person, you could build a portable rainwater collection "A" frame rack (use tarps so that it will fold up) and just set it out when it rains and collect the water in a 5 gallon bucket. Put a strainer, little 12VDC water pump (like one of the 1gpm ones) and pump it into a dedicated water storage tank. No worrying about the dust. dirt, road grime and bird poo on the roof.

[urlhttp://www.adventurerv.net/miniature-water-pump-p-8794.html]Minuture Water Pump[/url]
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