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Old 02-26-2018, 10:56 PM   #1
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size of fresh water/grey water tanks...

i've been searching the threads... maybe someone can direct me to an older discussion...

we are a family of 5 on the bus... 2 adults, a 10-year old boy, an 8-year old boy, and a 6-year old girl.

our plan is to have a composting toilet, so no black water tank.

we will have an outdoor shower and plan on using state parks or truck stops for thorough cleaning of the children.

the plan is to safely and securely mount our fresh water tank(s) under our bed at the read of the bus, either one tank centered, or two tanks on the sides. we plan on mounting our grey water tank under the bus, opposite of the gas tank (so between the tires on the driver side).

looking for suggestions of how big of a fresh water tank (or two) and how big of a grey water tank.

thank you in advance.
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Old 02-26-2018, 11:34 PM   #2
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How low on fresh do you want to be able to go without dumping gray? That will help decide fresh and gray sizes.
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Old 02-26-2018, 11:37 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by simplyusandabus View Post
i've been searching the threads... maybe someone can direct me to an older discussion...

we are a family of 5 on the bus... 2 adults, a 10-year old boy, an 8-year old boy, and a 6-year old girl.

our plan is to have a composting toilet, so no black water tank.

we will have an outdoor shower and plan on using state parks or truck stops for thorough cleaning of the children.

the plan is to safely and securely mount our fresh water tank(s) under our bed at the read of the bus, either one tank centered, or two tanks on the sides. we plan on mounting our grey water tank under the bus, opposite of the gas tank (so between the tires on the driver side).

looking for suggestions of how big of a fresh water tank (or two) and how big of a grey water tank.

thank you in advance.
Lots of opinions on this subject...a group that large is gonna need a system more responsive than a composting system...just my 2cents...having a over-taxed septic system will curse your entire adventure...

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Old 02-27-2018, 01:19 AM   #4
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How low on fresh do you want to be able to go without dumping gray? That will help decide fresh and gray sizes.


A week at minimum. Hoping to not use an insane amount of water since weíre not doing an in-bus shower. Just the outdoor one.


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Old 02-27-2018, 01:21 AM   #5
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Lots of opinions on this subject...a group that large is gonna need a system more responsive than a composting system...just my 2cents...having a over-taxed septic system will curse your entire adventure...

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Iíve gone back and forth on this very issue. My wife really wants to do the composting system...


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Old 02-27-2018, 08:43 AM   #6
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a few years back, I read that a single person averages 30 gallons of water per day. I'd say that's very conservative. I use a bit more than that when I'm home. However, that average is including so many toilet trips, a shower, bushing teeth, and I assume washing dishes and clothes. I have done some long trips on my motorcycle with all camping. I have my water usage down to 3 liters per day. This includes all water I use for brushing teeth, showering, dishes, eating, and drink. Most of it is for drinking.
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Old 02-27-2018, 09:05 AM   #7
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a few years back, I read that a single person averages 30 gallons of water per day. I'd say that's very conservative. I use a bit more than that when I'm home. However, that average is including so many toilet trips, a shower, bushing teeth, and I assume washing dishes and clothes. I have done some long trips on my motorcycle with all camping. I have my water usage down to 3 liters per day. This includes all water I use for brushing teeth, showering, dishes, eating, and drink. Most of it is for drinking.
3 liters a day is a bit extreme, but 3 gallons a day is very comfortable.

That way, your 50 gallon tank should get a couple off-grid for at least a week.
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Old 02-27-2018, 11:08 AM   #8
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3 liters a day is a bit extreme, but 3 gallons a day is very comfortable.

That way, your 50 gallon tank should get a couple off-grid for at least a week.
3 liters is me living off my motorcycle. 3 gallons a day average is easily achievable for me. My SO on the other hand.
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Old 03-02-2018, 12:47 PM   #9
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Iíve found 42 gallon tanks and 100 gallon tanks... thoughts?


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Old 03-02-2018, 01:37 PM   #10
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I have lived several years full time and found that 10 gallons per person per day worked out to be a good rule of thumb for us. IF we did our laundry elsewhere.

Throw frugal laundry into the mix and you can double that.

This does assume that you take conservation steps. Never run water unless it is doing some kind of "work". Don't leave it running while brushing teeth or washing dishes.

Navy showers help to.
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Old 03-02-2018, 02:51 PM   #11
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I am installing 2- 55 gal poly drums in very small rear storage area in rear (one windows worth) and 100 gallon gray tank.composting toilet.
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Old 03-02-2018, 04:10 PM   #12
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I am installing 2- 55 gal poly drums in very small rear storage area in rear (one windows worth) and 100 gallon gray tank.composting toilet.

This was or maybe is still my plan. 2 55gal for fresh under the bed, 1 55 for grey underneath. Not 100% sure about fitment of the grey where I want it so I may have 3 55gal fresh and 30gal grey. Either way sounds like I will have more than enough for an extended weekend.
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Old 03-06-2018, 11:32 PM   #13
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Hello from Fulton, i don't think you want to have your fresh overwhelm your gray that much. I am happy with 55 fresh, 38 gray and 19 black for 2 people. have never run the black over but can fill up gray if hooked up to water. you will need more fresh because of the amount of humans in bus, are you going to dump gray onto ground? If not you are going to need a lot of gray storagetoo. sportyrick
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Old 03-07-2018, 08:13 AM   #14
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Throw frugal laundry into the mix and you can double that.
I've done a little research and need to finish processing this thought, but I am planning on filtering my grey water into "white water" and then using that to wash my clothes.

So in theory you have a fresh water tank that feeds to a grey water tank after use (natural products and no grease going down the drain) then you filter that grey water and it goes into a white water tank only used by the washer/dryer combo, which empties into a second grey water tank until I dump it. Or to push the idea further, I am looking into having a evapotron that will evaporate up to 2 gallons a day.

I haven't finished this thought process but if I can pull this off then I won't have to dump the second grey water tank, just clean the minerals and all off after the water has been evaporated

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Old 03-07-2018, 10:38 AM   #15
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I suggest having the largest tanks that will fit. Easy! When have you ever heard any RVer complain about having too much anything - too much water, too large waste tank(s), too much electricity storage, too much space inside. You get the idea? Just because you have the ability to store or carry so much doesn't mean you always will do so, but on those rare occasions that every drop counts you'll be thankful to have the capacity. If in doubt, go big.

I have 220 gallons of fresh, 115 gallons of grey and 65 gallons of poo tanks. I would have more if I had space for more. That's for just one person! I want at least one month's self-sufficiency, and that includes having a nice shower every night, doing the dishes and using the loo normally, using the Splendide washer/dryer occasionally, in other words living a normal life.

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Old 03-08-2018, 07:12 PM   #16
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Hello from Fulton, i don't think you want to have your fresh overwhelm your gray that much. I am happy with 55 fresh, 38 gray and 19 black for 2 people. have never run the black over but can fill up gray if hooked up to water. you will need more fresh because of the amount of humans in bus, are you going to dump gray onto ground? If not you are going to need a lot of gray storagetoo. sportyrick

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Originally Posted by Iceni John View Post
I suggest having the largest tanks that will fit. Easy! When have you ever heard any RVer complain about having too much anything - too much water, too large waste tank(s), too much electricity storage, too much space inside. You get the idea? Just because you have the ability to store or carry so much doesn't mean you always will do so, but on those rare occasions that every drop counts you'll be thankful to have the capacity. If in doubt, go big.

I have 220 gallons of fresh, 115 gallons of grey and 65 gallons of poo tanks. I would have more if I had space for more. That's for just one person! I want at least one month's self-sufficiency, and that includes having a nice shower every night, doing the dishes and using the loo normally, using the Splendide washer/dryer occasionally, in other words living a normal life.

John
I agree with the above. Forgot the family of 5 part. I plan to dump often and be where it won't be noticed much less a problem. I imagine it would be less stress knowing you can use water like you do at home when it comes to the young ones.
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Old 08-05-2018, 09:15 PM   #17
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Im planning 100 fresh and 30-50 gallon gray. Ive already got a 10 and 20 gallon tanks for gray. They are being repurposed to all gray water. Undecided if 30 gal will be enough. I want enough a comfortable 2+ weeks boondocking for 2.
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Old 08-06-2018, 06:56 AM   #18
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I plan to dump often and be where it won't be noticed much less a problem.
If you mean what I think you mean, please don't. You may think this won't be noticed and doesn't matter but it does. There are plenty of folks that think this way and this is what causes areas to be shut down - we loose our ability to access these areas because a few folks abuse the area and break the rules. Yes, I have seen this really happen.
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Old 08-06-2018, 06:59 AM   #19
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looking for suggestions of how big of a fresh water tank (or two) and how big of a grey water tank.
With that many people about the best you can do is install the largest tanks you can find and then live with the results. It will take some time to teach them how to conserve but that will make a pretty big difference.
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Old 09-16-2018, 06:57 PM   #20
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I live in a 5th wheel right now saving for a skoolie conversion. I have 160 gallons fresh water 60 gallon grey and 45 gallon black. I have been stationary for a little over a year with shore hookups just as an experiment I went I filled up the freshwater and closed the grey water blackwater is always closed unless dumping it. I lasted 2 weeks then had to dump the grey water. 25 days I had to dump blackwater and fill the freshwater again. My plan is to have 150 gallons of freshwater 100 gallons of grey and a compost toilet and a 30 gallon blackwater for urine. I figure that will last me pretty close to 3 weeks. Still in the planning and learning stage.
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