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Old 09-28-2017, 03:51 PM   #1
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Repurposed Greywater

We're using a composting toilet but are wanting to reuse our grey water to supply our onboard plants with water. Anyone here have experience with this or other catchment systems to supply water to a small garden-esque installation?

Thanks

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Old 09-28-2017, 04:13 PM   #2
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Love that idea. You could do it for sure. Probably would need some kind of filter. For the soap, toothpaste and whatever else might get washed into the gray water.
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Old 09-28-2017, 07:31 PM   #3
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Just remember not all grey water is created equal. If you are washing dishes all the food particles and grease going in can cause your grey water to get pretty nasty pretty fast.


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Old 09-28-2017, 08:25 PM   #4
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I've thought about creating some sort of filtering system to get out some of the food grease somehow. Charcoal, sand, etc. I'm also not above some kind of larva culture in order to fully recycle everything we produce in the bus. Those kinds of things stay pretty self-contained and can handle anything organic.
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Old 09-29-2017, 09:09 AM   #5
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Larva culture in the tank itself? I think the whole thing depends on how nasty the grey tank gets. Maybe a screen in sink to keep food out. That is probably the major component making water nasty. Get one of those grease separators like they have in restaurants. Guessing a small one may be found cheap.
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Old 09-29-2017, 10:37 AM   #6
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Larva culture for stuff that gets caught in the sink. Something like a 5gal bucket that feeds into a hopper.

Might play with a grease trap of some kind. I'm pretty sure we could clean that into the larvaculture as well.
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Old 09-29-2017, 11:12 AM   #7
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Many public and corporate buildings reuse sink water from the bathrooms for flushing toilets and watering grass. However, in order for this to work, the products in the used water cannot be too alkaline or it will harm the plants. This is partially why a lot of public or corporate buildings use hand soap much different than what one may generally use at home. It would be worth it to use cistern-friendly or environmentally conscious products in the bus if you reuse your water.
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Old 09-29-2017, 02:35 PM   #8
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i really doubt there would be any cost benefit to recyling such a small amount of water.

a few potted plants will not exceed a couple of gallons use in a months time.

waste water is high sodium too, bad for plants. with out treating ph and sodium (salts) your not doing your plants any favors.

easier to plan on a using a larger fresh tank with enough capacity for you and the plants, than than to treat waste for reuse.
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Old 09-29-2017, 02:54 PM   #9
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i really doubt there would be any cost benefit to recyling such a small amount of water.

a few potted plants will not exceed a couple of gallons use in a months time.

waste water is high sodium too, bad for plants. with out treating ph and sodium (salts) your not doing your plants any favors.

easier to plan on a using a larger fresh tank with enough capacity for you and the plants, than than to treat waste for reuse.
Turf has a point. Recycling grey water on such a limited scale may prove impractical.

Lifestyle adjustments that allow you to produce less may yield better result than trying to recycle.
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Old 10-12-2017, 11:11 AM   #10
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I would be concerned that the chemicals in the soaps, tooth paste, food stuffs, etc.. would kill the plants you are trying to water.

If you are planning on small scale and wont need a LOT of water at a time... you could easily run it through a gravity ceramic/charcoal filter which would darn near make it safe to drink... let a lone safe to water plants with.

They make all different kinds of filters that can be adapted to stacked buckets or pots to make a gravity water filter. The ones I use are Donaldson candle elements that are carbon filled. They work great for making less then perfect water, potable.
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Old 10-12-2017, 04:07 PM   #11
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I would be concerned that the chemicals in the soaps, tooth paste, food stuffs, etc.. would kill the plants you are trying to water.

If you are planning on small scale and wont need a LOT of water at a time... you could easily run it through a gravity ceramic/charcoal filter which would darn near make it safe to drink... let a lone safe to water plants with.

They make all different kinds of filters that can be adapted to stacked buckets or pots to make a gravity water filter. The ones I use are Donaldson candle elements that are carbon filled. They work great for making less then perfect water, potable.
Generally you will be fine using grey water for plants. Phosphates can be an issue, but it's usually a minor one.

One caveat ... In the UK and Europe, waste water from a kitchen sink is considered "black" water, not grey, because of the food remnants it contains. It's just a thought.
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:16 PM   #12
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i really doubt there would be any cost benefit to recyling such a small amount of water.

a few potted plants will not exceed a couple of gallons use in a months time.

waste water is high sodium too, bad for plants. with out treating ph and sodium (salts) your not doing your plants any favors.

easier to plan on a using a larger fresh tank with enough capacity for you and the plants, than than to treat waste for reuse.
What he said.
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Old 10-12-2017, 09:09 PM   #13
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Just a note: I'm not interested in hearing why I shouldn't do this, just how I can. The scale of plant-having on our bus is going to be much more than "a few potted plants."
Thanks!

Probably setting up a a series of charcoal filters in the back of the bus that will cycle our gray water into a tank that we will then use for watering our rooftop garden.
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Old 10-12-2017, 10:53 PM   #14
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Just a note: I'm not interested in hearing why I shouldn't do this, just how I can. The scale of plant-having on our bus is going to be much more than "a few potted plants."
Thanks!

Probably setting up a a series of charcoal filters in the back of the bus that will cycle our gray water into a tank that we will then use for watering our rooftop garden.
So you are asking bus enthusiasts about horticulture?

There are better forums for your question.
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Old 10-13-2017, 07:23 AM   #15
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Depending on the types of plants on your rooftop garden you probably don't even need to filter it. As long as you're not using loads of harsh chemicals (bleach, draino, etc) and you have a robust population of plants that's appropriate for the climate, you could just use it straight. What type of plants and growth medium are you using on the roof?
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Old 10-13-2017, 07:51 AM   #16
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Right now I'm considering about 22 sq ft plots on the roof in a U shape, the bottom of the U being the back of the bus. I've heard growing in straw or mostly straw works well. I also have access to a great deal of rabbit poop and finished compost.

Thinking of making some boxes about 1.5' tall and 2' wide and layer gravel, poop, straw and some compost. Also figuring on how to allow drainage that won't drop on the roof of the bus. Not too worried about that though tbh.
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Old 10-13-2017, 10:06 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McPuccio View Post
Just a note: I'm not interested in hearing why I shouldn't do this, just how I can. The scale of plant-having on our bus is going to be much more than "a few potted plants."
Thanks!

Probably setting up a a series of charcoal filters in the back of the bus that will cycle our gray water into a tank that we will then use for watering our rooftop garden.
You are looking for people to just agree with a very stupid idea and saying you do not want any comments that do not agree with the stupidity. Here you are.

YEAH MAN AWESOME... Pour waste water tru a filter then replace filter every 3 days and you will get a few gallons of sup par water with a collection of bacteria cultures. Then you can pour the bacteria cultures all over dirt in a closed area and grow bacteria. Brilliant, Love it..

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Thinking of making some boxes about 1.5' tall and 2' wide and layer gravel, poop, straw and some compost. Also figuring on how to allow drainage that won't drop on the roof of the bus. Not too worried about that though tbh.
Boxes of feces on the roof.. Then pour water on them. Brilliant, Love it.. Don't worry it will all come together and work out great. Bio hazard waste to go with the bacteria from the grey water. Splendid
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Old 10-13-2017, 11:02 AM   #18
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Just be careful what you put in it, no filtering needed, no problems.
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Old 10-13-2017, 11:16 AM   #19
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You are looking for people to just agree with a very stupid idea and saying you do not want any comments that do not agree with the stupidity. Here you are.

YEAH MAN AWESOME... Pour waste water tru a filter then replace filter every 3 days and you will get a few gallons of sup par water with a collection of bacteria cultures. Then you can pour the bacteria cultures all over dirt in a closed area and grow bacteria. Brilliant, Love it..



Boxes of feces on the roof.. Then pour water on them. Brilliant, Love it.. Don't worry it will all come together and work out great. Bio hazard waste to go with the bacteria from the grey water. Splendid
This is more than a bit harsh.

I was simply thinking that the permaculture sites would have better advice, and more expertise.
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Old 10-13-2017, 12:17 PM   #20
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This is more than a bit harsh.

I was simply thinking that the permaculture sites would have better advice, and more expertise.
The OP asked for "I'm not interested in hearing why I shouldn't do this, just how I can"

You can do anything. When you ask for only certain answers(that agree with you) on a thread it is not a discussion it is just a support thread for a personal idea.

The fact is the OP is talking about taking waste water and bio hazard sewage and spreading it around and playing with it. Sorry I don't know how to sugar coat poop/bio hazard sewage.

--Side note(not what the op wants to hear) in permaculture settings I have seen people use composting poop. They only use it on trees, the theory is by the time the tree process the bio hazard waste it goes tru the tree trunk and is processed enough to be safe to consume.

Personally I think it is stupid. You are playing with bio hazard waste. Humans have evolved systems to wash waste away and it has proven to keep people much more healthily.
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