"The water kit - not quite complete but almost there"
Further to the “Motor home water woes” we recently endured I thought it was time to get out there and get the additional bits of kit we need to make sure we can deal with all eventualities in the future.
The main thing was to make sure we can get water in to the tanks. Sure, it would be nice to measure the amount of water we are putting in to the water tank, to make sure we only put in as much as we need, however the digital water gauges I need to do this aren’t available locally, so this is going to have to be an internet purchase.
After a bit of searching around on the internet I have identified the bits and pieces we need, which (fortunately) are readily available and a local DIY store not only has everything in stock but is also open late, which is great since I can’t get to the store during normal office hours.
The local DIY store has its “own” version of the bits and pieces I need which, as I am sure you have already guessed, are very cheap. I have been stung with this DIY store’s cheap and cheerful products before, so there is no way I am going to buy them. When you buy cheap from this DIY store you end up buying twice, and spending more than you need to in order to try and save a few quid. Consequently, I went straight to the branded products I know are well made, water tight and capable of doing the job.
Some of the motor home owners on the motor home forums I read are of the opinion standard hose pipe is okay for filling up the water tanks, however I am not so sure. I have heard that standard hose pipe deteriorates when the temperature changes from hot to cold, and back again, and will deposit the lining of the hosepipe, which will obviously contaminate the water. When I was younger I got really ill from a contaminated water problem on a family camping trips, so I am very careful (more than I probably need to) with anything water related.
The original hosepipe is the blue catering grade, and whilst the bit that attaches to the tap is utterly useless there is nothing wrong with the hose itself. Rather than buying a new section of hosepipe my plan was to use the existing hosepipe (and cut off the crappy tap attachment) and replace it with the Hozelock attachments.
"£21 doesn't get much - Hosepipe not included"
We ended up buying three Hozelock attachments - one to keep on permanently on the hosepipe, one that will screw on to threaded taps and another that clamps to thread-less taps. All the campsites I have been to have used threaded taps, and when I spoke to my “camper” work colleague she said the same was true of the campsites she had stayed at. Despite this I decided to get the attachment for thread-less taps as well. It would be just my luck that I wouldn’t bother than book that one campsite that uses thread-less taps.
The Hozelock attachments aren’t cheap (I could buy four of the DIY store’s own brand attachments for the price of one similar Hozelock attachment) but I think the additional cost is worth it. The Hozelock attachments were side by side with the own brand hosepipe attachments so it was possible to get a direct comparison between them, which is always good. The Hozelock attachments fell stronger, better made and more durable than the cheap and cheerful alternatives. The Hozelock attachments are also more aesthetically pleasing, and whilst this isn’t essential it’s always nice.
If you read have already read my blog post about the first proper trip out in the motor home (you can check it out here if not) you will know that we had to fill the water tank from the inside of the habitation unit using a kettle, which is not ideal, therefore we needed a funnel. Unfortunately, the only funnels available from the DIY store were its own brand, so it was buy one of these or go elsewhere. At the end of the day a plastic funnel is a plastic funnel, and this is one product that must be impossible to mess up. With a “one funnel is pretty much the same as another funnel” attitude the decision was made to buy one. One thing I will say, is that the screw in flexible pipe (essential to get water in to the water tank with the funnel) is very poorly made. Whilst it screws to the bottom of the funnel securely, the fit isn’t great and it leaks (not great for pouring water) and it is very thin and crushes easily between thumb and forefinger with little pressure. Yep, this bit of pipe isn’t going to last too long, but the funnel itself seems pretty well made.
Rather than use the flexible pipe provided with the funnel I intend to use a piece of the existing blue hosepipe, and the crappy tap attachment on it fits nice and secure to the bottom of the funnel. Perfect. A hose clamp probably isn’t necessary (I did test it and there are no leaks or anything) but I intend to buy one nonetheless.
In addition to the digital water meter the other items on the shopping list we couldn’t get from the DIY store was a fold up bucket (to empty the waste water when there is no designated motor home service point or drive-over drain) and a collapsible water carrier (to fill up the tanks when we can’t get close enough to the water tap to use the hosepipe).
Overall, it was a pretty successful trip and whilst we didn’t get everything we need we are on the way. It’s just time to get online for the other bits and pieces