How Do RVS Get Water?

An RV or recreational vehicle can be your home while visiting many amazing places. You can camp among pines, on the beach, or park by a beautiful landscape with close-range mountain views. But as you already know, water is essential to all facets of our lives, including our trip in the RV.

To ensure your travel trailer gets water properly, you must check that the water tank is sanitized, filled, and connected to a city water spigot. Now that you know what an RV is and why they need water, you should familiarize yourself with how the motorhome can get water. So, how do RVs get water?

Most RVs use a fresh water tank that can be filled up from home before heading on a trip. There are also some portable tanks that you can rent or buy. They connect to the camper’s hose bib and can come in handy while traveling to many locations.

Therefore, keep reading to learn more about RVs and their water supply to expand your opportunities for adventure!

How to Fill up the Fresh Water Tank

How Do RVS Get WaterRegardless of the type or model of the motorhome you own, you will need to go to the bathroom, cook, clean, or stay hydrated. This means that, before heading out on a trip, you must fill the fresh water system of the RV with water.

After traveling or camping for a few days, your fresh water tank will run low even if it is filled. Before filling up the fresh water tank again, you must be certain there is no waste left in it. Flush out the tank with fresh water because some sediment could be trapped at the bottom, like dirt and rust.

Here’s what you need to do to fill the fresh water tank successfully.

[affiliate_video_pro id=”vi163e4f85d68e3e”]

Connecting to a water source

Plenty of water sources can fill your fresh water tank when you go on a road trip. The most common sources of water that you can find all over the country are campgrounds, RV dump stations, travel centers, rest stops, and national parks.

You can take advantage of these public places and successfully refill your water tank. When the tank is full, you can head back on the road.

Using a water hose

There is a golden rule when it comes to filling your fresh water tank with water: to use a water hose. These hoses are portable and specifically designed for a fresh water tank. They are not eligible for black and gray water tanks.

Using a water hose to fill up the tank is easy. Using the water pressure to your advantage, you can quickly fill up the tank and be on your way. You can use your hose or connect the RV to a city hose.

If you use a hose at home to fill up the RV, you can buy a water pressure regulator for extra safety. The regulator is installed at the faucet end and prevents the RV water lines from bursting after too much pressure.

Using a water pump

This is the most economical way to fill up your fresh water tank. The drill-powered water pump is attached to an electric drill that can pump water into your tank.

You can use water pumps from 12 to 120 volts for the fresh water tank. Just remember to use the hoses that are manufactured for drinking water. The last thing you want is to use the hoses that pump the wastewater, oil, or fuel.

How to Fill up the Gray Water Tank

Every time you utilize the shower or the sink in the RV, the dirty water goes into the gray water tank. This tank is just as important as the fresh water one, especially if you like to keep the motorhome neat and clean.

Connecting to a sewer source

Connecting to a sewer sourceOnce you fill-up the fresh water tank, you are all set because the other two tanks, gray and black, use the same water. However, this water must be drained out, and the tank must be cleaned.

The capacity of the gray water tank is smaller than the one filled with fresh water. You need to find a sewer source to dump out your gray water.

Put gloves on and hook the sewer hose to the gray water valve. Let the operation finish, and as long as you hear water coming through the hose, don’t close the valve.

Using a gray water hose

Draining your gray water tank with a hose is a pretty straightforward process. You must connect the hose to the gray water valve and wait until the tank is empty. Remember, never dump your water on the ground. This is called stealth dumping, and it’s illegal.

Find grounds that allow the flushing of gray water and extract the water from your tank. When using a water hose, the key is to be patient; the operation may take some time.

Using a gray water pump

A water pump can quickly and effectively flush out the gray water from your tank. Use a sewer source and make sure that both ends are tightly fastened. When no water goes through the hose and the pump has done its job, you can safely disconnect it.

How to Fill up the Black Water Tank

The black water tank keeps human waste and sewage from your rig. The laws and rules about where the waste should go are pretty strict, so you must know how to “handle your business.”

Black water tanks require frequent maintenance, and you must use deodorizers and cleaners to prevent buildup.

Connecting to a sewer source

Despite popular belief that bathrooms in RVs can’t get clogged, they sure can. You can drop the waste from the black tank to a sewer source.

Use a transparent hose to see when the process is finished. You should also wear gloves. The operation is the same, just as with the gray water tank.

Using a black water hose

Considering what goes in the black water tank, it’s no surprise that it needs to be cleaned often. Like with the other tanks, you can use a hose, but for the black tank, it’s not recommended.

Without going into too much detail, this water is not that clean, and some things may get stuck in the hose. That is the last thing you want.

Also, toilet paper can be problematic and clog the hose. If you decide to dump the sewage still, just remember that it can take a little more time than other alternatives.

Using a black water pump

A black water pump might be the best option for cleaning the black tank. The procedure will go smoothly, and you will not have to worry about getting your hands dirty.

RV owners dump the water from the black and gray tank. This way, the gray water will pass through the hose, wash out the remains, and reduce odors.


How do RVs get water? Is the same water for drinking used for showering?

I have addressed all the questions in my article and a few others. You could have learned how important water is to the motorhome and what happens to it after being used in the bathroom, the sink, or the shower. RVs have three tanks, one for fresh water, one for gray water, and one for black water.

Once you fill up the fresh water tank, you can head on to your trip. The gray water is the one that comes from the sink and shower, while the black is the waste and sewage.

By keeping your tank full of water, you can enjoy all the amenities your recreational vehicle offers and head out on an adventure.

Scroll to Top