Which RV Water Filter System Is Best For You?

Some kind of RV water filter system is a necessity for RVers. But especially for those who travel a lot. That’s because the water supply at some campgrounds can leave a lot to be desired.

You will find bad tasting and awful smelling water, along with dirty water that has sediment in it. And since we all understand how important it is to have clean water for drinking, bathing and washing, here are a few ways to make sure that your water is safe to use.

Disclosure: Please note this post may contain affiliate links. This means – at no additional cost to you – I earn a commission if you make a purchase using our affiliate links. I only link to products and companies I use and feel comfortable recommending. The income goes toward supporting the free content on this website.

Use An RV Cartridge Filter

One of the most popular RV water filter systems in use is an outside cartridge filter. These can be placed somewhere in line with your water hose before it attaches to the RV.

It doesn’t really matter much whether it is attached at the water faucet or by the RV water inlet. Just as long as you have it inline before the water from the campground goes into your RV.

The beauty of these kind of RV water filters is that they will treat all of the water that is going into your rig. So whether it is kitchen or bathroom water, it is being filtered before use.

All you have to do is take a stroll through almost any campground in the country and you will see these filters in use. They are usually blue in color and easily spotted.

And for most people they work very well as they filter down to a 20 micron level. In fact, out of almost 3,000 reviews on Amazon, they have a 4.5 star rating. So a lot of people are happy with what they do.

There are certainly other RV water filter systems that filter water to a higher degree. But for most people this little filter does the job very well. And the cost is affordably low.

So this is a good place to start when filtering the water going into your RV. Just click the links below to read the reviews on these filters.

Click here for the outside blue cartridge water filters that we use

(This is an affiliate link for the product on Amazon. It does not cost you any extra to buy the product using my affiliate link if you choose to do so)

Higher Quality Whole-RV Filter System

Now if you want to take whole-RV water filtration to another level, there are plenty of options. But one of the most cost-effective is to use a higher level carbon filter that filters down to 5 microns or so.

Some RVers use this filter instead of the blue ones mentioned above. But some also add in this kind of filtration in addition to the blue filter. That’s what we do in our motorhome for our water used for washing and bathing.

Again, for most people this will be just fine. You can either use this kind of filter on the outside of the RV, or install it permanently inside. Either way, it is simple to use and the filter cost is very reasonable.

In fact, they usually last for about 3 months at a time if being used on a regular basis. We use this kind of filter along with the blue filter above and we are happy with the water quality we get for bathing and washing.

You can also use almost any 10 inch filter that you find at a local Home Depot or Lowes store for replacement filters. Check out the reviews on this product at the link below.

Click here for a low cost, higher-quality whole-RV filter system

(This is an affiliate link for the product on Amazon. It does not cost you any extra to buy the product using my affiliate link if you choose to do so)

High Quality Drinking Water Filtration

But when it comes to our drinking water, most of us want to make sure that it is up to very high standards. So although the above-mentioned filters will work very well, I have another suggestion for your drinking water.

Of course, there are any number of high-dollar water filtration systems available. These include reverse osmosis, 2,3 and 4 stage filters, and even ultraviolet water filtration.

But if you look at the real world reviews of most of these products on Amazon, they are not rated any higher than the ones already covered.

But there is an RV water filter system that will virtually replace all need for bottled water of any kind. And it will be much less expensive in the long run than those high-dollar systems.

It’s called the Berkey water filter and many RVers use it for their everyday drinking water. It is a gravity fed unit so you have to refill it manually. But the resulting water is incredibly clean no matter how dirty it may be going into the filter.

In fact, the Berkey helps eliminate 99.9% of bacteria, heavy metals, pharmaceuticals, viruses, and other water contaminants.

The Berkey RV water filter is also portable allowing it to be used either at home or in the RV. And since it uses no power to operate, it’s perfect for boondockers.

It also is cost-effective as it can filter 6,000 gallons of water before needing a filter replacement. So if you drink two gallons of water a day the filters will last you about 8 years!

And the replacement filters only cost a little over $100. So that means that you get ultra-safe and clean drinking water for about $12/year. You can’t get much less expensive than that!

You can find out more about the Berkey RV water filter system by clicking here.

(This is an affiliate link for the product on TechnoRV. It does not cost you any extra to buy the product using my affiliate link if you choose to do so)

The Berkey Water Filter VS Installed Filtration

One of the best features about the Berkey water filter system is that it is portable. so it can be moved from the RV to a home, or from one RV to another RV, all without need of any installation!

Reverse osmosis filters and ultraviolet filters actually work very well. But they have to be installed correctly and that usually means professional installation. So you have to pay not only for the filtration system, but the installation as well.

Then if you decide to sell your RV for any reason, you have two choices. (1) You can let the installed water filtration go with the RV, and go out and buy another whole system for the new rig. (2) You have to disassemble the installed system and re-install the old RV plumbing as it was. Then you have to pay again to install the old system in the new RV.

The point is that permanenty installed water filter systems are more suited for home use, not for RVs. This is because people don’t change homes nearly as much as they may change RVs.

This makes the Berkey water filter a great choice as an RV water filter system because of its portability. It can go wherever you go. So if you buy a different RV, just bring along the Berkey. Then you get pure, clean water in the new rig without any installation effort or costs.

Conclusion

When you bring up the subject of RV water filtration, you can get a lot of opinions about what is best. And most RVers seem to think that whatever they are doing is the best way to go.

But the truth is that there are any number of great ways to get fresh, clean, and pure water for RV use these days. Whatever fits your needs and circumstances best will be fine.

But in this article I am trying to approach the subject from a cost-effective point of view. And with that in mind, using cartridge filters for washing and bathing is a cheap way to go. And they work very well as the associated Amazon reviews testify.

Then if you use the Berkey water purification filter, you will also have the best drinking water. And this will come at a very low cost per gallon.

But if you have other suggestions for RV water filter systems that you have found to work well, please mention them in the comments below. We would love to hear about them!

In the meantime, I hope this discussion of RV water filtration has been helpful for you. Have safe and happy travels my friends!

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Video - "The Best RV Water Filter System For Drinking Water"

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A 50 Amp To 30 Amp Adapter – Is It Safe?

In a previous blog post I discussed the possibility of needing to adapt a 30 amp campground service to a 50 amp RV. This is a very common scenario in many campgrounds. A less common scenario is just the opposite. That’s when you need to run a 30 amp RV from a 50 amp campground pedestal. So can you use a 50 amp to 30 amp adapter safely in this case?

Disclosure: Please note this post may contain affiliate links. This means – at no additional cost to you – I earn a commission if you make a purchase using our affiliate links. I only link to products and companies I use and feel comfortable recommending. The income goes toward supporting the free content on this website.

Why Is An Adapter Needed?

There are a lot of RVs on the road that are wired for a 30 amp electrical service. To understand what this means, it’s good to have a mental picture of what an amp is. And while we are at it let’s also do the same for volts too.

The best analogy I have heard to describe the relationship between amps and volts is to picture a water hose. There are different sizes of water hoses, some big, some small.

For instance, a garden hose will put out a steady stream of water. But a fire hose is much larger and therefore will put out a lot more water at the end.

Volts are like the water pressure that goes into the hose. There has to be some water pressure to move the water along.

But if you have a consistent water pressure, the fire hose will move more water than a garden hose. So in RVs a 30 amp service is like the garden hose. It moves electricity along to the appliances in the RV.

But a 50 amp RV service can move a lot more electricity at the same time because the wiring is much larger and more capable.

The volts at the campground pedestal should remain at 120 volts no matter what RV is plugged into it. So we can determine how much difference there is in consumable power between 30 amps and 50 amps by using a common electrical formula.

It says that you multiply the amps times the total volts. Then you will know the maximum simultaneous power capability of any electrical system (the watts).

So if we multiply 30 amps times 120 volts, a 30 amp RV can consume 3600 watts of power at one time. But a 50 amp RV has two legs of service going into the rig instead of just one.

So if you add the two lines of 120 volts, that is a total of 240 volts. Then multiply that by 50 amps for each line and you have 12,000 watts of consumable power at one time.

Clearly then, a 50 amp RV uses a lot more power than a 30 amp RV. So what happens if you use a 50 amp to 30 amp adapter for your 30 amp RV?

How Does A 50 Amp To 30 Amp Adapter Work?

Since a 30 amp RV has wiring that can only safely handle 30 amps of power, you don’t want to overload it. If you were to somehow plug the 30 amp RV service into the 50 amp campground pedestal without an adapter, it could easily overload.

So there is a need to step down the power of the 50 amp campground pedestal to the 30 amp RV service.

That is where the adapter comes in. It does that work for you. Even though there is a lot more electrical power available at the pedestal, it restricts the total output.

That means that it steps it down to the usable 30 amps of power that will not harm your RV or your devices. Think of it as an adapter at the end of the fire hose that steps down the water stream to the size of a garden hose.

Click on the link below to find out more about 30 to 50 amp adapters like this one.

Click here for a 50 amp to 30 amp RV plug adapter

(This is an affiliate link for the product on Amazon. It does not cost you any extra to buy the product using my affiliate link if you choose to do so)

What does All Of This Mean For Your 30 Amp RV?

So what does this mean in terms of what you usually do with your RV? Does this adapter change the way you use your appliances or devices? Not really.

Since you still have the full 30 amps of power that you always use, nothing will change when you plug into a 50 amp service with an adapter. RVs with a 50 amp service that plug into a 30 amp receptacle will have to make changes in their power usage.

But not those who have a 30 amp RV and plug into a 50 amp pedestal. You don’t get any additional power , but you don’t lose any power either.

I hope this helps you understand how RV electrical services work and how adapters help in special situations. Let us know if you have had any interesting experiences with 50 amp to 30 amp adapters in the comments below.

Have safe and happy travels my friends!

A 30 Amp to 50 Amp Adapter – A Good Idea?

There is often confusion about what happens when you try to use a 30 amp to 50 amp adapter (sometimes called a “dogbone”) at a campground pedestal. Actually, there is confusion when any adapter is used to adjust the electricity provided to an RV.

But in this article we will discuss whether or not you should use a 30 amp to 50 amp adapter. And we will explain what happens when you do.

Disclosure: Please note this post may contain affiliate links. This means – at no additional cost to you – I earn a commission if you make a purchase using our affiliate links. I only link to products and companies I use and feel comfortable recommending. The income goes toward supporting the free content on this website.

A 50 Amp RV Electrical Service – What Does It Mean?

If you have an RV with a 50 amp electrical service it means that you have a thick and heavy electrical cord. And at the end of that cord you have a 4 prong 50 amp plug. So what does all those prongs do? And why is the cord so heavy?

A 50 amp RV electrical service comes with 2 wires that are rated to supply 50 amps of power to the RV. Then there is also a neutral wire and a ground wire.

That makes up all four prongs on the plug. And because wires that are rated to carry 50 amps are large, the cord becomes very heavy.

Essentially, you have 2 legs of 50 amp electrical service going into the RV. That is a lot of power. And if you multiply the amps by the total volts, you get the total power available to you in watts.

In other words, the wattage figure that you get tells you how much power can be consumed at one time safely. So two legs of 120 volts equals 240 volts.

If we multiply that by 50 amps that each leg can carry, that leaves us with 12,000 watts. This means that a 50 amp RV electrical service can run devices that total up to 12,000 watts of power simultaneously.

And in the real world that means that you can run a lot of devices and appliances without overloading the service.

30 Amps To 50 Amps – What Happens?

So when you plug your 4 prong 50 amp power cord into a 3 prong 30 amp service, what happens? Well obviously, one leg of power has been taken away.

This is because all electrical services need a neutral and a ground wire. And the positive wire has been stepped down to using only 30 amps at the pedestal.

A comparison of the 4 prong 50 amp plug and the 3 prong 30 amp plug

So does this create any problems for your 50 amp RV electrical service? Not at all. This is because the adapter adjusts the power going into your RV to use only 30 amps.

And since 30 amps is lower than 50 amps, nothing will be overloaded. This is because the wiring used for 50 amps is much larger than what is used for 30 amps.

If someone tried to run 50 amps through 30 amp wires, that could be a problem! But not the other way around.

30 Amps To 50 Amps – What’s The Difference?

So it is safe to use 30 amps of power going into an RV that has a 50 amp electrical service. But what does that mean in power usage?

Well, now you only have one leg of 30 amp power times 120 volts. And that means that your total usable power at one time is only 3600 watts. What a drop in simultaneous usable power.

So for an RV that has a 50 amp service, you probably have a lot of power hungry appliances. You may have 2 or more air conditioners, a microwave, a washer/dryer setup, and more.

If you now only have less than a third of the usable power going into the RV, adjustments must be made. This means that you probably can only safely run one air conditioner at a time.

And you may have to limit how many other power hungry devices you use simultaneously. In many cases you can still use them, just not all at once.

It may take a little fiddling around with to determine what can be used and when, but you will eventually get it. Every RV is a little different, so you will learn where the limits are for your particular rig.

Obviously if the main power fuse is tripped, you have gone too far. So it’s best to try to stay on the conservative side to prevent that from happening in the first place.

Click here for a 30 amp to 50 amp RV plug adapter

(This is an affiliate link for the product on Amazon. It does not cost you any extra to buy the product using my affiliate link if you choose to do so)

I hope this has cleared up some of the confusion about RV amp ratings in the RV and at the pedestal.

Have safe and happy travels my friends!