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Old 11-28-2016, 10:09 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by bodycoach2 View Post
RV Grey Water Recycling - Unique Solutions Inc RV has a hot water recirculator. They also make a grey water toilet flush system. Both together would save a LOT of water in our RV. Putting low flow fittings on sinks will help too.
I looked at that one but I thought it missed the mark.
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Old 11-29-2016, 04:57 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Easyrider View Post
Great idea that many of us can use!
I'd like to hear from others that try it out.
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Old 11-29-2016, 09:07 AM   #23
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Sounds like you really have a need for this type of a setup. In my RV I have about 25 feet from the water heater to the bathroom sink. Not quite that much to the shower.
Yeah, in my RV, the shower is actually the closest to the heater at 19.3' of line (wasting about 0.8 gal). The outside shower is next at 23.3' (1.0 gal), the bathroom sink is at 28.1' (1.2 gal), and finally the kitchen sink is the worst at 41.4' (wasting a whopping 1.7 gal).

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I didn't want a manual valve because I didn't want my wife to have to open a cabin or something to operate it. This way she can just throw the switch. Admittedly, some sort of a circuit timer would be nice but that made my project more complicated than I was interested in tackling.
I too was not thrilled with the idea of a manual valve, for two reasons: one, the need to open a cabinet door to operate it, and two, the need to run the plumbing to that location, increasing the water line routing complexity. Your electrically operated valve not only solves both of those issues, but allows for additional switch(es) at other locations that will operate the same valve/system.
I believe that the most difficult part of adding this to my RV is going to be routing the return line for the slideout "loop"; hopefully, I will have enough access to simply follow the existing lines. BTW, I will be tapping into the "city fill" line to return to the tank, as that will be closer and easier in my application.
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Old 11-29-2016, 09:10 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by S Bradley View Post
How about creating a loop back to the water heater instead of the water tank?
Going back to the water heater tank won't work; that line is already under the same pressure, so water wouldn't flow anywhere. What is needed is to plumb it into a line (or tank) that is un-pressurized, allowing the hot water to flow through the line.
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Old 11-29-2016, 09:28 AM   #25
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I'll have to look at it more carefully of course, but this might work as a time delay...

Time delay module...
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Old 11-29-2016, 12:50 PM   #26
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...Snip

BTW, I will be tapping into the "city fill" line to return to the tank, as that will be closer and easier in my application.
Doh! I din't think of that, and the city fill is in close proximity to the valve!

That may have worked just fine! Oh well, maybe on our next RV.
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Old 11-29-2016, 05:04 PM   #27
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The Aqua View Showermiser is another option that I have seen. I don't have any personal experience with it. I saw it for $60 at one RV parts supplier.
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Old 11-29-2016, 05:54 PM   #28
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This thread really should be moved over to Motorhome General Discussion, as this is a good idea that can benefit all brands of RVs, and not just Winnebago. Moderator, what do you think, should this be moved?
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Old 11-30-2016, 04:59 AM   #29
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Doh! I din't think of that, and the city fill is in close proximity to the valve!

That may have worked just fine! Oh well, maybe on our next RV.
On second thought, that won't easily work for my model of coach because the city water doesn't feed into the low pressure FW tank.
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Old 11-30-2016, 09:27 PM   #30
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How about creating a loop back to the water heater instead of the water tank?
This works in residential systems.

Check with your plumber if you have any reservations.

Gravity recirculating hot water loop.

Gravity hot water loops work because the heated water, which is lighter, rises through the loop. As the water cools at the top of the loop, it falls and is thermo-syphoned back to the hot water heater. The water enters the water heater thru the cold water input at a slow but constant rate. This works in residential systems but commercial systems use an in-line recirculating pump, it is also possible for this system. For the gravity recirculating loop to work properly, the water heater must be located at the bottom of the loop.

To make this work there are a few requirements that need to be addressed.

The supply line must be insulated as it leaves the water heater and makes it way towards each faucet that gets hot water.
The return loop must also be wrapped with insulation after it passes the last faucet in the house and makes its way back towards the heater.
But the last length of the return pipe should have no insulation on it. This may require some trial and error due to the relatively short length of over all pipe.
By allowing the water in the last portion of the pipe to cool, Mother Nature sets up a very slow convection flow of water within the loop.
This very slow flow of water by gravity, allows the water within the piping system to stay hot. The insulation on the piping lowers energy usage to a minimum.

How is this done.
Locate the end of the existing hot water line.
Cut into the pipe, install a tee fitting. Install hot water pipe to one end of the tee. Connect the other end of the hot water line that you cut to the other end of the tee. The last port of the tee will connect to the return loop back to the water heater.
Foam insulation is available to slide over the pipe as you install it.
If the loop fails to work, water may be flowing backwards. To stop this install a flapper-type check valve in the insulated part of the loop approximately 5 ft. from the water heater. Not a spring loaded check valve. Drill a 1/8 inch hole in the flapper so that a small amount of water can flow back to the water heater to maintain circulation. If the loop isn’t working well, slowly increase the diameter of this hole, do not exceed 1/4 inch hole.
Be sure the heater does not have a heat trap device at the top of the hot water outlet. These are small check valves that stop hot water from drifting up the hot water line when the hot water is not being used. Remove the heat trap device to get the gravity loop to work.
To complete the loop install another tee fitting in the cold water inlet line.
There should be a check valve in the water line coming from the pump to the hot water tank. If not it may be necessary to install one after pump and before the tee.
Connect the tee between the pump in the cold water inlet line add the return line.

Nothing here cannot be reversed if the desired result is unsatisfactory.
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Old 12-02-2016, 12:35 AM   #31
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Check out this link:
This is not a gravity fed system but it is an easy to follow diagram I found while researching recirculating pumps. "Old Bounder posted this"

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/...n%20system.jpg
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Old 12-02-2016, 09:13 AM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S Bradley View Post
How about creating a loop back to the water heater instead of the water tank?
This works in residential systems.

Check with your plumber if you have any reservations.

Gravity recirculating hot water loop.

Gravity hot water loops work because the heated water, which is lighter, rises through the loop. As the water cools at the top of the loop, it falls and is thermo-syphoned back to the hot water heater. The water enters the water heater thru the cold water input at a slow but constant rate. This works in residential systems but commercial systems use an in-line recirculating pump, it is also possible for this system. For the gravity recirculating loop to work properly, the water heater must be located at the bottom of the loop.

To make this work there are a few requirements that need to be addressed.

The supply line must be insulated as it leaves the water heater and makes it way towards each faucet that gets hot water.
The return loop must also be wrapped with insulation after it passes the last faucet in the house and makes its way back towards the heater.
But the last length of the return pipe should have no insulation on it. This may require some trial and error due to the relatively short length of over all pipe.
By allowing the water in the last portion of the pipe to cool, Mother Nature sets up a very slow convection flow of water within the loop.
This very slow flow of water by gravity, allows the water within the piping system to stay hot. The insulation on the piping lowers energy usage to a minimum.

How is this done.
Locate the end of the existing hot water line.
Cut into the pipe, install a tee fitting. Install hot water pipe to one end of the tee. Connect the other end of the hot water line that you cut to the other end of the tee. The last port of the tee will connect to the return loop back to the water heater.
Foam insulation is available to slide over the pipe as you install it.
If the loop fails to work, water may be flowing backwards. To stop this install a flapper-type check valve in the insulated part of the loop approximately 5 ft. from the water heater. Not a spring loaded check valve. Drill a 1/8 inch hole in the flapper so that a small amount of water can flow back to the water heater to maintain circulation. If the loop isn’t working well, slowly increase the diameter of this hole, do not exceed 1/4 inch hole.
Be sure the heater does not have a heat trap device at the top of the hot water outlet. These are small check valves that stop hot water from drifting up the hot water line when the hot water is not being used. Remove the heat trap device to get the gravity loop to work.
To complete the loop install another tee fitting in the cold water inlet line.
There should be a check valve in the water line coming from the pump to the hot water tank. If not it may be necessary to install one after pump and before the tee.
Connect the tee between the pump in the cold water inlet line add the return line.

Nothing here cannot be reversed if the desired result is unsatisfactory.
Wow, that's a lot of work, complexity, and trial & error. On my rig, while the heater is indeed at the lowest point, it would be impossible to insulate the hot water lines due to the complex routing of them. With MurphyMan's set up, it's easy, efficient, and foolproof; no flapper valves, no holes drilled in those valves, no insulation installation, no questions of "how much line to insulate and how much not to"... The only downside is having to wait 15-30 seconds after hitting the valve switch for the water to circulate; small price to pay for instant fully hot water at the tap. Now if a gravity circulating system were designed and built into the RV from the beginning, then it might be a viable system, but I doubt that it could be added to most existing RVs in a way that would actually make it worthwhile.
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Old 12-02-2016, 09:25 AM   #33
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On second thought, that won't easily work for my model of coach because the city water doesn't feed into the low pressure FW tank.
Yes, many have a City Water hookup, but not a City Fill option. Mine has both a gravity feed inlet for the fresh tank, as well as a valve that allows me to fill from my City Water hookup as well. That line (from the valve back to the tank) is actually closer to my final hot water faucet/line that the water tank, so for me it will be easier to return the water to that line than to the tank itself.
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Old 04-01-2017, 01:32 PM   #34
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Nice mod... why a motorized valve instead of a solenoid valve?
It was cheap on Amazon and configured exactly the way I needed it.
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Old 04-01-2017, 01:33 PM   #35
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Very nice, I like it. Do you drink your onboard water? If so, will the taste be altered by this little bit going through the water heater?

There are systems to do this in houses, but I don't know where they route the return water back into the system.
Used the system for a six-week trip , and I can't say that we noticed any taste from the water heater. The whole thing worked pretty well and my wife got along with it fine so I'd consider it a success.
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Old 04-01-2017, 01:34 PM   #36
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Thanks for the parts list. I have though about doing this, now you have simplified it to the point of a winter project.
Let me know if you try it out. I would like to hear anybody else's results.
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Old 04-01-2017, 01:35 PM   #37
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Fantastic!!! We just returned from our first boondocking trip in our new (to us) 30' class A, and have the same issue. My coach could not be set up any worse for getting hot water to the tap.

My water heater is up in the right front corner, just behind the front tire. From there, the lines go all the way back to about 3' behind the rear axle, cross to the other side, and then forward to about halfway between front & rear axles. From there, they STILL have to go through a large loop, since the kitchen is in the slideout! Based on Winnebago's plumbing schematics, I have 41.5 feet of line from the water heater to the tap!!!! Assuming a 1/2' diameter line, that is 1.7 gallons wasted before the hot water ever reaches the kitchen faucet!!!! Ridiculous!

My thoughts on the way home were exactly what you did, except I was thinking of a manual valve just under the sink (in the cabinet). But I like your idea of the electrically operated valve better; it allows a cleaner install and more easily accessible switch. It would also allow a second switch in the bathroom for the same valve/purpose!

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!!
Let me know if you try an installation. I would like your feedback.
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Old 04-02-2017, 07:12 PM   #38
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Murph-Nice job, love the idea of a motorzed ball valve!
Have you seen this commercial solution?

RV – Aqua View, Inc.
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Old 04-03-2017, 05:30 PM   #39
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There is a circulation motor you can put in the line (hot or cold) out of the water heater. You have to add a loop water line from the most distant place you want hot water.
The pump is controlled by a momentary switch at each place you want hot water. If you want hot water in the shower, you push the momentary switch for, lets say 15 seconds and hot water will be at the shower. The pump just pulls hot water out of the water heater "hot out" line and through the loop to the water heater "cold in" line. If the kitchen is another 5 seconds past the shower, then the person in the kitchen would posh their switch for 5 seconds to get hot water on to the kitchen, or 20 seconds if coming from the water heater. If there is a 1/2 bath, a switch would be needed there too. The pump only runs when you push the switch so water is only heated when asked for, unlike a gravity system, and doesn't pump the cold water back to the FW tank, which would require the pressure pump to run again to replace the water taken out of the pressurized side.
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Old 04-20-2017, 05:16 PM   #40
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Thank you Murphyman for starting this thread and a big THANK YOU to all that presented options. After finding and reading through this thread and doing some research, I installed the Aqua View SHOWERMISER last weekend in my 2016 Winnebago Micro Minnie 2106DS. With a 30 gallon fresh water tank and an Atwood on demand water heater I needed to find a solution to wasting water while showering. The State Parks we visit don't have water hookups at the camp sites just fill up stations throughout the campground.

Attached are before and after pictures along with a pictures of how I tied it back into my fresh water fill. I did not have access to run the return line behind the shower wall so I ran it out over the top of the shower curtain support. I ordered the Aqua View residential setup (the PVC elbow is not glued to the blue tube), so I could shorten the blue tube. I shortened it so I could run the return line up the 45 degree corner at the back of the shower and then out over the top of the shower curtain support and down the outside. At the floor I ran it across the back wall into a bathroom cabinet and then up to the fresh water fill.

This was a fairly straight forward install except for the need to find a way to tie the return line back into the fresh water tank. The Micro Minnie has enclosed tanks that aren't easily accessed. I fabricated a connection that uses the fresh water fill and still allows for filling of the tank. The connection used a 1 1/4" insert tee, a 1/2" PVC threaded elbow, 1/2" threaded barb fitting and an 1 1/4" flexible PVC coupling.

I have used the shower and it worked great and used far less water then before.
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