RV Lifestyle eZineAuthor

August Kite
August 25, 2015

No. 327



Buying that First RV;
following the sun;
frugal RVing;
working on the road


Stay Healthy: Filter Your Drinking Water
Reverse Osmosis (RO) Systems
New Bacteriostatic Filters
TDS Meters to Test Your Water
Trivia Quiz



Stay Healthy: Filter Your Water


Outside Water Filter


To stay in good health on the road, it is essential that the water you drink is free of bacteria, virus, and dangerous chemicals. One of the first things to add to your RV is a water filtering system. There are several options available.


For water filters to be effective and not add to health problems, they must be in use all the time. If you store the RV for more than a couple of months, remove all water filters and discard.

If boondocking for long periods of time without being hooked up to city water, the minimum solution for clean water would be to install an inline filter under the sink, then use another filter that hooks up to the water hose when filling up the fresh water tank.


Inline water filter    Outside Water Cartridge

There are new filter materials on the market that you may want to explore if you are a seasonal traveler or boondock frequently (see  Bacteriostatic Filters below).

Rick at RVWaterFilterStore.com recommends using 5 micron or 1 micron filters inside the RV and 5 micron filters outside.



True happiness comes from the joy of deeds well done, the zest of creating things new.




Reverse Osmosis (RO) Systems


If you primarily stay in RV parks hooked up to utilities, a Reverse Osmosis system may be the best option for clean water. This system costs about $250, easy to install, and provides the cleanest water you can easily filter on the road. A two-gallon holding tank is all you need, and it can be tucked under the sink or dinette.

The system shown here is the one I use. It has two pre-filters, an RO membrane, a small carbon filter on top to handle any smell from the holding tank, a tall faucet, and a two-gallon stainless holding tank. Water pressure from the RV park must be at least 40 psi to start the RO process. The higher the water pressure, the better the filter results, less TDS in the water.

RO System

The two pre-filters on the bottom probably need to be changed every year, but the expensive RO filter on top is good for about three or more years, depending on the water. The tiny carbon filter on top of the RO lasts as long as the RO filter. It simply filters out any odor from the stainless steel tank.
RO systems are also used for salt water desalination, but it make take a larger system than this one to make that work.

I also have two pre-filters (1 is carbon) installed in an outside cabinet where my water hookups are located. They can also be on the ground (some RVers use a bucket or a special spiked retainer sold at most RV supply stores).


Outside Filter Stand

This provides a simple "whole RV" filter system that lowers the TDS for the shower, washer, and dish washing water. Use the 5 Micron-size filters.

Since I travel primarily in the sun belt where the TDS reads high, around 450-600, these outside filters help keep the shower water softer without using a salt-based product. They do not stop the water spots, only RO does that.



The RV Lifestyle: A Dream Come True  Find out if the RV lifestyle is right for you. If you have questions, "The RV Lifestyle: A Dream Come True" is an ebook that contains the answers.

– Buying That Dream RV - Things to Consider
– Equipping an RV and Tips on Maintenance
– Managing Power, AC and DC
– Emergency Road Service
– Towing Your Auto
– Planning Trips - How To Get The Most For Your Money
– Boondocking (Primitive Parking)
– Earning an Income on the Road
– Staying In Touch with Family and Friends


Included in the Summer Sale this month at Amazon. Regular $3.99 now $2.99.
Sale ends September 1, 2015.

New Bacteriostatic Filters

KDF is an alloy containing zinc and copper that can be incorporated into carbon filters to make them bacteriostatic. That means that bacteria cannot grow inside the filter. This is particularly good for people who use their RV intermittently, as KDF will protect the filter while the RV is not being used. It is designed to kill bacteria and algae, not necessarily to remove chlorine and other contaminants.



KDF Filter



There are several other chemicals that manufacturers use to make their filters bacteriostatic, but many of them affect you as well as the bacteria!  KDF has a very good record as being the safest agent yet found for keeping bacteria from growing in filters, although silver nitrate is common, also.


To protect your health, use this filter only when needed for intermittent use of drinking/shower water, not for regular use.

Conquer the Road"Conquer the Road: RV Maintenance for Travelers" covers maintenance of all the basic systems: air conditioning, awning, generator, hot water heater, hydraulic levelers, inverter/converter, roof, sewer, tires, and much more. Driving and weight balance tips are included.

  Healthcare & The RV LifestyleHealthcare and the RV Lifestyle” is designed to present the important elements required for a safe and healthy interface with the healthcare industry:
 – Healthcare and Life Before 65
 – Fighting the Medical Syndrome
 – Dealing with the Healthcare Industry, Get Help Paying Costs
 – Staying Organized, Medical Records, Caregiver Credit
 – Medicare Part A, B, C, D, MSA, Therapy Management, Medigap
 – Retiree Insurance
 – Dental Implants - What to Expect
 – What Female Issues are covered
 – Glossary of Medical Terminology


Both eBooks are included in the Summer Sale this month at Amazon.
Regular $7.99/5.99 now $2.99. Sale ends September 1, 2015.





TDS Meter: Monitor the Water Quality

This neat little gadget makes testing the water easy and quick. You can see the Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) in the LED window.  Test the water every few months, and when it drops below the TDS level you prefer, change out the filters, no guess work with this instrument. The one I use (Intellitec) is pretty reliable, but there are many models on the market. There are adjustable types that claim they can be re-calibrated, I had no luck with those.


TDS meter


The Federal Government minimum standard for drinkable water is 450 TDS. I feel healthier when my drinking water is around 50-100 TDS. The water also tastes and smells better. It does take a reverse osmosis (RO) system to bring the TDS down to this level. Using a distiller takes the TDS to zero, but the energy it takes to achieve this level makes it impractical for the RV lifestyle.



See Margo’s blog, Moving On With Margo.com, for more tips, tools, and strategies to help you explore the RV lifestyle and get started. Her website, RV Lifestyle Experts.com, has articles on all phases of the RV lifestyle. Start with "Road Map to RVing".



Geography Trivia Quiz

1. Name the state that is due west of the state whose name means “green mountain.”
            a. California
            b. New York
            c. Idaho
Hint: Ethan Allen was the leader of the Green Mountain Boys.

2. The Chattahoochee River forms the southern half of the border between which two states?
            a. Alabama and Georgia
            b. Georgia and South Carolina
            c. Mississippi and Alabama
Hint: The northern half of this border is artificially straight.

3. Name one place found in the U.S. Fall Zone.
            a. Bridalveil Falls, Calif.
            b. Niagara Falls, N.Y.
            c. rapids in Richmond, Va.
Hint: A fall zone, or fall line, is the place where the upland region of continental bedrock and alluvial coastal plain meet—where the waterfalls are.

4. The gentle hills in the Southeast are known as:
            a. Piedmont
            b. Baby Appalachians
            c. Allegheny Plateau
Hint: This area includes parts of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama.

5. Name the place to find one of the world’s richest deposits of copper.
            a. Cooperstown, N.Y.
            b. Butte, Mont.
            c. Las Vegas, Nev.
Hint: The name of this city means an isolated hill with steep sides and a flat top.

6. The Grand Coulee Dam makes hydroelectricity by using the power of what river?
            a. Columbia
            b. Colorado
            c. Snake
Hint: This river runs through Canada for 465 of its miles.

7. Which group of mountains are the source of many rivers in the West?
            a. the Catskill Mountains
            b. the Smokey Mountains
            c. the Rocky Mountains
Hint: These mountains form the Continental Divide, separating rivers draining to the Atlantic and Arctic oceans from those draining to the Pacific.

8. Name the steel-making center of the Southeast.
            a. Birmingham, Ala.
            b. Atlanta, Ga.
            c. Clarksville, Tenn.
Hint: This city’s nickname is “Pittsburgh of the South.”

1. New York. Lake Champlain forms much of the border between Vermont its western neighbor, New York.
2. Alabama and Georgia. Originating in northern Georgia and flowing SW to the border with Alabama, the Chattahoochee River joins the Flint River and turns into the Apalachicola River.
3. Rapids in Richmond, Va. Richmond, Va., where the James River falls across a series of rapids down to the tidal estuary of the James River, is one example of a fall line city.
4. Piedmont. “Piedmont” is French for foothills.
5. Butte, Mont. This city is the birthplace of Robert Craig, “Evel Knievel,” and was named a Distinctive Destination by the National Trust for Historic Preservation in 2002.
6. Columbia. Grand Coulee, now a reservoir in the Columbia basin project, was a former stream channel of the Columbia River, created during the last ice age.
7. The Rocky Mountains. The major rivers rising in the Rockies include the Rio Grande, Arkansas, Platte, Yellowstone, Missouri, Saskatchewan, Peace, Athabasca, Liard, Colorado, Columbia, Snake, Fraser, and Yukon rivers.
8. Birmingham, Ala. Overlooking Birmingham, on nearby Red Mt., is a huge iron statue of Vulcan, the Roman god of the forge.









Contact Margo @ TheMaxwellGroup.net


Blog: Moving On With Margo.com

Website: RV Lifestyle Experts.com

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