A unique device diverts cold water back into the tank while waiting for a hot shower
Spending time in rustic campgrounds is part of the RV experience that many owners relish, and is one reason why most RVs are self-contained. Unless you own a toy hauler, chances are good that the fresh- and gray-water tanks aboard your RV hold 60 gallons or less. Although that might seem large, the tanks can empty and fill quickly, and there are few things more frustrating than having to pass on a shower because of fluid-capacity restraints.
For boondockers and many environmentally conscious RV owners, water conservation is important. One product that helps in that department is the Showermiser from Aqua View, a high-quality water diverter that redirects wasted cold water back into the freshwater tank while waiting for hot water to reach the showerhead. Not only does the device save water, it keeps the blast of cold water from hitting your body when the mixer valve for the showerhead is first turned on.
The Showermiser utilizes heat-activated technology integrated into a color-changing return pipe that visually signals the user when the water is warm. With the valve in the closed position, wasted cold water is returned to the freshwater tank via the color-changing pipe. Once the water is warm, the pipe color changes from dark blue (almost purple) to pale blue with a tinge of white. The color change is obvious, so there is no question when the water is at a comfortable temperature.
Making up the chrome Showermiser installation kit is a metal diverter valve, the color-changing return pipe and a 1⁄2-inch NPT nipple, rubber washer and nut. The kit sells for less than $60 and is available on the company’s website.
To install the device, the first step is to locate either the nonpressurized (input) side of the water pump or an accessible location in the water line that leads to the freshwater tank. We found it easiest to simply tee into the PEX water line located close to the input of the demand pump. This is when you’ll need to make a trip to the hardware or RV store for specific fittings and water line.
The next step is finding a suitable position for the new hardware and a place where the return pipe will be routed through the shower wall. This is achieved by temporarily connecting the return pipe to the diverter valve and placing it between the showerhead hose and the mixer valve inside the shower. After the hole location is marked and drilled to 13⁄16 inch, the return pipe can be assembled using the 1⁄2-inch NPT nipple, making sure all the connections are tight.
Although a washer is used to seal out water around the nipple, it’s suggested to add a bit of extra insurance with an application of silicone sealant, and Teflon tape should be used on all threads. The installation shouldn’t take more than two hours, but it might take a little dexterity, depending on access to the back of the shower stall, plumbing and configuration of the water system.
Not only did it feel good to have only warm water flowing from the showerhead, we were also pleased that water was not being wasted.
714-485-5904 | www.aquaviewinc.com/rv