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Old 05-27-2014, 07:11 PM   #1
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Oregon
Posts: 53
So much for only filling the water tank from "known" sources

Over the last 3 years of owning our trailer I've defended hauling a full tank of water from home because most places we go we are dry camping and I like to know that the tank doesn't pick up any bugs from unknown water sources.

Well, Friday as we were just getting on the road for the weekend when a "boil water" alert was issued for our area that made national news after traces of E. coli were found in 3 water samples that were taken over a 3 day period.

We already had a case of bottled water with us so I didn't bother draining the tank on our way out of town. We did use the onboard water for flushing and washing hands. As you can see in the link above there's a lot of talk about how serious to take these alerts. The alert was cleared within 24 hours and I have trouble believing all "bad" water was magically flushed from all the pipes going to nearly 700,000 people and it was then replaced by new clean water.

Now that we're back home I did drain the tank, but am still debating if I need to do another full cleanse with chlorine after the one I just did a month ago after getting the rig out of storage. I have made up my mind, though, that despite their boilerplate federally required recommendations i don't think I'm going to toss the $50 water filter I just replaced in our house refrigerator.

The NPR affiliate here did put together a pretty good list of tweets from folks about the notice including the following:
@RoguePearlPDX: Portland, we have the answer to your #PDXboil problems: beer.

Anyone else out here in Oregon have to deal with this this weekend?

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Old 05-27-2014, 07:26 PM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Idaho
Posts: 9,840
I say a 1/4 cup of bleach per 15 gallons of water is cheap insurance.

If it was me I'd pony up the bucks.

Bottom line, is your call.

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Old 05-27-2014, 08:33 PM   #3
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Illinois
Posts: 880
I keep a bottle of chlorine granuals (for swimming pools) and a ketchup type squirt bottle in with my fresh water supplies. Doesn't take much but whenever filling my fresh tank from anywhere I mix some chlorine with water and squirt it into the fresh tank before filling. This keeps the bacteria and nasty stuff away as much as possible and also prevents my water from sulphur smells that I have found in so many well based water pumps at campgrounds. It also runs through my whole house filter before coming into the camper. We also only drink liquids from bottles or cans when camping
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