Showering in an RV is an art. The RV shower is much different from a home shower with its plentiful water, spa hose, and roomy enclosure. Typically, RV shower units are tiny and tucked away into a corner of the bathroom. Sometimes, they’re in the same enclosure as the toilet. In both instances, they don’t offer much room and you need to be mindful of a few things. Here’s what to know about your shower for RV.
Little space, little water
As we mentioned above, an RV shower unit is tucked into a tiny area of the RV. Space is at a premium, and you won’t have much room to move around. Also, your RV hot water tank likely holds either six or ten gallons of water – not much compared to the 40-50 a small home water heater holds! You’ll want to conserve water while you shower so you don’t lose your nice, hot shower while you’re in there. Generally, you’ll want to start the shower to get wet, turn it off while lathering up, then turn it back on to rinse at the end. This isn’t the time for a long, leisurely soak.
RV shower accessories
Consider some of these RV shower fixtures to help make your shower more pleasant. There are RV shower heads similar to those in home bathrooms. They’re typically built to use less water than conventional shower heads, and are pressurized to compensate for less water. Look for a showerhead with a shut off valve so you can quickly turn the water off and on when you need. You’ll also want an RV shower drain – be sure to clean it regularly to keep it draining well.
RV shower pans
The RV shower pan is the floor where you stand while showering. Large vehicles may have an entire RV shower tub base, but most have a small pan with a lip to keep water from spilling out. This is another reason to both watch how much water you’re using, and to keep your shower drain in good working order.
RV shower pans should be non-skid, and they’re usually made of fiberglass or acrylic. They should last a long time – if yours gets cracks, you should repair or replace it quickly so the water doesn’t get under the floor. You can get a repair kit with epoxy resin and follow the instructions to fix your shower pan. Replacing the entire shower pan is more difficult, and you’ll want to either do plenty of research, or consider leaving it to a professional.
RV shower hose
Most RV shower heads are wands that can be removed and used. There is a hose – typically plastic or stainless steel – that connects the wand to the water supply. Plastic hoses will be cheaper, but stainless steel will last longer.
RV shower skylight
Some RVs have shower skylights, which provide more light to see and also warmth on sunny days. Because skylights are made of plastic, they eventually crack, cloud, or otherwise need to be replaced. If you have some handyman skills, there are great tutorials on replacing your skylight, or you can have a professional handle it.
RV replacement shower
You can replace individual parts of your RV shower if they fail, but you may need to replace your entire RV shower base at some point. You’ll need to measure your RV shower insert to be sure that the RV shower replacement you choose fits properly. There are RV shower kits available that include most parts you’ll need for your replacement shower.
Turn off the water supply and disconnect the water pump. Then find the RV shower access panel and disconnect all the pipes. Remove the old shower, going carefully so you don’t damage the base underneath, and follow manufacturer’s instructions to install your new shower. Test to make sure everything works properly, with no leaking.
RV shower replacement is a job you’ll want to make sure you do properly, because water leaks can be a huge problem – so make sure you either have home improvement skills, or enlist a good friend who does…or consider hiring a professional to do the job.
There’s nothing like a nice, hot shower at the end of a long day of traveling and exploring! Knowing a few things about your RV shower can ensure that yours works well and is ready whenever you need it.
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