travel trailer hot water (not enough)

We currently have a 6 gallon hot water heater in our travel trailer. When taking a shower the hot water will run out in under 5 minutes. We turn the water on as low as possible to try and gain more time but have been unsuccessful. We are hooked up to a sand point well (city water line) with adequate water pressure and approximately 4 gallon per minute output from pump.

Should we increase the size of our hot water heater? Or are there other options or issues we are missing? It is a gas water heater. The shower head states 2.5 gallon per minute but again... we have the water turned down to try and gain more time. We enjoy the current water output but would like to get at least several more minutes of shower time.

Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance

Re: travel trailer hot water (not enough)

First thing to remember is that you are NOT in a house with a 30-40 gl hot water heater. GI showers are a MUST ! We only have a 6 gl also and 3 adults and take hot showers in a row. FIRST wet your whole body down, TURN OFF THE WATER by the shower head.(Should have a shut off switch of some sort)> SECOND, soap down your entire body, doing your head LAST (helps prevent soap in the eyes), THIRD, water on again, rinse off entirely. Your done. Might be hard the first couple of times, but gets easier as you go. The other thing we do is use the campground showers. Ususally only $.25 or $.50 and that is the best money you will ever spend.



Senior Member
Re: travel trailer hot water (not enough)

As Bounder Boy said, "Navy showers" are a must. Everyone, including the 13 year old, has mastered the technique. We can do 3 of them in a row off of our 6 gallon tank. Also, we can turn the propane on as well as the electricity for "quick recovery." We only need to do that when it's cold outside.
Re: travel trailer hot water (not enough)

Yes, the water heater will recover on gas faster than elec. Turn them both on, if you have that option. They work independently of each other.


Re: travel trailer hot water (not enough)

I never have that prob ,, i use the CG showers ,, but i agree ,, u must save the hot water ,, as in wet down ,, turn water off ,, soap up ,, rinse ,, and yes i have had to do that a time or two ,, but never again ,, my shower now is used for storage ,, and will always be used for that ,, i have a small shower ,, and not worth me trying to take a shower in it ,, bath houses are better ,, they have enough hot water for an hr shower ,, JMO :approve:


Senior Member
Re: travel trailer hot water (not enough)

I agree with Rod - the shower stall makes an ideal place for the fishing rod, hip boots, tackle, ice chest, etc. Campground showers are the way to go, just remember to wear shower shoes. :laugh: :laugh:


Senior Member
Re: travel trailer hot water (not enough)

We are fulltimers and we have a six gallon, Atwood propane only water heater. We can take showers that last more like 10 minutes, but they won't run forever. We take them as hot as is comfortable and as long as you just shower and get out, it should provide ample hot water. The normal set temperature for an RV water heater should be 140 degrees, which means that you will mix it with about half cold water when showering. To me it sounds as though you are not getting hot enough water or some other problem.

We have been using our shower for more than ten years now and all that I can think of is that your tank may need to be flushed. They do tend to build up mineral deposits inside over time and it happens more quickly where water is very hard. Try turning off the water heater, allowing it to cool and then drain it to see what comes out. Get one of the plastic flushing tools that are available at RV shops to put on a hose and use that to spray the inside of the coils and tank and to flush the bottom of the tank to get all of the loose stuff out of the tank. It may be that you have too much build up in the tank, or on the heating surfaces which will lower production.