Long-term RV Sewer Hookup: How Do I Connect My RV Permanently (2023)

When you are planning to set up your RV on a permanent or semi-permanent basis, it is a good idea. However, there are logistics to consider and you should be prepared for them once your septic tank and concrete pad are ready for use.

One of the logistical factors you will need to remember is that RV black and gray water tanks are not meant to be open 24/7. In your hook-up process, you will have to take this design into account. You will also need to use the gray water tank to help flush the black one.

To learn more about this topic, just continue to read our article. It does its best to guide you through this project so you have the best information to follow. Take a few minutes to see how this important information helps you get the right permanent set-up.

Long-term RV Sewer Hookup 101

Permanent RVSeptic

How To Permanently Hook Up RV To Septic

(Video) What you need to know for full time RV SEWER

Permanent RV WaterHookup

Hooking Up Your RV To a Septic Tank

Connect Travel Trailer To Septic System

Permanent RVSeptic

Long-term RV Sewer Hookup: How Do I Connect My RV Permanently (1)

This is actually not a tough task to do. If you are building your own pad and giving your RV or travel trailer a permanent home, this is a good idea. It is also a good idea when you are planning a long-term stay at an RV park or campground.

The process is not hard to do. You just need the right tools, couplings, and hoses to do the job right. The items needed are as follows:

Saw

Utility knife

(Video) How To Plumb in a Seasonal RV or Camper With PVC Pipe

Tape measure

Two flexible 3” connectors

PVC pipe of 3” in diameter

90-degree sewer fitting adapter

45-degree adapter and RV drain

Of course, the specific models and shapes of most of the parts will depend on how your black water exit valve is designed and the location of the septic tank or dump spot.

Keep in mind that the sewer lines for RVs, etc., are not made for long-term use. You may have to buy some new hoses that are thicker and tougher when you want to stay in one spot for a very long time.

95% of the job is preparation. After that, it is a simple matter of hooking everything up correctly.

How To Permanently Hook Up RV To Septic

Long-term RV Sewer Hookup: How Do I Connect My RV Permanently (2)

You can read our article that we wrote some time ago. You can get to it at thispermanent RV setup link. It has the steps you will need to do the job properly. There are only six steps involved in that article.

Or you can follow the steps we found at this link:

Step #1: Close all valves on your RV and then twist the termination cap off the drain.

Step #2: Measure the distance from the RV valve to the opening of the permanent sewer’s inlet valve. Cut the pipe that you bought to length. Keep in mind it is better to cut it longer than shorter. You can always take some pipe length off but you can’t put it back on.

Do not forget to smooth out the cut portions and get rid of all the burrs. A file or utility knife can do this.

(Video) My Camper Home - Hard Plumbed Septic

Step #3: Now take your flexible connector. it should be designed with a 45-degree angle to fit the RV valve. Slide the connector into place and secure it. Then slide the PVC pipe into the other end.

Make sure the connector and pipe are set in the right positions before tightening any clamps or screws.

Step #4: Now it is time to connect to the other end. Again, make sure the pipe is in the right position, and then slip the 90-degree connector over the open end. After that, slip the open end of the connector over the sewer opening or valve. Secure both ends.

Step #5: Run the water faucets in your RV after opening the gray water tank valve. You want to check for leaks. If there are any, seal them up with the right compounds. If there are no leaks, you are done except for clean-up.

Get someone to help you that is experienced in this type of work if you are not sure your skills are up to the task.

Permanent RV WaterHookup

Long-term RV Sewer Hookup: How Do I Connect My RV Permanently (3)

There are two ways to get this project done. The first way is to simply run a garden hose from a spigot to the RV. No permits are needed for this set up and it may only cost you the price of the new hose.

If you are running an actual water line, you will need to bury it plus, you may need to get a permit and have inspections done. To do this task is like running a water line to your home but on a smaller scale.

While the first option is cheap and easy, it also has its share of problems. It would be best to bury the hose as well to protect the ground from any chemicals coming off the hose. The second option is tougher and more expensive but it is safer.

The water line will need to be buried up to 12 inches at the bare minimum. Then you have to make sure you are connecting the water line to the proper spot on the main line. The only real problem will be water pressure so take that factor into account.

When that is all said and done, you just have to connect that water line with the one in your RV. Don’t forget to wrap the water line with insulation and heat tape to protect it in the winter.

How To Hook up RV To Sewer With PVC

Long-term RV Sewer Hookup: How Do I Connect My RV Permanently (4)

The process we described above was using PVC pipe. Hooking the sewer up using PVC pipe is a matter of positioning and using the right connectors. Also, the type of security system you use is important.

In some cases, you can use PVC glue to hold the pipe in place. But if you ever move, removing the connectors will be difficult. You will want a flexible connector that only uses a clamp to secure it in place.

(Video) RV drain Temporary or Permanent easy Hook up

The key to using PVC pipe is to make sure you cut the pipe to the right length and have the right connectors. You do not want to be caught dumping any sewage on the ground, even if it is done accidentally.

If it does happen, you may face fines and penalties and will be spreading germs, the possibility of disease, and so on to the groundwater. Double-check your work to make sure all the connections are very secure and will not come undone accidentally.

Hooking Up Your RV To a Septic Tank

Long-term RV Sewer Hookup: How Do I Connect My RV Permanently (5)

If you know how to hook up your black water tank to a dump station, then you already know how to do this task. It is a matter of simply connecting the hose or pipes correctly and you are done.

That means you need to have the right-sized connectors to match the opening of the septic tank. You cannot go too small nor can you go too large. You do need an exact and very tight fit to protect you and the water system.

You can use PVC glue on the septic side of the project to get that tight fit. The septic tank won’t be going anywhere even if you move. You can make that permanent but have a way to seal the opening if you do move.

Then, the key to hooking up to the septic tank is having the right angles and the proper length of pipe. Go too short, you will have to add more connectors or start from almost scratch and cut a new length of pipe.

You will also need a slight downward slope to the pipe so the flow will be smooth and nothing stops in the middle of the pipe.

Connect Travel Trailer To Septic System

The first step in this process is to make sure your trailer is level. Whether you use blocks, tire steps, or the leveling jacks, you need to make sure your trailer is perfectly level.

If you are connecting to a house sewer or septic system, you may have to dig down and connect to the sewer pipe directly. You will also have to dig down between 12 to 18 inches with a slight slope if you are using the gravity system.

Connect the valves and connectors as we described above making sure they are secure and tight. You will need a 4-inch diameter and a schedule 40 pipe to do this project.

Some Final Words

These tasks are not that complicated. You should be able to get plans to help you with all the special details. Or you can talk to your city’s permit section to get what they require before you start this project.

This is another project you should not cheap out on. Get the right materials, and you can find them at an affordable price, so you do not have to do this work again.

(Video) How to Connect your RV to Home Sewer

FAQs

How do I connect my RV to my septic permanently? ›

Typically, you will find a clean out is the easiest way to connect your RV to your septic tank. This will be a PVC pipe that comes out from the ground with a screw cap. You can simply remove the cap and attach the sewer hose from your RV into this clean out.

How long of a RV sewer hose support do I need? ›

To be most effective, sewer hose supports should be at least as long as your hose. While 20 feet seems to be a good standard, we've noted some hose supports that only accommodate 10 or 15 feet. Depending on circumstances, that could be useful for some campers.

How far can you run an RV sewer hose? ›

you need to understand that most sewer hoses for RV use can be connected together. You can buy extensions ranging in length from 10 to 20 feet, and you can connect multiple extensions. Theoretically, there is no length limit to how far you can run a sewer hose for camper use.

How often do you need to pump an RV septic tank? ›

How often you need to empty your tanks is relative. If you are traveling with a large number of people, you may need to empty your tanks every other day. If it is just you and your spouse, once a week may be enough. A general rule of thumb is to wait until your tanks are about two-thirds full before emptying them.

How long can you leave sewage in RV tank? ›

You should be dumping your holding tanks every 3-5 days or when tank levels reach two thirds or three quarters full. Dumping this often reduces the likelihood of waste buildup that could cause clogs, odors, or misreading sensors.

Can an RV be your primary residence? ›

Declaring your main home

The IRS allows taxpayers to designate one residence only as a main home at any one time. Your main home is the one where you ordinarily live most of the year. This can be a boat or RV even if it doesn't have a permanent location.

Can you plug an RV into your house? ›

Is it Possible To Plug an RV Into a House Electrical System? While it's not recommended to plug RV into house power for extended trips, it is possible for a short amount of time. However, to do so, most RVs will require at least a 30/50 amp and a 15/20 amp electrical outlet.

What do you need for full time RV living? ›

General RV essentials
  • RV drinking water hose.
  • Sewer kit.
  • Power management system/surge protector.
  • Tire pressure gauge.
  • Fire extinguishers.
  • Extra fluids.
  • Jumper cables + battery jump pack.
  • Dry camping/boondocking gear.
Dec 17, 2021

Can you connect two RV sewer hoses? ›

RhinoFLEX RV Sewer Hose Coupler - RV Sewer Hose Coupler

The Camco RhinoFLEX Swivel Coupler easily connects two RhinoFLEX sewer hoses together, adding as much length as is necessary to your sewer hose assembly. Each end swivels for easy connection.

Can you store RV sewer hose in bumper? ›

Bumper Mounted Storage Box

Storage boxes mounted on RV bumpers are an ever-popular and convenient option for gear. You can also use this method to store RV sewer hoses. This is the perfect option to keep them out of the storage bays and secure in a box.

How much pressure can RV water lines handle? ›

Modern RVs, like fifth wheels, can handle up to 100 pounds per square inch (PSI) of water pressure. However, most RV experts recommend never letting the water pressure exceed 60 PSI. Somewhere around 40 to 55 PSI is ideal for many RVs.

How far can you run a 4 inch sewer line? ›

The distance between cleanouts in 4-inch pipe should not exceed 100 feet (or 50 feet for pipes 3 inches or smaller).

Can you fill RV water with a garden hose? ›

You should never use a garden hose to fill your van's water tank since garden hoses aren't manufactured to deliver safe drinking water. In addition to bacteria and mold, the water from a garden hose typically contains toxic chemicals like lead, BPA, and plasticizers.

What is the best RV sewer hose to use? ›

Best RV Sewer Hoses For 2023
  • Valterra Viper : Best Overall RV Sewer Hose.
  • Thetford Titan 20 Foot : Best Budget RV Sewer Hose.
  • Valterra Dominator : Best Value RV Sewer Hose.
  • Camco Revolution : Best Dual-Drainpipe RV Sewer Hose.
  • Lippert Waste Master : Best Cost-Is-No-Object RV Sewer Hose.
Feb 13, 2023

Can I leave my RV water pump on all the time? ›

Nothing is definitely going to go wrong with your water pump if you leave it on, but leaving it on allows for the possibility of problems like leaks, floods, and drained batteries.

Do you dump grey water or black water first? ›

Dump the black water tank first, then the gray tank. Dumping the gray tank last helps flush out the sewer hose. After you dump both tanks, thoroughly flush out the tanks.

Does grey water go into septic tank RV? ›

Some RV owners empty gray water onto the grass, but the best practice is to empty it into a dumping station. It is advisable to empty the grey water tank after the black water tank. This helps to clear any debris that might have been left over from the black water dump.

Should I leave water in my black tank when not in use? ›

The addition of fresh water is very important as you never want to have a dry black tank. Never leave your black tank open when connected to a campground sewer hookup. There's no pretty way to explain this: The liquid waste needs to build up with the solid waste in a black tank in order for it to properly flush out.

Should I leave water in my black tank when storing? ›

Store your black tank with a full tank of water and Unique RV Digest-It; keep your gray tank empty.

How long will a 28 gallon black water tank last? ›

As a general rule of thumb, though, you can expect to get about five or six days out of the black water tank before it needs to be flushed completely.

How do I make my RV a permanent home? ›

More lenient zoning requirements allow RVs to be permanent residences if they meet the same housing codes as traditional homes. This includes having sewer access or a septic system, access to fresh water, and possibly even electrical.

How do I get a permanent address living in an RV? ›

Unfortunately you cannot use your RV as a permanent residential address. A mail forwarding service like the one with Escapees RV Club is the easiest way RVers get mail on the road, for as long as they want.

Can you write-off RV on taxes? ›

Yes, your RV can be a tax write-off, no matter how long you've owned it. New and used RVs are both eligible for tax deductions in many states. If your RV is your home, certain deductions may also apply.

Does plugging RV into house charge battery? ›

Your house batteries do indeed charge when plugged into shore power. House batteries are the ones that power your 12-volt accessories… interior lights, water pump, vent fans, etc. They can also power 120V AC appliances… IF your rig is equipped with an inverter.

Can RV be plugged in all the time? ›

Again, the short answer about keeping your RV plugged in all the time is – no. The risks include battery damage from overcharging and frozen refrigerator coils, as most RV refrigerators need to be periodically cycled off and thawed.

What happens if I plug my 30 amp RV into house? ›

If you go over, you'll trip the breaker and cause your RV to lose power. This means that if you have a 30-amp or 50-amp RV, you won't be able to make full use of its electrical system. What is this? However, if you plan to plug into household power, call an electrician to install a 30-amp or 50-amp plug at your home.

How do people make money while living in an RV full time? ›

Find the right RV for you and start your adventure working from anywhere.
...
Inspiration is all around you.
  1. Freelance Writer. ...
  2. Proofreading & Editing. ...
  3. Write an eBook. ...
  4. Create and Sell Courses. ...
  5. Photograph Your Adventures. ...
  6. Create Videos About Your Adventures.
Dec 7, 2022

Is RV living cheaper than owning a house? ›

Living in an RV can be cheaper than living in a house, but keep in mind that this lifestyle isn't for everyone. A lot of people buy houses as an investment but that isn't something you can do with RVs (their value only depreciates over time).

Is it financially smart to live in an RV? ›

It is financially smart to live in an RV. Living in an RV means living a lot smaller with a lot less stuff. You have less room for everything – clothes, toys, tools and more saving you a lot of money. Along with less space, you save on utilities and home-improvement projects if you own your home.

How do you store a sewer hose on a travel trailer? ›

There are many ways to keep your RV sewer hose storage area organized and as hygienic as possible.
  1. Clear Plastic Storage Bins. ...
  2. Store in the RV Bumper. ...
  3. Suspend Pipe in Storage Bays to Hold RV Sewer Hose. ...
  4. Store Your RV Sewer Hose in a Tool Box. ...
  5. Use a Five-Gallon Bucket for RV Sewer Hose Storage. ...
  6. Use a Hollow Plastic Fence Post.
Jul 12, 2021

What size is an RV sewer connection? ›

There are two common sizes for RV sewer hoses: 5/8-inch and 1-inch. But not all RVs use the same size; some will be outfitted with 1-inch hoses, while others use 5/8-inch hoses.

Where should RV sewer hoses be stored? ›

Probably one of the most common places to store hoses is the basement (or pass through) storage compartment. Most RVers use this area for their RV sewer hose storage. Next is probably the RV bumper. SOME RV bumpers are made hollow for RV sewer hose storage.

Can I leave my RV dump valves open? ›

Your RV sewer valve (black water valve) should always be closed no matter what type of camping you are doing because you want to keep liquid in the tank to help break down solid waste and create an odor barrier against sewer gases.

How do you insulate RV sewer hose in winter? ›

Start by wrapping the heating cable kit around the sewer hose. Secure the heating cable kit with electrical tape and then cover the sewer hose and heating cable kit with pipe insulation. Use weatherproof tape to keep water and other elements from getting into any gaps.

What happens when water pressure is too high in RV? ›

But pressure that exceeds the maximum recommended level could destroy your RV's water system. Your faucets, fixtures, and water filters are likely to leak, and your plumbing pipes could burst. Repairs to an RV plumbing system are costly but may be prevented.

Why is there no water pressure in my RV when hooked to city water? ›

Campground/RV Park's Water Supply

If you're connected to a city water supply, start by checking the pressure at the spigot. If your water pressure regulator has a pressure gauge, you can check the pressure on the gauge. If it appears to be low, try turning up the water pressure a bit (if it's adjustable).

What should RV water pressure be set at? ›

Municipal water systems, for example, can deliver water pressure as high as 150-200 psi. By contrast, most RV plumbing specialists recommend that the water pressure supplied to an RV not exceed 60 psi, with a comfortable recommended pressure of around 40-50 psi.

How long can you run a sewer line? ›

You can expect your sewer line to last a minimum of 60 years (as is often with an older home), or longer depending on the material the pipes are made from. For example, the oldest homes may have pipes made from hardened clay (discontinued) and generally last about 50 - 60 years.

How many drains can be on one vent? ›

A horizontal wet vent could have as few as two fixtures or as many as ten fixtures but not more than two fixtures of any type can be connected to the system. Each wet vented fixture drain shall connect independently to the horizontal wet vent.

Why are RV hoses white? ›

The Best RV and Boating Hoses Feature:

want to buy a white hose. Typically, that means it's been rated as drinking water safe.

How long does it take to fill a 500 gallon water tank with a garden hose? ›

It usually takes about 1 hour to an 1.5 hours to fill a dunk tank. If you have really great water pressure at your party location it may take less time.

How many feet of RV sewer hose do I need? ›

How Long Should an RV Sewer Hose Be? The most common lengths for RV sewer hoses are typically between 10 and 20 feet. You'll want to make sure you have enough hose to reach the dump station, or campsite sewer hook-up, which is simple if you consistently hook-up or dump at the same location.

Can you connect 2 RV sewer hoses together? ›

RhinoFLEX RV Sewer Hose Coupler - RV Sewer Hose Coupler

The Camco RhinoFLEX Swivel Coupler easily connects two RhinoFLEX sewer hoses together, adding as much length as is necessary to your sewer hose assembly. Each end swivels for easy connection.

How does the Rhino Blaster work? ›

The Rhino Blaster Pro Tank Rinser latches securely onto your RVs sewer outlet. The 45 degree angle allows water to blast directly into the outlet, rinsing out residue. Blaster Pro Tank Rinser features a clear elbow to see when the water runs clear.

Can you connect RV to septic system? ›

If you own an RV and also have a home with a septic system, you may have wondered if it's possible to hook up your RV to your septic tank. And the answer to that question is simple. Yes, you can.

Can I plug my RV into my home? ›

Is it Possible To Plug an RV Into a House Electrical System? While it's not recommended to plug RV into house power for extended trips, it is possible for a short amount of time. However, to do so, most RVs will require at least a 30/50 amp and a 15/20 amp electrical outlet.

Can you tie into an existing septic tank? ›

It could be done, but not only must the tank capacity be considered, but the capability of the drain field as well.

Can a septic truck pump a camper? ›

RV Septic Tank Pumping

Honey Bucket can service your RV and camper pump outs. We service over 1,200 RV's a year and have the expertise and equipment to handle any type of job. When dump stations are not available, give us a call to assist with both black and grey water tanks.

Can you claim an RV as a primary residence? ›

Declaring your main home

Your main home is the one where you ordinarily live most of the year. This can be a boat or RV even if it doesn't have a permanent location. As long as it contains the required facilities, you can claim it as your main home on your taxes.

Does GREY water go into septic tank RV? ›

Some RV owners empty gray water onto the grass, but the best practice is to empty it into a dumping station. It is advisable to empty the grey water tank after the black water tank. This helps to clear any debris that might have been left over from the black water dump.

Can you empty a camper toilet into a septic tank? ›

In summary, yes you can dump RV waste water into house septic systems. Don't use chemicals in your black water tank that may destroy your tank's natural ecosystem. When dumping from an access port, try to make sure you're on the correct side of the baffle. This will ensure solids remain far from the outlet.

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