How Long Can You Shower in an RV For?


Summer is in full swing and you’re living the RV lifestyle. You wake up, have breakfast, and head out for a day of exploring.

You wake up again because your body feels dirty from all the sunscreen and sweat from yesterday’s adventure.

You want to take a shower but wonder: how long can you shower in an RV? Read on to find out and in-between the blog posts are different product recommendations. 

How Long Can You Take a Shower in an RV?

How long can you take a shower in an RV? This depends on the size of your RV, how big your water tank is, and how efficient your heater is.

If you have a large RV with a relatively small water tank and heater, then it’s likely that the amount of hot water available for showers will only last about 10 minutes. The bigger your RV is and the bigger its tank and heater are for heating water for showering purposes and cooking, then the more time it will take to heat up more hot water before refilling again from outside sources like nearby lakes or rivers.

What Are The Basic Components of an RV Shower?

You can start by taking a look at the basic components of an RV shower.

– Hot water heater:

This is where hot water comes from, usually stored in a tank that’s heated by electricity or propane. The hot water heater will be located either under the sink or in the bathroom itself.

– Shower head:

The showerhead is what you use to spray your body with fresh water before getting clean and/or wetting down hair for a shampooing session. You’ll probably find one on every wall of your RV, sometimes up high and sometimes low so that it’s easy for anyone tall enough to use it easily without having to bend over too much (if they’re tall).

Some models have multiple heads in different locations so that more than one person can take advantage at once; this can make things faster when everyone wants their turn at cleaning up after being outside all day.

– Shower curtain:

This creates privacy for whoever’s taking their turn inside an RV shower stall without leaving any gaps between themselves and someone else who might walk into view unexpectedly while they’re doing their thing.

However, many people also like how these curtains help keep dirt off flooring surfaces such as linoleum or tile beneath them while also preventing mould growth underneath due to too much moisture exposure over time.

How Can I Take Shower In an RV?

  • Turn off the water while shampooing or conditioning your hair; turn it back on when rinsing thoroughly (this will save up to 40 gallons per month).
  • Use the littlest amount possible when washing up, especially if you’re using liquid soap instead of bar soap (a difference of five ounces equals 1 gallon).
  • When washing your body, use a washcloth instead of a loofah sponge (sponges take up three times more water) and get wet before applying soap; this will help minimize water runoff and waste.
  • Keep towels dry after use by hanging them somewhere they’ll air out rather than throwing them in with other damp/wet linens.

How Can I Save Water Showering In Your RV?

RV water conservation is a big deal for people who are travelling for extended periods of time and want to conserve their resources. It’s also a good idea for those who live full-time in an RV because you never know when you might need that extra gallon of water.

That said, there are many ways to conserve water in your RV, especially when taking showers:

i. Use a Shower Timer:

If you’re the type of person who’s always worried about how much time has elapsed since your last shower, then a shower timer will be invaluable to you. You can buy one online and install it yourself or hire an RV service technician to do it for you.

ii. Buy a low-flow shower head:

This is another easy way to save water while taking a hot or cold shower in your RV. Instead of using the standard pressure regulator, get yourself a low-flow model that uses less water and still feels great on your skin.

iii. Install an RV water-saving device:

Most RVs come with one or more devices installed that help reduces waste when flushing toilets or washing dishes—but what about those times when only you are using the toilet? Or when someone else is doing dishes by hand outside?

Forgetting these things wastes precious gallons of fresh H2O. Get around this problem by installing an additional device that will automatically shut off after each use, thus keeping them full but not overflowing all day long.

Why Am I Running Out of Hot Water So Fast In My RV?

A typical RV shower head uses about 2.5 gallons/minute when it’s at full power. The average shower lasts about 7 minutes, so that means that in order to get clean, you’ll use about 10 gallons of water.

That’s a lot of water. And if you’re staying somewhere where there are strict limits on how much hot water can be used per day, like at an RV park—you may find yourself running out of hot water before your morning routine is complete.

This can be frustrating when all you want is to get started with your day and get some work done or maybe just relax and read.

How Long Does It Take To Heat Water in RV?

RV water heaters are designed to heat the water quickly and efficiently. They use the same amount of energy as a household water heater.

The reason they heat so quickly is that they’re designed to be used in short bursts very frequently, which means they have an incredibly high recovery rate and hold less water than a standard home unit. This also means if you try to use an RV shower for too long, it won’t work well.

Do RV Water Heaters Turn Off Automatically?

Yes, RV water heaters turn off automatically when the tank runs out of water. But no, they don’t turn themselves off when they run out of propane gas. You have to do this manually by flipping a switch on the heater itself.

To turn on an RV water heater: Turn the control knob (it should say “ON” or something similar) to “ON.” This will light up a red light above it as well as start heating up your water.

And to turn off an RV water heater: Turn the knob from “ON” back to wherever it was before you turned it on (if you can remember). This will change both lights from red and yellow/orange to just plain yellowish-white—and there’s no shame in using your guest’s towel for this one.

Can I Leave My RV Hot Water Heater On All The Time?

You can leave your RV water heater on all the time, but it will not work as a regular hot water heater. RV water heaters are designed to run on propane only. They cannot be run on electricity or solar power, and they certainly cannot be used to generate gas for cooking or heating.

If you have an electric or solar-powered generator, you can use that generator to keep your tank full so that when you need hot water in your shower, it will be there for you. But if there’s no generator available and/or nobody available to refill the tank manually (which would require opening up one end of the RV), then it might be best not to shower too long at once.

Does RV Water Heater Run On Battery?

If you own an RV, you may have been wondering if your water heater is able to run on solar power. Unfortunately, it’s not. In fact, the only way for your RV water heater to operate is by having a connection to either mains electricity or propane gas.

This is because solar power and batteries are not designed to provide enough power for heating a large tank of water like that in an RV. It could also be dangerous if your battery were low and the only thing keeping it running was powering your shower.

Will My RV Water Heater Freeze?

You don’t have to worry about your RV’s water heater freezing, but you should be aware of how to prevent it from happening in the first place. If a frozen water line is responsible for a leak, it could cause your RV’s pipes to burst. To prevent this from happening:

  • Keep an eye on the temperature gauge on your water heater
  • Use anti-freeze in areas where freezing temperatures are expected
  • Drain any standing water in your lines before winter hits

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The next time you’re taking a shower in your RV, don’t worry about how long it takes to heat up. Just enjoy the experience.

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Written by Jane Miller

I'm Nomadic Jane, a digital nomad and travel blogger. Since 2009, I've been traveling the world and exploring cultures through my travel blog.