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Old 08-03-2015, 08:32 PM   #15
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1979 31' Sovereign
Northeastern , Kentucky
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 626
Thanks for all the feedback. I really appreciate hearing about all the different experiences.

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Old 08-03-2015, 09:25 PM   #16
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2007 27' Safari FB SE
Pleasant Valley , New York
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 57
Lets make this fun. I tow my 27 Safari with a F250 diesel. I see no difference if the tank is full or empty. It just happily rides behind me regardless....and no real difference in fuel economy. So I run with a half to full tank,whatever might be there. Part of why I tow with this vehicle. That gives me lots of potty stops and plenty for coffee if I want. Then when I get home I turn the valve and let it make the ants who live under the trailer landing pad happy.

Okay, so I will admit that a full tank makes for a less "bumpy ride". So I really don't mind towing with a full tank and draining excess when I get home. But -I don't let the water sit at home so it doesn't get skunky and funky.

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Old 08-04-2015, 03:22 AM   #17
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Fort Worth , Texas
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Originally Posted by KYAirstream View Post
I've read that traveling with a tank full of water helps with the center of gravity with the trailer. I'm curious if it really makes a difference, since a 50 gallon tank of water weighs more than 400lbs. That seems like a lot of extra weight if the effect isn't substantial.

The physics is simple enough. So is having fresh water at any time.
1990 35' Silver Streak Sterling; 9k GVWR.
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Hensley Arrow. 12-cpm solo, 19-cpm towing (fuel)
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Old 08-04-2015, 06:07 AM   #18
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1991 34' Excella
2009 34' Panamerica
Telluride , Colorado
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 1,938
I see all benefits of a full tank! We fulltime with 2 adults, 3 young kids and 2 dogs. For us that equals 5 full days of coffee, cooking, dish washing, peeing, showering, and watering the dogs. It's a no brainier, we can boondock and never worry about having to look for water. On day 5 we can service the trailer, and start the cycle all over again!
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Old 08-04-2015, 07:08 AM   #19
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1988 25' Excella
1987 32' Excella
Knoxville , Tennessee
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Full to half full fresh water. Empty gray and black tanks if possible. Truck and trailer weigh 13000 to 14000 overall. I would rather have the water than worry about the slight difference in weight. We generally eat lunch in the trailer and use the bathroom most of the times.
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Old 08-04-2015, 07:27 AM   #20
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2008 25' Classic
Wichita Falls , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2012
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I'm more concerned what happens if you are boondocking and black and gray tanks are full and you have to tow back to a dump station over a forest road for 20+ miles. For my 25fb that would be roughly 600lbs.

2008 Classic 25fb "Silver Mistress"
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Old 08-04-2015, 08:52 AM   #21
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2016 30' Classic
Erie , Colorado
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Kelvin, if you start with 50gal FW full and empty grey/black tanks unless you added more fresh water how would you fill up the black and grey tanks which combined might be 75 gals or so?
2015 Classic
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Old 08-04-2015, 09:13 AM   #22
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2007 28' International CCD
Springfield , Missouri
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We always run full.
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Old 08-04-2015, 09:14 AM   #23
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2001 25' Safari
Vancouver , Washington
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 269
I do the same as many have already posted. If we're going to be dry camping, and there's no convenient place to quickly fill upon arrival, our fresh water tank is full when we leave home. If we will be staying at a campground with full hookups, we travel with just enough water to use the sinks and toilets if needed along the way. I can't tell any difference when towing other than the added weight of hauling with a full tank. The only other consideration I make is the route to our destination. If the roads include long steep hills, I am more likely to travel with only the amount of water we might need along the way. This reduces our towing weight which helps when going up and down those long hills.

I'll add another consideration. When we return and I'm putting our trailer into storage, the fresh water tank is always full. I look at this as part of our disaster recovery planning. Should we need to quickly hit the road to escape the impacts of a fire, flood, or earthquake (you can get any of those here in CA), our AS is ready to go with a full tank of fresh water.
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Old 08-04-2015, 11:32 AM   #24
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1988 25' Excella
Montrose , Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 28
Cool Tow a full or empty tank?

Most of my summer camping is here in Colorado and at high altitude. We favor the NFS campgrounds, some of which have water taps available, but not all. So, there is a learning curve. Some taps have been altered by the NFS to prevent use of a hose for filling the tank. Others have special taps that require a special wrench if using a hose to fill. The wrench is available from the campground host. Then there is water available close to campgrounds for free or a small fee in many of the small towns that we pass through. All of this knowledge is gathered over the years. Ideally, I fill the tank to about 1/4 full, then fill it further upon arrival at, or close to the campsite. Towing the extra weight of a full tank at high elevation adds stress to the tow vehicle, but sometimes is required.
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Old 08-04-2015, 11:36 AM   #25
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belen , New Mexico
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I always leave w 1/2 a tank for the road and fill it closer to boondock destination.
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Old 08-04-2015, 02:06 PM   #26
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2016 30' Flying Cloud
Blenheim Ontario , Ontario
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Originally Posted by AldeanFan View Post
The tank I'm my safari is under the floor ahead of the axels so adding weight there adds stability and lowers the centre of gravity, in theory.
In practice I've towed with the tank full and empty and can't tell any difference in how the trailer tows.

Normally I fill the tank of we'll need water and leave it empty if we will have full hookups. So the tank will be full on the way to the NASCAR race but empty on the way for the KOA. I try not to tow with a half empty tank because the water sloshes around but I have and couldn't feel a difference. If we ever need to cross the desert I'll have a full tank in case of emergency.
I usually tow with full or almost full fresh water, and it's paid off several times;
I use it to "Go to the can" when on the road, and one time a storm knocked out all camp supplied water while I was all soaped up in the shower. Turning on the pump allowed me to finish my shower, and use the toilet after.
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Old 08-04-2015, 02:15 PM   #27
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2012 30' Classic
Homosassa , Florida
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 484
We run full on each departure with about 5 gallons in grey and black tanks.
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Old 08-04-2015, 05:52 PM   #28
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2009 28' International
Pacific Palisades , California
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 391
We always travel as light as possible. We definitely feel the difference with the extra 320 lbs if we're full fresh. We've had two blowouts during the life of the trailer, and the last one occurred because we arrived at state campground dry and filled up locally, but they had no dump available. With most of the 320 lbs redistributed to the black and grey, we could really feel it, and I'm sure it contributed to the blowout.

We keep 1/8-1/4 for on the road use daily unless we know we're going to a place where there won't be water--which is almost never. We have had to fill using our 12 gallons of collapsible portable water tanks in some rare spots over the years.

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