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Overland

Water Saving Mods and Adjustments

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tl;dr - absolutely buy this, and depending on how you use your kitchen sink, maybe buy this.

 

When we started looking at campers/trailers one of my requirements was that we should be able to go for a full week without refilling our water supply, using an estimated 7 gallons of water per day for both my wife and me, which included a daily shower for each of us.  That was ~50 gallons, so we knew we couldn't get that with the Ollie, but were hoping that with some diligence and an extra 12 gallons carried in the truck that we could stretch a calculated 6 days into 7.  That never happened, and of course we actually slid the other direction, getting more like 5 days - 3.5 from the trailer tank and another 1.5 from the extra water.  I think if we really ran the tanks dry that we'd have gotten 6 full days but we never had a situation to really test that, mostly since we'd start to get nervous around the 20% mark and would go find water.

 

Then last year I replaced the kitchen faucet, and the new one had an aerator that really had no flow restriction at all.  It was rated at 2.5 gallons/minute vs 1.5 for the standard Delta faucet Oliver uses.  And it also has a short little lever that made it hard to adjust to a small stream to save water.  We could do it, but it was a pain.  I realized last month though that the faucet would take a standard sized aerator, so I decided to buy a few to test them out.  The ones I got were better, but made my cool kitchen faucet seem average, and I couldn't have that.  But a little internet sleuthing led me to The Mikado.  It restricts the flow to an amazing 0.35 gallons per minute and has the coolest spiral spray pattern you've ever seen.  At only 0.35 gpm, I imagine you'd get pretty frustrated if you wanted to fill a glass of water; but we use bottled water and only use the kitchen faucet to do dishes and wash hands, so that low of a flow rate actually works out perfectly for us.  We lost the ability to switch between two different sprays, but we never used that feature anyway.

 

With that success, I decided to take on the shower.  The highest rated low flow shower head I could find is the High Sierra.  It's not a looker by any means - it's downright ugly.  But it seemed like anyone who's ever rated shower heads has placed them at the top of their list, and it has a flow rate of only 1.5 gpm vs Oliver's 2.2, so I put my aesthetic sense to the side and ordered it.  In its favor, it feels great in the hand - very heavy and solid, and it also has a trickle feature like the faucets Oliver used to use, which is great for keeping the water warm while sudsing up.  Not in its favor is that I found it nearly impossible to connect to the hose from Oliver's faucet.  I ended up having to order an oddball adapter and then modifying that to make it work.  (It would have been easier just to have swapped out the entire faucet, which is what I'd recommend anyone else do.)  But even with the adapter, it does slide back into the faucet just like the original, so apart from being a pain to make work, it does work just the same.

 

But I have to say that this shower head is truly amazing.  It has a surprisingly forceful stream that feels as if it's using twice as much water as before, if not more.  It works so well that I didn't believe it was only using 1.5 gpm and had to test it myself - which made me even more surprised since I actually got a little less.  I'm not exaggerating when I say that this really transformed the shower, and I highly recommend it to everyone, whether you're trying to save water or not.

 

But it is ugly.

 

After both of those mods, I thought I'd see if lowering the water pressure would make any difference, and found that 40 psi was about the point that I started to notice some drop off in the shower output.  The sink stayed the same regardless what I set the pressure at.  In fact it will actually run for a good while with the pump off, just from residual pressure in the pipes.  So I've set both the pump and my external pressure regulator to 40 now, which I suppose helps my plumbing and maybe makes some dent in water usage though I doubt much.

 

The result?  8 full days this past trip with both of us taking showers each day, split roughly 5/3 for the Ollie's tank and the extra gallons in the truck.  So 2+ extra days of water while at the same time improving the quality of the water at both the sink and the shower and being able to lower the water pressure.  Really A+ results.  I don't know how often we'll actually need a full week's worth of water, but on this last trip it worked out well for us since only once were we someplace that we could actually hook up the trailer to a hose, which meant a lot fewer trips to get water.  Also it means a little less stress and obsessing over water use, which is a good thing.

 

By the way, the replacement aerator may work with the stock faucet, but I'm embarrassed to say that somehow I've lost mine* so I can't check.

 

 

 

*Along with the sink.  How do you lose a sink?

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Snowball • 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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That shower head sounds nice. I might come over to your trailer some morning during the rally and try it out!

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Steve, Tali and the dogs: Reacher, Lucy and Rocky plus our beloved Storm and Maggie (both waiting at the Rainbow Bridge) 2008 Legacy Elite I - Outlaw Oliver, HULL NUMBER: 0026 2014 Legacy Elite II - Outlaw Oliver, HULL NUMBER: 0050 2017 Silverado High Country 2500HD Diesel 4x4 

 

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I ended up having to order an oddball adapter and then modifying that to make it work.  (It would have been easier just to have swapped out the entire faucet, which is what I’d recommend anyone else do.)

 

Thanks, Overland--

 

It looks like I will be ordering the kitchen sink aerator.  I am intrigued and have looked on Amazon for the shower head. I'm wonder if you could answer a few questions:

I this the same one?

What procedure would be needed to swap out the "entire faucet" as you recommend we do?

What "oddball adapter" did you order (in case swapping out my faucet doesn't seem practical) and what modification did it require?

Thanks for your patience with my request (even if you might have to pretend to have it).

 

--Jeff


Onward through the Fog!


EarthPicks of Cochise County


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This is the adapter I used.  I cut off the extra threads and then had to drill out the inside diameter to make it fit the existing hose.  I actually think that the threading was slightly off, but it doesn't leak so I'm not swapping it.  I used a rubber O ring as a washer.  The problem is the custom connector on the existing hose, which is why I say it's probably better just to replace the whole thing.  I thought that I might be able to replace the hose, but I couldn't find a way to get either end to go through the faucet and come out.  Maybe someone can figure out an easy way to do it, but I couldn't.  Replacing the faucet wouldn't be hard, but it would require taking out the insert on the front of the vanity, which I didn't have time to do before our trip.  I think this summer I'll try to tackle that job, more because I'm having ideas about the sink than just wanting to do a better job on the faucet.

 

I can't find the exact faucet on Amazon that I bought, but it was essentially this one with the grip handle.  I bought mine directly from High Sierra.  The chrome handle probably looks better. Most people would probably want the brushed nickel, but I've been slowly swapping out all the brushed stuff in the trailer with chrome/stainless, since I think it matches the trailer better.

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Snowball • 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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That shower head sounds nice. I might come over to your trailer some morning during the rally and try it out!

I’ll have to give that some thought. Maybe I should charge a per minute fee.


Snowball • 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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Given the size of Steve - that would be a bunch of minutes.

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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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tl;dr

 

By the way, the replacement aerator may work with the stock faucet, but I’m embarrassed to say that somehow I’ve lost mine* so I can’t check.

 

*Along with the sink. How do you lose a sink?

 

 

I was researching your aerator mod and found this on the Delta Faucets website.

 

<b>Delta Faucet

· 6 months ago

 

Thank you for your question, Danny! </b>

 

<b>The RP80524 Essa wand does not have a removable aerator and the wand itself is not meant to be disassembled. The face of the wand has soft, rubber Touch-Clean spray holes which allow you to easily wipe away calcium and lime build-up with the touch of a finger. If you suspect a mineral buildup inside, you can unscrew the wand from the hose and pour a 50/50 solution of white vinegar inside, otherwise a new wand would be needed.</b>

 

<b>Best regards</b>

 

This is the model faucet I have in #193.  So it appears that this mod is not doable without changing the faucet as well.  Dang it!  And the list keeps on growing.

 

 

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Mike and Krunch   Lutz, FL   LEII #193 “the dog house”

 

 

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Overland, I like the spray pattern of the Mikado aerator. I think I will try that on one of my vanity faucets at home. I have a different Neoperl .5 aerator now, but the spray pattern is splashy in the shallow sink.

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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And the list keeps on growing.

Yeah, but now you have a reason to get a cool new faucet.


Snowball • 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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Overland, can you post a photo of the improved faucet?

 

I'd like to change out the spray head to the High Sierra, but can't visualize how it would integrate with the existing faucet (or any faucet of that type, frankly).

 

If it nestles into the faucet body, the same way that the current one does, that would be fine with me, aesthetics are not an issue. :)


2019 Legacy Elite II #488 - Delivery July 24, 2019
2018 F150 Platinum SC SB EB - Leer canopy

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Unfortunately I can't take a photo now, because my bathroom is all apart.  I'm redoing it with a new sink and also separating out the shower from the sink faucet.  Big project and I just haven't had any time this summer to finish it.  Like all my projects, I'll realize about two weeks before a trip that I have to get it done pronto.

 

But, yes, the handheld part slid into the existing faucet just like the original.  It looked a bit ungainly and the finishes didn't match (brushed vs polished), but it worked.


Snowball • 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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After reading your original post about the Mikado and High Sierra products, I thought about adding a diverter after a mixing valve to avoid the hassle you dealt with adding an adapter.  It sounds like the direction your going.  Good luck and keep us up to date on your progress.

 

Mike


Mike and Krunch   Lutz, FL   LEII #193 “the dog house”

 

 

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So, I finally got around to ordering the Neoperl Mikado aerator, and installed it in one of the guest bathrooms, replacing the original .5 gpm aerator.. This is the coolest spray pattern l have ever seen. And zero splashback onto the wood countertop.

 

Perfect replacement on my Kraus faucet.

I'm ordering more for the rest of the house, and the trailer, too.

Thanks Overland.

Sherry

 

 

 

[attachment file=194001]

 

20190826_121545.thumb.jpg.1935aa698a7c75841b8bf97b1bef7280.jpg

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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Cool, I'm glad it's working for you. We're redoing a bath in our house now - need to go buy a toilet, vanity and faucet this afternoon - and I'll probably swap out the aerator in the new faucet with the Mikado also.


Snowball • 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

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