Do you plan on RVing in freezing temperatures? You’ll need special equipment to protect your RV’s water system. Most importantly, a heated water hose! Read on to learn how to choose the best one for your winter RVing situation and see our top picks.
Table of contents
- What is a Heated Water Hose?
- Why Do You Need A Heated Water Hose for Your RV?
- How to Choose the Best Heated Water Hose for Your RV
- The Best Heated Water Hoses for RV in 2020
- Pressure Regulators & Water Filters
- Alternative Methods For Keeping Your RV Fresh Water Hose from Freezing
What is a Heated Water Hose?
A heated water hose has either insulation, a heating element running its length, or both. Designs vary with each manufacturer, but these hose will typically be a bit heftier and thinker.
The idea behind a heated water hose is to provide a small amount of power to keep the entire length of hose above freezing temperatures so water continues to flow. If a normal hose is left out in below freezing temperatures, you can expect water flow to stop and possibly damage.
Why Do You Need A Heated Water Hose for Your RV?
Freezing temperatures can cause many issues for RV owners. A heated water hose is an essential piece of RV equipment, especially for those who are traveling or stationary in locations with freezing winter temperatures.
When water freezes, it expands. Freezing pipes in stick and bricks homes burst and cause homeowners headaches and costly repairs. Living in an RV is no different, except that your RV’s plumbing is even more fragile and exposed than the plumbing in a house.
Plastic pipes and fittings will crack easily under the pressure of ice. This leads to leaking pipes, water damage, and mold that can create health issues for humans and pets.
Many RV parks in areas that get freezing temperatures will insulate the water spigot and require that guests have a heated hose, as well.
How to Choose the Best Heated Water Hose for Your RV
There are many heated hoses on the market for RVers. These hoses have electrical heat strips that run along the length and need plugged in to an electrical outlet. This keeps the water from freezing to prevent damage to your hose and your RV.
Here are some factors to consider when choosing the best heated hose:
- Length: make sure your hose is long enough to stretch between your RV and the spigot!
- Materials: not all hoses are safe for drinking water. Those that are will state it on the packaging. Make sure your hose says “drinking water safe” or “for potable water use”.
- Burst pressure or PSI: this is how much water pressure the hose can handle before bursting. It would be a good idea to couple your hose with a water pressure regulator to protect your hose and plumbing system.
- Energy draw: the hose is electric, so make sure you know how much power you’ll be pulling to heat the hose.
- Self-Regulating: This means the hose will turn the heating element on and off as needed due to external temperature.
- Temperature Rating: what temperatures the hose can handle.
The Best Heated Water Hoses for RV in 2020
With all of the above factors in mind, we’ve put together a list of the 4 best heated hoses for your RV here:
Camco 25ft TastePure Heated Drinking Water Hose
- Ideal for water line freeze protection down to -20 degree F (-28...
- Made with NSF-61 certified drinking water safe hose
- Includes female-to-male adapter to allow connection to the water...
The Takeaway: This hose can handle temps down to -25 F, features an energy-saving thermostat, and has a durable external cover to prevent damage.
FreezeFreeHose Heated Hose
- Prevents water from freezing inside hose
- Drinking water safe made from 100% high quality rugged virgin...
- Many lengths to choose from 5' to 100'
The Takeaway: This drinking-water-safe hose only uses .06 amps of power per foot when in use. This hose is self-regulating and has many lengths to choose from.
Valterra Heated Fresh Water Hose
- HEATED RV WATER HOSE: 1/2" diameter hose provides smooth flowing...
- EASY OPERATION: Self-regulating design eliminates the need for a...
- EASY TO INSTALL: 6' cord length and a light-up plug allows...
The Takeaway: The Valterra Heated Fresh Water Hose is a self-regulating drinking water hose. This hose features zippered insulators at either end for further protection against freezing temperatures.
NoFreeze Water Hose (+ Discount Code!)
- Available in 4′, 15′, 25′, 35′, 50′, 75′ and 100′ lengths.
- Keeps water flowing down to -30 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Hose Core – High Purity LLDPE Water Hose: A flexible, non-contaminating food grade hose that is ideal for use in food, beverage, and water applications.
- No Bad Taste – Inner core is a pure white PVC compound.
- Male Garden Hose Fittings – These forged brass fittings will never leak, collapse, or torque causing hose damage.
- Female/Female Garden Hose Couple – This allows the plug to be at either the spigot or ending connection point.
- Heater Element – Self-Regulating Heating Cable: Draws 1.5A per 25-foot hose length.
- Thermal Insulation – Remains flexible at -20° C to 80° C
- Read full specs here
- Optional Add-On: You can order your hose with additional heat trace elements called “pigtails” that extend 12 inches beyond the end of the hose to wrap around and protect connection points.
The Takeaway: The No Freeze Water Hose is the most expensive on the list, but it is arguably the best! The NoFreezeWaterHose is guaranteed to outperform any heated water hose or your money back. This hose is durable and can last for years. This heated drinking water hose officially works in temperatures down to -30F – you won’t find any other heated water hose more capable!
Also, check out their story on their website to learn about their North Dakotan roots and their mission to create a hose that will keep flowing when other hoses fail.
BONUS DISCOUNT: Get 5% off your NoFreeze Water Hose by using Discount Coupon Code “ONTHEMOVE5” at checkout!
Pressure Regulators & Water Filters
If you have a pressure regulator and/or a pre-tank water filter in-line with your RV water hose, you’re going to want to make sure these are protected, too! You can wrap these in a large blanket or towel, put them inside your wet bay (if you have one), or put them after the heated water hose so warmer water runs through them.
You can also wrap heat tape around these to help prevent them from freezing.
Alternative Methods For Keeping Your RV Fresh Water Hose from Freezing
If you don’t want to buy a heated water hose, there are other ways you can keep your fresh water hose from freezing.
The second best option is to purchase your own heat tape and wrap it around your existing hose. This option can work, but you lose out on the insulation properties of a heated hose, unless you also wrap your hose with insulation.
Alternatively, you could leave your water dripping in your RV… But this isn’t recommended and isn’t foolproof. Your hose can still freeze when you leave your water dripping, damaging not only your hose but your RV’s plumbing. And if you leave your water dripping, you’ll likely leave your gray tank open. This can lead to a frozen waste water hose, too!
The bottom line: if you’re going to be camping in an area with freezing temperatures, be sure your RV is protected! Don’t skimp on a heated water hose – you can spend a bit of money now, or a ton of money later.
PS: Don’t wait until cold weather is upon you to order your heated hose!
Learn more about Cold Weather Camping.
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