A portable rinse system is a great gadget for the RVing lifestyle. Many people use them primarily as an outdoor shower, but they are also very handy for everything from washing mud off dogs and children to keeping your camper or boat clean, doing camp dishes, or as a portable car wash.
There are many portable systems on the market, ranging from the low-budget gravity-driven sun showers to very fancy propane systems. We prefer a system that has a way to pressurize the water, as it is a more efficient use of limited water supply to direct it where you want it with a bit of force. We also prefer a system that is self-contained and doesn’t need to be set up or have an outside power source.
1. Dr. Prepare 4-gallon solar shower
For the budget-conscious traveler, the 4-gallon solar shower by Dr. Prepare is a nice option. It is a passive solar heat system with pressure provided by a foot pump system.
While it doesn’t give you blasting water pressure, it is plenty adequate for a quick shower or rinsing off dirty feet to prevent sand from tracking through your rig. When you are not using it, it packs down well for easy storage. This system retails for around $50.
2. Rinse Kit
Rinse Kit products come in a durable cooler-sized case and offer a nice 65 psi pressure system on-the-go. Made in Carlsbad, CA, there are no batteries or moving parts to this system; the water pressure is derived from the pressure of the water filling from a spigot.
The pressure tank holds 1.75-3 gallons of water (depending on the model) and can supply up to 10 minutes of pressurized water, depending on the spray setting. The tank is insulated, so it will keep hot water warm for use, or you can get a heating rod accessory to warm up the water. Pricing ranges from around $90-$300.
3. Road Shower
For those needing a larger capacity system, Road Shower models offer 4-10 gallons of pressurized water on-the-go. The system is mounted to the roof rack, yet is designed so that it doesn’t impede using roof-mounted racks.
Road Shower systems use passive solar heat to provide warm water and provides 55-65 psi water pressure if filled with a spigot or by using a 12-volt tire pump.
Pricing for a complete system ranges from $330-$550. However, the Santa Fe-based company also offers online DIY instructions to make a similar car top shower system on your own.