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How To Install An RV Water Purification System + Our Ruggable Winner

How To Install An RV Water Purification System + Our Ruggable Winner

While we’ve always sanitized, and drank directly from, our RV’s fresh water tank, we know a lot of people aren’t comfortable that their RV’s water supply is safe to drink. They might be concerned about the water sitting in the tank, or the wide variety of unknown sources that they hook up to. They might lack confidence in their sanitizing methods, or maybe they’re just extra-sensitive to bleach.

Whatever the reason, we hear from people all the time that they haul bottled water around because they’re uncomfortable with the thought of drinking from their RV’s faucets, whether from the tank or from a campground connection.

While we’ve been drinking directly from our RV’s water system for over 14 years, and we’ve never suffered any ill effect from it, we certainly understand some people’s hesitance to do the same. Even though we thoroughly sanitize our system a couple of times a year, we know that the potential exists to pick up a bug from one of the many water systems we connect to as we travel. That’s especially true for those of us who spend a lot of time, and fill our tank, at remote or isolated campgrounds, since the water sources there may contain no protective chlorine at all.

But the prospect of buying, storing and lugging bottled water around has always been a deal-breaker for us. We’re just not willing to go through the expense and trouble, not to mention the environmental nightmare involved in the transporting and selling of bottled water. And of course there’s the impact of creating, then disposing of, all those plastic bottles. We love dramatic natural beauty, and try to do our part to avoid being cavalier about practices that ignore the harm that wasteful practices do to our planet.

So we’ve been on the lookout for a solution for all those people who don’t drink the water on their RV. We discovered that a company called Acuva has patented a way to use the same type of purification method that major cities use to make water safe to drink: ultraviolet light. The UV lamps that cities like Paris, Vancouver and New York use to purify their drinking water are too large, and draw too much power, to be workable in a mobile environment.

But the advent of UV LEDs enabled Acuva to design purification systems that are small enough and energy efficient enough to work great for the marine industry. Now they’ve taken that same technology and designed a system that’s even more compact, with the RV industry specifically in mind.

Watch the video for more details about the Acuva Eco water purifier, and see the step-by-step overview of how we installed one in our RV. We’ve been using it in a variety of locations, both hooked up in remote campgrounds, and boondocking… drinking right out of our fresh tank.

We’re really impressed with the quality of the Eco, so we’re happy to announce that Acuva has just become the newest company to be added to our Discounts page.

Acuva is offering a special deal to our viewers. Visit and use the Promo Code RVGEEKS at checkout, and get 10% OFF any Acuva water purification system.

SAVE 10%
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Acuva 10% Off - Discount Code RVGEEKS

Ditch the bottled water! Major cities sanitize their drinking water using ultraviolet light, and now you can, too. Acuva’s UV-LED system makes water safe to drink, using a fraction of the space...Show More

Ditch the bottled water! Major cities sanitize their drinking water using ultraviolet light, and now you can, too. Acuva’s UV-LED system makes water safe to drink, using a fraction of the space and power… perfect for RVs.

Check out our Acuva installation video here

Get 10% off any Acuva system when shopping online at Acuva's website and using the discount code listed here.

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If you saw our last post and video, you know we were giving away a $250 gift certificate for Ruggable 2-piece washable area rugs. A hearty congratulations goes out to Judy J. whose entry #1523 was drawn as our lucky random winner. We hope that Judy enjoys choosing, and using Ruggable rugs in her 1995 Newmar Kountry Aire (yes, she’s a fellow Newmar owner!) and in her sticks & bricks house, too.

By the way, there were a total of 1,536 entires. So Judy’s last-minute entry number 1,523 is a great reminder that it’s never too late to enter our giveaways… until they end of course. If you hadn’t heard about the giveaway until it was already over, and you haven’t already done so, subscribe now! There will be more giveaways, and more great RVing content coming, and we hope you’ll want to hear about it.

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Adam McLaughlin

Sunday 30th of August 2020


Kathy Sayre

Monday 6th of August 2018

We are going to install an Acura in our 2015 Tiffin Open Road. We have a residential fridge with ice maker. Should we hook up the Acura to the ice maker also? It seems wrong to clean the water but not the ice. Love your videos. We are full time for almost 2 yrs now and love it!


Monday 6th of August 2018

Hi Kathy! Thanks for the nice note and great question. You can’t actually hook the Eco model Acuva system up to filter the ice maker water. That’s because it’s activated by turning on the water dispenser, which sends an electronic signal to the unit itself, turning on the UVLED. The icemaker would not trigger the UVLED to come on. For applications that require either a larger flow or flow-triggered activation (vs switch triggered), the next model up, the Arrow, would be required. An additional advantage to the Arrow is that it has the higher flow rate. The downside of course is that it is more expensive.

Since we continue to sanitize our freshwater tank, basically out of habit, and to keep all water cleaner, not just the water we drink, we’re not that worried about our icemaker. One other thing we do is keep a couple of gallons of water that we have run through the Eco in the refrigerator. That way we have cold drinking water available all the time without using ice. Hope this helps a little bit. And congratulations on your upcoming two year full-time anniversary!


Saturday 14th of July 2018

Thank you so much for this highly informative video. Thank you also for making the significant discount available. We took advantage of it and have an Acuva Eco on the way.

I wanted to pass along that Acuva now sells an optional Advanced Prefilter. They claim it removes lead, heavy metals, chlorine, chromium 6, mercury, volatile organic compounds, and carcinogens.


Saturday 14th of July 2018

Thanks, Mickey... we were happy to bring this great new product to people’s attention! And we’re glad to hear about the availability of an even more advanced prefilter, to ensure that your drinking water is safe from all kinds of contaminants! Hope you like your Eco as much as we like ours!

Scott K

Wednesday 30th of May 2018

Gentleman, I first want to thank you for introducing me and my family to the Acuva products. For anyone on the fence about purchasing from them due to the cost, it's worth it. This company truly stands behind their products, beyond what I'd have considered reasonable.

I will explain more below. Let me preface this by saying this is not a slight against Acuva, the Eco, or any of their products. My problems are most likely something to do with my RVs 12v electrical system that the Eco has not done well with.

We purchased an Acuva Eco last October after seeing the video posted here. We were skeptical at the price because there's no parts that can be fixed. My wife convinced me to go for it and we did. We had our first Eco about 2 weeks and the blue light turned red with a constant alert tone. I called the Acuva and ran through troubleshooting with them. We determined that during installation I most likely got water into the electical componts somehow and they replaced it at no charge.

This one we had for a month before it died again, again Acuva helped me troubleshoot the issue and replaced it for me. My issues with the system have been problematic for the last 8 months, and each time Acuva has stood by their product. I have even been teleconferenced into two different engineering meetings to help determine the root cause of the issues the Eco has had with my RV. These meetings have driven redesigns of the Eco and with my latest issue will again. I can't say for certain because I didn't keep track but I will say I've had at least 6 issues in the past 8 months and not once did Acuva ever tell me "too bad". Mr. Jean-Michel Dentinger has worked with me every time and has actively tried to make sure I was a satisfied customer and I am.

I have proudly shown people the Acuva products and told them how well the company has treated me. If you buy from Acuva you will not be disappointed. I can't say enough good things about Mr. Dentinger or Acuva. I honestly wish I could do more or say more good things about Acuva and their products.


Wednesday 30th of May 2018

Hi Scott! First, we're so sorry to hear that you've been having such difficulty with getting your Eco to work. But thank you so much for sharing your experience AND Acuva's response. We always say that any company can be "good" when everything is going right... but that a true test of their commitment to their customers is when things go wrong. And it makes us very happy to hear that they've been standing behind their product and have been so supportive, trying to help figure out how to get you working. We've met with Jean-Michel several times at Acuva's facilities here in BC and couldn't agree more with all you have to say about him... and the company.

We hope, after all you've been through, you've reached a point where everything is now stable and working for you! Again, thanks for sharing!


Wednesday 21st of March 2018

Hi guys. Started looking into this - and since i do not want to drill a hole in my counter (too chicken) and want the ice maker to get the water anyway, I found (as you said in a previous chat) that you need to get the arrow 2 which can work off of a water flow sensor and not the faucet (if you so choose). I am looking into this though $1,200 is pretty steep.

Question though, what do you do about brushing your teeth? Since this only helps in the kitchen, would you worry about germs in water that you rinse with? I know this seems like a real anal question, it just came to mind when I thought about spending the money, but then thought how bummed I would be if I got sick from a bug while rinsing after brushing.



Wednesday 21st of March 2018

Hi Rich! Since you're not planning to install a water dispenser in the counter, how are you planning to use the Acuva for drinking water access? Even the Arrow requires a dispenser to be installed, and we're assuming that you aren't planning to use it strictly for ice, right? Maybe you can clarify for us, but if you thought that you could get drinking water from the Arrow without drilling that hole in the counter, we don't think that's the way it works. We've been on board a boat with an Arrow, and the only differences are higher flow rate, and flow-activation. The need for installing a dispenser is the same. Sorry if we're missing something on this one. Please do fill us in if we are.

As far as brushing teeth, we've never actually thought about it, but maybe we should? We know that not actually drinking the water isn't enough to protect you from bacteria, and when we're in Mexico (spent two weeks there just last year), we use bottled water for brushing teeth. We haven't had the Acuva long enough to be out of the habit of being really anal about fresh water tank sanitizing, so we probably need to start thinking about this if we're going to relax our tank-bleaching regimen. We'd suggest that the same procedure we follow in Mexico for brushing teeth would be wise... fill a glass from a safe source (bottled in Mexico.... the Acuva on the RV), and use only that water for brushing teeth.

Hope this helps a bit, but please let us know what your plans are for drinking water access at the kitchen sink.

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