We are all now used to taking showers.
In fact, people have more showers now than baths across the U.S.
For space reasons many RVs and motorhomes are fitted just with a shower. This is great for getting up and getting out, but what about those times you just want to have a bath.
Can you add a bath to an RV? – It is possible to add a bath to an RV. Consideration come from space and hot water available. The bathroom area of an RV needs to be large enough to accommodate the size and weight of a filled bath. Also, standard RV hot water may not fill a bath 100%.
The average size of an RV bathroom is 8.4-foot x 4.2 foot. Considering the average length of a bath is 6-foot x 3-foot, as you can see it doesn’t leave a lot of room!
Large RVs with larger bathroom sizes can accommodate a combined shower and bath unit, as well as toilet and basin.
Why would you want to add a bath to an RV?
The RVs you see on the road today have more amenities than ever before; they have everything from the standard bedding, kitchenette, and A/C to satellite TV, Blu-ray players, and even hot tubs!
But what about a bathtub?
It seems to be the missing element in what otherwise would be considered a true home on wheels!
Why though would you want to add a bath to your RV?
With shower areas in almost all RVs you could argue the function to wash yourself is already included and a vertical shower will take up a lot less room than a horizontal bath of course.
A bath though is like an oasis of calm and relaxation at the end of a day.
It provides many benefits such as to de-stress, relax and some people find having a bath helps them sleep better at night.
After a long day hiking and exploring there aren’t many better ways to sooth aching muscles than taking a long hot bath.
As well as these benefits, adding an RV to your bath can increase Its overall value. It’s a great selling point if you do ever decide to sell.
What RVs have a Bath?
Typically, the largest ones!
You need to have a pretty impressive RV or fifth wheeler to have the space inside to fit a bathtub.
Space doesn’t come cheap in an RV. Some of the very largest $100k+ RVs have a lot of space inside, with lots of panels that open to create even more space.
An RV such as the 2017 Keystone Montana, which costs around $75k, is one such RV.
As you can see in this (shortened) video, the bath in this RV fifth wheeler is pretty impressive!
As you can see, it isn’t a full six-foot bath, but it is as close to a full-size bath as you’re likely to find.
What is impressive about the 2017 Keystone Montana bathroom is the built in shower unit too. One of the best-looking bathrooms we’ve seen in an RV to date.
Complications of having a bath in an RV
When traveling around in your RV you may find, like we do, that for every positive there are at least two negatives!
Having a bath in an RV is no exception.
Space is the first hurdle you are likely to come across. Some RVs are so small that wet baths have to be installed.
A wet bath is a small surface bathroom area that comprises a shower, toilet and sink in one single floor space. A wet bath is a great space saver, and ideal for an RV with limited bathroom space. They are relatively simple to install and use the same water outlet pipes to drain water and waste away.
Unfortunately, they are not, as the name suggests, an actual bath.
You could not use one as a bathtub.
Another complication is being able to harness enough hot water to fill a bath.
On average it takes 30 gallons of water to fill a bath. In our homes we have large combination boilers and heating systems to be able to continuously heat water at the rate required to fill a bath.
This is harder of course in an RV, with limited power.
Trying to generate enough power to continuously heat 30 gallons of water is no easy task. Even if this was possible it would be very expensive to run!
Many RV floors are reinforced, but a bathtub holding 30 gallons of water is very heavy!
If you do decide to opt for a bathtub inside your RV, make sure the floor can support the weight of the bath, full of water, with a person inside.
After all the considerations, costs, and complications perhaps a shower is the better option.
This isn’t trying to dissuade bath fanatics who really want to install a bath to their RV or fifth wheel, but just a realistic summary and hopefully sets some expectations for you to consider.
RV Baths – In Conclusion
Although it is possible to add a bath in to an RV, and some of the larger RVs already have baths installed, there are lots of considerations to be made.
If you do have the space, and the ability to heat enough water to fill your bath, then why not.
If like most of us space is somewhat lacking in the bathroom area, or you just simply couldn’t keep 20-30 gallons of water hot enough to actually enjoy a bath, you may need to stick to your shower unit.
Many find baths soothing for feet and ankles. If this is the main reason you are considering installing a bath, you may find it easier to go for a foot spa or massager instead.
They are much easier to carry around!
Although a bath or hot tub in your RV may sound like an amazing idea, it’s worth realizing that RVs and motorhomes were built to allow us to travel around with a minimal small home – rather than replicating our homes.
Perhaps look at the reasons why a bath is so appealing and seek out alternatives!