Outdoor showers are a great way to wash off after a day of camping. Having a shower available can help you save time and water, giving you more time to enjoy the outdoors and nature.
Making an outdoor shower for camping can be easy and cost-effective! There are a few ways to create one, depending on your resources. Most require some form of soap or cleanser as well as water, obviously.
Some use water collected in plastic containers or hauled from the camp site water source, while other systems use garden hose water pressure or portable water containers.
Some are simple curtains that you shake out, and others are more sturdy structures that have insulation and walls. Some even have features such as steamers or sprinklers to further clean the camper off.
Buy a waterproof showerhead
The first step in building an outdoor shower is to purchase a waterproof showerhead. You can find these at any big box store or hardware store.
They are usually very inexpensive, so it is worth it to go ahead and get one before starting this project. Even if you plan on attaching it to a faucet, having a hose makes it more feasible to wash yourself.
Bullet point: Choose your tank size based on how long you will be camping
The next step is to choose what size tank you want for your water supply. The blogger suggests getting a 5 gallon water tank, which is about the same size as a toilet bowl flush.
This is good advice as it would help conserve water while still allowing enough water for several showers.
Install a water pipe to the showerhead
Now that you have your showerhead and hose, you need to install them. You can either do this by taping the hose to the showerhead or gluing them together.
Once that is done, you will need to install a water pipe from the faucet to where you attach the hose. You can do this with copper piping or a water resistant tape.
For outdoor showers, copper piping is best as it is waterproof. Water resistant tape is better for indoor showers as it allows some water leakage if someone turns the faucet on too high.
Either way, both are necessary for a good installation and you can purchase them at any hardware store. The best part about installing these components is that it can be done before going camping so you are not rushing last minute.
Buy a water pump if you do not have natural flowing water
If you do not have access to natural water sources, like a stream or lake, you will need to buy a water pump. These are available at most hardware stores, and cost around $30-$50.
These are great because you can put them away after use! Most have a reservoir that can hold some water, which makes it easier to fill the tub.
Water pumps are necessary because they help get the water flowing through the hose and into the shower area. Without it, there would be no flow of water!
Some people make outdoor showers using just buckets or pans of water instead of a pump, but this is much less efficient and requires more frequent refills.
Set up a storage container for water
Once you have found a location for your shower, the next step is to set up a container for water. You will need a container to hold water that you will use to wash yourself and rinse off.
You can use any type of container as long as it is weatherproof. You may even want to use two containers one for washing and one for rinsing. This would help keep your body from getting too wet while still getting the water flow you want.
Many people use five-gallon plastic buckets for their showers. They are easily found and inexpensive, making them a good choice for a camping shower. You can also find waterproof bags that are designed specifically for setting up showers. These are better if you want to take your shower elsewhere than where you camp!
Either way, make sure your container is sturdy so that it does not leak or get pushed over easily by kids or pets.
Set up a storage container for soap or shampoo
Soap and shampoo containers can be bought at most local stores. You can also find them online as well. There are many varieties of containers, so find one that works for you!
Many people choose to put their soap or shampoo in a bag instead of an actual container due to the fact that most containers are not waterproof.
This is not a problem unless you want to use it in the shower unit you are building! Make sure you invest in a waterproof container or bag for your soap or shampoo.
Plan where to put the showerhead and sprayer
Once you have picked out the showerhead and sprayer, it is time to figure out where to put them. You want to make sure they are securely fastened so they do not fall off or get knocked off while you are using the shower.
Depending on the type of water supply you have, you may need a water pump. If your water source is a lake or river, you will need a way to filter the water before it gets to the tank.
A gravity fed system uses the elevation difference between the tank and showerhead/sprayer to force the water through. You will need to make sure there is enough pressure for this to work!
Once you have all of this set up, test it out and make any necessary adjustments. Make sure everything is secure and will not fall off when someone gets in the shower.
Install the sprayer and showerhead
Now it is time to put in the shower head and hose. You can purchase these at any home improvement store or Walmart. The hose needs to be the appropriate length for your shower, and the showerhead must be removable.
As mentioned before, you can find these at your local hardware store or online. If you find one you like at a hardware store, check if it is made of sturdy plastic and if it is compatible with your water source.
Once again, start with a test run to make sure the water flows properly. Make any necessary adjustments then!
Bullet point: Add Features
Now it is time to add some fun features to your outdoor shower. You can add shelfs, hooks, or even a tent around your shower for privacy. Alternatively, you could use a rain curtain to keep the water flowing outside of the stall.
Test everything before using it
Once you’ve put it all together, be sure to test out your shower before taking it camping with you. Make sure the water pressure is good, the nozzle changes patterns correctly, and that it stays warm!
If there’s any problem, take it apart and make the adjustment before you go camping so you don’t have to without a shower.
While you’re at it, give it a good clean too so you’re ready to go. Once you’ve got your hands on an outdoor shower for camping, enjoy your fresh new showers! You will have the luxury of a nice warm shower whenever you want one.
This is especially great if you are camping in cooler climates where having a hot shower is important for staying warm and comfortable.