How to Install an Underslung Grey Water Tank on a van

A grey water tank is one of the less glamourous necessities when converting a van. Therefore, why not hide it under the van? Opting to install an underslung grey water tank on your van means that you save precious space inside the van… result!

Note: if you intend on spending time in below-freezing conditions, an external water tank is not advised.

Installing an underslung grey water tank on a van is a reasonably easy job, however, it can be quite messy and very fiddly. Not only are you lying on the ground, but there will also be times where bits of shrapnel are flying off the van and onto your face whilst you’re drilling.

We recommend laying something (e.g. a mat or tarpaulin) on the ground prior to doing any actual work. This will not only make the job slightly more comfortable, but it will also catch any metal filings so you won’t have to drive over your mess!

We opted for this underslung grey water tank as it was suitable for the make and model of our van, however, this website caters to all vans so you’ll definitely find the right tank for you.

 

Prerequisites: decide the van layout

Materials

X250 50L Grey Water Tank

Chalk

Assorted Jubilee Clips

Assorted Washers / Spacers

Quantity

1

1

1

1

 

Price

£114.75

£5.00

£10.99

£7.79

Materials

X250 50L Grey Water Tank

Chalk

Assorted Jubilee Clips

Assorted Washers / Spacers

Qty.

1

1

1

1

Price

£114.75

£5.00

£10.99

£7.79

Materials

X250 50L Grey Water Tank

Chalk

Assorted Jubilee Clips

Assorted Washers / Spacers

Qty

1


1

1


1

 

Price

£114.75

£5.00

£10.99


£7.79

time

2 hours

Price

£138.53

 

Step 1 – Decide where the tank is going.

The underslung grey water tank will be accompanied by detailed instructions on where the tank should be positioned. There is very little scope for deviating from its intended position.

If you do have some creative liberties, consider where your main waste pipes are (shower and sinks) and pick a location that is nearby so the pipes don’t have to travel far.

Below is a diagram of everything that comes with the tank.

A series of diagrams depicting what you will get supplied with when purchasing an underslung grey water tank.

 

Step 2 – Trial fit

Time: 15 minutes

Despite knowing where the tank should go, a trial fit is important not only for peace of mind, but also to see if you will need an extra pair of hands.

Lift the underslung grey water tank into position and check it fits well.

Whilst it is lifted into position, mark where you will need to drill in order to insert the hooks which will support the bracket and tank. We drilled into the cross beams. We recommend using chalk to mark the van.

To achieve the best result you will mark the vertical part of the cross beam (the distance of the hooked part of the hook up from the bottom)

A plan and elevation view of how the grey water tank will be positioned under the van.

 

 

Note: in real life, the tank juts out more towards the back. The front bracket is actually pretty close to the front of the tank.

 

Step 3 – Prepare for installation

There are several ways in which you can make the installation of the underslung grey water tank easier.

First and foremost, make sure you have a light under the van. We recommend using something brighter than a phone torch for this job.

Next, place all the tools that are needed for the installation under the van within arms reach of where you will be. This includes:

  • drill + suitable sized drill bit
  • 4x hooks
  • 2x supporting brackets
  • 2x nuts
  • safety goggles.
 

 

Step 4 – Drill and insert the hooks

Time: 30 minutes

Find the marks you made previously and begin to drill into beam under the van. It is extremely important to wear safety goggles as the metal shrapnel really goes everywhere.

Repeat this for every mark made. Make sure to test if the hook fits through each time as you may need to enlarge the holes slightly.

Insert all the hooks into the holes just created in preparation for installing the water tank.

Note: if the hooks are struggling to fit, use an angle grinder to slim down the end to a point. This will make fitting them 100x easier.

A diagram showing where to drill into the vans cross bream and how to file down the hooks to make them fit easier.

 

Step 5 – Lift the grey water tank into position

This is a two man job.

Lift the water tank into position. It should be relatively easy to figure out exactly where it goes as its position is dictated by the beams on the floor and the position of the hooks you have inserted.

We recommend positioning each person along the length of the tank, as seen in the diagram below.

A diagram showing how to position yourself under the tank to make it easiest to install.

 

Step 6 – Secure the tank in position

Time: 20 minutes

This is a two man job.

Both people will be somewhat responsible for holding the tank up and in position. Each person will be responsible for one of the supporting brackets and 50% of the nuts (provided with the tank).

Take turns securely attaching the bracket and nuts whilst simultaneously holding as much of the load as you can.

Note: you may find that you need to use washers to bulk out the area as the hooks that are supplied are only partially threaded.

 

 

Step 7 – Connect the pipes to the water tank

Time: 20 minutes

There are 2x 3/4″ inlets where you can attach the waste pipes from your shower and sink using jubilee clips. There is also a 1″ outlet for draining the tank.

 

 

Conclusion

Although this task is one of the easier ones when converting a van, it is certainly not without frustration and a little bit of discomfort. These steps have been designed to take away some of the possible impending frustration.

Feel free to ask us questions regarding installing the grey water tank, whether it is about materials, price, time, or whatever else. You can always find us in the comments.

Next Steps: Installing a fresh water tank

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A detailed step-by-step guide for mounting an underslung waste water tank to your van. These instructions are specifically for a Citroen Relay, however, can be applied to any van. By mounting the tank under your van, it increases the amount of space you have to play with inside the van. This simple guilde is consise and has detailed diagrams. | Vanlife | van conversion | water tank | grey water tank | gray water tank | waste water tank |

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