Fresh Water

Fresh water is quite the commodity when you are cruising. All the water around you is salt and unprintable! Some islands will charge you for fresh water. In the Bahamas, you can expect to pay $0.50 per gallon of potable water and $0.15 per gallon of non-potable water. 


While fresh water is expensive, there are other ways to get it. We collect rain water, and it has been raining almost every day for the past few weeks. We collect between 20-40 gallons of water each day!

This keeps all our water tanks full, and when they are completely full, we begin to do chores that are water intensive. Our first order of business when we have too much fresh water is a daily shower!  

We usually shower once a week, but with this much fresh water we can shower every day! That makes us smell much better and feel much better too.  

The next order of business is laundry. Laundry on the boat consumes a lot of fresh water. The washing phase with all the soap uses a few gallons, and the rinsing phase can take even more water to get all the soap out! Having all this rain makes us feel confident in washing our clothes as we replenish our fresh water supply. 

No, we don't have a water-maker. We never had to go through the expense of purchasing one, nor the headache of maintaining and operating one. Instead, we just taste the deck water during the rain and when it tastes fresh, we open the tanks up and let the water pour in! 

Rain and Laundry

While anchored in Great Harbor Cay, Bahamas, we noticed something a bit unusual being done on a catamaran. Usually, cruisers will do their laundry and then hang them up to dry on the lifelines. This cruiser put their laundry up during a rain storm and let them get thoroughly soaked in the rain!

At first, my mind interpreted this as "they forgot to take their laundry in before the rains came" but they intentionally put them out as the rains were coming and even into the rain itself! They wanted their clothes to get soaked! 

It took me a moment to capture what was really going on here: they were rinsing their clothes with fresh water. 

On a cruising boat, clothes will get salty, no matter how hard you try to keep them salt free. Either a rogue wave, spray, or simply handling a wet line; salt will find its way into your clothes. Rinsing the salt out can consume a lot of water, and rain will provide you with such a resource. 

After a long rain, all the salt will be rinsed from your clothes and you will have clean laundry. Once the rain finishes, simply let it hang out a bit longer to dry and you will have clean and dry laundry! 

Next time you see rain coming, consider doing your wash cycles and then hang the laundry out for the rinse and dry cycles. It will save you a lot of water and time!