How Water Bowsers Work and What There Used For?

Trailer Engineering | 22nd September 2020


Water Tank

A bowser is a trailer fitted with a tank. That tank can carry anything from water, diesel, kerosene, aviation fuel or petrol. We will be focusing on the water aspect. Water bowsers (also known as water tanks) can be used for many reasons, but they are mostly used in plants and construction sites for storage and transportation purposes. They come in many sizes and are customizable to fit your specific needs. You can opt for static water bowsers, site towable water tanks or a highway towable bowser, portable water bowsers, offshore water bowsers or aviation water bowsers just to name a few.

Site towable bowsers are designed specifically to make the transporting of fluid across the site easy. These bowsers are extremely durable, allowing them to take on any terrain; meaning that most vehicles can tow it with ease. As far as highway towable bowsers, these can be towed with the payload on the highway. Highway towable bowsers come with a breakaway system just in case the trailer accidentally becomes unhitched from the towing vehicle. When this happens, the mechanism engages the brakes and it will bring the bowser to a complete stop. There are also indicators built into the chassis.

Keep in mind that you will need both your driver’s license and the towing abilities of the car or truck you are using as it has to meet the legal standards and guidelines for the bowser and payload. Water bowsers allow access to water when there are not any water mains on site. If you are wondering how they work, here is an easy breakdown of handling a water bowser.

How Water Bowsers Work

These are typically filled from the top with clean or drinking water, but the water must be prepared first before making it into the tank. If the water bowser is used in a welfare setup, they are normally connected to an on-demand pump.

Filling A Water Bowser

All you have to do is open the access lid at the top of the water and fill the tank until it is filled up. Double-check that the valves are closed all the way when doing this as you do not want to accidentally waste any water.

Emptying A Bowser

The great thing about bowsers is that they have taps or valves at the back that are used when you want to empty out the tank. Jet pumps and washers can be fitted to help decrease the time it takes to empty.

There are a few strategies you can use to empty the bowser, especially if you are using it to suppress dust. If you have a fitted sprinkler system, turn on the water pump. The water will push through to the spray bar sprinklers. Keep in mind that this is a more expensive strategy because the pump will typically have to be powered by petrol.

Another strategy is to rely on gravity to push the water to the spray bar. In order for this to work, the spray bars have to be below the tank. Finally, you can use splash plates to pump the water out of the tank and onto the plates. This creates a whale tail effect.

Water Bowsers for Construction and Demolition

Construction Sites

When it comes to the construction industry, the health and safety of those working on the construction site and those that live nearby are of the utmost importance.

One of the biggest challenges that construction sites face is dust. The majority of sites experience high-levels of dust due to the various activities that take place such as demolitions, cutting wood/MDF and the movement of off-highway vehicles. If not taken care of properly, the dust can cause long-term health repercussions for those working on the site. So how can construction sites deal with dust?

The simple answer is water. Water bowsers can be used in a wide range of different industries offering each one a wide range of benefits and the construction industry is no different. When it comes to dust suppression, there are several ways to get the water out of the bowser.

For example, if your bowser is fitted with a spray bar or sprinkler system then you can simply turn on the petrol-powered water pump to push the through the spray bar sprinklers. Alternatively, you could rely on gravity to feed the spray bar alongside as it is situated lower than the water tank; making it easier to get water across a construction site to remove the dust from the site.

Cleaning up

For over forty years, Trailer Engineering has been offering a full range of water bowsers to a wide range of industries. If you have any questions or would simply like to find out more about our water bowsers, then get in touch and speak to a member of the Trailer Engineering team today on 01384 564765 or send us and email on We look forward to hearing from you.

Water Bowser

Drinking-Water Bowsers

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