Water Bowsers

A water bowser is a water tank that can carry Water, AdBlue or Liquid Fertiliser. Most water bowsers are commonly known as a term to describe a smaller version of a water tank that is not a lorry tanker. These water bowsers can be either mobile or static and are perfect for distributing fresh water where mains water is not available or has broken down.

Water bowsers are also the perfect way to move water supplies from site to site or for operations such as dust suppression, flower watering, resupply of fresh water to aircraft, etc.


Litre capacity


Litre capacity


Litre capacity

Trailer Engineering’s Water Bowser Guide

What is a Water Bowser and where are they used?

Water bowsers can provide storage facilities and distribution capability for drinking water, fresh water and even waste water. Some configurations of a water bowser can also be specifically designed to store AdBlue or liquid fertiliser. All water bowsers can be adapted for multiple rolls such as pressure washingplant and flower watering, refilling sprayers with liquid fertiliser, dust suppressionlivestock and animal feeding. Water bowsers save a lot of time in travelling, transport and improve efficiency for multiple rolls across many industries such as, film locations, construction / demolition sites, road works, piling operations, agriculture and farming, landscaping and grounds care maintenance, event management, local council tasks, fire fighting and even creating a much needed water supply for emergency and major incident sites (for example loss of clean water supply caused by a natural disaster)

Water bowsers can also be known as water trailers, water bowsers are a type of trailer fitted with a tank that is able to carry water. Bowsers in general can carry anything from diesel to kerosene and more, but water bowsers are specifically designed to carry water only.

Coming in a variety of sizes and with features that can suit your specific needs, water bowsers are designed to allow for the easy transportation of water storage for emergencies or industrial use. They are also customisable, with options such as static water bowsers and towable water bowsers available.

Industrial use of a Water Bowser

How Do You Use a Water Bowser?

Water bowsers are used as convenient water storage, which can be used in many settings, such as for pressurised water tools and for cleaning away hazardous dust on construction sites. They are filled from the top with water from a source of your choosing, using the access lid. Once the lid is closed, you can use the tap or valve that is attached to empty the bowser. Water bowers can be fitted with hoses, sprinkler systems, spray bars, and more, to help you get the kind of utility you require from them.

Types Of Water Bowsers

There are many varieties of water bowsers. They can come in different sizes for different volumes of water, in static form or towable water bowsers, and with a range of features and accessories that allow you to use them however you want. You can also choose your water bowser trailer based on what type of water it’s supposed to be carrying.

Skid Base water bowsers are a static water tank built on a frame that has facilities for a fork truck to pick up and move the tank around. This type of water bowser can be configured for any task and is perfect for more static jobs such as long term water supply for welfare units, festival and event water supplies, in yard fire fighting, providing storage for back up emergency water supplies or even for supplying fresh drinking water to towns that may have lost water supply due to natural disasters like storms. These skid base water bowsers are also available as a stackable option where you can stack 3 water bowsers high when empty or 2 full. The stackable water bowser is perfect for distributing multiple water tanks across event sites in one go.

Site towable water bowsers are perfect for moving water supply across off road sites or farms as well as tasks such as dust suppression, flower watering or even pressure washing. There are many different designs of a site towable water bowser, all depending on what task you need a water bowser for, depends on which design of site towable water bowser you require. There is a wide range of water pumps, pressure washers and dust suppression equipment available. Some dust suppression parts include whale tail splash plates, dust cannon, gravity fed dribble bars or water pump fed spray bars and even Trailer Engineering's unique Rainmaker pressure washer combo that competes with the higher cost dust cannons.

Highway/Road towable water bowsers can be configured for every task, the only difference from the above water bowsers is that the road towable water bowser is fitted onto a legally certified trailer that has been approved by the governing body of that specific countries road rules. Generally speaking road towable trailers should be fitted with braking systems, lights, mudguards and road suitable wheels, tyres and axles.

Dust suppression water bowsers come in a large variety of tank sizes and equipment options. From splash plates to spray bars, mist makers and dust cannons. This effective type of water bowser can also be configured to do multiple roles as well as dust suppression, including tasks such as cleaning via pressure washer, general water supply, etc.

Animal drinking water bowsers are equipped with a trough either on the rear or the front of a water bowser. These water bowsers automatically refill the water in the trough via a float that moves up and down, depending where the float is located depends on if it automatically opens or closes the tap on the water bowsers tank. This type of water bowser is perfect for leaving in a field over a long period of time to feed animals and cattle with fresh clean water where there may not be a water supply. This type of water bowser is available as a skidbase/static, site towable or road towable water bowser.

Flower watering bowsers are perfect for local councils wishing to water their displays of plants across town centres and roadsides or estate management and grounds keeping companies looking after large scale gardens. They are also perfect for orchards and plant / tree farms. There are many designs to this type of water bowser, the basic water bowser tends to be just a water tank fitted with hose reel and spray gun, however it can then be customised with extras such as rear chevron boards, flashing beacons and working platforms.

Bowser's For Potable Water

Potable water is commonly referred to as “drinking water,” though, in reality, it is used for much more than drinking alone, such as washing utensils and materials, designed to be used in human consumption. Potable water has to be kept uncontaminated due to the potential for human congestion. As such, portable water tanks for potable water have to conform to WRAS standards to make sure they can safely store drinking water without contamination.

Bowser’s For Non-Potable Water

By contrast, non-potable water can’t be used for drinking purposes. As such, portable water tanks do not have to meet the same regulations as bowers for potable water. These trailers can be used for plumbing, gardening applications, construction site use, and as a part of rainwater harvesting systems.

Water Bowser Benefits:

Eliminates The Risk of Contamination

When it comes to storing drinking water storage for emergencies or more general use, water bowsers for potable water are designed to prevent contamination of said water. At Trailer Engineering, our water browsers have been fully tested by the drinking water inspectorate (DWI) and are secretary of state-approved for the use of drinking water.

Easy To Maneuver Around a Site

While you can get static varieties, towable water bowsers bring the convenience of being able to hook them up to any vehicle, and the lighter ones can even be pulled by hand. This can allow you to bring water anywhere around the site that wheels can reach.

An Economical & Efficient Solution

Water bowsers are designed to store and hold water, keeping it free from contamination and corrosion. As such, using them as opposed to other, less effective water storage solutions can be much more efficient, reducing your waste.

Suitable For a Range of Industries

From agriculture to construction, manufacturing to cleaning, these portable water tanks have seen use across a variety of industries. Whenever you need water storage for emergencies or general use, towable water bowsers might be the answer to your needs.


A water bowser is a term for a water tank but can also be the same meaning as a water trailer if the bowser / water tank was fitted onto a trailer. Whereas a water trailer is what people call a trailer that has a water bowser or water tank fitted onto and can also be known as a tanker.

The word bowser itself can be used for many variety's of a tank for example fuel bowser if it was designed to hold fuel. Again if a fuel bowser / fuel tank was fitted to a trailer some parts of the world may also call this a fuel trailer instead of a fuel bowser.

How do water bowsers work?

Water bowsers can work in a variety of ways, all depending on what application your water bowser is configured for. The majority of water bowsers are fitted with a water pump and can distribute water either automatically, by hand or by the flick of a switch, depending on the type of water pump. There is also a option for a pressure washer to be fitted to water bowsers in which cold water pressure washers are the most popular jet washer that is fitted to a water bowser, however a hot washer pressure washer is also available, preferably used for those tasks that require more of a deeper clean.

For agricultural and farming purposes a water bowser can be fitted with a animal feeding trough. These water troughs tend to refill automatically when the float inside reaches a certain level it will open a tap fitted to the water bowser and allow clean water to enter the trough. Making it a low maintenance job feeding animals across farms and countryside. Landscaping, estate management, local councils and grounds keepers may use water bowsers to water plants, flowers and crop in a variety of ways. Some water bowsers can be fitted with sprayers, but the majority are fitted with 1" water pumps connected to a hose reel and have a hose pipe gun or spray lance. These water bowsers can also be manufactured with rear chevron boards and flashing beacons for working roadside. Larger water pumps can also be fitted to a water bowser for feeding larger trees that require a lot of water directly pumped into the ground surrounding the tree.

Drinking water bowsers supply many hard to reach locations such as events, festivals, film locations, construction sites and major incident sites. These water bowsers have to be approved for the storage and distribution of drinking water. Here in the UK our drinking water bowsers are certified by the Secretary of state, DWI (Drinking water inspectorate). Again for distribution of drinking water the bowser can be fitted with an array of water pumps or can be gravity fed by WRAS approved taps, handy for filling up water bottles or buckets.

The water bowsers tank can also be adapted for storage and distribution of Adblue/DEF. This is possible when the water bowsers tank is manufactured from polyethylene or stainless steel and the fittings are manufactured from stainless steel. This is because although Adblue is not classed as a hazardous chemical it is corrosive to mild steel, meaning if the water bowsers tank was manufactured from steel it would rot through the tank. As for distributing the Adblue there are special Adblue pumps that would be fitted to the Adblue bowser.

Water bowsers can also be configured in the form of a more cost effective vacuum tanker. This is a unique product that the team at Trailer Engineering LTD designed and manufactured where we fit a 2" trash pump the can suck up solids up to the size of 25mm and a extra vent in the tank. This has become a popular waste tank as it is perfect for emptying toilets in welfare units and portatloos when they return to the yard.  Other sized pumps can also be fitted upon request.

Fire Fighting water bowsers come in all shapes and sizes. In some cases people refer a fire engine to a water bowser, however its not always those large fire fighting trucks that can suppress a fire in a emergency. Some smaller water bowsers are available to fight fires, these can come in the form of a road or site trailer and even a skid base water tank. The smaller water bowser option is perfect for reaching hard to reach places that a lorry may not or even having your own fire fighting equipment in the yard or factory. Fires can occur in many possibilities and this is why many scrap yards, processing facilities and manufacturing companies have opted to have their own fire suppression equipment on site. The fire fighting water bowser is fitted with a suitable water pump for supressing water and has a fire nozzle with options of hose including lay flat hose.

Aviation water bowsers have many different applications, some may be manufactured for refilling clean water onto aircraft or they can also be manufactured for de-icing smaller aircraft. Ground handling companies also use water bowsers for cleaning the outside of commercial aircraft.

How is a water bowser filled?

Generally water bowsers are filled via the man-lid at the top of the water bowsers tank, however some water bowsers are also fitted with the optional extra of a Hydrant fill point. Water bowsers can be filled via the mains, water tankers, other water bowsers, water hydrants and any other water supply that is available.

What is a water bowser pump used for?

A water bowsers water pump is used to empty the water tank, in an array of tasks. These tasks range from wash down jobs to supplying fresh water to facilities such as shower blocks or catering units. A water pump is not always needed as some tasks can be done by being gravity fed.

Water bowser pumps

There are many types of water pumps that can be fitted to a water bowser. Depending on the task, depends on what type of water pump you want on your water bowser. For example if your water bowser was doing dust suppression tasks via a splash plate or spray bar the most common water pump would be a 1" petrol water pump such as the Honda WX10, however other pump brands and sizes can also be fitted, some water bowsers may be fitted with a 2" water pump which will create a bigger ark of water, covering more area. If your water bowser was to be supplying water to a welfare cabin, it will more then likely have a on demand water pump. The on demand water pumps start pumping when you open a tap inside the welfare unit, once the tap has been shut off the water pump will continue to pump until the pressure has built up. This type of water pump can come in the form of 110v, 240v and 12v. If you are on cleaning and wash down tasks your water bowser will want to be fitted with a pressure washer. Pressure washers come in a variety of sizes depending on what type of pressure you require, there is also the choice between a cold wash pressure washer or a hot wash pressure washer. The most common pressure washer fitted to a water bowser is the 3000psi diesel powered pressure washer. However petrol pressure washers are also available. There is a endless amount of brands that manufacture pressure washers, such as Yanmar, Honda, Hyundai, Karcher to name a few, all of which are available to buy from Trailer Engineering. If you was to have a water bowser converted into a budget vacuum tank, it wouldn't be a water pump that would be fitted, instead it would be a trash pump preferably a 3" trash pump which is capable of taking solid waste up to the size of 25mm.

Water bowser capacity?

Water bowsers come in all shapes and sizes. The smallest water bowser Trailer Engineering manufacture is a 110 litre Bowset, the Bowset is designed similar to a wheelie bin, making it easy to move around. The next size up from the 110 litre is the 500 litre and then the 985 litre water cube. Our most popular water bowser sizes are the 1125 litre and 2000 litre capacities. Larger capacity water bowser tanks are available from Trailer Engineering upon request.

How heavy is my water bowser full?

To find out how heavy your water bowser is when full, you will first need to find out how heavy the water bowser is empty and then add this weight to the weight of its contents i.e. water. For the purpose of finding out the total weight so that you know if you can tow the water bowser behind a vehicle you will also need to include the weight of the trailer, water tank and weight of its contents. Water weighs approximately 1kg per 1 litre. So if you had 1125L of water it would weigh 1125kg add this to the weight of the water bowser including trailer and tank and that is the total weight of your water bowser when it is full.

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    Water bowser trucks

    Water bowsers can be mounted to the back of vans and trucks making it easy to move around across certain sites such as road works or tight areas that a trailer may struggle. The water bowser can be fitted to a truck either by bolting it down or welding it to the flatbed or chassis. However if you don't wish to make that truck dedicated to only water bowser duties you can also have a skidbase water bowser that will simply be lifted onto the flatbed via fork truck or crane when required and can be secured with ratchet straps. A common water bowser truck you may see is a flower watering unit or pressure washer. Water bowser trucks are also used for supplying fresh clean water whether it be for drinking water or supplying clean water for shower blocks. A water truck is able to do all of the tasks a water bowser can, however it does dedicate a single vehicle for those tasks, whereas a water bowser is a stand alone product and can be moved with multiple vehicles, giving your fleet of trucks multiple roles.

    Wheel barrow water bowser

    There are water bowsers available in the shape of a wheel barrow. This type of water bowser has a pressure washer fitted with a water tank most of which have a 120 litre water tank. This is a perfect pressure washer and water bowser combination for small cleaning tasks such as washing down the hull of a boat or marine vessels, or even washing garden patios.