How to Transport a 275 Gallon Water Tank in a Truck Bed

On our homestead, one of the tasks we have is to transport water between our spring and our large irrigation tank. In this post I will show you how I screwed together a simple frame to keep my 275 gallon water tank in place while driving up our steep and bumpy mountain road.


Earlier on I had just put the water tank in the back of my truck bed, and just put some loose wood pieces to kind of keep it in place. I actually used my Gooseneck hitch to help the tank from not sliding backwards when I drove up our steep road. This worked pretty well, except for each time I had backed my truck into position under the filling pipe from my mountain spring (ready to fill the tank with water), I had to readjust the tank, and all the little pieces. So, basically it worked going uphill with a full tank, but going downhill was a mess…and was time consuming.

So, I chose to put together a frame for the water tank, to hold it properly in place in the back of the truck bed.

Placing my new truck bed wood frame in the back of my truck

I had some old rough-cut 2×4 that I used for the project.

The main piece

First I made a main piece, where the 270 gallon water tank was going to be inside. The two “legs” that go parallel with the sides go all the way to the front wall of the truck bed. The square where the tank is going inside was made so the tank would be centered over the axle of the truck.


270 gallon water tank frame for my truck bed, piece # 1

One reason that I made  made it so that there would be a large space between the “legs”, and between the main square and the front wall of the truck bed is that I sometimes bring 6-7 five gallon water jugs with me for drinking water. They fit nicely in the space, and stays in place when I go up the hill. We are blessed on our property, since our irrigation water is also our drinking water :-).

The tailgate piece

The next thing I placed was a loose piece to go all the way against the tailgate of my truck bed. If this piece had been screwed to the main piece, I would probably have an issue getting the whole thing place in the bed, and take it out again. Doing it this way helped on the weight of the “piece of art” as well :-).


270 gallon water tank frame for my truck bed, piece # 2

The “buffer” piece

The last piece of my puzzle was the piece that goes between the main piece and the tailgate piece. I call it the buffer piece.

It fits snuggly in its place, and since I made it with two equal spaces inside, I use it to store my different PVC connectors that I use when filling the tank, and emptying the tank. I use two different connectors when I empty the tank, depending on if it goes into our irrigation tank or our “shower water” tank.


270 gallon water tank frame for my truck bed, piece # 3

And, when it all placed in the truck bed, it looks like this:


270 gallon water tank frame for my truck bed, all pieces

In addition, I have a “sandwiched” 2×4 piece loosely put in a pocket by each of the truck wheels. This is to keep the frame and the tank from moving sideways.

And, the last little piece (putting in in place in image above), is used to “lock” the water tank inside the main frame “square”. If this piece had been screwed in place, I would have had a hard time putting the water tank in, and taking it out.


Ever since I built this water tank “frame”, it has been so easy to transport my 275 gallon water tank in the back of my truck bed. I never have to worry about ever adjusting it inside the truck bed. Since the empty water tank can “bump around” inside it’s “square” in my frame, I use a ratchet tie-down to keep it down.

I used rough-cut 2×4 pieces, and it would have been easier if I used regular sized 2×4 (like you get at Lowes, and Home Depot). The reason for this is that I had to use a chisel on the wood right in front of the spigot (“spicket” 🙂 )of the water tank. The rough-cut 2×4 pieces are true 2″ by 4″, and builds maybe  1/4″ too much by the spigot to easily put my PVC connecters on.

But all-in-all I am very happy with it 🙂

If you want to, you can watch a video of me placing the pieces in the truck bed, and putting the water tank where it goes:

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About TJ

A Senior Software Engineer - a software developer for almost 30 years. Supporter of use of sound logic, both in work and life situations. Eager to learn new things, and is not afraid of jumping into an excavator for the first time starting the work of making a three miles steep mountain road. Loves nature, and has his favorite times (when not with his wonderful wifie) in the shade during the summer listening to our Creator's nature-musicians - the song birds.


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