City water connection won't work

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beer batter

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Greetings All.

Not an RV but a 40 foot 5th wheel camper.  I typically fill our fresh water holding tank and run all our water through the pump because it works.  When I hook a hose up to the city water connection I can't get any water coming through.

My guess is that there is a by-pass switch somewhere to switch from the holding tank to the city water - but where?  Maybe I'm wrong.  How should this work?

Camper is old but very well maintained.  It's a 1973 camper made by Cree which is not around any more.

A confused newbie looking for an easier way....
 

Tom

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Hi Beer Batter,

We'd certainly call a 40 foot 5th wheel an RV.

There's a check valve in the system that prevents water from the city connection flowing back into the water tank. Although it's possible for the check valve to be stuck in the "wrong" position, it's also possible that there's a filter screen near the city water input that's clogged up. Others here may have additional suggestions.
 

Steve CDN

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As Tom says, it's possibly a check valve.  In my coach the check valve is part of the assembly where the city water hose screws into the coach.  That hose fitting on the coach, along with the flange all come off, and on the inside of the fitting is a spring loaded stopper which prevents reverse water flow.  Sometimes when the coach is not used, the corrosion causes the stopper to get stuck.  If you remove the fitting, and see the little stopper assembly, you can manually loosen it and by working it a few times it should remain unstuck.  If not, and if that's the problem, that type of fitting is a common replacement at an RV supply store.

Of course, look for one of those pesky filter screens too.

If that doesn't work, let us know and we'll try to figure it out together.
 

Ron

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There is usually a valve that allows you to either fill the water tank or use the city water in the coach.  Do you have any valves located near the water connection?  If so try opening or closing these valve one at a time to see if you can get the city water to work.  Please let us know how you make out.
 

Tom

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Ron said:
There is usually a valve that allows you to either fill the water tank or use the city water in the coach.

Ron, our 1985 Pace Arrow didn't have an either/or valve. It had a city water connection and a separate gravity fill. I'm not sure if the either/or valve is only found on newer models, or if some older models also had it.
 

Ron

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Your right Tom some of the older models may not have had a valve.  If I remember correctly our 88 Bounder had a city water connection to provide city water to the inside of the coach and a fill point to fill the tank.  Forgot about that.  If there is no valve then it might be necessary to inspect the check valve
 

beer batter

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Thanks for all the suggestions. ?The camper is currently over 100 miles away at the lake so I can't check it just yet but thought I'd describe the setup.

The holding tank and fresh water fill is up above the 5th wheel portion of the camper that would hook up to the towing vehicle. ?The city water fill connection if about 8 feet from the rear of the camper, so my guess would be that they are spaced nearly 30 feet apart.

Between these two fill connections are all the water appliances that would be used (kitchen sink, shower, bath sink, stool). ?My guess would be if there was a check valve to stop water flow from going into the holding tank, I would still be able to get water through the appliances even if the check valve were stuck - correct? ?Or is there another spot for a check valve? ?Would the check valve be near the freshwater holding tank or at the city water inlet?

There's definitely something right at the city water inlet not allowing the water to enter the system. ?The screen looked OK from what I could see. ?Thanks for all the suggestions, keep them coming.

PS, any body talk fishing around here? ?Nothing like a fresh walleye beer batter around the camp.

 

Tom

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beer batter said:
any body talk fishing around here?  Nothing like a fresh walleye beer batter around the camp.

Thought you'd never ask. We have a number of fisherfolk around here. I've never fished for walleye. My love is fly fishing streams for trout, but the nearest good streams are 4-5 hours away. We have good striped bass, black bass, catfish and sturgeon fishing right outside the door.
 

beer batter

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I love fishing.  We keep our camper on a lake in west central Minnesota near Alexandria.  It's primarily a walleye lake which is what I target.  There's also largemouth bass, sunfish, crappie, northern pike, and big bull heads but most people come to this lake for the walleye.  The lake is about 5 miles across and 3 miles wide so we've always got room to roam around the lake in our boats.  This year has been tough due to the colder than normal temps but it's got to warm up at some point.  We've had a few extra camp fires to offset the colder temps this season which is an added bonus...

The slow fishing has given me more of an opportunity to do many enhancements and modifiications to our camper.  It's over 30 years old and very well maintained, but is starting to show its age.  I'd love to be able to run off the city water connection so this will be one of the things I dig into next.

It looks to me like the city water connection enters the camper underneath the floor boards.  I don't know precisely where the water lines go.  I assume I'd have to access everything from outside the camper unless I want to pull up the floor boards (which I don't).  Assuming I can remove a couple screws to pull out the city water connection and flange, what would I expect to see?  Is there where the check valve would be located? 
 

Tom

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beer batter said:
Assuming I can remove a couple screws to pull out the city water connection and flange, what would I expect to see? Is there where the check valve would be located?

I've never taken off a city connection or tracked down the check valve, so I'll defer to someone who has.
 

beer batter

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So I pulled off my city water connection and found the check valve.  It's located immediately at the point of where you'd attach the hose for the input of the city water.  I disconnected the check valve and turned on our pump from the fresh water holding tank and water came squirting out the city water input.  This is good.  It tells me everything internal of the checkvalve works fine.  No blockage of the water lines.

I poked at the check valve and the spring was a bit hard to push in.  Once I freed it and worked the spring in and out a bit it seemed to be much better.  Didn't connect a hose up to it as the weather was crappy again, but at least I now know what the problem is if it still doesn't work.  Thanks for all the suggestions.  You were right on.
 

Woody

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Tom,

Fleetwood must have changed the water system between your 85 and my 93, I have a valve that I can open to allow the city water hookup to fill the onboard water tank. If the valve is open and the tank is full the water will overflow out of the gravity intake.

Woody
 

Tom

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Woody

They sure must have changed it. What you described is exactly the way our Monaco is set up. Actually, the Monaco has the gravity fill in addition to the city water hookup and valve. I had no idea how a 1973 RV might be set up.

One thing that bugs me with my Monaco setup is that the fresh water fill is in close proximity to the dump valves. Doesn't seem to the hygenic way of doing it.
 

Ron

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Tom said:
Woody

They sure must have changed it. What you described is exactly the way our Monaco is set up. Actually, the Monaco has the gravity fill in addition to the city water hookup and valve. I had no idea how a 1973 RV might be set up.

One thing that bugs me with my Monaco setup is that the fresh water fill is in close proximity to the dump valves. Doesn't seem to the hygenic way of doing it.

Gee Tom why worry about the freash water fill location looks like the design engineers didn't.  Course they probably don't even use an RV.
 

Tom

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Ron said:
Course they probably don't even use an RV.

True of many designers of al kinds of products - they don't use the products they design and, if they did, they'd design them differently.
 

Ron

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Tom said:
True of many designers of al kinds of products - they don't use the products they design and, if they did, they'd design them differently.

That is for sure.  Should be a law requiring design engineers to use the products they design for a period of time before it is released to the public.
 

Karl

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Woody,

My '96 Bounder has that same valve. Sure makes it easy to fill 'er up, but I share Tom's concern about the fill quick-connect being in the same location as the dump valves. I guess the designers thought all water was the same - Black, grey and drinking ::) I've gotten in the habit of rinsing everything first, hooking up to fill, then put everything away before dumping (separate hose for flushing).
 

johnholton

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Ron said:
That is for sure.? Should be a law requiring design engineers to use the products they design for a period of time before it is released to the public.
  I need permission to use your fly rod quote - my friends and I have bought a lot of happiness.  I'd be interested in talking about rvin' and flyfishin' but don't know the ettiquette of this forum yet.  Is there a fishing focused forum for rvers?
 
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