problems with water/check valve

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swifty

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Aug 5, 2005
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Our first trip out with our new used trailer this week and we had water problems!
After we filled fresh water tank and turned on the pump and bled the lines, everything went fine for about one hour then water began to shoot out of the city water hook-up. I had to take city water fitting off and put a plug in the line. we never did get pump to pressure lines right, just kept sputtering and there weren't any leaks anywhere. Help!
 

Carl L

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swifty said:
Our first trip out with our new used trailer this week and we had water problems!
After we filled fresh water tank and turned on the pump and bled the lines, everything went fine for about one hour then water began to shoot out of the city water hook-up. I had to take city water fitting off and put a plug in the line. we never did get pump to pressure lines right, just kept sputtering and there weren't any leaks anywhere. Help!

There should be a little plastic check valve just inside the fitting.  Sometimes this gets crosswise and jams partially open.  Fiddle it a bit with a  probe like a small screwdriver and try the pump again.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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You need to clean the inlet check valve as Carl suggests, or perhaps even replace the inlet if the check valve has gone bad.  It is not uncommon and is inexpensive to replace.

we never did get pump to pressure lines right, just kept sputtering and there weren't any leaks anywhere. Help!

It "sputtered" even after you plugged the inlet?  Could you elaborate a bit more on what you mean by "sputtered"? The typical RV water pump is a demand pump and cycles whenever you turn on a water faucet.  It can be very difficult to get all the air out of the lines, so you may get air bubbles for a couple days. Small bubbles appear as foaming and low water flow, while large bubbles cause it to spit and [what I call] "sputter".  Sediment trapped in the screens at the faucet mouths can also cause low and/or eratic water flow. Unscrew the end of the faucet and clean the screens you will find there.

If the pump runs continuously and won't build enough pressure to shut off, you have some sort of leak.  It may not be a leak that runs out into the interior - there is a check valve in the pump that allows water to flow back into the tank if it leaks.  There may also be a hole in the pump diaphragm that allows pressure to bleed off. Either of these can be corrected with a pump rebuild kit [or simply a new pump.]
 

sroets

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Sep 27, 2005
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Hi, my first time on a forum but we had the same thing happen. We were at a campsite, on city water and the next day when we wnt to leave we turned on the pump and the water came shooting outof the city line. We could not get it to stop. Where is the check valve? on the city line valve or on the pump. We have a 2001 Chinook. 21 ft Thanks for any help you can give us!
 

Ron

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At  the point where you connect your water from the campground right behind the connection point on the RV there should be a check valve that can become obstructed so it cannot stop the water being pressurized by the pump.  Either the check valve is missing or plugged so it will not seat properly.  Sometimes just reconnecting the hose and reapplying water pressure from the campground will cause the check valve to correct its self.  If not then you will either have to clear it or replace it.

 

Bob Buchanan

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sroets said:
Hi, my first time on a forum but we had the same thing happen. We were at a campsite, on city water and the next day when we wnt to leave we turned on the pump and the water came shooting outof the city line. We could not get it to stop. Where is the check valve? on the city line valve or on the pump. We have a 2001 Chinook. 21 ft Thanks for any help you can give us!

As mentioned by Ron -- the check valve is just inside of the shore hose hook up. And as Carl mentioned, if you stick something like a small diameter screw driver into the outlet, you can straighten it out so it will work properly. It is most likely not clogged -- it just a "piece of junk" valve that can easily turn sideways and become totally useless.

The water pump turns on when (1) there is no pressure coming into the rig (and pump) from shore supply, AND (2) a spigot or shower -- or in your case, the outside hookup -- is open. If you have a water pump switch, it will cut the power to the pump and that's probably a wise idea during unhooking of shore water and the corresponding release of pressure from shore to the pump. You can then place a plug in the outside outlet before turning the pump switch back on.

Here's what I did when I discovered that the valve was worthless. I bought a manual valve shut off and screwed it into the outlet. It's been there for several years now. I then placed a quick connect after that to hook the hose up. BEFORE I remove the hose, I turn the valve off -- and when I hook up shore water, I turn the valve on. So the back pressure to the pump is not released.

Attached is a picture of the setup.
 

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holiday4086

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Oct 9, 2005
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Gentlemen, could the same solution solve a reverse of this described problem? "Shore water" connected to trailer (with regulator and in-line filter) is filling the fresh water holding tank to overflowing? If I leave the "shore water" on, fresh water pours from the fresh water tank filler hole.
 

Woody

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There is an inline shutoff valve that will keep shore water from going into the tank. Mine is located right next to the pump and the cold water and hot water drain lines. Close this valve.

Woody
 

Tom

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Woody said:
There is an inline shutoff valve that will keep shore water from going into the tank.

Woody, some older RVs may not have the valve. e.g. our old Pace Arrow didn't have it. The only way to fill the fresh water tank was through the gravity feed.
 

holiday4086

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Oct 9, 2005
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Thank-you Gentlemen for your response. 1986 Avion. No shut-off valve.  Perhaps a little history is in order. I've had the trailer for over a year. Fulltiming. This last stop I connected directly to the UNREGULATED "shore water".  No filter or regulator. Taking a shower and realize that this is too much pressure. Install regulator and now the "shore water" is filling the fresh water tank to overflowing.
Next? Scott
 

Woody

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I would think it would be an easy fix to install that valve I mentioned just downstream from the pump. You would have to remember to close it when on shore water and open it when on tank water though. Any plumbing supply house should carry it in metal or plastic.

Woody
 

holiday4086

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Oct 9, 2005
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G-Men, Thank-you for your input.
As an update..........Woody, you were correct. On further inspection, there is a valve located in the outside accessed "water/power closet". It was in the off position.
On a tip from Michigan based Cayo RV repair (Avion experts).
I chose to eliminate the other possibility; that the check valve in the on-board fresh water pump was stuck open.
I removed the pump and blew into the inlet and outlet. Perhaps just relieving the water pressure when I disconnected the water lines or shaking the pump around was sufficient to dislodge the ball.
Re-installed. Works.
Thanks, Guys.
Scott
 
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