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Ask Dave: Why did RV’s faucets leak after water pump was replaced?

Dear Dave,
Last winter the RV service center winterized our motorhome. We had told them that we already purged all water from plumbing so they only needed to put antifreeze into the plumbing. They forgot and burned out our pump, so they replaced it on their dime. When we dewinterized it, all of a sudden we had leaks in most of our faucets so had to replace them. My question is whether the pump is adjustable for water pressure, or if it is set at 40 psi. I’ve tried calling them, but they never answer or return my calls. Thanks, Dave! —Genevieve, 2005 Itasca Meridian

Dear Genevieve,
Your Meridian originally came with a Shurflo water pump that produced approximately 45 psi like this one on a 2003 Winnebago Adventurer.

Your rig also had PEX tubing with Flair-It connections that are compression fitting rather than the typical metal crimp type used on other brands. The Flair-It fittings are rated at 60 psi.

I do have a question about what happened to your original water pump. If you purged all the water out of the plumbing system, why did you need antifreeze. There are two ways to winterize: Blow all of the water out of the plumbing system, or fill it with antifreeze. Either way keeps water from freezing in the lines and bursting them. Also, no antifreeze in the lines will not burn up the water pump, so I’m not sure what happened to the original pump unless you turned it on with no water in the system and let it run for a very long time. I have inadvertently hit the pump switch when the unit had no water and it ran for most of a day before I realized it was running.

So, let’s take a look at what is causing your leaking issue. Not knowing what pump they replaced the old one with, it’s hard to tell what the pressure is. However, I would not think it would be over 60 psi. You should be able to find the pump and look at the pressure or gallons per minute rating. If you can get the make and model, we should be able to identify it.

Most likely it is another Shurflo, which is now owned by Pentair, or a Flojet. Most do not have an adjustment for dialing down the pressure. In fact, most owners complain about not enough pressure. However, you should be able to install an inline pressure regulator, available at most home improvement stores. Since you have PEX, you can find compression connections, as well, such as Shark Bite or even PEX to size it.

One other thing I would check before doing this is hooking the city water fill up with pressure from an exterior faucet and see if you have the same leaks. My guess is it’s not too much pressure, but rather loose fittings or even cracked connections. Check the pressure with a gauge that you can get at a home improvement store and make sure it’s not more than 40 psi. You might want to get a pressure regulator for your hose to use at the faucet. This will tell you if it’s actually a pressure issue or the fittings.

You might be able to just tighten the Flair-It threaded ring with a pliers, or you can get new fittings.


 You might also enjoy this from Dave 

What water pressure should I have at the campground?

Dear Dave,
When at a campground, what is the suggested psi setting for an adjustable water pressure regulator? —Tony, 2003 Holiday Rambler Vacationer

Read Dave’s answer.


Dave Solberg is a leading expert in the RV industry and the author of the “RV Handbook.”

Read more from Dave here

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Bob Weinfurt
1 month ago

What I’m thinking is some sediment was stirred up when the pump was changed or fragments from cutting a water line and the particles of it got into the valve seats. Flushing the system might have resolved the issue but if the fixtures had been tightened down, the seats might have been damaged by the particles.

Irv
29 days ago
Reply to  Bob Weinfurt

+1

TIM
1 month ago

I would suspect cracked/damaged faucets due to improper winterization. It all depends on where the water is leaking.

Rolling Coal
1 month ago

The plastic on plastic faucet fittings need to be tightened every now and then, they will become loose as the RV shakes, rattles & rolls going down the road.

Pat Larson
1 month ago

Not stated is how the water lines were initially cleared of water. If the owner did it with an air compressor set above 60psi that could be the cause of all of his leak woes.