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Old 05-30-2009, 11:29 PM   #1
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RO Booster Pump

I have found that, even with a two RO membrane system, some parks have such low pressure that it takes forever to fill the water tank. Following the information from Frank (Vagabondwater.com) and Mike, I decided to add a booster pump, for use when a quick fill is needed. I found a similar pump to the one Mike got from Frank. I made a mound for it and added rubber mounts to dampen the vibrations.



Blue handle valve at left behind door opening is to cut off the "after filter" pressure gage, booster causes pulsations that would damage gage. Copper pipe encased in white foam above pump is a water hammer arrester, installed to try and eliminate pulsations from pump.



Timer is for booster pump, I can be quite forgetful and don't want to blow up water tank. Labels on Surge Guard are for switch to control AGS bypass. This is to allow use of AGS while plugged in for pet protection in HOT climates.



On trial run at park here in Yakima, 6 gph w/o booster, 20 gph with booster.
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Old 05-31-2009, 12:49 AM   #2
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With the single RO membrane & booster pump on input I get about 16gph product water and TDS rejection of ~99%. Never thought of a timer for the pump- good idea.
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Old 05-31-2009, 12:56 AM   #3
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Even without an RO, a timer on the fill would be a good idea. Of course I've never forgotten it and allowed the tank to bulge, and the water to run down the street. No, not me!
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Old 05-31-2009, 12:57 AM   #4
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Mike,

As an afterthought, the pump alone is probably a better investment than the second membrane.
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Old 05-31-2009, 03:13 PM   #5
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Low pressure to the R/O system

We use a thing called a permeate pump to increase out put pressure from the membrane. had a problem where the product water pressure to the ice maker was too low. The permeate pump raised it to about 40 psi. It works by using the waist water to power a diaphram which increase the pressure of the product water.
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Old 05-31-2009, 11:14 PM   #6
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Dale: I cannot imagine that my ancient coach has an advanced feature that yours does not, but my "Richins" designed coach has a solenoid to auto-shut off the RO when the tank is full. A timer seems, well, so neanderthal.

Aside from giving you a chance to catch up on the latest technology, I was wondering what the inbound water pressure was before and after installation of the booster? Frank R never mentioned anything about maximum inbound water pressure for his system-- so perhaps another solution is to hook directly to fire hydrants. Two minutes and you are ready to roll.

Norm
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Old 06-01-2009, 07:20 AM   #7
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Please post the mfg and specs for the pump(s). I have a RO boost pump that might work.
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Old 06-01-2009, 02:15 PM   #8
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Wow, this sounds like it may be the answer to several of my problems. I have been having an issue with very low yield rate on the RO system if the inlet pressure is below 40PSI, seems the last few parks I have been in have pressure in the area of 30PSI which also provides another issue.

If the water inlet pressure is below 40PSI, and I have the pump on while in autofill mode, I get a reverse condition where I am pumping water out of the tank and into the RO waste stream. This is most likely due to a weak check valve somewhere in the system. The easy answer is to turn on the pump when needed and then remember to turn it off, but, a boost pump sounds like it may be the answer to the low yield issue at least and in the process of installation, I may locate the weak check valve. Can someone supply a part number and manufacturer for the boost pump?
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Old 06-01-2009, 02:29 PM   #9
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Here is one option for a booster pump: Aquatec
The one I have is 120v, in the PS utility bay where the patio plug is located, and I have it plumbed inline for the RO input. The plumbing includes a bypass for either/both the booster pump and the solenoid valve so I can add water to the tank above the upper switch limit (I figure about 5 or 8 more gallons). Because the pump I'm using is 120v and by the patio plug, I just plug in the pump & output more than doubles from that of 70psi city pressure. The pump (diaphragm type) makes some noise but w/the bay door closed is tolerable. And when I'm trying to fill up to get on the road, its is indispensable.

The pump should not exceed 120psi static output (i.e. pumping against a pressure gauge w/no flow) IMO. That's about what mine does. I'll post photo & exact model# info when I get home later today (if I remember....
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Old 06-01-2009, 02:44 PM   #10
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WeBrzn- your back flow problem has been discussed previously; likely culprit is a cheap OEM diverter valve that when pressurized from the closed side will leak internally by expanding the valve body or some similar weakness. This from a 2008 post:

I installed a SeaTech 1/2" push-type check valve immediately on the each side of the City/Fill valve. Regardless of where or how many internal fitting leaks, or how many OEM check valves are in backwards, this last line of defense location nailed the problem. With proper quality check valves heading away from each side of the City/Fill valve, water can't escape backward thru the valve. Using the push type fittings, I could manage the installation inside the limited space available on the inside surface of the utility compartment's main panel (trying to get the barb type fittings pushed into the existing PEX tubing in the cramped space behind the panel will be a trying excercise IMO). Now no mo leak dribbling reject water out of the RO.
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Old 06-01-2009, 05:51 PM   #11
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Thanks Engineer Mike, I did recall seeing something from you on the subject of the check valves and a fix. I have resisted the urge to try and locate the issue either with a check valve or the diverter as it is tight and cramped quarters and I have been able to overcome the issue, for the most part. Did drive home with the pump on one time with the tank fill autofill in the "on" mode, had a numerous gallons of water (likely at least 5 or 6) in the waste hose system and leaking all over. Now it is on my list to double check that the pump is off, but a backup would be very welcome.
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Old 06-02-2009, 05:03 PM   #12
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I installed 2 Sea Tech 3 - way Selector Valves (diverter valves) and they both leak across when the differential pressure is greater than 20psi. The fix was to install check valves as Engineer Mike suggested.

The best upgrade to date has been installing the Vagabondwater RO system.
Thanks to Frank Rouse for a great design!
Pure water anywhere any time.
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Old 06-02-2009, 10:55 PM   #13
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Norm,

I am sorry to tell you that the solenoid you will notice in the lower center of the posted photos on my install is for my automatic fill system. The booster is installed after the autofill, as its pressure is too high for the solenoid. The timer is for shutting off the booster pump when I forget that I have turned it on, I don't want to over pressure or over fill the tank.

The inbound pressure is what ever is available at the supply where you are at. Where I am at in Yakima, the starting pressure was about 40 psi, giving me a flow of about 5-6 gph. With the booster pump I get 100+ psi and 20 gph.

The pump I used was a Shurflo # 8005-912-260, this is not the pump that Mike got from Frank and I can't find that #. The one Mike had was going to be about $175.00, I got mine on Ebay for about $40.00, it appears to be an out of date pump. It's ratings, 115VAC 1.4GPM;100PSI BP;3/8’ FPT;N/C.

WeBrzn,

If your Apex is like Lyle and Cathy's, then You have a few problems with your system. Your system uses two solenoid valves in place of a three way valve. They had a problem, while driving the pump would feed back thru one of the valves and to the RO system, this would fill the dump hose with reject water. We installed a check valve after the solenoid valve that runs to the house water system (not the fill.)

Lyle mentioned that he didn't have the same success washing his coach with the RO water and it drying spot free. I found that the system has no way to keep from having the "city" water feed into the coach system if the city water is on. This allows the city water to mix with the RO water from the pump. Lyle is going to replace the check valve we installed with a ball valve. This will be left shut off, allowing no city water into the coach, other than thru the RO system. If in an emergency, supply from the city water is needed, the valve can be opened.
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Old 06-03-2009, 08:07 AM   #14
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"The timer is for shutting off the booster pump when I forget that I have turned it on, I don't want to over pressure or over fill the tank."

Dale, rather than the timer, you could automate the operation of the boost pump by installing a relay that activates the pump when the solenoid valve is opened to fill the tank.
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