My black tank dump valve has been sticking and often just hard to open so rather than have an issue on the road, I decided to replace the valve while at home. In fact, I got two valves and figured I would just replace both of them while I was at it. I figured maybe 1 to 1 1/5 hours. Wrong
I thought I might be able to reach up and do the work without removing the front stainless panel with all the fittings, etc. No way. I could get the bolts out of the valve assemblies but could not move the fittings apart enough to remove either slide valve. So, off comes the panel. There are a bunch of things that need to be disconnected to remove the panel and most of them are not easy to reach. Plus the panel is heavy which just made the job harder.
Finally got the panel out of the way. R&R of the valves is tight since there is little room to 'spread' the pieces apart. I got the grey valve on pretty easy but getting the other valve on was tight. I was able to push the black tank sideways just enough to get that valve on.
Valves on, reconnect everything, strain my guts to hold the heavy panel up to get a couple of screws in. Run some water into grey tank via flush fitting, all is well. Do same for black tank and the new valve is leaking like mad
. After a few words I will not repeat here, I proceeded to disconnect everything again and remove the panel (should have tested valves before putting the panel back on...yes
). Turns out that one of the rubber gaskets was twisted a bit due to the tight quarters. Fixed that, reinstalled the valve, and tested before putting panel back on. All OK.
Now, while having the panel off the second time, I notice one of the hoses going to the Aqua Hot exchanger was too short, was pulling on the exchanger fitting and was mostly crimped closed. So, I made up an elbow with a short piece of heater hose, installed it and put a strain relief clamp on it.
Removal and installing of the panel the second time was quicker since I learned a few tricks from the first effort. In the end, I spent about four hours on this. I am just glad I didn't have to pay some RV shop $100+ per hour.
Gotta love these beasts