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Old 01-18-2016, 08:50 PM   #1
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Drinkable water in an 86 Winnebago?

I'm working on the restoration of a 1986 Winnebago Chieftain 27RT and was wondering if I should expect the water not to be drinkable. Not unsafe, but horrible tasting. They plumbed the RV with black rubber hoses (like the kind that connects your car radiator). Won't that affect the taste?

I have yet to sanitize the tank and supply lines and don't currently have a readily available fresh water source, so haven't been able to just do a taste test. I'm expecting to have to rely on bottled water.
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Old 01-18-2016, 09:00 PM   #2
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Don't think we would drink it. Doubt if the hoses are makde for drinkable water.
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:03 PM   #3
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Send an e-mail to Winnebago Owner Relations

All they need is body serial number or vin code.

pdf. files for electrical, plumbing etc

or@winnebagoind.com


Another source of info....
http://winnebagoind.com/resources/manuals/


According to Parts List....your plumbing is 'polybutyl' tubing 1/2".
Very common plumbing material in 70s & 80s
Safe to use...just had issue with leaks at fittings

http://www.winnebagoind.com/service/.../86wcn27rt.pdf

If you don't have poly then a previous owner did a change out.....rubber hoses just doesn't sound right???
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Old 01-19-2016, 06:09 AM   #4
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Winnebago didn't use rubber hose. If you have it someone changed it.
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Old 01-19-2016, 06:49 AM   #5
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FWIW whatever is in there probably needs replacing anyway. The materials age out. Just use potable water tubing to do it.
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Old 01-19-2016, 02:06 PM   #6
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When we bought our 82 PA 5-6 years ago I never though about this so we have been drinking out of it for 5-6 years still breathing.i can't count how many 12 cup pots we have made out of those tanks. We bought a 7gal and a 6 gal water tanks for the trip south to get us past the freeze line which followed us all the way to Quartzsite. lol
We were able to see the tanks and they looked clean, and we bleached them, and we new the previous owner.
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Old 01-19-2016, 04:36 PM   #7
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It more than likely is Qest (tm) black polybutylene plumbing. I would sanitize the hell out of it if the fresh water system hasn't been used in ages. (probably OK to use if you are just using city water and not the fresh water tank and just flush it out real good)

I don't have city water though and use the fresh water tank in my old RV. I flushed it out like 6 or 7 times and it came out all brown and nasty. I always put bleach in with the water when I fill the freshwater tank and it pretty much comes out like pool water the way I mix it. I use the water for dishes, washing my hands and flushing the toilet and just keep a milk jug of well water in the fridge for drinking and cooking.

I would trust my old pipes if I was using the city water connection directly though (with the exception of the hot water tank, no way I would drink from that thing but then again I don't trust any hot water tanks for drinking purposes anyway)

Be aware that that old poly plumbing was known for breaking and causing damage. So far I've had fairly good luck with my grey Qest plumbing but I never leave the water pump on just in case something does happen. If you can afford to replace it all with PEX or something like that it might be well worth your while.
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Old 01-19-2016, 05:01 PM   #8
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Issue with the poly (Quest) plumbing was chlorine in water systems made it brittle.

Sanitizing an old system.........more chlorine/30 yr. material.........Hummmmmmmmmmmm
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Old 01-19-2016, 05:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alvo View Post
I'm working on the restoration of a 1986 Winnebago Chieftain 27RT and was wondering if I should expect the water not to be drinkable. Not unsafe, but horrible tasting. They plumbed the RV with black rubber hoses (like the kind that connects your car radiator). Won't that affect the taste?

I have yet to sanitize the tank and supply lines and don't currently have a readily available fresh water source, so haven't been able to just do a taste test. I'm expecting to have to rely on bottled water.
We just stopped using our 1986 Winn.33 a couple of years ago when we upgraded to newer one. Never had any problem with the taste of the water but we usually used our well water from home. Only time we had bad tasting water was when we bought a new white hose just for rv use, it had such a bad taste we didn't use it the next time we camped. We still have the old Winny on the property, still good on the inside everything still works, just couldn't trust it out on the road. (last time out he brakes locked up so we said that's it) Really don't know what to do with the old girl, lots of good memories.
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