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Old 04-21-2011, 06:26 PM   #1
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What kind of plumbing do I have?

I am in the process of replacing the toilet in my 87 Coachmen. I'm putting in a taller toilet and need to extend the line about 12" to meet up with the new toilet valve. I also want to put a shut off valve in the line somewhere. The problem I have is that I cannot find the right plumbing parts. The lines on my rig are some type of gray plastic with some type of metal "bands" that clamp the fittings on. The fittings are 1/2", but appear to be some type of weird thread. The standard plumbing parts from Lowes, etc will screw into the fittings, but will not tighten up correctly. What type of fittings/thread are on the old coaches ? Where can I find adaptors that will let me connect the old stuff to new pipe thread fittings?
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Old 04-21-2011, 06:37 PM   #2
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it sounds like you have pex its in my rv and stick house this should be easy look for shark bite connectors there may be different names i got mine at home depot
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Old 04-21-2011, 07:09 PM   #3
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I thank you have pre PEX tubing it was called poly something another. It is not made anymore; however you should beable to by fitting that will fit. Check with someone at a local hardware or plumbing supply. Most of the kids at the big boxes will just look at you like you have 2 heads. When you find the fitting, get a few spares. Hope this helps you out.
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Old 04-21-2011, 07:34 PM   #4
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Those Shark Bite fittings look like some type of compression fitting. Will that work on the hard plastic lines I have? If they'll work, it looks like I'll have cut off the threaded PEX connections I have now, and add new connections to match the pipe thread (I assume it's pipe thread) on the stainless lines I bought at Lowes. That sound right ? But then how do I get it back to whatever thread is on the water fitting on the new toilet ?
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Old 04-22-2011, 02:08 AM   #5
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What you have is NOT PEX. It is called polybutylene, and is no longer being used in North America. It was used in RVs and manufactured homes of that era. As for the threaded fittings, they should be standard pipe thread. In any case, a specialty plumbing supply store should have what you need. And I think some RV parts suppliers still stock polybutylene repair stuff and fittings.

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Old 04-22-2011, 07:44 AM   #6
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The brass Shark Bite (and similiar fittings) are tailor-made for your situation. Buy them at any big box hardware store.They are MEANT to join dissimilar plumbing materials ( like your out-dated gray poly) with PEX CPVC, copper or what have you.
They are not a compression fitting, instead, they are a ridiculously simple push-on style. And they hold forever. You can buy them as straight unions, T's, Y's or with male or female ends.

Just cut your gray pipe, slide on a Sharkbite with a male end and attach a flex hose of the appropriate length to your new toilet. All done in 2 minutes with no special tools or abilities.
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Old 04-22-2011, 10:07 AM   #7
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I agree with Senior Chief. I had to do the same thing you want to do. Just be sure to cut the grey stuff straight and clean. Slide on a Shark Bite and add a flexible hose to your toilet. Oh, and if you want to add a shut off, just sandwich in between the flexible hose. Actually quite easy.
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Old 04-22-2011, 01:24 PM   #8
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You guys are great !!!!!

I picked up a Shark-Bite valve today. It'll be a few days before I can install everything, but hopefully it'll work. Thanks again !!!!
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Old 04-23-2011, 07:12 AM   #9
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As Quietwater said, make a clean, straight cut on your gray poly and push the Sharkbite on firmly until seated; in other words, follow the directions!

Good luck with the new throne.
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Old 04-23-2011, 10:27 AM   #10
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Sharkbites and Pex are the way to go I have just completed the removal of all my copper lines from my Shasta it has all been reolaced with Pex . nice and easy job
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Old 04-23-2011, 04:10 PM   #11
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Oh, and be careful about sanitizing your water lines, Chlorine eats through the plastic.
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Old 04-23-2011, 07:30 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedneckExpress View Post
Oh, and be careful about sanitizing your water lines, Chlorine eats through the plastic.
That's extremely nice to know !!!! So how do I sanitize them ? AND is there something special I'll have to do to winterize them ?
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Old 04-23-2011, 11:40 PM   #13
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I've heard use of hydrogen peroxide instead of bleach as a suggestion. I don't think there's anything extra special for winterization besides the standard blow out the lines and add the pink stuff to the pump.
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Old 04-24-2011, 07:19 AM   #14
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Sorry, I have to disagree with RedneckExpress on using bleach to sanitize. Chlorine will not eat through plastic; every gallon of bleach on the grocery store shelf is in a thin plastic bottle, after all. At reasonable concentrations (even at pretty high concentrations) chlorine bleach will not damage your plumbing.

City water is typically treated at 10ppm of chlorine. For sanitizing, you want to aim for approximately 100-200ppm of active chlorine, so 2-3 ounces of household bleach per gallon of fresh water will do a good job of sanitizing your lines. Fill your fresh water tank, add the bleach and let it sit in the tank for a while. Pump it through, and then refill your tank, this time adding a gallon of white vinegar- this will cut the bleachy taste and odor. Let it sit a while then pump through again.

Hydrogen peroxide is an effective sanitizer, but not when combined with masses of water. It would be a very expensive way to sanitize your system.

For winterizing, you need to first drain all the water from your system. There should be one or more low point drains you can open- our Southwind has three. 1 by the water pump, and 2 in the sewer bay. You will also need to drain your hot water heater (remove the plastic plug), and install the bypass if you have one.

If you have an air compressor, you can purchase an adapter at Wally World which allows you to blow air through your system and remove the water that way (close the drains and open the valves), OR you can purchase pink RV antifreeze (not poisonous). Put the antifreeze in your fresh water tank (how many gallons is determined by the size of your system) and pump the antifreeze through until every faucet, low spot and drain is full of pink stuff. If you cannot bypass your HW, you will have to fill it with pink stuff as well, and thats going to take 6 gallons or more by itself.

When you're done pumping or blowing, drain your black and fresh water tanks as well, and you're good for the winter.
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