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Old 07-19-2015, 05:07 PM   #1
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Water system issues.

Having a problem with our new (to us) 2014 RED 33AA water system. It seems like we have two issues and no idea if they are connected. First, valve to change from city water into motorhome to city water to fill water tank is not working. Second, water pump runs but no water to any faucet. Can't find any evidence that we are leaking water anywhere.

We tried to fill the fresh water tank while hooked up to city water by turning the valve from city water to tank fill but there was no water flow to the fresh water tank. We then filled the fresh water tank via the outside water fill. We noticed that the cap on the outside water fill is missing and thought that might be part of our problem. Bought a stopper to plug that fill point, we think ensuring a tight fit. Followed the instructions in the Tiffin manual, open all faucets and turn on the water pump. Pump runs but no water out any of the faucets. Water does work when under city water connection. After using the city water a few minutes, we disconnected from city water and tried the pump again. Ran fine for 20-30 seconds and then no water. Also, checked and no water in the water heater.

Hoping this is an operator error but it seems just like our system on our previous '08 Allegro. Any help will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
RJ
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Old 07-19-2015, 07:36 PM   #2
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If the valve that changes between city and fill tank is not working, it could be that it is set to block water flow from the tank. I'd verify by disconnecting the supply line at the water pump and see if water flows by gravity. The water pump will only work if water flows to it by gravity, then the pump pushes it. Your pump worked for a short time when water was present, then stopped when water was no longer going to the pump. That valve probably needs replacing/repairing.
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Old 07-20-2015, 04:12 PM   #3
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I would concentrate on getting the city water/tank valve fixed first. Many times, that is a three way ball valve that is between the external hose connector, the water tank, and the RV cold water system. In one position, it connects the external hose connector to the water tank, in the other position it connects it to the cold water system. But if putting water into the city water connection causes no flow to either the tank of the cold water system, the ball inside the valve could've moved to, and now be stuck in, an invalid position where it is blocking the hose connection, but connecting the cold water system to the tank fill. In this position, if the pump is running, it could be pumping water from the tank, through the plumbing system, and right back into the tank. The water will follow the path of least resistance (into the tank, in this case) and not have enough pressure to reach any faucets.

The details are probably somewhat different for your coach, but this is a very typical water system for a coach that has a city water/tank fill valve:



Note the control valve in the upper right corner: if it were turned 180 degrees from the "tank fill" position shown, it would completely block off the city water inlet, and let the pump circulate water from the bottom of the tank right back into the tank.

Another possibility is that the flow to the pump is blocked. Usually, there is a clear dome with a filter screen at the inlet to the pump. If you remove this clear cover dome, you should get water flowing out of the tank by gravity. If not, there is often a valve between the pump and the tank, so you can close it and remove this filter screen without getting soaked. Maybe that valve is closed? Maybe the filter screen is so full of gunk it is blocked? The valve I'm speaking of is where the antifreeze adapter connects in the picture above. This might be a three way valve as shown, might be a plain valve if there is no winterization adapter or if the winterization valve is separate.

The water heater may not be filling up because of these issues, or it may have a winterization bypass kit installed, and the valve(s) are set to bypass the heater. Whatever you do, don't turn on the heat until you are sure that the water heater is full. The diagram above shows a single valve hot water heater bypass: typical setups can have one, two, or three valves of various styles.

Putting a cork in the gravity fill, while a good idea for sanitation, probably makes no difference in anything you are reporting. It does not need to be an air tight seal, in fact, there must be a way for air to enter the tank as water is used. If the tank is completely sealed air tight, the pump will be trying to draw a vacuum in the tank as it pumps water: that will either decrease or stop the pump's ability to draw water, or it could cause the walls of the water tank to collapse into the center if the vacuum gets bad enough. There should be an overflow/vent in the tank, as shown above, but the gravity fill can also be a vent (there is sometimes a separate vent tube that is part of it, or there could've been a small hole in the lost cap.
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Old 07-21-2015, 09:16 AM   #4
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Thanks to all! All it took was turning the valve on the pump inlet line to the open position and now the water pump works, the tank fill valve works as it should and the water heater filled. That valve was closed when we got the motorhome from the previous owner and I thought it was the valve to drain the pump etc. Not my finest moment. We really do appreciate the help we get on this forum. The plumbing diagram is something we will carry with us.

Next I want to check and probably change the water filter. We didn't get all the manuals and can't find anything on changing the filter. There is a red button on top which I pushed and water came out. Is this a way to check if the filter has water in it? Also, there is a wrench laying by the filter. I'm guessing this is used to remove the filter housing. Grab the top of the filter, put wrench on the bottom and turn clockwise?

Sorry for so many questions but don't want to break something by turning the wrong way or doing something really stupid.

Thanks,
RJ
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Old 07-21-2015, 09:45 AM   #5
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I believe the red button is a bleeder valve to allow water to drain from lower parts of the system to make filter replacement less of a mess. In a household system, you'd turn off the water, open a faucet lower than the filter, and push the button. water would drain and replacement of the filter can be done without having water go all over.

You might wish to write down the make and model of each appliance and system in your RV. Time spent searching the items on your list followed by the word, 'manual' will yield most every owner's manual, parts list, and often a troubleshooting guide for each item. You might also find an owner's manual for your RV if you go to the manufacturer's website.
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