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gator67 01-30-2013 02:02 PM

Calcium chips in the faucets (revisited)
I have written about this problem before, but this is intended to document the history of this problem, and hopefully draw in new suggestions.

We have had a problem with white chips, presumably calcium, in our faucets. The chips are in the COLD side, not the hot side.

We had several techs, both mobile, and respected service centers, look at the problem, and they have not been able to come up with a solution.

Outside the coach we have a water filter, a water softener, and the screen at the city inlet. So, no chips of the size we experience could get through those screens. We have had the water softener for over two years, so we figured any remaining calcium in the pipes should have been flushed out.

It originally seemed to occur after we used the water pump. However, there was no indication of chips in the water pump filter. Also, after NOT using the water pump when we traveled, we discovered chips, so we decided that it something to do with the jostling of the traveling. At one point we put 20 gallons of vinegar in the fresh tank and left it there for a few weeks while we were traveling. It almost seemed like that helped, but after using the pump a few times, we encountered the chip problem again. The cold water side of the bathroom sink was blocked by the chips and, fortunately, pouring some vinegar down the cold side of the faucet (after removing the handle and cartridge) for a day or so, cleared it out.

We have not used the water pump for several weeks, and now, after traveling, the chips are back. In fact, right now, I need to clean the chips out of the toilet input screen.

Since we haven’t used the fresh tank water for weeks, and all we’ve done is travel, we cannot understand where these chips are coming from. We have had this problem for a couple of years and would really like to resolve this problem so we can dry camp without having to be concerned with the faucets clogging up. :banghead:

Any thoughts or suggestions would be very much appreciated.

TQ60 01-30-2013 02:26 PM

Did you buy new?

If used then PO could have bad real bad water.

You may still have a bunch in the tank.

May need to remove tank to clean or a gallon of CLR.

EngineerMike 01-30-2013 02:54 PM

I'd rule out the tank, since you have no chips of import in the pump input screen. That's a one-way circuit.
Previous discussion here & here2 for clarity.

If you have the Suburban water heater, perhaps your water heater plumbing is wrong & you are pulling chips out into the plumbing by a bad connection. WRV had a plumbing schematic for the hot & cold water. Maybe there is a wrong cross connect, could even be one that is not on the schematic.

The water heater anode cannot help but manufacture the chips. That's its job. Your softener probably isn't eliminating the incoming calcium (some places are sky high in calcium laden water) entirely. I'd focus on that as the source.

The only other source I can imagine is some sort of odd bacterial growth in the water that throws off "chips," and when I say imagine I mean turning up the imaginator to #11 on a 10 scale.

ronjhall 01-30-2013 03:00 PM

Do you put softened water in your fresh water tank? It may have been collected in water lines after pump. But before city water lines.
Like already stated try some CLR or similar product to clear out water lines.
You will not see the calcium in hot water water lines. Because the calcium settles to bottom of water heater. Have you flushed your hot water heater.

TQ60 01-31-2013 10:57 AM

Crud in the water heater could be a source.

Here is my thought, the heater may have air trapped, this allows it to maintain water pressure, many MH have tanks just for this.

As the pump runs water flows into the heater, when pump is off and water used the air pushes the water out of the heater.

Try flushing out the water heater, if it has a check valve it may be bad.

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