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Old 06-28-2012, 12:21 PM   #1
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1978 31' Excella 500
Colorado Springs , Colorado
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Newbie with water/pump? problem

Hi all,

Just bought a '78 excella and am completely new to any rv (pop up camper doesn't count). I'm trying to summarize and can't get the water going. Filled the fresh water tank and first realized the drain valves were open but now closed and no water running from under the AS. Also has new PEX plumbing. When I turn on the pump, it keeps running and running. I get a spattering of water every so often but that's it. It appears as though water/air was moving through pump. Then I hooked up to a hose and water is fine. Got the antifreeze cleared out, decent water pressure with both cold and hot valves ( haven't started the water heater). Now back to trying the pump and I'm not sure ANY water is flowing through. Pump keeps running and the faucets are slowing down. Is there perhaps just a fresh water tank valve I'm missing or any suggestions? I don't have regular access to running water so using the fresh water tank is a necessity. Thanks for any help you can offer a newbie! Perhaps I got in over my head with this one, but I learn quickly!
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Old 06-28-2012, 12:33 PM   #2
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2001 30' Excella
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You may be sucking air and therefore cannot maintain any vacuum to pull the water up from the tank. Double check all the fittings on the inlet lines. I don't know if these pumps can be rebuilt if they fail but you may look into that. If all efforts fail you may need a new pump so at least consider that and check around for prices.

Good luck with it.
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Old 06-28-2012, 01:56 PM   #3
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1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
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Newbie with water/pump? problem

Greetings shmaliski!

Welcome to the Forums and the world of Vintage Airstream ownership!

The fresh water pump that you likely have if it is the OEM unit is a PAR or Peters and Russell. These pumps are not common in the RV industry and Airstream is the only RV manufacturer that used them as original equipment consistently. These pumps can be rebuilt with modest effort and expense. The rebuild kits can be ordered from online suppliers or in many cases can be purchased from the parts department of a power boat dealer. I have had far better luck with the PAR pumps than any of those typically used by RV manufacturers . . . my Minuet still has its original pump and it has been rebuilt once while I have owned the coach (2005 to present). I suspect that the pump is either drawing air due to a leak in the diaphragm or a leak in the suction side of the hose that links the pump to the water tank.

Good luck with your investigation!

Kevin
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:07 PM   #4
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1978 31' Excella 500
Colorado Springs , Colorado
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 10
Thanks for all the info. I will try to visually check the line and tighten up first. If that doesn't work, it doesn't look too hard to remove the pump. Kevin, you're right. It is a PAR 36800. Looks like parts are readily available and not too difficult to replace. I'll update when I solve the problem but since the husband and kid are out in the lake, right now I think it's beer thirty. Thanks again!

Ali
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Old 07-02-2012, 09:22 PM   #5
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1988 25' Excella
Trumbull , Connecticut
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no water from water pump

Hello. One thing to check is to see if an anti freeze bypass valve kit was installed. If a kit was installed and the lever is in the bypass position it will be trying to suck from the hose that would go into the anti freeze bottle and not from the fresh water tank.
This bypass valve is not the one that is associated with the water heater but one installed for winterizing.
Happy camping. nm1oqrz
Quote:
Originally Posted by shmaliski View Post
Hi all,

Just bought a '78 excella and am completely new to any rv (pop up camper doesn't count). I'm trying to summarize and can't get the water going. Filled the fresh water tank and first realized the drain valves were open but now closed and no water running from under the AS. Also has new PEX plumbing. When I turn on the pump, it keeps running and running. I get a spattering of water every so often but that's it. It appears as though water/air was moving through pump. Then I hooked up to a hose and water is fine. Got the antifreeze cleared out, decent water pressure with both cold and hot valves ( haven't started the water heater). Now back to trying the pump and I'm not sure ANY water is flowing through. Pump keeps running and the faucets are slowing down. Is there perhaps just a fresh water tank valve I'm missing or any suggestions? I don't have regular access to running water so using the fresh water tank is a necessity. Thanks for any help you can offer a newbie! Perhaps I got in over my head with this one, but I learn quickly!
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Old 07-06-2012, 06:19 AM   #6
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1978 31' Excella 500
Colorado Springs , Colorado
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I have running water! There was a third valve inside the bathroom cabinet fairly close to the pump. On first glance, it appeared unmovable as it is tucked into a corner without clearance for a full turn. Well, a quarter turn later, the pump works. So glad it didn't turn into a big project as is usually the case. Now I just need to get rid of all the foamy water which from other posts seems to be a matter of draining all the water from the tank and possibly cleaning the faucet heads. Getting more and more familiar with the AS all the time. Thanks for all the suggestions!

Ali
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