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Old 11-17-2010, 10:24 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by w7ts View Post
Actually they didn't know either.

However when they sent the diagram and I figured out that there was a labeling mistake on it, I was able to see what the check valve does.

It is a check valve in parallel with the exterior faucet shut off valve.

The exterior faucet is connected to the same pipe as the freshwater inlet right next to it. Therefore if the check valve where not present, there would be no fresh water available from the inlet fitting if the exterior faucet shut off valve were closed. The check valve allows outside incoming water to bypass the valve, while keeping water from the trailer's tank from reaching the exterior faucet when the shutoff valve is closed.

Regards,

Ken
After posting here first, I contacted the dealer where I purchased the trailer and he was scratching his head over this one also. I then contacted the Mother Ship and got a speedy reply that confirmed what Ken said here. I've got my water drained now and will pump the pink stuff in later in the week and will be able to confirm at that time, but it does seem that if that valve is closed, only city water will be available at the exterior faucet. Opening the valve will allow water from the FW tank (or antifreeze) supplied by the onboard pump to the exterior faucet. I haven't found this documented in the Owner's Manual nor Airstream's online winterizing instructions. Without knowledge of the function of that valve, there is a degree of risk that water might remain in that segment of pipe.
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Old 11-17-2010, 10:47 AM   #16
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(good 4 u 'doodle, following up with tech support)

without a pix, we r still left speculatin' on which valve is d'topic.

this specific external water service line shut off (mentioned and discarded in post #2)

is covered in the relevant owner manuals (page C-7 in 2005) ...

CAUTION: The exterior water service line to the utility compartment is in an unheated section of the trailer and must not be used in below freezing conditions.

A water valve is provided so the water can be turned off to the line. The exterior water service shut off valve is located in the lavatory cabinet. Close the shut off valve and open the water service for a few seconds to drain the line and prevent freeze damage.


folks have posted pix of this section of plumbing (and related bits)

in a variety of the classics that have this arrangement...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f443...for-56832.html

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f443...ferrerid=16139

like so many of the most common questions,

there are genuinely useful older threads...

with great details, pics and insight.

it is really unfortunate this stuff gets lost/buried and goes to waste...

cheers
2air'
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Old 11-20-2010, 11:02 AM   #17
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...without a pix, we r still left speculatin' on which valve is d'topic. ... 2air'
1st attempt at attaching a photo...

The valve in question was in the lower right, circled in red. This is where I found it on my 2008 27FB. I suspect that it could be located elsewhere in different models. In this photo, the water supply comes from the left. The water heater valves are in the bypass positions. The 4th valve is shown closed, but if I understand what the Mothership told me, I need to open it, the external valve cutoff and the external valve to flood that line with antifreeze.
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Old 11-20-2010, 11:29 AM   #18
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The same mystery valve is in my Safari 25' FB, but it doesn't lead to an external faucet, but to a drain directly under it. This is under the bed and next to the water heater. When I am winterizing it drains water for some minutes. "Some" means more than a few and less than forever. It drains that water line and may drain the hot water heater tank because once I have drained it and open the drain plug on the heater itself, I get no water out of the heater. When I blow out the lines, air comes out of that drain.

There's nothing I could find in the owner's manual about it.

If it's a coincidence that a similar valve exists in the Classics in the same place, but goes to an external spigot, it is best to drain the line. Maybe on the Classics it serves a dual purpose—external spigot and water heater drain.

It's hard to see because of the carpeting in our trailer and I'm sure some people haven't noticed it because of that and that it is not mentioned in the manual.

Gene
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Old 11-20-2010, 02:48 PM   #19
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good pic doodle, very clear now...

Quote:
Originally Posted by YankeeDoodle View Post
...The 4th valve is shown closed, but if I understand what the Mothership told me, I need to open it, the external valve cutoff and the external valve to flood that line with antifreeze.
yes that's correct.

if you want the antifreeze to remain in that section of plumbing

the external faucet should be closed once the pink stuff is flowing.

however simply closing the '4th valve' and opening the external will drain any water and prevent it from freezing.

so either approach works.

cheers
2air'
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Old 11-23-2010, 12:04 PM   #20
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Update - Airstream fibbed to me

Upon further personal investigation, it turns out that this "mystery valve" simply drains the water line feeding the water heater, and if the bypass valves are set for normal operation, it will drain most of the water from the water heater also as Gene noted in a previous post. The valve does not bypass a supposed check valve in the exterior water spigot as JC told me.

This is a quote from the Owner's Manual for my trailer:

"The fresh water line drain valves have been moved to the exterior of the coach for easier access. If you look between your tires you can see a galvanized “box” that is a few inches lower than the trailer frame. This “box” or pan supports the water tank.

The line drains will be the two brass petcocks extending from the end of the pan. The white plastic petcock you will see is to drain the water tank."

There is in fact a 3rd low point drain as illustrated in the photo I previously posted. For my trailer, the brass petcocks that resemble automotive radiator drain valves are on the road side and the extra valve is on the curb side. I've looked for additional low point drains and have found none.

As I had previously posted something that turned out to be incorrect, I wanted to nix this myth before it sent someone down the wrong path.
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Old 11-23-2010, 03:55 PM   #21
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My trailer has a third valve also. Like some others, it bypasses a check valve for the outside faucet.

While it strikes me as being a product of an overly clever engineering mind somewhere, I believe I understand its purpose.

When connected to city water, there is little reason to shut off the water to the outside water spigot, because freezing conditions and the possibility of vandalism or carelessness leading to an empty freshwater tank do not exist.

But when city water is not connected, it is possible to run in cold weather, and there does exist the concern that the contents of the freshwater tank may be lost due to mischief or foolishness. By leaving the valve closed, it is possible to have the outdoor spigot on when city water is connected, and off otherwise, which is a fairly convenient arrangement in most cases.
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Old 11-23-2010, 04:02 PM   #22
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As previously posted, the valve isolates the outside faucet. When I winterize, I blow out the line to the outside faucet and then isolate it with the valve. Then, I open the faucet and leave it open until spring.

I use the outside faucet nearly every time I use the trailer. I have a very short hose that I attach from the outside faucet to the black tank flush sprayer. When I am getting ready to break camp, I first dump the black and then turn on the outside faucet and let the black tank flush while I am raising stabilizers and hooking up. By the time I am finished, the water from the black tank is coming out clear. Looking down the toilet, my empty black tank is always nice and clean.
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