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Old 08-19-2016, 04:23 PM   #1
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Water Tank

Was on the way to a campsite, noticed my fresh water tank was leaking like a sieve. It looks like 6 to 9 holes (perfectly round) on the bottom of the tank that's leaking. The holes are in each corner and a couple in the middle. They are too symmetrical to be caused by picking up debris from the road. Has anyone had this issue?

Parked in a KOA I plan to check out the tank later when it dries up. Thanks.
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Old 08-19-2016, 04:29 PM   #2
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I had the same thing, but only (2) holes about 3/16" dia. on curb side bottom corners. One had a chip like a drill had been used to make the hole. Very strange! I used epoxy putty to cork them up. Let us know if you discover anything in your investigation.
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Old 08-19-2016, 04:29 PM   #3
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that is weird.. any aliens (spaceman) around you recently.. lol
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Old 08-19-2016, 04:57 PM   #4
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Nope no aliens. 😜
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Old 08-20-2016, 06:16 PM   #5
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There are 4 holes. 3/16 or 1/4 inch. One in each corner on the passenger side of the tank and 2 in the middle. All are aligned. How I'm even more perplexed. I wonder if they are freeze plugs that failed?? Will try a patch job when I get home. Hopefully that will work.
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Old 08-20-2016, 06:46 PM   #6
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Hello smith, welcome to Air Forums. You are certainly reporting a very unusual situation. I see your trailer is a late model, quite new. The water tanks in our trailers are typically polyethylene, and typically 3/8 to 1/4 thick.

Did you have to remove a portion of the belly pan to gain access to the tank?

Is there any chance something was installed below the tank where a drill bit may have partially penetrated the tank, such as propane line clamps, spare tire holder, or sewer hose holder? I'd look for something on the belly pan that had a similar hole pattern. Some folks, including me, use 3/16" diameter rivets to attach the belly pan aluminum to the frame members. Is is possible someone drilled too deep and hit the tank?

David
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Old 08-20-2016, 07:10 PM   #7
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Water Tank

There was no belly pan. The tank is hold up by several straps. There are no stripped bolts or anything. So I assume there wasn't a pan installed by the factory. That's why I am baffled, nothing makes sense.
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Old 08-20-2016, 09:25 PM   #8
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Old 08-20-2016, 10:35 PM   #9
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Old 08-21-2016, 07:15 PM   #10
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Maybe the previous owner removed the belly pan for some reason. Maybe that's when the drill penetrated the fresh water tank. I've never heard of an Airstream without a belly pan made out of aluminum. The belly pan helps keep the trailer warm, helps keep the components under there clean, and helps keep rain water out while towing. I suspect it was removed for some reason. Look for evidence of rivet holes along the frame rails and cross members.

However, all speculation on my part.

But now what? 3M makes a special adhesive designed for polyethylene materials. There may be others out there too. Or, you can try "welding" the holes shut. Polyethylene is thermoplastic and will fuse together like metals do. It takes some skill to do this, but it is possible. It is more like a brazing process because you need a stick of polyethylene material to puddle into the hole. You might as well try to plug the holes as the tank is no good the way it is.

The more expensive solution is haul it to a good dealer and have the tank replaced. It is quite a bit of work and will cost quite a bit of money.

Other Airstreamers may have other ideas.

David
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Old 08-22-2016, 04:31 PM   #11
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another option ... get some short stainless steel metal screws larger than the hole. Put a good rubber washer on it and some silicone. put a bead of silicon around the head of screw and on washer both sided and screw the screw into the tank. When it get tight just a smig more and stop. let it sit up and cure and should be good to go.
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Old 08-22-2016, 09:18 PM   #12
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I would use LEXELL instead of silicone. Apply the LEXELL to the threads as well.
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Old 08-23-2016, 06:37 AM   #13
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If no belly pan then it was removed. The holes were probably caused then. Good luck.
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