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Old 02-14-2015, 08:11 PM   #15
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Old 02-15-2015, 11:56 AM   #16
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1969 27' Overlander
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My copper lines froze during "the years of neglect".

Yesterday I finished leak testing my replacement Pex lines. I replaced everything with pex except for the difficult to access T's under the bath vanity that serve the shower valve and lav.
I used a combination of crimp fittings and sharkbites. The crimps are much less expensive but you need good access to get the crimp tool to the metal ring to make the connection. I used the sharkbites where access was difficult.

I tried compression fittings to get to the threaded fittings on the new faucets but I could not get a watertight connection so I used copper fittings attached with a solderless adhesive for copper.

I was surprised to learn that when the pipes freeze and split, the majority of the unsplit copper has actually been expanded and is no longer a nominal size and needs to be replaced.
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Old 02-15-2015, 03:32 PM   #17
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With the plastic PEX lines (& with wiring too), you'll want to get those rubber grommets made to fit the holes in the frame through which you run the lines, in order to prevent chafing from cutting thru the lines over time & movement on the road (more of a problem in trailers than stationary buildings).

I know that Vintage Trailer Supply sells the rubber grommets in 3 or so sizes/diameters, but there are probably other sources too.

If it's an afterwards addition of the grommets, then you can also slit them, insert around the line, & re-glue the rubber together with any automotive rubber adhesive once inserted onto the frame member holes.

PS - Odd to have 2 posts on essentially the same topic the same day, so some may be helpful on the other ...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f163...ml#post1581368


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Old 02-15-2015, 03:47 PM   #18
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FYI,,, don't do like the PO did with our 72 overlander.. He used 3/4" PEX from one end to the other. Problem is,, it takes 3 gallons of water flow to get hot water too the kitchen.. Just adds unneeded waste to the holding tank...

With the flow restrictors built in and the 12 volt pump low volume water flow,, why did he use 3/4" ???
3/8" would have done a fine job I feel and am planning to redo it all this spring when the weather warms up some. Sodbust..
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Old 02-15-2015, 04:56 PM   #19
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Pex with standard crimp rings works great. If you need to remove one after installation I use a Dremel tool with little cutoff wheel to split the crimp ring. It is very easy and cheaper than Sharkbite fittings.

Of course, as others said, you have to plan the job carefully so you don't have to get your crimp tool into inaccessible places.
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Old 02-16-2015, 12:17 AM   #20
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I too like PEX. There are a couple of points worth mentioning:
When plumbing, prefabricate outside of your cabinets and enclosures as much as possible to prevent physical contortion requirements while crimping. This is how the factory gets all the plumbing and wire in those impossible places. The Dremel tool clamp cutting idea works really well.
Also, a word of caution on Sharkbite. You may get away without leaks on the pressure side of your water system, but I will guarantee you vacuum leaks on the fresh water side of the water pump.
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Old 02-16-2015, 04:39 PM   #21
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Using Pex piping along with crimp rings is a no-brainer. I also agree with Sodbust about not using three-quarter inch Pex. I re plumbed my Tradewind using half inch and 3/8 inch Pex.
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Old 02-16-2015, 05:30 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Thomasmg View Post
I want to replace copper with pex. No leaks, but I I want to update and maybe save a few pounds hauling. Advise?
I replaced all of the copper lines in my 1976 31' Sovereign with Pex back in 2001. No problems or leaks since then Here is pointer if you have the center bath like mine. The water line runs from the back corner (drivers side) of the trailer under the bed mounted on the side wall, through the center closet up to the cabinet in the kitchen. Then makes a 90 degree turn to the curb side and runs under the floor over to the kitchen sink area to connect to the kitchen faucet and then back to the shower, bath faucet, toilet and water heater. As it turned out the PO had a leak under the floor section and had cut a hole in the floor to fix it, then replaced the section he cut out. I was able to use the same hole in the floor to run the Pex. But if I were to do it all over again I would avoid the Drivers side all together since there are no water connections on that side. Run the Pex accros the back under the beds and the cabinet between the beds on each side and then up along the curb side. Then you don't need to mess with the section under the floor. Good Luck
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Old 03-19-2016, 01:22 PM   #23
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We're in the process of buying a 1971 25' Trade Wind. The plumbing is currently inoperable - what's the average cost to replace the whole plumbing system?
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Old 03-19-2016, 01:50 PM   #24
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We're in the process of buying a 1971 25' Trade Wind. The plumbing is currently inoperable - what's the average cost to replace the whole plumbing system?
Parts or labor ?

I assume you're talking the fresh water side, not the black.

The costs are relatively low in terms of parts - the trailers just aren't that big. However, getting at all the plumbing will require removing most of the interior, which is a big, but doable job. To have someone do it is $$$; these
trailers had plastic bathrooms which take a beating on disassembly atfer 40 years.

I'd seriously get the plumbing working if it doesn't leak, and try camping in the trailer. Figure out what you want to do with it, and how much you're up for doing yourself.

We replaced all the plumbing w/ PEX gradually as we rebuilt our '71 Tradewind completely. Barbie and I are perhaps a bit handier than most. Take a look at our blog below for some ideas. We've had a grand time working on the trailer together...

- Bart
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Old 03-19-2016, 02:27 PM   #25
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We have a '76 Ambassador with rear bath and switching over to Pex did not require removing cabinets but was a little challenging for the tub/shower. All other piping was relatively easy to reach. I started in the back and first took photos of the original layout. Them I started working on the cold water first and then the hot side. I used Shark fittings for most joints which are pricey but can be disconnected if needed.

The bathroom sink faucet in ours can be (barely) reached through the rear hatch. The water heater area can be reached through the panel behind the toilet and water heater cabinet.

The pipes going forward to the kitchen just follow the curbside curve of the trailer and go under the closet and twin bed so access is good in those places. I used plastic anchors for the Pex about every 3 feet and one before and after any valves or fittings for support. I also ran the Pex through old garden hose around the rear curve to prevent chaffing (hopefully). So far all is well 5 years later.

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Old 03-19-2016, 02:45 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by dennis3751 View Post
We have a '76 Ambassador with rear bath and switching over to Pex did not require removing cabinets but was a little challenging for the tub/shower. All other piping was relatively easy to reach. I started in the back and first took photos of the original layout. Them I started working on the cold water first and then the hot side. I used Shark fittings for most joints which are pricey but can be disconnected if needed.

The bathroom sink faucet in ours can be (barely) reached through the rear hatch. The water heater area can be reached through the panel behind the toilet and water heater cabinet.

The pipes going forward to the kitchen just follow the curbside curve of the trailer and go under the closet and twin bed so access is good in those places. I used plastic anchors for the Pex about every 3 feet and one before and after any valves or fittings for support. I also ran the Pex through old garden hose around the rear curve to prevent chaffing (hopefully). So far all is well 5 years later.

Dennis
We have no rear hatch... the fittings were well hidden in the bathroom.

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Old 03-19-2016, 03:50 PM   #27
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1976 31' Sovereign
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Thanks for replying guys. We're up in Edmonton, Alberta where it's below freezing mark about 6 months out of the year - lack of winterization is what the current owner thinks did in the plumbing. We hope that we can replace the plumbing ourselves with the help of a couple plumbing friends. We're heading to look through the trailer tomorrow - it's 3 hours from here. They've already told us the plumbing isn't working, so hopefully we'll be able to get a look at it to see what is going on. Any links you can recommend for inspection tips?
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Old 03-19-2016, 03:54 PM   #28
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1976 31' Sovereign
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barts View Post
Parts or labor ?

I assume you're talking the fresh water side, not the black.

The costs are relatively low in terms of parts - the trailers just aren't that big. However, getting at all the plumbing will require removing most of the interior, which is a big, but doable job. To have someone do it is $$$; these
trailers had plastic bathrooms which take a beating on disassembly atfer 40 years.

I'd seriously get the plumbing working if it doesn't leak, and try camping in the trailer. Figure out what you want to do with it, and how much you're up for doing yourself.

We replaced all the plumbing w/ PEX gradually as we rebuilt our '71 Tradewind completely. Barbie and I are perhaps a bit handier than most. Take a look at our blog below for some ideas. We've had a grand time working on the trailer together...

- Bart
Does you're have the rear bathroom? I think they said this one has all the plumbing underneath. Knowing that, you're saying we'll need to gut most of the trailer to replace the plumbing?
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