Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 03-08-2013, 11:38 AM   #1
Rivet Master
Globie64's Avatar
1964 19' Globetrotter
The Sea Ranch , California
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 1,377
Images: 18
Blog Entries: 3
Sharkbite blowout

We arrived at our campsite in Carmel Valley last night in the rain and dark, got the Globie hooked up and poured something to drink, and the sound of the rain got.... louder and closer, almost like it was inside. It was inside- a hot water pex sharkbite connection had blown out, fortunately where I could get to it. Also fortunately, I had put in ball valves to isolate the fixtures, so I could turn it off and still have cold water. Off to the most likely local place to buy another sharkbite piece to replace the one that failed. Maybe i didn't secure the pipe adequately and it vibrated apart? I was able to shove everything back together, but under pressure, the pex worked it's way out of the fitting in about 10 seconds. The pressure didn't seem excessive, and I never turn on the spigot to the trailer more than a quarter turn to start with. I'd enjoy any words of wisdom or otherwise. Thanks

Wherever you go, there you are
Globie64 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2013, 11:44 AM   #2
Wise Elder
Jammer's Avatar
2010 30' Classic
Vintage Kin Owner
South of the river , Minnesota
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 4,020

Sharkbite blowouts are usually caused by either:

1) pipe not inserted far enough into the sharkbite, or
2) not cutting the end of the pipe square.

There is a place and a time for Sharkbite and similar fittings (the big-box stores sell ones made by Watts around here) but they are not as reliable as crimped connections.

To learn to see below the surface, you must adjust your altitude
Jammer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2013, 11:48 AM   #3
Rivet Master
dkottum's Avatar
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Battle Lake , Minnesota
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 6,828
When the hot water heater is turned on there is expansion in the system, that can cause various leaks, or undo a weak connection. Follow these threads about cures for that problem:

doug k
dkottum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2013, 11:51 AM   #4
Rivet Master
crispyboy's Avatar
1994 30' Excella
alexandria , Kentucky
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,451
Images: 3
I would measure the depth of the sharkbite fitting and mark this on the pipe. Push the pipe in as far as you can in relation to the mark on the pipe. Try to retract the pipe to see if the teeth bite into the pipe.

When I replumbed my first trailer with pex I used the quick connect fittings from Lowes. While they were not Sharkbite fittings though they worked similarly. The pex had to be perfectly square to the fitting or else they would leak. I tore them out and returned them. I purchased a Zurn crimp tool and associated fittings. No problems thereafter. I would keep the quick connect fittings as an emergency backup in the trailer toolbox.
Steve, Christy, Anna and Scout (Border Collie)

1994 30'11" Excella - rear twin
2009 Dodge 2500, 6 Speed Auto, CTD, Quad Cab, Short Bed
Hensley with adjustable stinger

WBCCI # 3072
AIR # 6035
crispyboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2013, 11:55 AM   #5
65th Anniversary CLIPPER
masseyfarm's Avatar
1996 36' Clipper Bus
Tub City , British Columbia
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 3,184
Images: 49
The square cut of the pex is the key to sharkbite installation. I've been there.

"LOVE and LOSS, are two of the greatest emotions one can experience. -- I went to school to learn about "WHAT GOES UP MUST COME DOWN" but I had to live my life to learn the lesson of: 'WITH LOVE THERE WILL BE SORROW'."
David Stewart. (after loosing my NAVIGATOR)
masseyfarm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2013, 12:08 PM   #6
Rivet Master
Globie64's Avatar
1964 19' Globetrotter
The Sea Ranch , California
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 1,377
Images: 18
Blog Entries: 3
Hi, wow, thanks for the quick responses. The end is cut square and it was in all the way- I have about a dozen other sharkbites in the trailer and no problems.... so far. I'm not a plumber, but have plumbed two homes with copper and ABS myself, so I know something, maybe just enough to be dangerous, but have had good success. I will go through the other posts that you linked to. It's great to have this sounding board when something goes wrong, rather than being literally out in the wilderness alone! Even so, it was a great night in the trailer, good food and wine and reading, and a good night's sleep.
Wherever you go, there you are
Globie64 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2013, 02:10 PM   #7
Rivet Master
mandolindave's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 2,086
Images: 4
I had a Sharkbite leak in the house

The problem was that weight of the water made the connection bow. I straightened it, and supported it. To be safe, keep it straight and figure a way to support the line near the fitting.
mandolindave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2013, 02:49 PM   #8
Restorations done right
Commercial Member
Frank's Trailer Works's Avatar
1962 26' Overlander
1961 26' Overlander
Vintage Kin Owner
Currently Looking...
Baltimore , Maryland
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 5,547
Images: 2
Is it possible that you undid that fitting once while putting it all together? They can be disconnected and used again, but the teeth that bite the pipe and deform ever so slightly. I never trust them after they were set once.
Watts type fittings are made of plastic, shark bite fittings are bronze cast with plastic innards. The two are very different. I used Watts type once on my own trailer and would never use them again except in an extreme situation. Crimped on fittings are bullet proof. They never leak except the plastic swivel unions when cross threaded or over tightened.
Frank's Trailer Works is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2013, 05:09 PM   #9
Rivet Master
Commercial Member
lewster's Avatar
Currently Looking...
Naples, FL , Hood River, OR
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 6,793
Sharkbites and their twin....Gatorbites, both have a depth gauge for different sizes of tubing so you can mark them to be certain that they are fully inserted. I would highly suggest using one if you use these connectors.

I have never had one of these, or Sea-Tech plastic fittings get loose or blow out, and I use a lot of them every day.

Lew Farber...RVIA Certified Master Tech...ABYC Certified Master Marine Electrician
lewster is offline   Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities

Copyright 2002-2015 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:25 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.